Science in the River City Workshops


(in person)
(in person)
(in person)
(on Zoom)
(on Zoom)

Workshops: October 25, 2022

Adapting and Modifying Investigations for Sensemaking
Kelli Quan

How can we adapt labs and activities for use in a sensemaking classroom? Rather than starting from scratch, explore ways to modify classic investigations to create meaningful and powerful sensemaking opportunities for your students that align to the science practices of the NGSS.

Strategies to Help Your Students Catch Up, Enjoy, and Gain Confidence in Science
Jay Brennan

Do you have students who are struggling to catch up? Let's visit strategies to help increase student success and engagement in science. Topics will cover warm-up strategies, in class activities, projects, and grading for success and retention.

Designed for Middle and High School teachers

Making Waves! How Earthquakes Are Used to See Inside the Earth
Julie Harr and Liz Johnson

Integrating Earth Science into your physics curriculum doesn't have to be a challenge. In this workshop, learn how different kinds of waves are used to map the interior layers of the Earth, and even see inside alien worlds!

Designed for High School teachers

Science Through the Winter Garden
Lorie Hammond

Explore how many K-2 NGSS science inquiries can be supported by simple winter-spring gardens, growing radishes and carrots in a large pot or garden plot. This hands on workshop will enable you to explore ready to go activities which go beyond farm to fork to cover important science and math standards.

Designed for Grade Levels K-2

Planet Formation for Biology Teachers: Launching a Year of Earth Science Integrated Biology
Liz Shoemaker

In this overview of the first unit from the MBER-Living Earth course, you will use real data and hands-on labs to develop and revise a model for Earth formation. We need to build a planet before we can put life on it!

Designed for High School teachers


Workshops: November 15, 2022

The Case of the Vanishing Bees: Integrating Literacy, Social Justice, Engineering, and Science
Corinne Lardy

This workshop will provide opportunities for participants to experience a storyline about pollination that integrates ELA, Social Justice, Engineering, and Science. We will engage in "text layering" as a scaffold for understanding pollinators, and how to engage K-2 students in investigating phenomena, collaborating, and designing technologies as agricultural engineers, as we consider the impact we have on plants as food sources in our world.

Designed for Grade Levels K-2

Implementing a "Mistake Game" to Normalize Learning from Failure
Brian Ellis

Students are often risk-averse in class, particularly when presenting to their peers. This is counterproductive during model-building when ideas are developed collaboratively. The "Mistake Game" is an instructional move that helps normalize mistakes and generate conversation during class discussions.

Designed for Middle and High School teachers

Using Earth Science Data to Unpack Energy Change Models

Steven Ramsay

Have you wondered how to integrate earth science standards into your physics class? This workshop will focus on how to integrate changes of earth systems and connect it directly to energy changes and energy change models. This will be a data analysis driven set of lessons starting at the local level and culminating with worldwide earth changes.

Designed for High School Physical Science

Making Sense of Sensemaking
Ingrid Salim

Participants in this workshop will learn or revisit strategies for sensemaking around specific phenomena. Participants will see examples of a number of tools and strategies including whiteboard work, agree/disagree, different dialogue and writing prompts, reading strategies and synthesis tasks and will have the opportunity to create at least 3 for their classes. Participants will leave with a toolkit of strategies.

Designed for Grade Levels 4-12

Race/Gender and Debunking Social Constructs in Biology Classrooms
Hannah Perkins

Social constructs such as race and gender are frequently debated through a scientific lens. This workshop will provide participants tools to help students figure out the lack of biological basis for Race and Gender and provides strategies for discussing these concepts in real life. Participants will leave with a lesson plan and student documents.

Designed for High School Biology/Life Science


Workshops: December 13, 2022

Puzzling Forces: Bringing Science and Standards Together Across Grade Levels
Sarah Caves and Megan White

Explore the spiraling standards of forces with lessons in each grade 3rd through 5th. Hands on activities help fit together the puzzle of grade level SEPs with engaging and rigorous science your students will enjoy.

Designed for Grade Levels K-12

Decoding the Stars
Melissa Marcucci

Learn how scientists figure out what stars are made up of in this digital matching of star spectra to element spectra! Participants will have access to all materials. Please bring your devices!

Designed for High School teachers

Climate Change: Molecule Shape Matters!

Julie Harr and Liz Johnson

Are you adding back sensemaking into your classroom post-distance learning? Are you wanting to add more climate change into your chemistry curriculum? Come revisit strategies to build sensemaking to foundational chemistry topics such as molecular geometry and explore why carbon gets a bad rap in climate change.

Designed for High School Chemistry

Racial Literacy & Antiracist Science Teaching: What, Why, & How

Robert Brewer

Students and communities are in pain and "bringing" that pain to school. How and why should science teachers
promote racial justice? Are we ready to do this and what is our role? The session will define racial literacy, explain how
antiracist teaching and science intersect, and (time  permitting) provide model antiracist lessons.

Designed for Grade Levels K-12

Exploring Ecosystems and Ecosystem Resilience in Biology of the Living Earth
Chris Griesemer, Libbie Coleman, and
Cindy Passmore

Explore ecosystem function and resilience in the face of human impacts and climate change as a central model in the upcoming MBER-Living Earth course (aligned to Biology of the Living Earth in CA's three-course appraoch to high school science). Most appropriate for high school teachers across disciplines thinking about integrating earth science into their curriculum.

Designed for High School teachers


Zoom Workshops: November 1, 2022

Making Science Engaging with Online Simulations
Nick Bua and Corinne Rushing

Does your district offer simulation platforms for your students, like Gizmos? Have you been too overwhelmed to dig through all of the different simulation websites? We will review some of the tips and tricks in using simulations, provide sample ideas, and give you time to explore curated simulations from different platforms that match your content area and style!

Designed for Grade Levels K-12

What Makes Good Phenomena?
Susan Rubert

NGSS centers on phenomenon first teaching but what makes good phenomena?  Establish criteria to evaluate your phenomena and get recommendations on where to find ‘good’ phenomena that are relevant to your students, rich enough to drive exploration and uncover learning.

Designed for Grade Levels K-12

Zoom Workshops: December 6, 2022

A Teacher Call to Action: Environmental Literacy and Justice in Our Schools
Peggy Harte and Chris Griesemer

During this session, participants will explore the "The Teacher Call to Action for Environmental Literacy" written by teachers for teachers as part of the California Environmental Literacy Initiative. We will dig into each of the three sections, reflecting on how this document might help move along your practice, individually or with your colleagues. Part 1: The Imperatives for Environmental Literacy Part 2: Voices from the Field Part 3: Roadmap for Instruction describes steps to increase Environmental Literacy integration.

Designed for Grade Levels K-12

Developing Your Own Model for Ambitious and Equitable Science Teaching: Examining Dilemmas in Practice
Cindy Passmore

Come consider how you might approach various dilemmas in the science classroom and through dialogue and reflection find your own sense of what makes for ambitious and equitable science instruction in your class. These dilemmas are presented as vignettes that have been drawn from our research classrooms and represent some of the key areas that teachers grapple with as they shift their practice.

Designed for Grade Levels 9-12