It’s that time of year again (arguably our favorite time of year) when ARKive staff in the US have the chance to talk to thousands of science teachers from across the country and even abroad. Of course, we’re talking about the National Science Teachers Association, where nearly 10,000 science educators came to Indianapolis to celebrate all things science!
What did we do?
Over the course of three days, we spoke to over 500 teachers who told us stories about everyday life in their science classrooms and the different ways they plan on using ARKive in the future. One elementary teacher said she’d like to use the convenient, short video clips during transitions from rowdy outdoor recess to quiet and focused indoor learning. A college professor liked that many species pages include links to organizations that are working to save species from extinction and was brainstorming a conservation project for her students requiring them to reach out to an organization to identify an action that students can take today, in their hometown, to help save species.
We also hosted a session called “ARKive.org: Creating virtual learning experiences within conservation education” that was attended by a variety of educators who taught different age groups and disciplines. As an introduction to the 30+ ARKive Education resources, participants put on their thinking caps and imagined all sorts of new mini-beasts as part of the Marvellous Mini-beasts – Design a Species lesson. One imagined species was a beetle with legs poking out all around its center making it “able to scurry in any direction with the blink of an eye!”
Our Creative Climate Change Twitter Challenge
During NSTA, ARKive was hosting the Creative Climate Change Challenge, encouraging young people around the world to come up with a unique way to spread the word about climate change, from rapping to poetry and more. We took a tech-savvy spin on this at our conference booth and asked teachers with Twitter accounts to come up with their best creative caption for the images below. By tweeting their caption, they were entered into a draw for a signed copy of Jane Goodall’s “Hope for Animals and Their World”.
Some of our favorite tweets included:
Polar bear: “Man, this iceberg used to be a whole lot bigger!”
Woodland jumping mouse: “Oh no, where has all the snow gone? Thanks a lot, climate change!”
Emperor penguin: “Last one in is a frozen egg!”
We’re already making big plans for NSTA next year including the unveiling of a whole new ARKive Education program. However, we can’t spill the beans just yet, but be sure to stay up-to-date with ARKive in the coming weeks to find out more!
Liana Vitali, ARKive Science, Education and Outreach Officer, Wildscreen USA