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So far James has created 6 blog entries.

Giving My Students the Power, As Inspired by Dead Poet’s Society (1989)

“I went to the woods because I wanted to live deliberately. I wanted to live deep and suck out all the marrow of life. To put to rout all that was not life; and not, when I had come to die, discover that I had not lived” (Henry David Thoreau, as quoted by Neil Perry).
What does it mean to have lived? How do we measure the successes of our own lives? Who do we let define what it means for us to ‘live deliberately,’ in the words of Thoreau?

I ask these questions after watching Dead Poet’s Society (1989), a film […]

What’s The Big Idea With “Big Ideas”?

Have you ever been so interested in something that you can’t help but research it further?

Think about it. From a biochemical reaction mechanism to why the Hindenburg caught fire, interesting and engaging phenomena occur all around us. These phenomena are not isolated occurrences, despite the specific contexts in which they occur. The same basic principles govern the world around us in predictable, observable, and explainable ways; these phenomena are simply the vessel for engaging us and making us wonder how and why they happen.

Those basic principles, the overarching themes within our disciplines of interest, operate to categorize and explain […]

By |February 15th, 2018|Uncategorized|0 Comments

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Middle Schoolers and NGSS: Extending Thinking Beyond the Standards

Is it dangerous to eat an orange on a hot air balloon?

What a strange question. I mean, why would I even ask that? Let me contextualize it a bit more. Please watch the following video before you continue reading.

Now that you’ve watched the video, I’ll ask my question again: Is it dangerous to eat an orange on a hot air balloon? Think for a bit about it before you continue reading. A few probing questions to get you started:

 Are party balloons and hot air balloons made of the same material?
What about the liquid in an orange peel makes […]

By |February 2nd, 2018|Uncategorized|0 Comments

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The Value in “Flopping”: Day 1 Jitters, Stumbles, and Learning on the Spot!

Picture this: You’re standing in front of your class. It’s the first time you’re teaching as a student teacher in a real classroom. Students are somewhat paying attention, but they are distracted by other classmates. You’re trying to refocus them on the lesson, but you don’t want to yell at them. You’re getting frustrated, but you don’t want your first day to involve snapping at students.

What do you do?
From Rush Henrietta Senior High School, it’s Mr. Kostka reporting this week for GR!S. I wanted to report about the demos upon demos my student teacher has let me conduct […]

By |November 5th, 2017|Uncategorized|0 Comments

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Kicking Off a New School Year at East

Hello and Welcome to the 2017-2018 GR!S class blog! Our cohort is very excited to share our experiences this semester: and that begins with our journey at East. Join us (James and Olivia) as we explore pedagogy, advocate for change and work toward becoming reform-minded science educators who employ culturally responsive teaching and inclusive education practices.
East EPO Partnership with The University of Rochester
To provide a little background: The University of Rochester shares an Educational Partnership Organization (EPO) with East School in Rochester, NY. The mission of the EPO states:
“Our mission is to prepare all students for a successful […]

By |September 15th, 2017|Uncategorized|0 Comments

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John Kessler Talks Climate Change to Chicago Sun-Times

John Kessler, a friend of the GRS program, was recently spotlighted and quoted in the Chicago Sun-Times regarding his work on the Great Lakes and climate change. He recently completed a week-long tour collecting data about microbes and their methane emissions in order to gather data about its impact on climate change. Given the current political climate, Dr. Kessler summarized his relationship with science in the following words:
There’s skepticism about science.  It’s our job to slowly and methodically go through and talk about science … and communicate what we know and don’t know.
You can read the full article by […]