In The News

NSELA Welcomes New Members

Posted: May 2, 2020

NSELA welcomes the following new members who have joined in the last few weeks:

  • DianaLyn Perkins, Coppell ISD
  • Joy Bautista, Newtonville, Massachusetts
  • Christy Krenek, New Mexico Public Education Department
  • Sharon Cates, Idaho State Department of Education
  • Suzanne Prince, Lafayette Parish School System

Not a member? Join NSELA now! Annual membership fee is only $60.

 

Sharing Words of Wisdom: Outgoing NSELA Board Members Leave a Lasting Impression on National Science Leadership

Posted: Apr. 25, 2020

Prepared by: James Blake, Ed.D.

We had to say goodbye to four “greats” who are stepping off of the board this year (pictured below).  I asked them a series of questions when I was preparing remarks for our annual membership meeting.  What I received back from these leaders was too good to be only for the meeting.  Check out their reflections - they are amazing. Thank you all for your service to NSELA! 


Ann Hammersly - Treasurer

 Eddie McGrath - Region B Director

     Kevin Niemi - Informal Science Committee Chair  


 Missi Zender-Sakach - Past President


How long have you been a member of NSELA?

  • Ann: 12 years.  My first experience with NSELA was the SLI in Asheville NC in 2008, where we learned about strategies for Professional Learning Communities. My colleague Erika Mills and I brought this information back to Arizona and taught workshops across the district (and I even did one at NSTA National) with what we’d learned. Erika and I both participated in and led Action Research groups over the years as well. You could say that this first SLI experience REALLY helped me grow as a leader since I put so much of it into practice to help the other teachers in my district.

  • Eddie: 6 years

  • Kevin: 11 years I just went back through scores of emails in my NSELA folder and discovered my welcome email in 2009  as an NSELA member. It was from President Brenda Wojnowski and Susan Koba was my regional director. I know Susan convinced me to join as she and I were on the NSTA PD committee together.

  • Missi: 22 years


What board positions have you held, in addition to your current role?

  • Ann: I was also Region D director for one term, and served on the PD committee for three years

  • Eddie: VESELS Mentor + Region B

  • Kevin: My membership led to many great friends in NSELA. This transitioned me to also serving on the NSELA PD committee from 2011-13. When Elizabeth Mulkerrin began her presidency years she asked me to serve as the chair of the informal education committee which I have done for the past six years.

  • Missi: Region E Director, Membership Committee, Professional Development Committee, President


Tell me about a highlight with NSELA.

  • Ann: My answer to #1 would apply here, but so would last summer’s SLI, where I really enjoyed working with/getting to know the VESELS winners. Mofungo with them and the presidential chain was an experience not to be missed!

  • Eddie: Besides every Leadership Summit (I never left without at least five ideas I tried out immediately):  A few years before I joined, I met Trish H. on a bus ride at NSTA to the Exploratorium in San Francisco.  She told me all about NSELA, and I joined based on what she told me!

  • Kevin: I think our committee’s greatest accomplishments were the committee’s sessions at the NSTA conferences which always drew a number of educators from the informal science community. We have different needs as leaders in the informal arena and these organized discussions at NSTA were needed and productive. I hope they can continue.

  • Missi: the LASTING friendships and the frolic---Nancy’s Inquiry Toolkit videos, BBQ/fire pit at Asilomar, lobster bake at Plymouth Plantation, killer mosquitoes in Dearborn with beverages carried in from our CA leaders, swine flu from Portland, four SLI’s with my parents by my side in Branson/Williamsburg/Austin/TN, jellyfish at Monterrey Bay Aquarium, feeding a giraffe in Omaha, and the list goes on…


What advice do you have for aspiring leaders considering getting more involved with national volunteer organizations - such as NSELA? 

  • Ann: The best way to learn to be a better leader is to DO IT! Don’t be afraid to step up and try something that is not currently in your skill set (like being treasurer) because you will learn and grow and will be a better leader and a better person for the learning experience.

  • Eddie: If you aren’t hearing the things you need to hear in your organization, it’s because it’s your turn to speak!  When you see a need, and decide you’re the person who can meet that need, you have become a leader.

  • Kevin: We are all too busy BUT the rewards of serving our professional organizations far outweigh the time commitment. Besides, the social community of NSELA is outstanding! 

  • Missi: We are all GREAT leaders in our own spaces, and in our own rights.  But how do you engage yourself to lead with further efficacy and integrity?  Where do you go to strive to improve, to be better, to learn, to grow?  NSELA is that network of resources for me.  It is where I find people to surround myself with that are so much MORE creative, driven, scientifically knowledgeable, etc.----and that support educators in different areas, different situations and different pathways.  In those moments, when I’m experiencing limitless learning from others, I realize how much further I have to “stretch” myself to become an even stronger leader.  Organizations, such as NSELA, give us these immeasurable educational opportunities to cultivate our professional networks and build interpersonal relationships; ones that will support each and every one of us in our mission to improve science education.

 

Join Us For FREE "Reimagining the Possibilities" Webinar on May 5th at 1:00PM CST

Posted: Apr. 29, 2020

How can we reimagine science learning in a way that that makes sense during the pandemic? How can we help teachers and families keep learning going in a meaningful way? Join us on May 5th at 1PM CST to examine some tools that do just that. 

This webinar is complimentary to both members and non-members for NSELA. Register for the event here in order to get the join information!

Speaker: Kathy Renfrew

Kathy Renfrew is an experienced elementary teacher/educator who has been privileged to hold many roles in her career. She was an elementary teacher who moved to the Vermont Agency of Education as the Elementary Science Assessment Coordinator. In that role she was involved with the drafting, adopting and implementing The Next Generation Science Standards in Vermont. Kathy returned to MA where she was an elementary science coach. Currently Kathy is an education specialist for the Wade Institute for Science Education, a virtual coach for Sibme, an EdReports reviewer and a science volunteer in a 2nd grade classroom. Kathy attended the University of Massachusetts in Amherst for her undergraduate degree in Human Development. She followed that with a M.Ed in Professional Teaching and a MS in K-8 Science Education.

Kathy is an active member of NSTA, CSSS and NSELA. She is also a board member of the MA Science Educational Leadership Association.

Register Here
 

Save the Date for NSELA's Virtual Summer Leadership Institute!

Posted: Apr. 27 2020

Due to the outbreak and spread of COVID-19, we are hosting our annual Summer Leadership Institute virtually this year! It is scheduled for July 20th - 23rd from 11am - 1:30 pm CST each day. 

A full schedule as well as registration information will be shared soon. Mark your calendars!

 

"A Safety Minute" Tips by Dr. Ken Roy - NSELA Safety Compliance Officer

Posted: Apr. 27, 2020

NSELA Safety Minute by Dr. Ken Roy – NSELA Safety Compliance Officer - For current safety updates five days a week, follow Dr. Ken on [email protected].

The most recent edition of the American National Standard used for safety glasses, safety goggles, side shields, and other eye and face protection devices is ANSI/ISEA Z87.1-2020: American National Standard For Occupational And Educational Personal Eye And Face Protection Devices.

There are a number of changes in the 2020 standard update that science supervisors need to know for their Science and/or STEM department and also the OSHA Lab Standard chemical hygiene plan or OSHA HazCom safety plan as applicable.

Read more at the ANSI Blog: ANSI/ISEA Z87.1-2020: Current Standard for Safety Glasses

 
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