Heads Up

Resources for teachers interested in science, technology and mathematics

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  • Professional development for Agriculture/Horticulture teachers: 3 June 4:00-4:45pm. Free: The focus will be exploring the Science Learning Hub and Biotechnology Learning Hub resources that support teaching and learning in Agriculture and Horticulture. It will also suggest ways to adapt the resources for use with students.

  • Voices of future Generations: An opportunity for our 8-12 year old Pacific Island students to submit a creative story about children’s rights, environmental solutions, and the future that we all want. Deadline is 15 July.

  • Love your rubbish: This LEARNZ virtual field trip is an opportunity for you and your class to follow a piece of rubbish from a lollipop to the landfill. 9-11 June.
  • Environmental Education Workshop for Teachers: For Southland teachers, 17 June. Follow the link for details.
  • BioLive/ChemEd 2015: Wellington 5-8 July. The focus for this joint conference will be Moving Forward: Pathways and Partnerships for Biology and Chemistry Learning. This year the Biology Educators’ Association of New Zealand (BEANZ) and The New Zealand Association of Science Educators (NZIC) will run their biennial conferences in tandem for the very first time.
  • Sir Paul Callaghan EUREKA! Awards – Workshops: To help students prepare their entries for the 2015 Sir Paul Callaghan EUREKA! Awards competitions will be held from 18 April until 9 May for Year 9-13 students and university undergraduates. The workshops have been specially designed for students who want to learn how to communicate their passion and vision for how science, technology, maths or engineering can provide solutions for the challenges facing New Zealand. The workshops will be held in Auckland, Hamilton, Palmerston North, Wellington, Christchurch and Dunedin. Regional competitions will be held in main centres in late July followed by the National Finals in Wellington on 3 September.  The closing date for entries is 19 June.
  • Miriam Dell Award for Excellence in Science Mentoring: Applications have opened for the Miriam Dell Award for Excellence in Science Mentoring. This biennial award acknowledges mentors who demonstrate outstanding efforts to retain females in science, maths or technology. Nominees can include teachers at primary or secondary schools, who may have mentored, formally or informally, females at any stage in their career – from school age to the science workforce. Nominations close 30 June.
  • Teachers of Physics:NZIP Conference: 6-8 July, The conference theme relates to International Year of Light.
  • New Zealand International Biology Olympiad (NZIBO): The New Zealand team to compete in Denmark in July is:Zhong Huang from Macleans College; Cherie Jia, Auckland International College; Nikita Lyons, Waikato Diocesan School; and Ery Zhu from Avondale College.Students keen to participate in the 2016 NZIBO programme and potentially trial for the 2016 team to go to Vietnam, should register at http://www.nzibo.org/nzibo/registration/  Registrations close 7 August.

  • Margaret Mahy Starlight Essay/Poetry Competition: New Zealand students (Y 5-8 and Y 9-13) can win an exciting weekend in Twizel, all expenses paid, a kit-set Galileoscope and a visit to the University Observatory at Mt John. The Margaret Mahy Starlight poetry/essay competition is part of the Starlight Festival in Twizel from 9 – 11 October 2015. Prose or poetry can be imaginary, historical or scientifically based. Judges will be looking for knowledge of the southern stars and either good research or imaginative use of astronomy. Entries close 5pm 10 August.
  • The Prime Minister’s Science Teacher Prize: Nominations for this Prize open on 1 May 2015, and close at 5pm (NZST), Friday 31 July, This Prize will be given in recognition of an outstanding teacher of Science. The Prime Minister’s Science Teacher Prize is worth $150,000 with the recipient receiving $50,000 and the recipient’s school receiving $100,000.
  • TENZ Conference 2015:4-7 October, Hamilton.
  • ULearn 2015 Permission to Play: 7–9 October, Auckland
  • LEARNZ Field Trip Chooser: View all 2015 LEARNZ field trips.
  • 2015 Teacher online PLD opportunities:  From CORE Education.
  • TRCC Courses: Current courses available to October ’15
  • Term 2, 2015 National Newsletters: including All Sciences including Agricultural and Horticultural Science
  • Failing slopes : Modelling how rock cliffs and slopes can collapse.

  • Enviroteach: This magazine is an environmental education resource for teachers. It is produced quarterly. Visit the website o view past and current issues. The recent issue is all about soil.

  • Cybersafety: The Online Safety Advisory Group (OSAG) has led the development of new guidelines helping schools to apply the law and to understand an issue that’s constantly in flux.

  • How to Subtract by Adding: This video explains how computers subtract by adding numbers together!

  • Secondary e-newsletters now available: Term 2 e-newsletters for secondary middle leaders are now available. These newsletters offer effective teaching and learning strategies, useful links for resources and exemplars, links to relevant readings, plus information about upcoming regional workshops and cluster sessions.

  • Human magnets!: This ELI involves using your pupils to model ancient and modern magnetic fields.

  • Be a mineral expert 1; beginning to identify minerals: This ELI introduces colour, habit, lustre and cleavage as ways of identifying one mineral from another. The activity uses simple visual tests to identify a set of ‘unknown’ minerals. This is the first in a series of activities on minerals which can be used in a variety of lessons, ranging from the nature of minerals as the ‘building blocks’ of rocks to the origins and recycling of useful elements in the Earth.

  • Enviroteach: This magazine is an environmental education resource for teachers. It is produced quarterly, and sent to schools across Southland.  You can view and download from the link. The April 2015 issue of Enviroteach focuses on soils. It explains why it’s so helpful to know the properties of our soil and provides some simple methods students can use to assess soil health. It offers several fun and meaningful activities students can do to support their learning.

  • Discover The Simple World Of High Level Mathematics!:This website was created to demonstrate that learning math can be fun, if everything is kept simple and easy to understand.

  • Nutrigenomics: Our genes can affect the way our bodies deal with food. Particular food components will be more helpful to some people than to others. Nutrigenomics is the study of how our food and our genes interact. It helps us work out the effects that specific foods can have on an individual’s health, performance and risk of disease. 

  • High-Value Nutrition Challenge: Check out new content on the Science Learning Hub. The High-Value Nutrition Challenge is one of New Zealand’s 11 National Science Challenges, which tackle the biggest science-based issues and opportunities facing our country.

  • The Addictive Mathematics of the 2048 Tile Game: It’s the Internet sensation of these days. It’s a game played on 4×4 grid, with numbered tiles. At each stage, you slide tiles in any of the four directions of the screen (up, down, left and right). If two tiles of the same number fall onto one another, then they merge into a tile whose number is the sum of the tiles’ numbers. Once tiles have slid and merged, a new tile pops up at a random free location of the grid. With 10% chance, it’ll be numbered 4. Otherwise, it’ll be numbered 2.

  • Nepal’s Langtang village from space: before and after: The village of Langtang is gone, wiped off the face of the Earth by the first of the recent Nepalese earthquakes.

  • What does regression to the mean, mean?: Employers, lovers, researchers and investors have all been fooled by this statistical concept, but it’s actually a doddle…..

  • Nancy’s Brain Talks: Videos from a professor of cognitive neuroscience in the Department of Brain & Cognitive Sciences at Massachusetts Institute of Technology.  Dr. Kanwisher has posted many videos of her seminars and lectures on her web site.

  • Journey to the Centre of the Earth: How far would you have to travel to reach the Earth’s core? And what would you see along the way? Discover what lies beneath…with this visualisation via BBC Future.

  • Giant LED sculpture: Photo steps to how a large LED sculpture was made.

  • Light It Up!: 15 DIY LED projects.

  • Sunlight is older than you think: A Ted-Ed.

  • Early bird winds back the avian clock: Modern birds may have evolved six million years earlier than thought, say palaeontologists after analysing the fossil remains of a previously unknown prehistoric relative.

  • Do trees communicate with each other?

  • Philae! Phone home!: Scientists are still waiting for Rosetta’s comet lander Philae to phone home. Also; a new explanation for the dominance of matter over antimatter, and CERN physicists confirm the neutral B meson sub atomic particle exists.

  • How long would it take to fall through the Earth?: If you could jump through a hole in the Earth, how long would it take to get to the other side? 

  • Nature or nuture? Twins hold the answer.

  • Our beautiful planet: the blue marble in 2015: This new ‘blue marble’ Earth image was taken to celebrate the 45th anniversary of Earth Day.

  • Orientation Puzzle: In this challenging puzzle, what you can see determines how you can move.

  • Briny water under Antarctica’s surface could host life: An airborne survey of a presumably dry Antarctic valley has revealed a stunning and unexpected interconnected subsurface briny aquifer deep beneath the frozen tundra.

  • Warming ‘increases heatwaves and heavy rain’: Three-quarters of extreme hot weather and almost one in five extreme rainfall events can be attributed to greenhouse gas emissions primarily from human activity, a new study shows.

  • Why neutrinos matter: A TED-Ed .

  • Can cows make strawberry-flavoured milk?: If dairy cows are what they eat, can changing what they eat change the flavour of milk? Dr Karl explores the wonders of milk.

  • Einstein’s theory of relativity: Emmy Noether developed much of the maths used in Einstein’s theory of relativity. She was also expelled from her university by the Nazi party.

  • Hotspots; modelling the movement of a plate across the globe: This ELI activity uses a candle and a piece of card to model the evidence of the movement of a tectonic plate over a fixed heat source in the Earth’s mantle. This activity can be used in any lesson in a science or geography class dealing with plate tectonics.

  • Microbial oceanography animation: Explore what’s beneath the ocean surface, beyond the sharks and fish!

  • Key Concepts in Microbial Oceanography brochure

  • LEARNZ Term 3: Check out the full range of upcoming field trips, plan and book the perfect trip for your class here. You can browse by location map or use the trip chooser to search by type.

  • Mobile phone bans lead to rise in student test scores: Banning cellphones in schools reaps the same benefits as extending the school year by five days, according to a study. By comparing student exam records and mobile phone policies from 2001 to 2013, researchers noted a significant growth in student achievement in classrooms that banned cellphones, with student test scores improving by 6.41 percent points of a standard deviation. This made them 2 percentage points more likely to pass the required exams at the end of high school, researchers explained.

  •  How far would a fruit fly fly if a fruit fly could find fruit?

  • Enhancing an Understanding of Mathematics: A series of National Council Mathematics Teachers (US) videos to enhance understanding of the mathematics that students need to succeed in college, life, and careers.

  • Nature and Science in the Primary Classroom: The Enviroschools programme provides a wonderful context for integrating the nature of science in the primary classroom.

  • Pathwayz: Pathwayz is a new interactive website for science teachers and their students.

  • Flight of the Butterflies: Schools now have the opportunity to show a subsidised screening of this highly acclaimed natural history film.

  • What’s Up DOC?: Recent additions to the DOC website and conservation blog

  • T-News from Techlink: May 2015

  • Technology Online Open Home recording: In April, Technology Online held an open home – an online event providing a guided tour of the website. You can watch a recording of the tour at Technology Online Open Home.

  • Food Industry Training Programme: The New Zealand Institute of Food Science and Technology (NZIFST) courses.Teachers are always welcome to attend the Food Industry Training courses run by NZIFST.

  • Electronics skills professional learning and development: After a recent successful round of workshops introducing basic electronics to many teachers, Skills NZ are keen to hear what needs people have so they can plan for future PLD. They can run professional development at all levels from primary to secondary level in electronics, basic robotics, and programmable chips, as well as demonstrating Raspberry Pi. Skills NZ is keen to receive any suggestions that would help you relate these to your classroom programmes or club.  For suggestions or more information:  contact rossp@skills.org.nz

  • Light and mirrors investigation: To understand photography you need to understand light, A. short video in which a young presenter introduces the topic of light and mirrors. Using the idea that light travels in straight lines, challenge your students to investigate how they can make light go round the corner using mirrors.

  • Turning on the Tap: A resource on the GWRC website; a guided teaching resource providing  an integrated approach to teach students about one of our most important resources…water.

  • National Science Challenges: New Zealand’s National Science Challenges are designed to tackle the biggest science-based issues and opportunities facing our country. Large numbers of scientists from different institutions and across disciplines are coming together to collaborate and address 11 key issues.

  • How does photography work?: Videos in which two presenters find out how cameras use light to create photographs. Students will have the chance to build their own pinhole cameras from scratch and pick up tips on how to take the perfect pinhole picture!

  • The Airport: This interactive gets students to explore everyday examples of innovative science in the airport from biometric passports, graphene, 3D printing to holograms and body scanners. The interactive provides an excellent starting point for discussion or students’ own research on scientific news and discovery.

  • Bright Sparks 2015: For those not familiar with Bright Sparks: since 2000, the programme has fostered young New Zealanders as they explore their interest in technology, electronics and software. Mentoring takes place through school visits and within an online forum.Students are encouraged to create a project and submit it to the annual Bright Sparks Awards, attended by industry and well-known, successful New Zealanders. Categories include technology related to: science, engineering, environment and software. A project could be standalone here (e.g. a science investigation relating to a device) or fit into more than one category, like the science behind an environmentally friendly electric vehicle.

  • Take Action for Water – Get Involved: This section of Take Action for Water introduces students to the ways in which human activities impact on the health of our catchments. Throughout this section students, as ‘kaitiaki’, are encouraged to consider how they might enhance the ‘mauri’ of the environment. Students participate in a scenario which gives them the opportunity to apply their knowledge and understanding to solve environmental issues around catchment health and management.

  • The Plankton Chronicles: Microbiology images and video material.

  • Energy Skate Park: A PhET Interactive Simulation.

  • Ocean Acidification: A diverse collection of instructional materials

  • NZCER Catalogue: 2015 online catalogue of resources.

  • Schoolgen: Genesis Energy’s website teaching about renewable energy. It has resources on photovoltaic cells (L3,4) & analysis of their data (L7, 8) and Carbon footprint (L5,6).

  • Education for Sustainability: Education for Sustainability resources have been transferred from TKI to NZC online. There’s a rich range of teaching & learning ideas to support EfS in your school.

  • Amoeba Sisters: Biology animations.

  • Science News for Kids: Aiming to inform, educate and inspire kids to understand and appreciate science and its role in society.

     

 

Heads Up Archive