CrookED Science Newsletter Term 3 2015
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Dear Friends and Colleagues,
Welcome to the final CrookED Science newsletter of 2015. 

CrookED Science is a science and technology education consultancy working with primary and secondary schools, school systems, universities and organisations across Australia.

This newsletter brings you 9 items of news: 

1.   2015 Infographic


Arguably the greatest achievement here has been teaching and experimenting with 55 out of the 58 NSW K-6 Science & Technology outcomes in the first 10 months of their implementation. The collaborations referred to can be viewed here.

2.   Working Scientifically & Technologically Course

On the Friday of the long weekend in the October holidays, 30 primary teachers gave up their own time, travelling from as far as Armidale, Bathurst, Gulgong and Oberon, to immerse themselves in the hands-on professional development: Working Scientifically & Technologically. This was the first time this BOSTES endorsed CrookED Science workshop had been run and it was a resounding success. The teachers engaged in a host of practical activities and left with a far better idea of how to succeed at K-6 Science & Technology, make it fun and devise their own Science experiments and Technology activities. They also left with 5 hours of BOSTES endorsed professional development, accredited by STANSW, addressing the Australian Professional Standards for Teachers towards maintaining Proficient Teacher Accreditation in NSW.

Given the strength of the feedback and the requests to repeat from those unable to attend, Working Scientifically & Technologically will be run again in Term 2 2016 on Tuesday 26th April at St Paul of the Cross Primary School, Dulwich Hill. Once registration is up an running it will appear on the BOSTES and CrookED Science websites.

3.   Primary Science Meet Up

As part of the Sydney Science Festival, CrookED Science hosted the Primary Science Meet Up with the support of the University of Sydney School of Physics and STANSW. On a Friday evening in August, 60 teachers gave up their own time to share, learn and network. As well as the excellent Primary Science ideas being shared, a bonus feature was the diversity of those attending: government, independent and Catholic schools; primary, secondary, trainee teachers, researchers, home schoolers, parents, Scouts and industry representatives. It was a wonderful event and we hope to run something similar next year. 


4.   Highlights of Term 4

Some great events have also taken place during Term 4. The Powerhouse Museum played host to STEM + X, a TeachMeet about how to incorporate any topic with STEM subjects. I presented on STEM + The Martian, discussing how the film The Martian could be used as stimulus for designing Built Environments on Mars.
UNE hosted GRASS - Growing Regional and Agricultural Students in Sciencean excellent professional development event in Armidale for secondary science teachers. I was fortunate enough to be invited, running two workshops, one on how to teach practical skills via the pendulum experiment in HSC Physics, and the other on utilising simulations to benefit HSC science teaching e.g Thomson's Experiment

5.   Still to Come

Still to come this year is TeachMeet at the House, a TeachMeet at the Sydney Opera House. I will be presenting 5 Ways to Win at Primary Science and Technology, in 2 minutes! In January, I will also be presenting my research at the American Association of Physics Teachers' Conference in New Orleans.

6.   In the Media

Things have been quite busy on the media front. In September, a synopsis of my research was published as Students with laptops did better in HSC science in The Conversation. This was subsequently featured in The Age, The Sydney Morning Herald and in an interview for ABC Canberra. It is also going to be republished in Science Education News.

Wearing my system improvement hat, I also co-authored a paper with Dr Mark Turkington on Reviewing education systems: an alternative approach, published in the Australian Educational Leader

7.   Incursions

An unexpected byproduct of this year has been running some incursions for schools. So far we have run hands-on incursions for primary school Science & Technology on such topics as Heat, Forces, Information and Liquid Nitrogen. If you are interested in such incursions in 2016 (sorry, no vacancies left in 2015) for any aspect of the NSW Syllabus then please contact us.

8.   Booking CrookED Science for 2016

The large scale collaborations between CrookED Science and primary and secondary schools are already fully booked for 2016. However, there is still availability for smaller scale (one or two day):
  • HSC Physics revision sessions
  • Mentoring of HSC Physics teachers
  • Planning/programming with HSC Physics teachers
  • Mentoring of primary teachers in K-6 Science & Technology
  • Planning/programming with primary teachers in K-6 Science & Technology
  • Working Scientifically & Technologically accredited courses
  • Incursions
  • eLearning
  • Research 
  • Conference keynotes
The calendar is filling up very quickly, so if you are interested in any aspect of our work then please contact us. (Bookings have also begun for large and small scale work in 2017).

9.   RIP Steve Whitehead

I would like dedicate this final CrookED Science newsletter of 2015 to Steve Whitehead, a wonderful young Physics teacher who taught at OLSH Kensington, Marist Kogarah, Marist Canberra and in the UK. Steve died earlier this month after a brave battle with cancer. His wife Naomi (another wonderful young Physics teacher) and his two boys are in our thoughts. May he rest in peace.

We hope the rest of Term 4 goes well for you and that you have a peaceful and restful festive period. Please feel free to forward this email onto colleagues.

Kind Regards,

Simon Crook
Copyright © 2015 CrookED Science, All rights reserved.

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