Category Archives: Next Gen Science Standards

Free webinars on science standards scheduled

The National Science Teachers Association (NSTA) is conducting a series of free web seminars in the coming months with the focus of each webinar on a different grade level.  The design of these 90 minute webinars is to deepen teacher understanding of how the three dimensions of the Framework (practices, core ideas and crosscutting concepts) are intended to be blended in classroom instruction. Expectations at each grade level will be examined along with the presentation of sample of teaching and learning. All webinars run from 6:30 to 8 p.m.

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Maine STEM Council names inaugural executive director

Dr. Thomas E. Keller has recently been appointed executive director of the Maine STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics) Council. The council was established by the Legislature in 2011 to “develop strategies for enhancing science, technology, engineering and mathematics education from prekindergarten through postsecondary education.” The council mandate also includes linking these STEM education strategies to those for workforce development in STEM fields.

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Learn to engage students with Next Gen Science Standards

Teachers and curriculum leaders are invited to attend the Maine Curriculum Leaders’ Association conference on the Framework for K-12 Science and the Next Generation Science Standards (NGSS) held Oct. 21-22. The event, “Engaging All Students with the NGSS,” will feature Brett Moulding, nationally-recognized NGSS implementation expert, as well as Maine science teachers.

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Science teachers needed for graph literacy pilot project

The Concord Consortium is recruiting 10 seventh- and eighth-grade science teachers for the Piloting Graph Literacy Activities in Maine project, funded by the National Science Foundation. During the past year, four pilot Maine teachers used more than 50 class sessions trying and commenting on new instructional materials designed to help students understand graphs, which are an important component of the Next Generation Science Standards and are used often in science (and math) textbooks, as well as newspapers and magazines.

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Maine assessments updates

The 26 states of the Smarter Balanced Assessment Consortium, of which Maine is one, are on target to administer the first Smarter Balanced assessment in spring 2015. That gives teachers and students the 2013-14 school year and most of the 2014-15 school year to prepare for the new assessments. You and your students (and their parents, too) can try out the practice tests online to experience what the new test will be like. Smarter Balanced will be administered via computer, a change that serves Maine well given the Maine Learning Technology Initiative has helped our students and educators become national leaders in computer readiness.

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Schools embrace first chance for choice of learning technology

AUGUSTA – For the first time since the Maine Learning Technology Initiative began in 2002, schools have made a choice in the solutions they will use for 21st century teaching and learning.

This fall, 39,457 students and educators will start using Apple’s iPad tablet ($266 per year, per seat with network), followed by 24,128 using Apple’s MacBook Air laptop ($319 per year, per seat with network) and 5,474 using the HP ProBook 4440 laptop which runs Microsoft Windows 7 ($286 per year, per seat with network).

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Commissioner Bowen to address Rockland Kiwanis Monday

ROCKPORT – Education Commissioner Stephen Bowen will speak to the Rockland Kiwanis Club Monday about his department’s commitment to seeing all Maine students leave school college and career ready.

In his remarks as the guest speaker at the June 10 lunchtime Kiwanis meeting at the Samoset Resort in Rockport, Commissioner Bowen will share how the Maine Department of Education is increasingly a resource to districts in developing and deploying the best practices that ensure educator effectiveness and high student achievement.

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Business leaders support Common Core standards

Recently, the Business Roundtable – a group of more than 200 chief executives from across the country – wrote in support of the continued implementation of Common Core State Standards. These leaders are the latest to come forward from the education and business communities to advocate for these higher standards that will position students to be successful after high school, and economies like Maine’s to benefit from that. Continue reading

Building leadership capacity to transform our schools

Today marks the launch of Maine DOE’s new School Improvement Webinar Series. It’s one of the many resources we’re making available to support the school improvement work initiated by our Maine School Performance Grading System.

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STEM education-industry collaboration a model to look to

Yesterday, Governor LePage and I celebrated our nationally competitive robotics teams and students who have received recognition at the national level for their accomplishments in science, technology, engineering and mathematics – known as STEM.

Maine should be proud of these innovative student leaders who received the Governor’s Promising STEM Awards. Continue reading