Contra Costa County Office of Education

                      February 2016

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Thank you to everyone who attended the California Conditions of Learning Symposium: Engage, Teach, and Lead. Resources from presenters can be found on our symposium page. Check out the conversation on our Twitter hashtag: #CaConditionsofLearning
Our newsletter is full of resources, programs and events. Visit our website to view resources, link to standards and stay up-to-date with events. Feel free to contact Hilary Dito with questions, comments and professional learning opportunities about integrating STEAM into your Pre-K-12 classrooms.

California Standards in Science
Framework Draft for Public Review
The first review of the California Science Framework was completed in January. The second draft is due out this summer. Take time to look at these documents during the development process. Follow California's Department of Education updates by joining the NGSS electronic mailing list. Send a blank email to this address
Next Generation Science Standards Resources 
Teacher Opportunities and Professional Development
CCCOE Distinguished Speaker Series:
Implementing the NGSS: a Hands-on workshop
Registration is now open for CCCOE's Distinguished Speaker Series' workshop with Dr. Cary Sneider, on March 22. Dr. Sneider helped author both a Framework for K-12 Science Education and the Next Generation Science Standards. Attendees will understand the instructional shifts of NGSS, engage in NGSS activities, and learn how to integrate engineering into the classroom. 
For more information and to register, visit their Eventbrite listing.
Pleasant Hill Literacy Institute

Join Kylene Beers and Bob Probst as they lead this two-day institute that offers attendees the perfect opportunity to work with colleagues and learn strategies that will help all readers (especially struggling readers) develop the skills they need for attentive and engaged reading. Built upon their books Notice and Note: Strategies for Close Reading and Reading Nonfiction: Stances, Signposts, and Strategies, this workshop provides hands-on work with practices that change the way students read.
Over the two days, they'll look at strategies that help all by sharing:
  • Methods for encouraging engagement, building relevance, and promoting rigor
  • Strategies for close reading of fiction and non-fiction texts
  • New ways of teaching vocabulary
The program will be held on March 7 and 8, 8:30 a.m.-3:30 p.m., at the Pleasant Hill Community Centerin Pleasant Hill. 
For additional information and to register, please visit this Eventbrite site. The fee is $175 for both dates.
CCCOE presents Number Talks 

Number Talks support implementation of the California Standards in Mathematics (CCCSS). Participants engage in discourse, conversations, and alternative thinking in mathematics. Number Talks will take place at the CCCOE, in Pleasant Hill. 

Secondary Number Talks 1.0, for grades 6-9 Instructors, will be held on Tuesday, April 5, 8:30 a.m.-3:00 p.m. This workshop is framed around the Making Number Talks Matter book, written by Cathy Humpreys & Ruth Parker. This resource is included in the price of the workshop. For additional information and to register, visit this Web page.

Number Talks 1.0, for grades K-5 instructors, will be held on Wednesday, April 6, 8:30 a.m.-3:00 p.m. This workshop is framed around the Number Talks book, written by Sherry Parrish. The book contains more than 850 purposefully designed number talks and a DVD featuring 19 number talks filmed in actual classrooms. These resources are included in the price of the workshop. For additional information and to register, visit this Web page.
Design Challenge Learning Institute at The Tech

Every student is an inventor at heart, and InventionX challenges, recognizes, and rewards students for their curiosity and problem-solving-prowess. Educators can learn how to engage students in STEM, receive a guidebook that includes activities, and learn to create Invention Challenges.

This program will be held on Saturday, March 12, from 10:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m., at the Design Challenge Learning Institute at The Tech, in San Jose. Register is $90. Contact Allison Wilhelm, or visit their website for information and registration.
Free Adobe Professional Development for Educators

Adobe Education Exchange provides free professional development to educators on a variety of topics which also integrate Adobe software applications. Subjects include Web Design, Digital Media, Story Telling, and other 21st century skills!

For more information and to explore the offerings, visit their website.
Level Playing Field Institute Hiring Season Staff for its SMASH Academy (LPFI)

LPFI is hiring seasonal staff for its Summer Math and Science Honors (SMASH) Academy. LPFI is looking for highly qualified STEM instructors and support staff for all four SMASH sites located at Berkeley, Stanford, UCLA, and USC campuses. They need three computer science instructors per site this year. SMASH Academy, a year-round academic program of the Level Playing Institute, is a three-year, rigorous education initiative that prepares talented, underrepresented youth of color to become competitive and successful in STEM at the college level for five weeks each summer beginning in the 9th grade. 

For more information, visit their website.
Teacher Research Academy (TRA)

The Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory Teacher Research Academy (TRA) is now registering teachers for the 2016 program. The TRA offers middle school, high school, and community college faculty unique professional development experiences at LLNL. TRA teachers participate in a continuum of standards-based instruction, enabling them to progress from novice to mastery in exciting scientific disciplines while they experience the application of real world science in an environment teachers seldom experience.
There is a $20 registration fee. Visit their Web pages to view the schedule and to register.
Fun Exchanges and Activities for Science Teachers (FEAST)
Join secondary science teachers at Chabot Space and Science Center for networking and sharing science resources. FEAST meets once a month on Saturdays. Join educators on February 27 for Mars, Recent Discoveries. FEAST will be held from 9:00 a.m. to noon.

To register and for more information, visit their website.  
IISME Summer Fellowship for Teachers
The IISME Summer Fellowship Program places eligible K-16 teachers into high-performance corporate and science-research environments for the summer. Teachers work full-time for 8 weeks and are paid $9,000 for their work. Teachers complete a project for their Host organization and also spend time focusing on how they will transfer their Summer Fellowship experience back to their students and schools. By working at one of IISME's Host organizations, teachers experience, first hand, the practical applications of the science, math, technology and 21st Century skills they teach. The Summer Fellowship experience becomes a springboard for infusing curriculum with "real world" connections that further engage students in learning.

For more information about the IISME Summer Fellowship Program, eligibility requirements and to apply, please visit their website.  

Classroom Resources and Websites
Beginning Code for Geometers

This program encourages students with an interest in mathematics, regardless of programming background, to get more comfortable with the utility, language, protocols and structures of coding. Students will engage in a series of projects, based on various standards within the geometry curriculum, that will enable them to use the Julia programming language (similar to Matlab) to simplify procedures, explore extensions, and broaden their thinking about the existing curriculum.

All activities, handouts, notes, and assessment pieces are included. The following link will take you directly to the Beginning Code for Geometers ETP. 
California Institute for Biodiversity Summer Opportunities
Register now for Patterns, Proportions & Processes: CIB's Sierra Institute, a two weekend residential professional development program just outside of Yosemite National Park. The 2016 Institute will investigate the NGSS Crosscutting Concepts: Patterns and Scale, Proportion and Quantity looking at patterns within and across California habitats, how patterns can be scale dependent and how data collection and analysis can be used to link these concepts. We will be connecting 
the Blueprint for Environmental Literacy & the CA NGSS Framework to K-12 teaching practices, and attendees will learn how to include outdoor lessons, citizen science, environmental stewardship & wild-cams in their curriculum.

Find out more and register at this website.

Zaption's intuitive web app enables teachers to quickly add images, text, quizzes, and discussions to videos. The result is an interactive learning tour that transforms video from a "lean back" experience to an engaging "lean forward" activity. With Zaption's analytics, instructors get immediate feedback on how students interact with the content and understand key concepts. A basic account is free.  

Check out the Zaption Gallery to preview tours (the interactive video lessons that authors create) and see examples of what you can do!  The possibilities are endless, check it out at this website
With Math I Can

''With Math I Can...'' was born from the sobering realization that more and more kids and adults believe that they aren't good at math. It is a mentality that is all too common and accepted in our society. It's a mentality that can have a profound and lasting negative impact on an individual. Our mission is to change that mentality and provide support tools to help teachers, educators, and parents deliver the message ''With Math I Can...''
Student and Family Opportunities
Contra Costa County Science and Engineering Fair (CCCSEF)
The Contra Costa County 2016 Science and Engineering Fair will be held March 17-19, at Los Medanos College, in Pittsburg. 

The CCCSEF Organizing Committee is also recruiting for judges and members for the Scientific Review Committee. If you are interested, visit the Contra Costa Science Fair website. Please mark your calendar today for 2016's Science Fair judging day, March 18. 
iCLEM Internship Program 

The iCLEM program offers a paid summer research internship opportunity at the Joint BioEnergy Institute to current high school sophomores and juniors attending  Alameda, Contra Costa, and San Francisco county schools. The eight selected students will work in a state-of-the-art research lab; gain college knowledge; participate in professional development; be exposed to many Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math careers; amongst other opportunities. 

The program will require training on Tuesday, June 14, and runs from June 20 - August 4. Applications are due March 1st.  For more information and eligibility requirements, please visit their website
PG&E Better Together STEM Scholarships
PG&E Better Together STEM program awards a total of $1 million in scholarships to local high school, community college and "non-traditional" students pursuing higher education in the fields of STEM. Scholarship winners will receive up to $20,000 per year for up to five years; program finalists will receive $2,000 towards their studies.

Students pursuing a STEM-related degree are eligible, and must be enrolled in a full-time undergraduate program at an accredited two- or four-year college, university or vocational-technical school for the duration of the 2016-2017 academic year. The deadline to apply for the PG&E Better Together STEM Scholarships is Feb. 29. Scholarship winners will be announced this spring. For more information and to apply, visit their website.
Girls Who Code Summer Immersion Program 
The Girls Who Code Summer Immersion Program is a seven-week intensive computer science course 10th and 11th grade students. Girls learn everything from robotics to mobile development to HTML and CSS while gaining exposure to the tech industry and receiving valuable mentorship from women working in technology.

To learn more about the program, click here, for frequently asked questions. Applications are due March 1.
Expanding Your Horizons
This program is for 6-8-grade girls and their parents to explore careers in STEM. Attendees will engage in hands-on activities and interact with women in STEM fields.

Expanding Your Horizons will be held on Saturday, May 7, from 9:00 a.m.-2:30 p.m., at Diablo Valley College, Pleasant Hill. To register, visit their website for more information.
Camp H for Girls
At Camp H, girls weld metal, chop wood, drive screws, pour concrete, and practice hands-on design and engineering skills to build real projects for community benefit. Camp H believes in power tools and girl power. Camp H will be partnering this summer with the Women's Daytime Drop-In Center, in Berkeley, an amazing organization that provides free housing and services to homeless women and victims of domestic abuse. 

Girls will design and build furniture and fixtures for their communal and residential facilities. No matter what skill level, girls will learn, practice, and perfect their craft and use of a variety of tools. Camp H believes that the design and building skills our Camp H girls learn are valuable for their lives and careers, and can also benefit the lives of others. The camps are led by highly skilled female builders, architects, educators, and mentors at a counselor: camper ratio of 5:1. Visit their website for details.
Young Scientist Challenge 

Discovery Education 3M Young Scientist Challenge encourages young people to solve everyday problems using science and innovation. Students must create a one- to-two-minute video describing a new innovation or solution that could solve or impact an everyday problem related to how we live, how we work, or how we play. 
The challenge is open to students in grades 5-8. The top-10 students will receive a trip to the 3M Innovation Center in St. Paul, MN to compete for the chance to win $25,000! All video entries must be submitted online by April 20. Visit their website for details.
Splash is the program that brings high school and middle school students from everywhere to Stanford's campus for a two-day-learning extravaganza. Classes are taught by Stanford undergraduates, graduate students, and other community members. Students can take up to 14 hours of classes for $40. Parents can participate in Stanford Splash Parents' Program, as well.

 Sign up for the next Splash weekend (April 9-10) at this website

Contra Costa County STEM Summer Education Camps
The STEM summer camps offer the opportunity to explore theory and practice in week-long experiences that blend hands-on exploration, field visits to industry workplaces, problem-solving and presentations by experts. Students can explore engineering, bio-technology and environmental science. For more information, visit the program's website

The CCCOE STEAM Enews is published regularly, highlighting news, events, and resources that enhance STEAM education for all students. If you received the STEAM enews from a colleague, please join our mailing list to continue receiving updates. This publication does not signify that the Contra Costa County Office of Education endorses the event or program mentioned.


For more information regarding CCCOE STEAM, please visit our website.



Hilary Haugen Dito
CCCOE STEAM Coordinator



Deputy Superintendent, Pamela Comfort, Ed.D.



STEAM Coordinator, Hilary Haugen Dito



Published by the Communications Office of the Contra Costa County Office of Education

Layout/Design, Diane Morrell; Web Developer, June Stephens;
Writer/Editor/Media Relations, Jonathan Lance