ISTE 2014

Atlanta, GA
June 28 – July 1, 2014
Conference Website

The International Society for Technology in Education (ISTE) is the premier membership association for educators and education leaders engaged in improving learning and teaching by advancing the effective use of technology in PK–12 and teacher education. The theme for ISTE 2014 is “Expanding Horizons.” Teachers, tech coordinators, district administrators, and media specialists will find formal sessions, informal venues, and networking areas to help achieve their ed tech goals and expand their horizons.

Sunday, June 29

Carolyn StaudtBeing smart with graphs

Carolyn Staudt

4:15–5:15 PM, GWCC A311/312

SmartGraphs are digital objects that “know” about themselves, providing scaffolds to students to help them learn about graphs and the concepts conveyed in graphs.

Digital SmartGraphs can be authored or customized by teachers and accept inputs from students’ responses, sketches, functions, models, and probes. The software analyzes the graphs for the kinds of features that experts recognize and then engages students in conversations that instruct and assess student knowledge.

SmartGraphs is guided by collaboration between the Concord Consortium and the Pennsylvania State Department of Education Classrooms for the Future program, through which 145,000 laptop computers are deployed to serve 500,000 students. Other states, districts, or schools that are also interested in providing meaningful software to help students interpret visual graphical data from existing graphs or real time data collected with probes will thrill with this free open source software tool!

Monday, June 30

Sensing Science: Temperature Readiness for K-2

Carolyn Staudt & Jamie Broadhead

2:15–3:15 PM, GWCC B208

Sensing Science uses sensors and computer models that enable K-2 students to interact with their assumptions and reflect on their actions and archived data.

Sensing Science has one major goal: To discover what preconceptions young children (5 to 7 years old) hold in regards to the nature of temperature and heat and to determine whether these preconceptions form a progression of ideas leading towards accepted theory. This project funded by the National Science Foundation has formulated four research questions. Our first project year has been devoted to addressing the first two questions, which focus on revealing young children’s preconceptions of temperature and heat. We use the word preconceptions to indicate the naïve ideas that children hold before formal instruction. In year two, we will continue to investigate the first two research questions, addressing the latter two questions as time permits.

  • How can visualizations, data collection linked to everyday experiences, and student reflection integrated into creative exploration help reveal student preconceptions and provide valuable information on K-2 student understanding of temperature and heat?
  • Can the use of visualizations and data collection via digital sensing technology provide better models and “tools for thinking” to advance K-2 students’ understandings of temperature and heat?
  • How can the use of replay of video and reflection aid in addressing K-2 student preconceptions and improve student understanding of heat and temperature?
  • How does student ability to learn with visualizations and data collection enhanced by digital sensing technology change over time?

Tuesday, July 1

Innovative technology in science inquiry using probes and models

Carolyn Staudt

8:30–9:30 AM, GWCC A311/312

We’ll show you how you can customize middle and secondary classroom activities with probes and open source models using a simple web-based authoring portal.

The Innovative Technology in Science Inquiry (ITSI) project prepares diverse students for careers in information technologies by engaging them in exciting, inquiry-based science projects that use computational models and real-time data acquisition. ITSI has produced dozens of activities in engineering, middle school engineering, earth, physical and life sciences and high school physics, chemistry and biology using a range of commercial sensors as well as open source or research-based software, including Next Generation Molecular Workbench, NetLogo, Physics Education Technology (PhET) and Seismic Eruption. The project has been able to create a wealth of standards-based activities by leveraging the work of prior National Science Foundation (NSF)-funded projects and by authoring in an online template-based interface.

Teachers can customize ITSI science inquiry activities easily to fit their classrooms and engage their local communities using the web-based interface. This workshop will allow you to try out the some of the activities and see how they would fit in your own classroom. Project materials are free and available online.

ITSI activities are embedded in software that allows students to read the activity, answer questions, make predictions and collect data, analyze results, run a computer-based model, take and annotate snapshots of that model, and save their work within one application. It also allows the collection of formative and summative assessment data, which is available to the teachers. The software is not specific to any sensor manufacturer or platform. It is designed to work with whatever curriculum, computers, and sensors schools may have or adopt.

This NSF-funded project provides professional development (PD) activities for teachers in four states: Alaska, Iowa, Kansas, and Virginia. As part of the extensive PD effort—which includes both face-to-face and online components—teachers study their implementations through the use of VideoPapers, peer review activities of others, and share their analysis with other participants.

Free STEM resources from the Concord Consortium

Carolyn Staudt

10:15–11:15 AM, GWCC B309

Learn to use hundreds of free Concord Consortium activities developed for grades 3 and up that integrate probes and models, including the award-winning Molecular Workbench.

We have pioneered learning innovations for science, mathematics, and engineering since 1994 and have created hundreds of STEM activities based on probeware and computer-based modeling and simulation, including the Molecular Workbench, which was awarded the prestigious Science Prize for Online Resources in Education (SPORE) and grant funding from Google to be adapted for the Web.

Concord Consortium curricula focus on facilitating “digital inquiry,” allowing students to investigate phenomena and questions that would otherwise be inaccessible or extremely difficult to explore. With rich models and simulations, students can examine the fastest of chemical reactions, manipulate the world of genes and DNA, or compress millennia into seconds to unlock the gradual mysteries of evolution. With probes and sensors connected to real-time graphs, students can easily explore the world around them, transforming abstract concepts such as motion and temperature into compelling, responsive visualizations.

We have embedded models and probes into an extensive collection of research-based digital curricula that take full advantage of computer networking, collaboration, assessment of student performance, and feedback to teachers.

Classroom research shows that these materials can help students learn deeply about science, engineering, and mathematics concepts that are often beyond the reach of traditional curricula. This collection of innovative curricula provides a compelling vision for the next generation of STEM curricula.

The Concord Consortium has also contributed hundreds of resources to the National Science Digital Library (NSDL).

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