Episode 074: Resources for Conducting NGSS Aligned Professional Development

Lori Henrickson works at the curriculum level in her district in Nevada and is the state science teachers association executive director. On this episode, she shared her approach to NGSS-focused professional development and outlined for us how she conducted her sessions.

This past year, she focused on three main goals: student assessment, building relationships and connections between scientists and teachers, and identifying phenomena. Lori shared with us some helpful professional development resources to navigate through NGSS curriculum development.

Resources Mentioned in this Episode:

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Episode 073: Teaching about the Intersections of Biology, Race, and Racism

dei ngss race Jul 22, 2021

Dr. Jeanne Chowning and Hanako Osuga at Fred Hutch sat down with us to discuss some of the curricular work that they have done specifically focused on race, racism, and genetics.

They talked about how to navigate these topics in the classroom, touching on ideas such as how race is not the same as ancestry. They shared with us a series of lessons and a lesson sequence, covering big ideas of what is race and what race isn’t.

Moreover, they shared a reflective module to support teachers as they learn and unlearn information about the systems of oppression around us.

Resources mentioned in this episode:


Unit Overview: https://docs.google.com/document/d/1sp7StLhs88QcsNS4F9W6arRS6wXJbGhD1gABPuW6tN8/edit

Teacher Pre-Module:

Brian Donovan’s work: 

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Episode 072: Using Modeling as a Pedagogy in Chemistry

This week we had a conversation with Erica Posthuma, a current high school chemistry teacher. Erica shared with us some of the practices she has implemented as a “modeler” and how she helps students develop their own understandings from their observations and understandings.

Erica also discussed her journey as a teacher, including how she was affected by the pandemic and how modeling has changed how she approaches chemistry. Erica wraps up this episode discussing some of the avenues she has found to publish as a high school chemistry teacher.

Resources mentioned in this episode:

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Episode 071: MySci and Elementary Curriculum Development with Jeanne Norris

elementary mysci ngss Jun 24, 2021

This week we chatted with Jeanne Norris who is a part of the Washington University Institute for School Partnership. She discussed some of the features and benefits of the MySci program, which she helped develop.

This program provides teachers with quarterly kits, curriculum and professional development to incorporate high-quality science material in their classrooms.

Jeanne also discusses educative curriculum and some of the behind the scenes aspects of building elementary curriculum. She talks about how science can be tied to reading and math standards and help students grow holistically.

Resources mentioned in this episode:

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Essential NGSS Resources

ngss stem Jun 11, 2021

The Next Generation Science Standards (NGSS) were released in 2013 and offer an innovative approach to science education. This is accomplished through using phenomena as an anchor around which a lesson or unit is planned. Three-dimensional (3-D) learning is then added to the mix, which includes the use of Science and Engineering Practices (SEP), Crosscutting Concepts (CCC), and Disciplinary Core Ideas (DCI).

Many of you will already be familiar with these concepts. These ideas are the basics of NGSS instruction But for those who are new to the standards, we decided to create a page dedicated to revealing the essential aspects of the standards. Check it out here:

What is NGSS?

The content of the page is based in part on Margaret O'Sullivan's NGSS 101 video course. It is also designed to serve as a reference to further NGSS resources for those who wish to take a deeper dive into the standards.

Margaret believed in making it as easy as possible for teachers to understand and improve...

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Episode 070: Student Teaching NGSS in a Pandemic with Madison Levine and Rachel Lauzier

In this week’s podcast, we sat down with Madison Levine and Rachel Lauzier, two seniors in the Neag School of Education at the University of Connecticut. They discuss their student teaching experience this past spring and how they navigated being a pre-service teacher in a pandemic. The two of them touch upon hybrid teaching and the challenges they were faced with when balancing in person and at home students.

Moreover, they discuss resources they found helpful while facilitating a hybrid classroom and share with us their experience engaging students in NGSS practices.

Resources mentioned in this episode:

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NGSNavigators Podcast Encore #16 - Tamashi Hettiarachchi

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We have officially introduced Tamashi Hettiarachchi as the next host of the NGSNavigators Podcast, but we want to take the time to make sure our audience has the opportunity to get to know her and learn more about her experience and expertise in science education.

Tamashi previously appeared on Episode 54 of the NGSNavigators Podcast. In this episode, she spoke with Margaret about task-based discussion and strategies for orchestrating it in the classroom. Check out the original post for more resources on this topic.

A quote from Episode 54:
"In the end, the goal is for the class discussion to become an evidence-based explanation for whatever phenomena you present to the class. And I think especially in this kind of productive talk is something that's new to the classroom, and it's important to remember that this type of talk is new for your students and new for you as a teacher, so the transition takes...

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The Current State of Science Education - NGSNavigators Podcast

We are bursting with excitement about all the new things happening with NGS Navigators. As you may already know, NGS Navigators is now part of a nonprofit organization called The Margaret O’Sullivan STEM Foundation, Inc., which is dedicated to honoring the work and legacy of the founder of NGS Navigators.

With the changes comes exciting news, including the official launch of the podcast, with several new episodes coming soon.

This week's podcast is one to tune in for. Our board members, Dr. Todd Campbell, Jen Gutierrez, and Wanda Bryant introduce our new host of the podcast, Tamashi Hettiarachchi. Join us as we get to know our new host and for a lively and thought-provoking discussion on issues that affect us all in and out of the classroom. 

We are thrilled to have our wonderful host Tamashi on board and look forward to many new and exciting conversations to bring to you.

**Here is a link to the article mentioned in the episode: Army Ants and Their Guests

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In Remembrance: Interview with Margaret O'Sullivan

Presented with a new Introduction from Ellen Michalek, dear friend of Margaret and executive director of the Margaret O’Sullivan STEM Foundation:

What is the Margaret O’Sullivan STEM Foundation? We are a nonprofit organization operating under the NGSNavigators name to carry out the work that Margaret started.

NGS Navigators was founded by Margaret O’Sullivan in 2018. She had a passion for teaching science which led her to develop professional development for teachers K-12. She dove straight into the Next Generation Science Standards (NGSS) when they were released. She experienced, first hand, the positive transformations her students made with phenomena-based learning. This led her to become an active voice in the NGSS community. The NGS Navigators podcast became wildly popular as it provides relatable topics and endless resources for the science educator community.

We are at the one year mark when our founder and fearless leader Margaret O’Sullivan...

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NGSNavigators Podcast Encore #15 - David Grossman


This week we take a look back at Episode 44 of the NGSNavigators Podcast, which featured NGSS teacher David Grossman. He shared a number of great insights on ways teachers can take small steps toward implementing NGSS in their classrooms. He also discussed how he dove into implementing storylines in his classroom even though he was not an expert in the storyline topic at the time.

Be sure to check out the original Episode 44 blog post for these resources, show notes, and more!

You can listen to this episode on the player above, or also find this episode here:

View a list of NGSS resources related to this episode in the original post.

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Our Spring 5 day challenge kicks off March 24th. More details coming soon...In the meantime, join our Facebook community and let us know your NGSS professional development needs.

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