Growing Responsive STEM Communities

October 24 – 25, 2020 Online

SATURDAY OCTOBER 24, 2020 | 9:00-10:30am PST, 11:00-12:30pm CST, 12:00-1:30pm EDT

Welcome & Keynote Speakers

Re-Building Trusting Relationships: Lessons Learned from Enacting Culturally Relevant Pedagogy | Dr. Sheila Borges Rajguru, Rutgers University

Culturally relevant pedagogy (CRP) has been incorporated in STEM teacher pre-service education and professional development programs in order to unveil the inequities that alienate students from STEM and to come up with solutions by incorporating and celebrating students’ lived, cultural experiences. Few CRP programs offer ways on how to (1) build trusting relationships and (2) rebuild it with our students once it has been breached. This talk illustrates the science behind trust and how it relates to building relationships in K-12+ classrooms. It delves into the tangible actions educators could take in order to initiate and maintain trusting relationships with their students and each other. Knowing how to build a connection – whether in-person and/or virtually – is important in teaching and learning, and most critically in STEM where innovation is a team effort based on diverse collaboration and partnership.

How the NGSS Science and Language Instructional Shifts Support Each Other for English Learners | Dr. Okhee Lee, NYU Steinhardt

Three emerging forces promise to shape the landscape of STEM education: growing student diversity, increasing academic rigor of content standards, and advancing technological innovations. As disciplinary practices in STEM subjects (e.g., develop models, argue from evidence) are language intensive, engagement in these practices presents both learning opportunities and demands to all students, especially English learners. Using classroom examples, this presentation will highlight the mutually supportive nature of instructional shifts in STEM subjects and second language acquisition.

Keynote Conversations

SUNDAY, OCTOBER 25, 2020 | 9:00-10:30am PST, 11:00-12:30pm CST, 12:00-1:30pm EDT

Adapting Lessons or Changing Practice?: Unpacking the stories we tell to advance equity in our classrooms | Dru Collins-Minch, Director of Educational Equity, and Dr. Gloria Rosario-Wallace, Shanique Leonard, Michael Hardy, NYCDOE Office of Equity & Access

SUNDAY, OCTOBER 25, 2020 | 10:45-12:15pm PST, 12:45-2:15pm CST, 1:45-3:15 PM EDT

STEMteachersORGS “Reflections on Starting & Nurturing a Teacher-led STEM Community” | Fernand Brunschwig STEMteachersNYC, Wendy Hehemann STEMteachersPHX, Tiffany Taylor STEMteachersNWA

Redesigning for Community Change Through a STEM/DEI Collaboration | Kim Chaloner, Dean of Community Life, Grace Church School, Brian Filiatraut, Director of Sustainability, Poly Prep Country Day School, Motoko L. Maegawa, Director of Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion, Catherine Cook School

STEMteachersEXPO Program

FRIDAY OCTOBER 23, 2020 | 2:45-4:15pm PST, 4:45-6:15pm CST, 5:45-7:15 PM EDT

Community Mixer

SATURDAY OCTOBER 24, 2020 | 10:45-12:15pm PST, 12:45-2:15pm CST, 1:45-3:15 PM EDT

Day 1: Block B


Culturally Responsive STEM: Cultivate Your Students Voices Using Open-Source & Maker Resources | Amanda Grutza, Portfolio School & Pixel Academy, NY/ STEMteachersNYC

Help your students find their voice and use it to enact legitimate social and cultural change in the world. This workshop focuses on using both open-source and maker/STEM resources to empower students and supplement existing material and curriculum with innovative tools and practices meant to open up the conversation on injustices and activism.

STEPUP #1. Careers in Physics | Melissa Girmscheid, West Point HS, Phoenix AZ STEMteachersPHX, Jeremy Secaur, Elyria HS, OH STEMteachersCLE

STEP UP is a project designed to increase the representation of women in physics by supporting high school teachers to make their own classes more inclusive and encourage the growth of students’ physics identities. In this session, we will provide a brief overview of the STEP UP program and work through the Careers in Physics lesson, which can be implemented in both physical and virtual classrooms.

Science is LiT! Using Narrative Nonfiction and Storytelling Strategies to Assess Student Understanding of Science Content | Dr Elondra Napper, Encouraging Champions, Seven Springs NC

Everyone loves a story! In this session you will be immersed in how to use science content, social emotional learning strategies and culturally responsive strategies to teach and assess students understanding of the NGSS standards.

OpenSciEd 1 – Structures and Strategies that Support Emerging Multilingual Students’ Content and Language Development | Sarah Delaney and James Ryan, San Francisco CA

Where Is The Racism In Your School? | Tanea Hibler, Brophy College Prep, Phoenix AZ/ STEMteachersPHX

If you know what racism is, where it exists, how to address it, then these structures can be broken down, and equitable systems can replace what used to exist


Fostering a Positive Culture of Error in Middle School Math | Dr. Angela Dosalmas, Mills College, Oakland, CA and
Sinclair Wu, San Francisco CA

This session will explore specific ideas and methods for math educators to foster a classroom culture where students are engaged in and feel safe discussing mistakes and misconceptions. Through a series of hands-on activities, participants will model strategies that help increase not only student proficiency but also self-confidence.

Quantum Physics Outreach Program (QPOP)! From quantum theory to quantum technology: how the laws of the microscopic world are shaping our future | Sebastian Will, Dept. of Physics, Columbia University, and Paul Bianchi Horace Greeley HS NY Prof. Sebastian Will

SATURDAY OCTOBER 24, 2020 | 1:00-2:30pm PST, 3:00-4:30pm CST, 4:00-5:30 PM EDT

Day 1: Block C


How to Teach STEM in a Culturally Responsive Manner | Sugandhi Chugani and Desmond Martin, NextWaveSTEM, Chicago IL

Educating in STEM goes further than a simple understanding of the physical sciences or problem solving using computers and circuits. When we teach STEM, it is becoming integral to consider the cultural context in which STEM careers and applications find themselves being used. By exploring with students the specific ways that they interact with technology every day, STEM becomes more relatable and relevant.

Plastic Bag Challenge! | Jennifer Cheesman, Zuni Hills Elementary, Sun City AZ/ STEMteachersPHX

In this hands on workshop, participants will hear about a book “One Plastic Bag Isatou Ceesay and the Recycling Women of the Gambia written by Miranda Paul. Learn how the ladies of this small town took a problem of plastic bags being dropped and accumulating in ugly heaps by the side of the road. Participants will create a new product out of a simple bag and share with others in the session.

Unteaching and Unlearning: Decolonizing Math History and Education| Martina Meijer, PS139K, NY

Let’s take a critical lens to our curriculum content, especially the history of the math that we teach. This is a moment for teachers to develop a more complex understanding of the background of the math that we teach our students, one that does not center European mathematicians or European culture. I invite us to rethink what we thought we knew, and continue a journey of unlearning and unteaching, for the benefit of our students and their future.

OpenSciEd 2 – Supporting Equitable Access to High-Quality Science Learning Experiences for All Students | Sarah Delaney and James Ryan, San Francisco CA


The POWARR™ of Student Collaboration in Virtual STEM Classrooms | Dr Marquita Blades, POWARRful Teaching Strategies, Powder Springs GA

True collaboration is about the exchange of ideas, not necessarily sharing materials. In this session, you’ll learn how to take a problem-based approach to STEM and increase student collaboration in your virtual classrooms using the lessons and activities that you already have!

Evaluating our STEM Professional Development Workshops | Yadana Nath Desmond, Yi Li and Jackie Gaston, STEMteachersNYC

Participants will 1) encounter the basics of developing and aligning pre, exit and implementation survey questions, 2) become familiar with resources on coding responses, and 3) develop and critique summarization of findings.

Maintaining well-being whilst working online | Aishling Dean, My Little School, Riyadh SA

In the current situation, boundaries, breaks and privacy have all disappeared and well-being has gone to the bottom of the focus list. This session aims to equip the attendees with strategies to ensure their own, colleagues and students well-being.

Simple strategies such as active breaks and designing a safe office apace can support educators in ensuring they maintain a healthy work-home balance.

Using Pivot Interactive for Science Practices in Biology, Chemistry, and Physics | Peter Bohacek, Henry Sibley HS, Afton MN

Teachers will have to opportunity to see how Pivot Interactives enables authentic science investigation using interactive video online. We’ll see how students learn from a library of thousands of interactive, high-resolution videos of real events, with built-in instructions, data tables and graphs, and real-time automatic feedback. Pivot Interactives is a paid subscription service that costs $5/student per year.

STEMCoding: Coding Integration in high school Physics and Physical Science classrooms | Celestina Pangan, Chavez High School, Houston TX

The STEMCoding activities that can be used as an alternative form of assessment in the physics or physical science classroom. Each activity has physics concepts, such as Kinematics and Electromagnetism, integrated into the code for it to work. Not only the activities are reinforcing the Physics concepts, but also are providing basic coding experience to both students and teachers who may not have a computer science background or prior coding experience.

SATURDAY OCTOBER 24, 2020 | 2:45-4:15pm PST, 4:45-6:15pm CST, 5:45-7:15 PM EDT

Day 1: Block D



STEPUP #2. STEP UP: A Social Movement to Promote Cultural Change in Physics | Jason Sullivan, Mariel Kolker, Natasha Collova, Shannon Greco, Montgomery HS, NJ/ STEMteachersNYC

Drawing on research evidence, STEP UP is mobilizing thousands of high school physics teachers to reduce barriers and inspire young women to pursue physics degrees in college. Our lesson materials are research-driven and will help shift deep-seated cultural views about who does physics.


Amazingly Versatile STEAM Activities Using Only Paper, Tape & Scissors | Godwyn Morris and Paula Frisch, Skill Mill NYC

Join us to learn how to transform paper, tape and scissors into creative curriculum based explorations for you and your students. From marble runs to bridges to catapults to habitats and more, the possibilities are endless and use the supplies are easily accessible to all. This hands-on workshop will get you cutting, folding, connecting and building in a matter of minutes, and be ready to implement new activities when you need them.

STEM+C: Using Tinkercad in the Classroom | Isabel Mendiola and Peter Haydock, Hingham WI

Participants will learn skills and strategies to integrate engineering and coding into the classroom to support science, computer science, and career and technical readiness.

Culture building through GAMES on Zoom | Elissa Levy, Life Science Secondary School NY/ STEMteachersNYC

1. Participants will be able to describe the importance of playing fun games on zoom to build culture and support students socio-emotionally. 2. Participants will build a toolkit of fun games to use for synchronous teaching by actually playing them!

Vernier Software and Technology tools for Remote learning and beyond | David Carter and Gary Myers, OR

PyMol! Strengthening virtual Chemistry and Biology instruction through 3D modeling | Daniel Fried and Maria Voigt

SUNDAY, OCTOBER 25, 2020 | 9:00-10:30am PST, 11:00-12:30pm CST, 12:00-1:30pm EDT

Day 2: Block A


Planning for Culturally Responsive Teaching | Raxha Bhagdev, Hamilton High School, Chandler AZ/ STEMteachersPHX

This presentation will explain the need for culturally responsive teaching (CRT) and explore why CRT should include trauma-informed pedagogy. A broader perspective of CRT should also include pedagogical best practices for social-emotional, relational, and cognitive growth.

Increasing Equity in STEM curriculum via Local Alumni Focus Groups | Chris Resch and Glen Stuart, Montgomery HS, NJ/ STEMteacherNYC

Some of the best resources to increase inclusively within the STEM curriculum can be our own alumni. In this session, participants will hear about how Montgomery alumni focused groups have formed, informed, and contributed to the creation of lessons that are more equitable in nature. An exemplar lesson will be provided to participants, with time devoted to resource sharing.

STEMSS Lessons To Support Language Learners |
Karen Guerrero, Arizona State Univ, Mesa AZ

STEM+Social Studies for language learners = Success! Come explore integrated lessons that emphasize key strategies to support teaching language and content in the classroom whether you teach online or face-to-face.

Clouds, Climate, and Culture | Ashley Grey, Baruch College Campus HS, NY

This session will introduce participants to a variety of NOAA and NASA-inspired applications for teaching meteorology, climatology, and climate justice. Participants will also learn about free opportunities to bring NOAA and NASA STEM educators into the classroom who tailor content to grade level, region, and interest. Finally, this workshop will provide information on teacher professional development opportunities through the American Meteorological Society’s Project Atmosphere.

Grading With Equity In Mind | Tanea Hibler, Brophy College Preparatory, Phoenix AZ/ STEMteachersPHX, and Ariel Serkin, Norfolk County Agricultural HS, Warpole MA/ STEMteachersMassBay

Why does grading for equity matter? Come learn and discuss the value and impact that equitable grading practices can have on your students.


Simple, Fun, and engaging STEM lessons | Spencer Sharp, Southern Wells Elem School, W Poneto IN

Do you find it hard to fit STEM in your class? This session simplifies STEM and makes it easy for anyone to use.

Teaching with Scientific Articles and Research | Evie Wong, Science With Evie, NY

History and English classes emphasize the use of primary sources and why shouldn’t it be different for STEM classes? New research in all fields of STEM make high school science relevant for students. Help our students see why it’s important to leave school with a solid understanding of science, regardless of what their professions will be.


Day 2: Block B


9:00-10:30am PST, 11:00-12:30pm CST, 12:00-1:30pm EDT

Adapting Lessons or Changing Practice?: Unpacking the stories we tell to advance equity in our classrooms | Dru Collins-Minch, Director of Educational Equity, and Dr. Gloria Rosario-Wallace, Shanique Leonard, Michael Hardy, NYCDOE Office of Equity & Access

10:45-12:15pm PST, 12:45-2:15pm CST, 1:45-3:15 PM EDT

STEMteachersORGS “Reflections on Starting & Nurturing a Teacher-led STEM Community” | Fernand Brunschwig STEMteachersNYC, Wendy Hehemann STEMteachersPHX, Tiffany Taylor STEMteachersNWA

Redesigning for Community Change Through a STEM/DEI Collaboration | Kim Chaloner, Dean of Community Life, Grace Church School, Brian Filiatraut, Director of Sustainability, Poly Prep Country Day School, Motoko L. Maegawa, Director of Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion, Catherine Cook School


Widening the Lens of Environmental Science Education| Caroline Dougherty, Expeditionary School for Community Leaders, NY/STEMteachersNYC, Anna Mello, The Chapin School, Ashley Grey, Baruch College Campus HS, and Zakhia Grant, EcoRISE. Facilitated by Glen Stuart, Montgomery HS/STEMteachersNYC.

Teachers will examine how race has played a part in environmental science leading to less BIPOC in the environmental science field and the combat the stereotype that BIPOC don’t care about the outdoors. They will then investigate how history and science overlap and about anchoring environmental science curriculum into environmental justice to increase students critical science agency. Teachers will leave with a working document about culturally relevant education changes that they can make in their curriculum.


Building REALationships in the classroom | Jodi Wilson, Pride Academy Charter School, East Orange NJ

Are you interested in building authentic relationships with your students? Does the prospect of Virtual Teaching create feelings of anxiety as to how exactly you will do this? Let’s dive in and explore ways that authentic relationships can be fostered remotely in a REAL way AND be rooted in culturally responsive teaching and engaging for you and your students!

Looking to Create: How Scaffolded Visuals Support Hands-on Learning in a Blended Model | Kiera Nieuwejaar and Meghan Eison, The League of Young Inventors, NY

Strong visual presentations can make a big difference in the blended classroom. We provide a model of stepped-out video lessons that scaffold STEAM activities with cultural context and stepped-out build sessions, to give all students an opportunity to achieve success in hands-on science and engineering.

SUNDAY, OCTOBER 25, 2020 | 1:00-2:30pm PST, 3:00-4:30pm CST, 4:00-5:30 PM EDT

Day 2: Block C


Harmonizing Culture and STEAM: Integrating Cultural Responsiveness to STEAM Curriculum | John Carlo Tulinao and Jasfer Familaran, Amberlea Elementary School, AZ

This session will focus on utilizing cultural concepts and practices around the world in designing a STEAM lesson. The session will discuss ways on how to advocate, promote, and foster cultural empathy and responsibility within the STEAM classroom through exploring various cultural practices and artifacts. The discussions will help teachers build an understanding of resources/materials that can be used to create instruments, materials and artifacts based on foreign cultures.

Using Culturally Responsive STEM and Social Justice Education To Build Student Critical Consciousness | Yvonne Thevenot, STEM Kids NYC

In this session, educators will learn how students from several New York City communities were engaged in a social justice activism program hosted by STEM Kids NYC that enabled them to analyze, navigate, and challenge social injustice issues and then bridge those issues to a computer science framework in order to build apps that illuminated those issues.

STEM Learning, a platform to develop English proficiency in first generation of immigrants | Melineh Zohrabian, Teach Communication through Science, (Glendale CA), Barbara Flynn (Early Education), Anita Arojyan (Middle School), Estine Shahverdian (Middle School), and Eugenia Khorosheva, PhD (CALtech)

The panel will share ideas on how STEM learning can boost the language proficiency in first generation of the immigrants from various perspective; including early educators, school districts, classroom teachers and top scientists traveling for their projects into the United States.

Providing equitable STEM to all students | Jessica Cordaro, Reacher Cyber Charter School, Bear Creek Tsp, PA

With many students learning from home, access to materials to complete hands-on projects may not be easy. I will show you how to use local community resources and donations to provide supplies to all students, as well as the impact of using diverse guest speakers to engage students in STEM projects.

EcoRise – Student-Driven Learning through Eco-Audits | Zakhia Grant, EcoRise, Austin TX

Engage students in authentic learning experiences with eco-audits. An Eco-Audit is a student-driven, problem-based learning experience where students collect and analyze data relating to energy, transportation, waste, water, food, air, and public spaces. Students use the data to design and propose a solution to the sustainability challenge illuminated with the eco-audit, and can bring their solutions to reality by applying to our Student Innovation Fund.


Virtual Professional Development for Elementary STEM Teachers in the Time of COVID-19 | Juliette Guarino Berg, The Chapin School NY, Kate Macaulay Hunter College Elementary School NY, Dieuwertje (DJ) Kast, USC Joint Educational Project STEM Programs, NY & CA/ STEMteachersNYC

When the COVID-19 pandemic hit American shores, elementary STEM teachers were thrust into online learning environments with little to no salient professional development around best practices in digital instruction. This session will demonstrate best practices in facilitating online professional development for elementary STEM teachers in their online professional learning communities.

Starting your Organization: Writing a mission statement, Establishing a board, Basics of Grant writing | Jennifer Herring, STEMteachersNYC

SUNDAY, OCTOBER 25, 2020 | 2:45-4:15pm PST, 4:45-6:15pm CST, 5:45-7:15 PM EDT

Day 2: Block D


Please note, schedule subject to change.