FAST Professional Development Information:


One of the many benefits of membership in FAST is the opportunity to participate in high quality Professional Development programs. For more information on the currently available programs click on the links below and begin your own Professional Development program.

Additional Professional Development opportunities will be posted when they become available. So please check back often. If you have any suggestions, for additional topics or programs, or comments and concerns contact Linda Petuch at


The University of Florida/IFAS Center for Aquatic and Invasive Plants is looking for 24 science and environmental educators interested in attending Plant Camp 2019.  Applications are encouraged from teachers fourth through twelfth grades as well as environmental educators working in other areas (eg, nature centers, preserves, extension, 4-H, master naturalists, etc.)

This 5-day workshop, from June 10-14, 2019, is designed for educators interested in learning more about the 130-plus invasive plant species invading Florida’s natural areas and neighborhoods as well as the native flora and fauna that make our state so unique.

Hands-on field and lab experiences will strengthen background knowledge and confidence for teaching this subject, while also providing 40 hours of professional development credit. There is no cost for the workshop and lodging and most meals are provided. * Watch this short video for more information on Plant Camp.

The workshop is an annual event of the Florida Invasive Plant Education Initiative, made possible by the Invasive Plant Management Section of the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission, in partnership with UF/IFAS.

Applications will be accepted starting today and are due by February 17, 2019. CLICK HERE to complete the online application.

For more information, please contact:

Dehlia Albrecht, Education Initiative Coordinator

UF/IFAS Center for Aquatic and Invasive Plants · 352.273.3665 ·

*There is no fee for the workshop. Lodging and most meals are provided.

Earth Science Educator Workshop

Earth Science Educator Workshop

When: Saturday, Dec. 1, 10 a.m. to 1 p.m.

Where: NASA Jet Propulsion Laboratory, Pasadena, California

Target Audience: Formal and informal educators for grades K-8

Overview: Explore the impacts of increasing global temperature on glaciers and sea level using real satellite data from NASA alongside special guest scientists from JPL. Discover ways to turn these resources into engineering, math and science lessons for students. Finally, learn to use the engineering design process to develop water-filtration and recycling systems to minimize our adverse impact on the water cycle.

› Register online

  • This workshop is not available online; you must be physically present to participate.
  • Please bring a tablet or laptop, if possible.
  • This workshop is limited to educators at U.S.-based institutions and organizations.
  • Note: Due to Mars InSight landing events, the venue may need to be moved. If any complications arise, you will be notified one week in advance via phone or email.

Questions? Call the Educator Resource Center at 818-393-5917.

Can't attend the workshop? Explore these standards-aligned lessons and resources online.

  • Water Filtration Challenge – Students work in teams employing an iterative design process to design and build a water filtration device using commonly available materials.
  • Lessons in Sea-Level Rise – What is sea-level rise and how does it affect us? This "Teachable Moment" looks at the science behind sea-level rise and offers lessons and tools for teaching students about this important climate topic.

This free workshop is offered through the NASA/JPL Educator Resource Center, which provides formal and informal educators with NASA resources and materials that support STEM learning.

In Case You Missed It: Educator Resources for Nov. 26 Mars Landing!

The Space Place Newsletter Find out how to make NASA's next Mars mission a Teachable Moment and get tips for engaging students.Check it out

Explore standards-aligned lessons from NASA/JPL Edu all about Mars InSight!

Once again the non profit, CEDAM International is offering

a unique scholarship opportunity for marine educators to participate in field work during the summer. Our 2019 scholarship recipient will be funded on a one-week scuba diving trip to Bonaire in the Dutch Caribbean. This trip is run by the well-respected marine conservation organization We have been granting the scholarship for 18 years now. 

Your Florida Association of Science Teachers Facebook page seems like a good place to share news about the scholarship. We hope you can post the information below to your members.

Here is a brief description:

CEDAM International announces its 2019 Scholarship recipient will join a fish survey trip to Bonaire on July 27 to August 3. This scholarship, awarded annually, enables a qualified educator to participate in a field trip. Participants have the opportunity to collect data, attend training sessions and interact with REEF staff members and local partners. This is a unique hands-on learning experience. Applicants must be certified scuba divers and professional educators in grades 1-12.  

Here is the link for details and an application form:

Thank you in advance for helping us get the word out about the scholarship.We appreciate any mention in your newsletters or web site. We think it is a wonderful opportunity for your members. 

Please contact me if you have any questions.


Jan Rosenfeld

Chair, CEDAM International

1104 Dukes Parkway West
Hillsborough, NJ 08844

Hello, Florida Association of Science Teachers —


We would like to share our upcoming event with you in the hopes you will share it with your members, as this opportunity should directly appeal to them. The University of Florida Health Cancer Center is hosting a free conference for middle and high school teachers in Florida. Here are the details, and our flyer is attached:

Conference Overview

The University of Florida Health Cancer Center is pleased to invite you to attend a free two-day conference, highlighting current research and promoting cancer awareness, for science teachers in Florida.

As a participant, you will hear about cutting-edge research taking place at UF and connect with scientists, physicians, and students to engage in a dialogue about community health and well-being.

The conference will take place at the University of Florida Cancer and Genetics Research Complex in Gainesville, FL, and includes a social event at the Samuel P. Harn Museum of Art. There is no charge to attend the conference or social event. However, registration is required and attendance is limited. Complimentary accommodation at the UF Hilton Conference Center will be provided for attendees traveling from outside of Alachua County. Attendees must register by July 1.

Conference Website

Conference Facebook Event

Conference FAQ video

Lakeville: A Natural Resource Management 

Activity Free Workshop for Educators!

Join us for a FREE educator workshop to learn an exciting activity you can use to teach youth about natural resource management, invasive species and civic engagement!

When: January 18, 2019

Where: Southeastern Livestock Pavilion, 2232 NE Jacksonville Rd, Ocala, FL 34470

Registration deadline: December 15, 2018, or when space is full.

Lakeville: A Natural Resource Management Activity is a curriculum unit that teaches students the role native, non-native, and invasive species play in ecosystems and the social significance of these ecosystems. Students are challenged to make management decisions, taking the perspectives of various stakeholders in their community into account as they attempt to address the problem of invasive species. Students then assess what effect their decisions will have on the ecosystem.

This workshop will provide hands-on training for educators to learn all components of the Lakeville activity, from initial preparation through assessment.


· Earn 6 PDP’s

· Free resources and materials

· Door prizes

· Lunch, snacks and beverages will be provided

· Open to all educators, both formal and non-formal

· No cost to attend!

Limited space available. Register now to secure your space!

Dear Middle Grades Science Teacher,

WestEd, a not-for-profit educational research agency, has funding from the National Science Foundation (NSF) to conduct a research project, SimScientists Games, during the Spring of the 2018-19 school year that aims to use a new genre of games as formative assessment resources designed to collect evidence of learning during gameplay and reinforce middle grades life science concepts and investigation practices for ecosystems. The games are intended to provide engaging activities for understanding and investigating the science system components, roles, interactions and population dynamics of all ecosystems. Teachers will be able to monitor students’ progress and results using secure web-based tools that accompany the games. Researchers hope the games will help students learn and provide timely information teachers can use to help students in more targeted ways. We are seeking teachers to participate in this research study.

Participating teachers will receive a live online webinar orientation and training (up to 4 hours), stipends up to $1,200 for their involvement in the study, as well as access to simulation-based computer formative assessments.

In order to participate, middle grade (6th, 7th, and 8th) science teachers must be planning to teach a unit on Ecosystems starting after April 1, 2019, and be willing to use two suites of SimScientists simulation-based embedded modules as well as two educational games or offline Reflection Activities, a benchmark assessment, and pre and posttests for a total of seven class days during their Ecosystems unit in their classroom. The Pilot testing would need to occur during the Spring of the 2018-19 school year, with the Ecosystems unit and all study activities starting after April 1, 2019.  

Study participation also involves: sending home consent forms with your students, scoring your student benchmark responses, attending a half day online training webinar, and completing an end of unit survey, and phone interview (if selected).

Please see the “SimScientists Games Strand” for more information on this unit:

For technical requirements, please click here:
*Note: SimScientists modules are NOT supported on iPads, iPhones, or other tablets.

For answers to frequently asked questions about participating in a SimScientists study, please see our FAQs at:

If you are interested in participating in this research opportunity, please complete an online intake survey at:  

Please forward this email to any middle grades (6th, 7th, and 8th) science teachers who you think might be interested in this opportunity.

To learn more about this project, please see the FAQs or email Melissa Rego at For the best chance of participating, please complete the survey by September 14, 2018. SimScientists studies are filled on a first come, first served basis.

Thank you for your support!

Melissa Rego
Implementation Coordinator and Research Assistant - SimScientists

National Science Teachers Association
1840 Wilson Blvd.
Arlington Virginia 22201
United States


Science Matters is an initiative of the National Science Teachers Association promoting quality science education, through the sharing of information, resources, and professional development opportunities. Each state has a Science Matters Coordinator whose primary role is to be the point of contact for distribution of science resources and opportunities to the state network.

Opportunities shown below were compiled by Mary Lou Lipscomb (IL) and aligned to FL needs by Marsha Winegarner (FL)

Professional Learning Opportunities

  1. The NSTA Learning Center has terrific FREE web seminars designed to help you locate and use its vast collection of 12,000 resources, online community, and professional learning tools. NSTA Web Seminars are free, 90-minute, live professional development experiences that allow participants to interact with nationally acclaimed experts, NSTA Press authors, and scientists, engineers, and education specialists from NSTA partner organizations. To find out more and to register, go to
  2. Through NSTA, the American Chemical Society will host a webinar “Chemistry Colors our World” on September 15 at 6:30PM focused on integrating National Chemistry Week resources into classroom curriculum. To learn about ready-to-use demonstrations, lab investigations, videos, and register, go to
  3. Registration is open for Seminars on Science from the American Museum of Natural History. The 6-week online courses can be taken for up to 3 graduate credits each. All of the courses are online and are led by both an experienced classroom teacher and a research scientist. The next session runs from September 21st to November 1st. Sign up today and receive $50 off your registration fee! Use code SCIENCEMATTERS. For more information about the program, check out Seminars on Science at<>.
  4. The NGSS Evidence Statements for all grade levels are now available. These statements were developed and reviewed by educators and scientists, including many members of the NGSS writing team. The evidence statements are intended to identify clear, measurable components that, if collectively met, fully satisfy each performance expectation (PE) described within the NGSS. Find out more at (for K-5); (for Middle School); or (for High School).
Grants and Awards

  1.  If you're a U.S. preK–12 educator, you could win a $2,500 travel voucher to anywhere in the world in Accelerate Learning's "STEMscopes Field Trip Around the World" sweepstakes. All that's required is a Facebook "like" and sharing of the contest page with your educator friends (deadline September 4). More information can be found at
  2. Enter the PBS Loves Teachers Sweepstakes for your chance to win a Samsung Galaxy® tablet, $100 Amazon gift card, and more! To enter, go to   TrackId=7ff26a0b26114c28ae67b9a5d4a6340f .
  3. The Awards and Recognitions committee of NSTA has announced their revamped online Teacher Awards applications. They’ve added a new feature that allows you to nominate an applicant. That applicant will then receive an email informing them of the nomination along with the application. You may also apply for yourself. To find out more, nominate someone, or apply yourself, go to:
  4. Classroom pet grants available! If you are a teacher at the preK through 8th grade level, you can apply for a Pets in the Classroom grant; please visit for more information.
  5. For those of you writing or planning to write grants, check out Education World's Show Me the Money: Tips and Resources for successful Grant Writing at

Student Opportunities

  1. Beginning September 1, 2015, U.S. fourth-grade students will receive an Every Kid in a Park (EKiP) pass that will give them free access to all of the federal lands and waters across the country for a full year, with the goal of getting more than one million fourth graders onto public lands. For more information, go to
  2.  eCYBERMISSION, a free web-based competition for students in grades 6–9, officially went live, with open registration for student teams and volunteers. Professionals are encouraged to participate as volunteers to help build students' interest in STEM. Find more information and register at
Great Deals and Latest Links

  1. Leading the school's science department can be an honor, obligation, or headache—or all three rolled into one. We'd like to know what you think about the role of a science department head! Take this brief NSTA Reports survey now at
  2. Get to know the otters, whales, and sharks of Monterey Bay, CA by tuning in to PBS for the premiere of BIG BLUE LIVE on 8/31. PLUS: Get into the action by joining PBS and special guests for a Twitter Party on 9/1 focused on marine biology and conservation! Date + Time: September 1 | 7-8PM EDT. How to Join: Follow @PBSLrnMedia on Twitter, then search for #BigBlueClass Event for Teachers + Students. For more information, go to TrackId=bdddc51f972f460a8d4a07b52203ab92
  3. Environmental Justice and Freshwater Resources Course is a two- to three-week InTeGrate teaching module that enables undergraduate students to identify the freshwater components of the hydrologic cycle and connect them to the basic need of all human beings for equal access to clean freshwater. This module is part of a collection that is freely available and ready to be adapted by undergraduate educators. For more information, go to
  4. With support from Chevron, the National Academy of Engineering has launched LinkEngineering, a dynamic new website designed to support implementation of preK–12 engineering education. At LinkEngineering, teachers, teacher educators, and school/district administrators will find tons of resources on the big ideas in engineering education and can connect with other educators to get feedback and share ideas. Learn more at
  5. Environmental Justice and Freshwater Resources Course is a two- to three-week InTeGrate teaching module that enables undergraduate students to identify the freshwater components of the hydrologic cycle and connect them to the basic need of all human beings for equal access to clean freshwater. This module is part of a collection that is freely available and ready to be adapted by undergraduate educators. For more information, go to
  6. With support from Chevron, the National Academy of Engineering has launched LinkEngineering, a dynamic new website designed to support implementation of preK–12 engineering education. At LinkEngineering, teachers, teacher educators, and school/district administrators will find tons of resources on the big ideas in engineering education and can connect with other educators to get feedback and share ideas. Learn more at
  7. Engineering challenges, paper airplanes, cantilevers, submersibles, and a freeze ray—what do they have in common? They're all elements of the film Despicable Me 2 that could be used to prompt science-oriented conversations with kids who've just seen the latest Minions movie. Read more from Blick on Flicks about how to use the Minions craze to get students interested in science.
  8. The American Association of Chemistry Teachers has a variety of resources to help with classroom/lab safety. To learn more, go to

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