Don’t miss the 6th Annual Collaborating for Education & Research Forum on February 23, 2013 from 8:15 a.m. – 2:00 p.m. in Jordan Hall of Science on the campus of the University of Notre Dame. We’ve compiled a wonderful program for this year’s event!
SPECIAL GUEST Glenda Ritz – Indiana Superintendent of Public Instruction
On the Road to High Quality Instruction: Creating a Culture of Support for Teachers
MICHIANA SCIENCE AND TECHNOLOGY CENTER PLANNING
President Greg Jones will present an overview of the MSTCi Strategic Plan
LEARN more about Teacher Quality Metrics
REVIEW great STEM Related Opportunities for Teachers & Students
MEET new collaborators in STEM engagement activities
VISIT the lunchtime Project Fair & register for various summer activities
ENJOY a free continental breakfast and lunch
RECEIVE 5 PGPs for participating (teachers only)
REGISTRATION IS FREE, BUT SPACE IS LIMITED.
To register, visit events.michianastem.org.
Please register by Feb 20th to attend.
Continental breakfast begins 8:15a.m.
Program begins promptly at 8:50a.m.
If you have already registered, but cannot attend, please contact email@example.com.
It’s early to tell, but it looks like we’re in for quite a show later this year. Comets can be astonishingly beautiful “pokes” from the cosmos, giving us a glimpse of natural processes that are typically too long in duration or too far in distance to make much of a cultural impact. This new comet could provide an exceptional educational moment. And unlike last year’s transit of Venus, no one saw this one coming…until just recently. Watch the four minute story, below.
Comet Hale-Bopp provided a nice show nearly two decades ago. A South Bend Tribune article encouraging even new amateur astronomers to photograph the spectacle drew me into astroimaging. Below is an image I took, following those published instructions, with an ordinary SLR camera and print film–remember print film?–my first night out. Comet ISON could provide as good, and potentially much better, a target for new astroimagers. Big fun is on its way.
To whet your appetite for the big ISON show in the Fall, watch this video about a naked-eye comet that should peak on March 12 and 13 this year. March 5 and 12 are other key viewing dates.
We are pleased to invite you to Collaborating for Education and Research Forum VI to be held at Notre Dame’s Jordan Hall of Science on Saturday, February 23, 2013 from 8:30am to 2pm. The Forum is sponsored by the National Science Foundation and Notre Dame to foster a collegial approach to STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics) education and research in Michiana. We will be discussing the opportunities and challenges facing the local STEM community. In previous years some 350 STEM professionals have participated in these Fora.
This year we will be offering local K-12 STEM teachers and administrators who register and participate in the entire event a Certificate for 5 State of Indiana Professional Growth Points.
For more information and to register please visit: Forum VI Registration We will welcome last minute registrations, but for planning purposes it would be helpful if you would register by Thursday, Feb 21.
If you have colleagues who you believe would appreciate knowing about the forum, consider forwarding this their way:)
For more information please call Therese Blacketor at 574-631-1264.
Dr. Steven Dick, Former NASA Chief Historian, will present a public lecture in Notre Dame’s Digital Visualization Theater, Jordan Hall of Science, on Saturday, February 23rd at 7 PM.
In 2006 Pluto was controversially demoted to dwarf planet status. This infamous episode is the point of departure for a discussion of the nature of discovery over the last 400 years of telescopic astronomy. What constitutes a “new class” of astronomical object? Who decides if a spiral galaxy, quasar, or pulsar is a new class? Has dark matter really been “discovered”? And how do these claims come to be accepted among scientists and the public?
Did you know that Hubble Space Telescope (HST) observers rely–sometimes–on the ground-based observations of amateur astronomers to determine the best use of their space-based instrument? Below is an American Association of Variable Star Observers (AAVSO) announcement of a request for help: observers plan to view a (“cataclysmic“) variable star on January 11 and 12, but can only get the data they need if the star is behaving at a certain way (“not in outburst”) for the Hubble to observe it. Trouble is, the pattern of behavior for the star isn’t well enough known for the team using the Hubble to be sure that star won’t be in that unacceptable state. So they are asking from help from the broader community of variable star observers. (You can join, by the way…they’ll train you. Visit http://www.aavso.org/outreach.) At the Notre Dame QuarkNet Center, we’ve had high school teacher and student teams participate in this sort of citizen-science for years. (See Bremen HS astronomy educator Aaron McNeely’s blog on his team’s asteroid discoveries; here’s one student’s investigation into variable stars and the work of the AAVSO.)
When teachers and students are effectively invited into the research community in this way, it looks a lot like science education. What else, other than effective invitation into the community, would we want out of science education: when new members take on the values, the tools, the culture of the research community as members, what else are they lacking? But if they remember long lists of facts and can spout theories without even being aware of, let alone belong to, the community that generates those facts and theories, we might well ask: “so what?” Perhaps it is the centrality of the research community that has been missing in STEM education. But it doesn’t have to be that way. The AAVSO and many other organizations are developing a craft of issuing effective invitations into STEM community. In my view, the best way to promote STEM education–and the associated prosperity that comes with a vibrant STEM community–is to promote integrated STEM community where ever you can. Make connections wherever you can, and maintain them. That’s what AAVSO is doing.
Here’s the text of the AAVSO announcement. (Just click it to view the published notice.)
Via email from astronomer extraordinaire Chuck Bueter:
“Tonight is a good night to look up. The International Space Station zooms over Michiana from 6:34 p.m. to 6:39ish, southwest to northeast. You can’t miss it, so take a friend or family member outside with you.
Then the Geminid meteor shower happens late into the night and morning darkness. I’ve been watching some dazzling Geminds the past few nights. The weather forecast is favorable (again, in Michiana), and the moon is nearly new, so out of sight. For details see “Go Outside December 13-14″ at http://www.nightwise.org/blog/. ”
If you haven’t seen a show in the Digital Visualization Theatre at Notre Dame’s Jordan Hall of Science, you’ll want to catch this one. (If you have, you already know you want to see another:) DVT Director Keith Davis will provide a stunning visual tour of the cosmos and our place in it next Friday evening, November 9th at 7:00 PM. The DVT seats about 150 participants, so come a bit early to get your seats.
Three astronomy events are coming to Michiana in mid-November. First, on Saturday, November 17, the Michiana Astronomical Society (MAS) is gathering on the plaza at Villa Macri after 9 pm to watch the Leonid meteor shower. Dress warm, bring a lawn chair, and await shooting stars patiently.
Two days later, on Monday, November 19, people who are interested in buying a telescope for the holidays can drop into the Lions Room of the downtown Mishawaka library anytime from 4 PM to 7 PM for advice. Veteran telescope user Jim Hopkins of Naperville, IL, will be on hand to speak one-on-one with inquiring buyers.
Third, after the telescope buying dialogue, the regular meeting of the MAS will feature Dave Brunsting speaking about Michiana Rocketry. The meeting begins at 7 PM, with the talk covering “almost everything you ever wanted to know about hobby rocketry.”