Pumpkin Soufflé

I was standing in my classroom as the bell rang and Anna approached me with the folded piece of paper. As I unfolded the paper, each little layer had a different note saying something like "not there yet", "one more fold" etc. which I've discovered is a practice appreciated in middle schools but far less so by those in cubicles. When I reached the last fold and opened the paper it said "Pumpkin Souffle" and had a handwritten recipe.

I will never forget what it felt like to hold the treasured family recipe in my hand, and I will never forget her glee the following Monday when I shared pictures of how mine turned out. It wasn't perfect, but the moment was. I think about that November a lot and I think about what it takes to actually make a souffle or student succeed. In both processes there is uncertainty, anticipation and hope. As we move through the hardest months in education (October doldrums) and into the holidays, I know you have the right ingredients for student success. I am so thankful for the work you are doing in your classrooms and the supports you are offering to students every single day. You are a source of hope for so many and are greatly appreciated.


Upcoming Professional Development

Collaboration Meetings-

Did you know monthly PD sessions are recorded? Find recordings here: (Link)

Content Specific Virtual PLCs


Content specific PLCs are back! All content areas will meet on the second Thursday of the month at 4 pm. Biology, Chemistry, Physics and Elementary will all have content specific breakouts; but, all are welcome.

Register here: LINK

Regional Professional Development Communities

Along with our KSDE Science Teacher Leader Team we are VERY excited to be offering quarterly regional professional development meetings. Each meeting will consist of a morning of typical professional development followed by an afternoon to workshop. The cost for each event is $35. College credit and PD certificants are available.

Session Descriptions (Click to expand details)

Quarter 2

Title: Science Regional PLCs- 2nd Quarter, Navigating Science Shifts and Supporting Students

Description: During this regional PLC, together we will offer a look into how to navigate and change lessons with the "navigation routine" from our standards. This will help participants to see how the Science and Engineering Practices can be used to assess student understandings and build future curiosity. The morning will provide a scaffold for this approach and the afternoon will provide support for implementation in specific classrooms with collaboration from those in attendance.

Quarter 3

Title: Science Regional PLCs- 3rd Quarter, Investigating Routines and Rigor for Science

Description: During this regional PLC, together we will introduce participants to the investigation routine from our standards framework and walk through how it can help to determine appropriate rigor for our students. The morning will provide a scaffold for this approach and the afternoon will provide support for implementation in specific classrooms with collaboration from those in attendance.

Region 1 (Registration)

K-State Olathe
(Click for Location)

Quarter 2 - November 16th, Register Here: LINK
Quarter 3 - February 20th, Register Here: LINK

Region 2 (Registration)

Smoky Hill Education Service Center
Click for Location)

Quarter 2 - November 18th, Register Here:
Quarter 3 - February 20th, Register Here:

Region 3 (Registration)

Fort Scott Community College
(Click for Location)

Quarter 2 - November 14th, Register Here: LINK
Quarter 3 - February 20th, Register Here: LINK

Region 4 (Registration)

ESSDACK Regional Service Center
(Click for Location)

Quarter 2 - November 16th, Register Here: LINK
Quarter 3 - February 20th, Register Here: LINK

Region 5 (Registration)

Northwest Kansas Educational Service Center (NKESC)
(Click for Location)

Quarter 2 - November 15th, Register Here: LINK

Quarter 3 - February 20th, Register Here: LINK

Region 6 (Registration)

Southwest Plains Regional Service Center
Click for Location)
8:30-3:30 pm
Quarter 2 - November 13th, Register Here:
Quarter 3 - February 20th, Register Here: (TBA)

Fields and the Framework Ep.3

Talking about Talk Moves

During this month's episode we meet Dr. Betsy Lawrence a middle school science teacher in the Olathe School District. Betsy and Meg discuss what makes elementary science critical and why utilizing collboartions at the district, state and national level have had such an impact on his classes. To learn more about teacher talk moves and the TERC project visit: (LINK) and check out the list of discourse stategies in STEM Teaching Tool #35 (LINK)

Listen to Episode 3 here: (Link) or on Spotify: Link or on Apple: Link

Differentiation Discussion

One of the powers of the Cross Cutting Concepts is the way they allow students a level playing field to start to make sense of the world around them. In the LATEST STEM Teaching Tool #91 they are described as "thinking tools that have applications across all sciences" and how we use then in our instructional practices can make all the difference in our students' understanding of science!

Take some time to engage in STEM Teaching Tool #91 with your team


Elementary Science Specific

Freebies for Science and STEM Teachers: Elementary

A Tiger’s Tale: Biodiversity Trivia Game

World Wildlife Fund (WWF) and WeAreTeachers have created a lesson plan and trivia game about wild tigers and their vital role in protecting biodiversity. Targeted for grades 3–5, the lesson plan engages students in exploring materials from a tiger toolkit—which includes a classroom PowerPoint Presentation, educator guide, downloadable posters, and student activity sheets—to discover facts about tigers and why they matter, and what threats they face. The resources discuss what WWF is doing to help tigers and the forests where they live and suggest action steps that students can take to help protect them. After their tiger research, students can test their new knowledge with a PowerPoint slide trivia game and coordinating activity sheets (e.g., Tiger Word puzzle, Identifying Tiger Stripes Challenge, Tiger Range Maze, and more). Learn more here: (LINK)

November 8, 2022, 9:00 AM Pacific / 12:00 PM Eastern

Play can be an effective tool to help kids build STEAM skills. In Collaboration with The Toy Association, learn about free resources available through The Genius of Play initiative, which provides parents, caregivers, and educators with research, expert advice, and ready-to-use ideas and activities to engage kids of all ages in fun and skill-building play. Participants will be empowered with hands-on information and tools ready for immediate application in your program. Learn more here: (LINK)

Kansas Science and Engineering Fair

While the Next Generation Science Standards (NGSS) have implemented 8 Science and Engineering Practices; we know that there is still merit in students (especially elementary students) going through opportunities to discuss and conduct scietific thinking. Did you know that Kansas has a Science and Engineering Fair that happens every spring? Science fairs are a great opportunity to promote cross curricular learning as students write their reports and practice their speaking and learning skills. It is also a GREAT opportunity to build their elementary IPS portfolios. Learn more about the Kansas fair here (Link) and please reach out if I can help with this in any way.

Secondary Science Specific

ORISE Season of STEM Activity Plan Competition

Oak Ridge Institute for Science and Education (ORISE) wants your help to provide STEM activity plans for students that can be completed at home during the holidays. Teachers of any grade level or subject are invited to submit a STEM activity plan that incorporates household items for an opportunity to win supplies to start or enhance your own classroom makerspace! Three teachers will be awarded a classroom makerspace filled with maker tools and supplies. (Deadline November 30) Prizes include

  • Ozobot Evo Coding Robots

  • LEGO Mindstorms Robot Inventor

  • Makerspace Tools and Supplies: construction paper, Origami paper, cardboard sheets, glue, hot glue gun, utility knives, wire cutters, modeling clay with tools, pipe cleaners, popsicle sticks, sequins, feathers, toy wheels, duct tape, ribbon, and more

Learn more here: (Lin

Call for Applications - CERN Summer Program

In summer 2023, CERN will offer again two residential programs for high-school science teachers from all around the world! The HST2023 programme will take place from 2-15 July 2023 and the ITW2023 programme will take place from 6-19 August 2023! Learn more here: (LINK)

Register Your Middle or High School for ChemClub for the 2022-2023 School Year!

The ChemClub program is an AACT member benefit that provides students with a unique opportunity to experience chemistry beyond the classroom. We are delighted to announce the pilot to extend ChemClub programs to middle schools for the 2022-2023 school year! AACT has supported ChemClub in many new opportunities! This year, ChemClub offered its first-ever scholarship to graduating high school participants pursuing a chemistry career. Teachers can also apply for grants for their chemistry classroom, such as the ChemClub Community Activities Grant and the ACS-Hach High School Chemistry Classroom Grant.

Applications for the 2022-2023 school year are now open! As a reminder, you must sign-up and re-register each year in order to be a chartered club and participate in ChemClub-related opportunities. Registration is open until November 1. All clubs that register by July 1 will receive a package of ChemClub goodies at their school mailing address! To remain a chartered school with ChemClub, teachers are required to maintain an active AACT membership and must re-register each year as a ChemClub. Learn move here: (LINK)


Taking Stock of Science Standards Implementation Planning for Progress

In the spring of 2022 the National Academies of Sciences held their "Taking Stock of Science Standards Implementation" summits to examine how states continue their implementation efforts of state standards. There is a need for a reflection on these efforts looking at curriculum, instruction, assessment, professional learning, and policy. To identify the conditions and develop a road map for moving implementation efforts forward. The document on the left walks through, in brief form, the recommendations and discussion had during the meeting. While not all of the notes will impact the work we do in Kansas, it paints an important picture of the work being done at the national level.

KATS Corner (Kansas Association of Teachers of Science)

Thank you to all who presented and attended KATS in the Cosmos! We had a blast!!! Be sure to save the date for the annual KATS conference April 22nd. Not a member of KATS? Register today at:

Region 4 (Wichita) Will have their regional event 10-2 at the Sedgwick county zoo on Nov 12.

Check the KATS Facebook event for more information!

Additional Opportunities

From Outside of KSDE

2022 Kansas & Missouri EE Conference

Time & Location

Nov 04, 8:00 AM CDT – Nov 06, 12:00 PM CST

The Kauffman Foundation Conference Center, 4801 Rockhill Rd, Kansas City, MO 64110, USA

About the Event

The 2022 Kansas & Missouri Environmental Education Conference will be held at the Kauffman Foundation Center in Kansas City, Missouri on Friday, November 4th - Saturday, November 5th. There is an (optional) field experience on Sunday, November 6th.

For information on hotel accomodations and other conference information, click here.

PLEASE NOTE: All conference presenters and attendees must be fully vaccinated against COVID-19 and able to show proof of vaccination.

Learn more here: LINK

Save the Date for STEMIEFest 2022!

Join us for FREE virtual STEMIEFest 2022 on Thursday, December 8, 2022 from 12 pm to 4 pm EST. STEMIEFest is a gathering of early childhood/early childhood special education professionals and faculty, families, STEM industry members, and more to engage in innovative and inclusive early STEM learning experiences. This year’s STEMIEFest will look different from previous years. Instead of a multi-day celebration in one week, we have a one-day event that will be followed by a series of targeted professional development opportunities in 2023 . Registration details will be out within the next week, so look out for it!

If you are new to STEMIEFest, you may check out our archives from 2020 and 2021: https://stemie.fpg.unc.edu/stemiefest

Wind Energy Workshop (Sub Stipend and Kit)

To help prepare new teachers and coaches for the 2023 Kansas KidWind Challenge, the Kansas Energy Program has scheduled the following six wind energy teacher workshops across the state. There is no cost to attend! Each person attending the workshop will receive a substitute stipend (if necessary), reimbursement for mileage to/from the workshop and your school, lunch, and a Vernier KidWind Basic Wind Experiment Kit (valued at $129). Learn more about KidWind with this quick overview video.

Follow the links below for more details and registration:

Nov. 2 (Wed) – Olathe Nov. 3 (Thur) – Iola

KidWind Challenges

Env. Educators Discussion flier.pdf