April 11-13, 2019: NTCCSD teachers and Iowa Regents' Center present at National Science Teachers Association in St. Louis, MO.

Vonna Watson, Brenda Kaufmann, UNI doctoral student Lisa Chizek, all teachers at North Tama County Community School District teachers and Heidi Meyer, instructional coach at MFL MarMac Community School District accompanied Director Beth Van Meeteren to the annual National Science Teachers Association (NSTA) in St. Louis, Missouri. All five presented their work in integrative STEM and literacy experiences in grades 1-3 to more than 800 teachers at the two-hour Elementary Extravaganza event. Meyer shared her work with Bee-Bots in 3rd grade and how programming and coding interfaces with literacy. Chizek shared experiences creating short stories using light and shadow phenomena to create the illustrations. Watson and Van Meeteren modeled how force and motion experiences using Ramps & Pathways and tinkering with tops in first grade leads to vocabulary development and authentic reasons to engage in literacy as children document findings. Kaufman demonstrated how second graders can engage in reasoning about matter through STEM investigations that are conducted during small group reading instruction.
Watson, Kaufmann, Chizek, and Van Meeteren also presented a 3-hour short course on Ramps & Pathways to instructional coaches and curriculum directors from around the country. Chizek and VanMeeteren led two sessions featuring Chizek's work in meaningful science learning. Learning about Light and Shadows with Shadow Stories engaged upper elementary participants with ideas on how to engage in science experiences with younger students. Engineering a Pancake Recipe: Connecting Chemistry to Everyday Life inspired upper elementary, middle school, and high school educators on how to reveal chemistry in every day life.