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As we face the many challenges that keep coming our way, it is sometimes difficult to keep our focus on our mission. If we are to provide the best possible science education for our children, it is important for them to experience authentic activities, inside and outside the classroom, that help them use all the science process skills to develop their understanding of science concepts and principles. If our children are to become globally competitive in an ever-changing world, they must learn how to learn.
Therefore, science educators must hone their skills and continue to learn the best ways to facilitate student learning. We must participate in professional learning activities that show us the most effective methods. It has never been as important for us to be the “guide on the side” rather than the “sage on the stage”. By providing activities that guide students toward discovery and knowing which questions to ask along the way, they can become life-long science learners and well-informed citizens.
NCSLA is not an organization for just one type of science educator. We are made up of teacher leaders from public, private, parochial, and home schools. NCSLA also consists of STEM coaches, school and district coordinators of science, as well as school principals. Many of our members are science educators from higher education programs as well as their pre-service teachers. Informal science educators from our museums, zoos, aquariums, state parks and forests, planetariums, and science/nature centers are members of our organization. We also have members who represent after-school programs and others to just have an interest in promoting science education.
Currently, NCSLA is organizing into committees and groups to find ways that we can better provide professional assistance to the many types of science educators that NCSLA represents. If you can help us identify what is needed to help science educators like yourself be more effective in their role, we would like to hear from you. As we design the activities we offer and our Spring and Fall Science Education Summits, it is important that we provide experiences that are important and valuable to each of you.
So, I encourage you to contact me or another Board member or Committee Chair to help guide the direction of our work. We want our efforts to be vital to your work and our common mission. The names and contact information for our Board and Committee Chairs are on our website. We hope to see you in Charlotte on November 28-December 1 at the NCSLA Fall Membership meeting and the NSTA Charlotte Area Conference.
Manley Midgett – NCSLA President
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