2021 Portland Area Conference

October 28-30, 2021

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Grade Level



Session Type


FILTERS APPLIED:PreK - 5, Presentation, Engineering


Rooms and times subject to change.
5 results
Save up to 50 sessions in your agenda.

Connecting NGSS to Student Interests and the Science That Surrounds Us in Real Life

Thursday, October 28 • 9:30 AM - 10:30 AM

Oregon Convention Center - E144

Show Details

Learn how to create engaging lessons, connecting to student interests and to the science and natural phenomena that surround us. Pick up strategies to engage K–6 students in explorations, helping them recognize and understand real-world science, while creating a lifelong love of science. Handouts!

Attendees will learn: 1. innovative strategies to help children identify, explore, and understand a variety of interesting, real-life science that surrounds them in their everyday world; 2. how to design lessons that emphasize exploration, and give students the opportunity to test variables and analyze their effects; and 3. effective questioning strategies to engage students and increase the depth of student thinking, also helping to make student thinking visible; and to help teachers use effective questioning strategies to help students clarify and articulate their understanding of essential science phenomena and concepts.

Donna Knoell (Educational and Technology Consultant: Prairie Village, KS)

Teachers as Curriculum Writers: Design for NGSS with Our Articulated Writing Process

Friday, October 29 • 8:00 AM - 9:00 AM

Oregon Convention Center - A103/104

(Only registered attendees may view session materials. Please login with your NSTA account to view.)
PDF version of presentation slides
Slideshow (Google slides)
Presentation slides in Google slides format

STRAND: Developing More Inclusive Classrooms

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Writing your own NGSS units? Learn about our articulated writing process that achieves NGSS and English Language Proficiency standards. Applicable to all levels!

Participants will learn: 1. how we unpack PEs and approach writing a unit; 2. how to consider NGSS from a language perspective; and 3. why the investment in time upfront leads to a more effective writing experience and a more coherent experience for students and teachers.

Jennifer Mayo (Portland Public Schools: Portland, OR), Jennifer Scherzinger (Portland Public Schools: Portland, OR), Geoff Stonecipher (Portland Public Schools: Portland, OR)

Assessing in 3-D: K–5 Common Science/ELP Assessments

Friday, October 29 • 11:00 AM - 12:00 PM

Oregon Convention Center - E144

(Only registered attendees may view session materials. Please login with your NSTA account to view.)
K-5 Common NGSS/ESL Assessments
OER Commons
Oregon Open Learning Hub

STRAND: Sharing Authentic Assessment Strategies

Show Details

The Portland K–5 Common Assessments assess student learning in a relevant and compelling 3-D  task, centered in local phenomena. The assessments and rubrics provide access for emerging bilinguals.

1. There are key features of three-dimensional assessment design that include both a local phenomenon or problem and access for English learners; 2. Evidence statements serve as tools for rubric design to inform assessment goals and enable feedback about student learning; and 3. Strategies for using the Common Assessments provide opportunities for teacher self-reflection and collaboration.

Susan Holveck (Portland Metro STEM Partnership: No City, No State), Noelle Gorbett (Oregon Dept. of Education: Salem, OR)

Facilitating Emancipatory and Justice-Centered Environmental and Climate Learning with Elementary Students

Friday, October 29 • 12:30 PM - 1:30 PM

Oregon Convention Center - E144

Show Details

We’ll explore key stances, strategies, and resources for supporting elementary students to learn about and take collective action in response to authentic socio-ecological challenges.

1. Young learners are capable of consequential and justice-centered learning about social, political, environmental, and climate issues. Concerns about “developmental appropriateness” can perpetuate dominant forms of science and invisibilize marginalized students’ lived experiences; 2. Science learning should support students in understanding and engaging with local and global challenges through centering the world views, perspectives, and leadership of BIPOC communities; and 3. The use of project-based approaches can allow young learners to develop their voice and leadership capacity as they solve problems that are real and urgent in their communities.

Rae Han (EarthGen: No City, No State), Pranjali Upadhyay (Educational Service District 112: Vancouver, WA)

Building Community Through Writing Science Curricula

Saturday, October 30 • 11:00 AM - 12:00 PM

Oregon Convention Center - D133/134

(Only registered attendees may view session materials. Please login with your NSTA account to view.)
NSTA 01 Question Starters.pdf
NSTA Driving Question Board Guide.pdf
NSTA Portland Oct 2021.pdf

STRAND: Integrating Multiple Learning Experiences and Connecting to Move Forward

Show Details

Learn about the shift to NGSS in our large urban district, including collaboration between Science and ESL departments in writing K–5 curricula that meet both Science and English Language Proficiency expectations.

1. Glimpse into our collaborative writing process; 2. Experience several high-leverage instructional strategies in our K–5 NGSS and ELP units; and 3. Ideas for how to collaborate across departments, including how this work has developed during and post-COVID-19.

Geoff Stonecipher (Portland Public Schools: Portland, OR), Kate Yocum (Portland Public Schools: Portland, OR)

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