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The Connected Classroom

Information on and from EducationPlus' Learning Division

Tag Archives: science

code classIn this full-day, hands-on workshop, coding is presented using drag & drop programming in a game-like, constructivist atmosphere. Today’s group, with instructor Debbie Fucoloro, are exploring the basics of programming by completing a series of tasks & puzzles. Those attending will leave EducationPlus with an understanding of how computer programs and their language work, as well as a desire to share the excitement of learning how to code with their students once the school year starts. What a great to incorporate science, technology, engineering and math into the classroom!

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The EducationPlus Learning Department is proud to support the ARCHS Spring Institute for Early Childhood & Youth Development Professionals.  ARCHS is hosting a full day of professional learning opportunities with a fantastic lineup of leading edge STEAM experts from across the St. Louis region.

professional learningARCHS hopes educators will take advantage of the expertise from  EducationPlus, Box Cars & One Eyed Jacks, Gateway Greening, The Magic House, Quirkles, St. Louis Science Center, University of Missouri 4-H Robotics, and more on this full day of learning.

The spring institute is designed to offer ways to learn from area educational leaders, as well as from each other with a focus on STEAM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts & Math) from 8 am – 3:30 pm on Saturday, April 5, for just $45.

EdPlus Learning Consultants will be providing professional development all day. Learn more and register online here;   see the agenda for additional details.

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stemCommon Core State Standards, College and Career Readiness Standards, and the Next Generation Science Standards place great emphasis on a multi-disciplinary approach that increases interconnectedness among all disciplines and engineering.  “Putting the “E” in STEM: Strategies for Training Engineers In Your Modern Classroom” offers middle and high school teachers from all disciplines an introduction to essential principles of engineering, places to find resources, easily accessible tools, and basic ways to begin including engineering principals into their current curriculum. Curriculum coordinators and administrators are also encouraged to attend. Learn more from Dr. Bridgette Davis of Louisiana State University’s School of Education on April 21. Registration is available online; members pay $150 for a full day of learning.

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Thomas Jefferson | Flickr The three-week institute Thomas Jefferson: Personality, Character and Public Life, offered by the National Endowment for the Humanities, will take place at Boston University from July 8 to 26, 2013.  Speakers include R. B. Bernstein, Peter Hatch, Joanne Freeman, Jan Lewis, and Peter Onuf. The institute will seek to deepen our understanding of one of the most important figures in American history, a figure who is fascinating, influential, inspiring, and embattled.

Focusing on Jefferson’s personality and character and connecting them to his public career will be the theme of the first week, followed by an examination of  his views on religion, his role as a family man, and his correspondence with John Adams. In the final week, the Institute turns to slavery, science, and money.

The application and further information (like the stipend for teachers is $2,700; itinerary and speaker bios) is at the institute’s website.

During the three weeks, participants will also ponder some larger questions:

  • Is the intimate life knowable?
  • Does it connect to the public man or woman?
  • Do we each fashion our own version of Jefferson to reflect our values and needs?
  • What is Jefferson’s legacy?

Discussion will include pedagogical questions:

  • What role should biography and primary sources play in history instruction?
  • How does teaching biographies fit with state standards and high stakes testing?
  • How do we teach intimate information about famous Americans to young people?
  • How can teachers be honest and realistic yet still inspire students and encourage citizenship?

Learn more by visiting

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Getting young students excited about and involved in STEM (science, technology, engineering, and mathematics) at the primary and secondary school level is critical – its one of the keys to shifting them from being a group that knows the basics of new technology to a group that knows how to harness technology to create and innovate.

Through a variety of programs and tools, Google hopes to make STEM learning engaging for primary and secondary students and inspire the next generation of big ideas.

Come learn about the various Google tools designed specifically to encourage students to study STEM subjects and learn about the various careers that await them in these fields. Topics of conversation will include:

• MIT App Inventor • Google Science Fair • YouTube Space Lab • Google’s Exploring Computational Thinking website • Khan Academy video library • Advanced Google Search • Google Scholar • Google Books • Google Earth • Google SketchUp • YouTube for Schools • Google+ for Educators •

​A wealth of Google tools, apps and websites are available at no charge to STEM teachers and their students.  Learn how to utilize these in your classroom to meet your curricular needs.

what you need to know for this workshop
Date offered: November 5, 2012
Time: 8:30 a.m. – 3:30 p.m.
Where: CSD 1460 Craig Road, St. Louis, MO 63146
Cost: $95 CSD member; $135 non-member
One graduate credit available through Lindenwood University for $60.
PRE-REQUISITE: You must have a Google Account and/or Gmail.
Registration required

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We just learned about this from our friend Kathleen Frank from the Challenger Learning Center in Wheeling, West Virginia: McGraw-Hill Education launched the STEM Innovative Educator Awards to recognize & reward teachers who are finding innovative ways to reach today’s students. The awards, known as the STEMIEs, will acknowledge teachers who are pioneering effective techniques to engage their students in science, technology, engineering, or math – fields of study critical to our nation’s economic growth.

Teachers can enter by submitting a 2-minute video, a short essay, and lesson plan that demonstrate an innovative lesson or other project from their classroom. First place will receive $15,000, second place gets $5,000 and third place wins $2,500, plus McGraw-Hill will grant an additional $2,500 in other awards.

Think about it, do you:
• Have an innovative math lesson?
• Have an interesting idea for math game or science activity?
• Want to share your most intriguing science project?

… because, they are looking for:
• Engaging/interactive lessons
• Unique uses of technology in the classroom
• Innovative and differentiated instruction techniques
• Teaching tips you would give your first-year-teacher self!

In addition to the judging panel, members of the general public will have the opportunity to vote online for their favorite video. Applications will be accepted through May 31, 2012. For more information about the STEMIEs, please visit

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According to, Independence Seaport Museum focuses on engaging visitors with the rich past, present and future of the Delaware and Schuylkill rivers by building on vibrant collections, historical archives and engaging programming. ISM focuses on trade, commerce, shipping, immigration, ship building, military, fishing, recreation, transportation, science and technology. This content provider has offered videoconferences since 2010.

The museum recently posted several program offerings that sound really interesting, including:

Their videoconferences range in cost from $125 per session to $145 per session. I’m looking forward to connecting some St. Louis area schools with these programs!

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Tracking Student Learning with VoiceThread
Date: June 17 from  8:30 am – 3:30 pm
Cost: $138 CSD member; $214 non-member  (One Graduate Credit Available)
Location: Cooperating School Districts, 1460 Craig Rd
voiceethread screenshot
A VoiceThread is a free, online, collaborative, multimedia slide show that holds images, documents, and videos and allows people to leave comments in 4 ways – using voice, text, audio file, or video.  VoiceThread can be used for assessment, foreign language, field trips, art, language arts, social studies, math and science.  In the VoiceThread environment, students and teachers can safely share their voices on the global stage.  In this class, participants will create a project using photos and audio commenting using VoiceThread to document student learning across several content areas.  Learn how this multi-media free resource can be used in your classroom!

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creative commons astronautChallenger Learning Center St. Louis, in a partnership with Cooperating School Districts, is now offering “A Day in the Life of an Astronaut” over videoconference. In this videoconference, students (grades 1-4) will learn about the daily activities of astronauts, including typical work activities, spacewalks, exercise, going to the bathroom, sleeping and eating in space.  Students will also see real astronaut food and a short video clip of astronauts “playing” with their food.

This videoconference, like “The Body in Space,” is less than an hour- it clocks in at 20-25 minutes, depending on the grade level participating. Keywords to help students prep for this videoconference include space, space travel, astronauts, science, gravity, international space station, and space shuttle. It’s $85 for non New Links to New Learning members and $75 for New Links to New Learning members. To sign up, contact Rebecca Morrison at CSD. Please note, both Challenger Learning Center St. Louis programs are offered on Tuesdays and Thursdays only, and at least two weeks advanced notice with requesting is required.

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St. Louis
Videoconference: The Body in Space
Grade Level(s): 5-8th (can be customized for lower or higher grade levels)
Length: 30-35 minutes
Availability: Tuesdays or Thursdays only, minimum 14 days notice
Cost: $85 per program ($75 for New Links to New Learning members), $80 per program if requesting three or more for the same day
Register with Rebecca Morrison at CSD:

During this interactive program live from Cooperating School Districts, students will learn about the science behind the effects of space travel on the human body. They will participate in hands-on activities and discussions about the environment of space, space adaptation sickness, fluid shift and its effects on body organs, and bone and muscle atrophy with a Challenger Learning Center St. Louis educator.

Missouri GLE’s addressed during this videoconference:
1.2.C.a  Recognize energy from the Sun is transferred to Earth in a range of wavelengths and energy levels, including visible light, infrared radiation and ultraviolet radiation
2.2.B.a  Recognize every object exerts a gravitational force of attraction on every other object
2.2.B.b  Recognize that an object’s weight is a measure of the gravitational force of a planet/moon acting on that object
2.2.B.c  Compare the amount of gravitational force acting between objects (which is dependent upon their masses and the distance between them)
3.2.C.a  Recognize the major life processes carried out by the major systems of plants and animals
3.2.F.a Predict the response the body may take to maintain internal balance during an environmental change
6.2.C.a  Describe Earth’s gravity as a force that pulls objects on or near the Earth toward the Earth without touching the object

IL Learning Standards addressed:
12.A.1a  Identify and describe the component parts of living things and their major functions
12.C.2a  Describe and compare types of energy including light, heat, sound, electrical and mechanical

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