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What are NESTA members working on?

  • 15 Jun 2023 8:30 AM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    The end of another school year is finally upon us.  These past weeks have been a flurry of final assessments, student support, senior goodbyes and of course, classroom organization.    But, I'm so happy to finally be granted the mental freedom to look ahead to next year, both in terms of NESTA ongoings and continuing my professional growth.  To that end, I'll briefly share some of my summer goals with all of you and encourage each of you to reach out to continue the conversation, work collaboratively or simply cheer me on :). 

    1) My professional read this summer is Ambitious Science Teaching by Mark Windschitl, Jessica Thompson, and Melissa Braaten.  

    2) My NESTA collaboration goal is to reach to other organizations to discover how professional educational organizations can best support each other and our communities.

    3) My NESTA improvement goal is to lead a working/reframing of the Windows to the Universe website.  It's time for a visual refresh and to review and improve the content as well as its' accessibility as a resource in today's classrooms.

    4) My classroom preparation goal is to perform a complete overhaul of my Chemistry classroom curriculum.  With the support of my supervisor, I will be taking the ideas (perhaps framework) from OpenSciEd chemistry curriculum but putting my ESS expertise spin on it.  As I rummage through ideas I'll happily share out in our Facebook PLC which is collaborative space only for our members.  So, I'm happy to journal my ideas and experiences there for all of you to share your thoughts.  

    There is certainly more..  but those are my BIG FOUR goals.    Hope you all have a productive, restful and re-invigorating summer filled with family, friends, time to explore and grow. 

    Wishing you all the best!

    Natalie Macke
    NESTA President (2022-2024)

  • 15 May 2023 6:27 PM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    May flowers surely follow April showers...   This is undoubtedly a universal sign for teachers to start thinking about how the lessons learned from the past can be best used to forge a bright and productive future for their classrooms.    So, if you are like me, you find it particularly difficult to wrap up the learning from this past year in your classroom as you start to be consumed by imagining the possibility of a better classroom for next year's students.  So while reality begs to keep me grounded, this Blog entry I will indulge my sensibilities to follow the fancy of my imagination to paint a future.

    How should I focus efforts of NESTA to effect change in both my classroom as well as other classrooms to support ESS education?

    This past year I've learned that volunteer work at NESTA is not too much different than what I've learned to anticipate from my own classroom in terms of ups and downs.  But regardless of the peaks and troughs, we can count on a do-over.  So this is what NESTA summer projects look like :

    1. Window to Universe is due for an overhaul of sorts.  Time for a visual refresh and content - update.  Members are encouraged to share their insights with our team.
    2. Our NESTA website needs a bit of  refining of sorts to better address specific audiences.  This summer we will be focusing on sharing information to help student-teachers and new teachers effectively implement 3-D Learning in their classrooms.  
    3. Just when you think you have teaching down to "science"of sorts...  looks like we have to "think again".  So my Chemistry classroom is getting a makeover of sort to incorporate more ideas presented in "OpenSciEd".  Time to consider how storylines can best be used in a manner to support student investigation and learning.  Access our Facebook PLC if you want to join in on the journey.
    4. My colleague Missy Holzer and I (Natalie Macke) will  be working on a storyline for NJ/NY educators to  use NJ's unique mining history to engage students in authentic investigations about Earth's natural resources.    We'll share our work at the GeoSTEM Academy , August 15, 2023 during a NESTA co-sponsored workshop at Sterling Hill Mining Museum.    I hope you will join us!

    Thank you all for embracing my imaginations for tomorrow's classroom!  


    Natalie Macke

    President of NESTA

  • 15 Apr 2023 9:19 AM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    Spring is in the air and that feeling of renewal is refreshing.  It was so nice to meet some of our members in person as NSTA, Atlanta this past March and have the opportunity to share what NESTA has to offer with others through our presence at the NOAA booth as well as during various workshop events.  

    The work of NESTA leadership continues and summer planning has officially begun.   We are excited to focus our attention and energy this summer to upgrade our Windows to the Universe website.  Please be on the look-out for a user survey so our upgrades can focus on the needs of paid members.  We are dedicated to continue the legacy of Window to the Universe to be a supportive and engaging tool for classroom use.  

    Exciting news from our recent NESTA  leadership elections.  We are happy that Chris Campbell (Region IV Director) and DeEtta Andersen (Region VI Director) will continue in their positions for another two years.  We're happy to also welcome back Dr. Mike Jabot in his new position as Region II Director.  Lastly, we have two new Directors at Large who bring a wealth of knowledge and connections to help NESTA increase outreach efforts and support our new initiative to engage educators through their classrooms with offerings through our NESTA Data Network.  Congratulations to Angie Rizzi and Diane Ripollone.  Angie Rizzi currently serves as the My NASA Data Task Lead which is coordinated out of the NASA Langley Research Center Science Directorate Earth Sciences group.  Diane, a mentor for the American Meteorological Society Education Program teaches science at Cardinal Gibbons High School in North Carolina.  We are so fortunate that these two amazing educators are willing to join the rest of us teacher volunteers working at NESTA to help make connections and offer opportunities that support Earth System Science and Space Science to K-16 educators and their classrooms. 

    NESTA will enjoy our new Spring beginnings and continue to work to ensure that quality Earth and Space Science Education if available for all generations.  Thank you to all that support these efforts through donating their time and resources.  You make a difference.

    Natalie Macke
    NESTA President

  • 05 Mar 2023 10:50 AM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    Just finished... but work in progress..  
    Check out our website dedicated to promoting NESTA member and NESTA affiliates/partner work at NSTA, Atlanta later this month!  All members are encouraged to let us know how they are participating.  Just send an email..

  • 19 Feb 2023 11:18 AM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    NESTA is really proud to of our journal, The Earth Scientist (TES).  Shout-out to our current editor, Peg Steffen who has curated, organized and published outstanding and informative issues these past years.  By happen-stance I started poking around our website and found that access to TES was a bit confusing and needed some updating to preserve our member benefit as well as highlight our sponsored issues.  Check out our updates and I encourage you to spend time with our past issues.    I hope to find a member or members to work with that will do exactly that so we can highlight some articles that are "oldies, but goodies" to share with the public!  If you are interested in librarian sort of position, let me know.

    Natalie Macke
    NESTA President

  • 17 Feb 2023 12:30 PM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    So as we inch closer to our big splash at the National Science Teachers Association Meeting, we are in full throttle mode preparing resources to share along with PD events and our Friends of Earth Science Reception.  Will you be at NSTA, Atlanta in March?  If so, let me know if you have a presentation you would like us to highlight or resource you are interested in sharing at the event.   Busy weekend coming up!

    NESTA President, Natalie Macke

  • 05 Feb 2023 12:43 PM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    Our Community Project Working Group has powered on to prepare our first Community Data Exploration Project!   We hope that we can engage teachers and classrooms while supporting teachers offering opportunities for authentic scientific investigation.     Registration for our first project will start in March!  Stay tuned..   


  • 23 Jan 2023 5:45 PM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    So.. I'm so excited for Thursday's meeting..   

    Representatives from NOAA and NESTA are getting together to discuss how NESTA can help NOAA bring the Ocean Today resources to more classrooms..    I learned today, our idea spurred on NOAA to offer a NSTA workshop just to introduce the Ocean Today resources.... We (the NESTA crew) will follow up with a session that helps teachers extend the resources to model using the resources for cooperative learning, addressing cross-cutting concepts and using science practices.  We'll give you the ideas and you run with it...  An opportunity to learn, create and share!...  My favorite type of professional development...  Now... just need to figure out to best do this without Internet access in Atlanta...    Stay tuned...  

    This is a great opportunity for teachers to have a peer-reviewed and  published lesson.   I would love to make this a NESTA thing...   Hmm.. "NESTA CREATES".  You will have a unique opportunity to highlight published work on your applications for science PD that we teachers love, love, like NOAA Teacher at Sea, AMS Project Ocean and Project Atmosphere and Polar-Trec.   Contact me if interested...     

  • 07 Jan 2023 10:23 PM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    So, I'm a huge advocate for students participating in authentic science investigations.  To that end, I met today with John McLaughlin form NOAA to chat a bit how NESTA can help support their service-learning projects..  If you are interested in joining the conversation, do lmk.

  • 04 Jan 2023 7:14 AM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    Looking forward to NSTA- Atlanta..   Once the schedule comes out..  we'll announce again!

    NESTA Collaborates with NOAA to Help Connect Students to our Nation’s Changing Coasts
    Our coasts are changing. Join the National Earth Science Teachers Association to explore creative ways to use NOAA Ocean Today video assets for sense-making of phenomena using cross-cutting concepts. Help your students discover personal connections to our coastal systems.

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