weSPOT at NSTA Conference 2014 – 30,000 attendees

The NSTA conference is one of the most important events in Science Education in the EUA, which offers the latest in science content, teaching strategy, and research to enhance and expand the professional growth of science educators.  This event attracts over 30,000 attendees annually.

Ale Okada and Tony Sherborne from Sheffield Hallam University run a workshop together entitled Authentic Enquiry: Raise Motivation and Results with Real Science.
Our aim was to discuss with teachers how to turn traditional topics into scientific adventures that inspire students, instil scientific thinking, and improve test scores. This was based on a highly successful UK middle school curriculum Science UPd8 project sponsored by the Association for Science Education in the UK.

During this workshop science teachers were also introduced to two European Projects in Enquiry based Learning:
TEMI – Teaching Enquiry with Mysteries Incorporated
website: http://www.teachingmysteries.eu/
weSPOT – Working Environment with Social and Personal Open Tools for Enquiry based learning
website: http://portal.ou.nl/web/wespot  

Five key features of  WeSPOT were presented :
1. Social networking   
2. Enquiry workflow
3. Mobile data collection
4. Learning  Analytics
5. Knowledge Maps

NSTA 2014 was held in Boston on  the first week of April. Workshops were organised across four strands:

  • Science and Literacy: A Symbiotic Relationship
  • Teaching Elementary Science with Confidence
  • Leading from the Classroom
  • Engineering and Science: Technological Partners

There were an impressive number of science educators who participated in numerous hands-on workshops and presentations including the Boston Museum of Science, which provided free admittance to conference attendees.
NSTA is a great opportunity for science teachers to be inspired whether it is by speakers for promoting innovative learning in their classroom, or though obtaining new professional learning resources, new strategies and technologies from countless workshops, special programs and sessions.  This impressive science event lets you gain an in-depth look into particular areas of interest and science discipline.  

Related Links:

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NSTA Conference
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Authentic Enquiry workshop
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