Category Archives: The Science Teacher

A place for high school science teachers, named after the NSTA’s journal The Science Teacher (TST). Click on a headline to read the entire post.

The Vernier Go Direct Sound Sensor: See Sounds in a New Light (Bluetooth)

As much as I loved field trips with my students, I found the bus rides to be excessively stressful. It wasn’t because of the teacher responsibilities or the student behavior, but because of the noise. The volume and diversity of machine noises and the voices and laughter bouncing around the inside of the school bus […]

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The Vernier Go Direct Radiation Monitor: Well Worth the 90-Year Wait

Stephen Hawking died recently marking 2018 as another date in science history from which events will be measured. Isaac Newton was born in 1642, the same year Galileo died. And it is that 1642 date that is often used as a convenient moment in time to label as the birth of modern science. Three hundred […]

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Enhancing Google Sheets for the Classroom

Among the most commonly used tools in the science classroom are those that allow students to collect and manipulate data, including Microsoft Excel, Graphical Analysis, and Google Sheets. This month, we focus on one of the benefits of Google Sheets that sets it apart from similar tools: the add-ons. If you’re new to add-ons, first […]

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Health Wise: Be Prepared for Opioid Overdoses

In light of the national opioid epidemic, schools need to be prepared in case a student overdoses. Consider: In 2016, 4.8% of high school seniors reported using opioids for nonmedical reasons (NIDA 2017c). From 2002 to 2015, annual opioid-related deaths grew 2.8-fold to 33,091, says the National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA 2017a). More than […]

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Commentary: Reasoning Versus Post-truth

The Oxford Dictionaries word of the year for 2016 was post-truth, defined as “denoting circumstances in which objective facts are less influential in shaping public opinion than appeals to emotion and personal belief.” Science is not immune to appeals to emotion and belief rather than fact. To help us challenge the drift toward post-truth, the […]

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Focus on Physics: Eight Tips for New (and not so new) Teachers

Being a teacher can be a wonderful experience. Making it so is greatly aided by qualities that you can acquire. Needless to say, you must know your subject and be able to explain it well. Beyond that are traits and practices that make the difference between loving teaching and enduring teaching. Have the right attitude […]

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Health Wise: Getting Their Names Right

By definition, one’s own name is the most personal of all words. When a teacher mispronounces a student’s name, the experience can be painful and even harmful to the student’s emotional and educational well-being. Mispronounced names can add to the difficulties that English-language learners experience in classrooms, according to an Education Week article (Mitchell 2016). […]

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Science 2.0: Align Your Curriculum With the ISTE Standards

Our previous seven columns have been devoted to integrating the International Society for Technology in Education’s (ISTE) standards into the science classroom. Yet, knowing which activities align with the standards and determining where they fit within the curriculum can be challenging. This month, we provide some scaffolding to help teachers align the ISTE standards to the example […]

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Focus on Physics: The Delightful Catenary Curve

When teaching how tension and compression relate to geometrical structures such as bridges, arches, and domes, I show a picture of the Notre Dame Cathedral in Paris (Figure 1A), completed in the 14th century. I point out the elaborate buttresses that keep the walls from pushing outward while supporting its weight. Architects of the day […]

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Commentary: Going Beyond the Textbook

It has been said that science began “whenever and wherever [people] tried to solve the innumerable problems of life” (Sarton 1952). The Next Generation Science Standards (NGSS Lead States 2013) call for the pursuit of scientific literacy for all through science instruction. This includes acknowledging the contributions to science of those whose communities have been […]

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