Educational Resources Digest – Week of May 11

Volume 6 - Resources to help you continue to support learning during the COVID-19 pandemic


To Parents and Colleagues

There has been a burst of energy for curating, creating, and distributing resources and opportunities to support learning during the COVID-19 pandemic, along with regularly scheduled programming. We’ve created a digest of what has come through Washington STEM’s inboxes during the past week. As remote learning continues, we will provide additional resource lists as we find them.

Please note that we work with a diverse set of partners, and these opportunities and events are not tailored to any particular audience or partner. Please review each opportunity to decide if it’s relevant to your needs.

— Cheers and be well!

Upcoming Programs and Webinars

Happening in May

5/13    Webinar: Now Is the Time to Redefine School

When: May 13, 12:30 pm PT
Where: Online via Zoom

In our free webinar Wednesday, May 13 at 12:30pm, Trish Millines Dziko, Executive Director of TAF (Technology Access Foundation), will share TAF’s vision of building a more impactful education system that disrupts centuries of racial inequities, enables us to bring out and nurture the genius in every child, and honors teachers as professionals. She will go through short and long term goals as well as what needs to be true to implement that vision. She will also answer your questions.

5/13, 5/14    K-12 Mathematics Office Hours

When May 13 and 14
Where: Online via Zoom

The K-12 Mathematics Department at OSPI will offer open Virtual Office Hours this week. As always, you are welcome to attend any session! Office Hours will include:

  • Doing math together
  • Thinking about finishing out the year
  • Looking ahead to next year
  • Question and Answer time

Wednesday, May 13, 11 AM – 12 PM:
Thursday, May 14, 3 PM – 4 PM:

Registration begins 5/20    Bridge to College Courses (Summer Institute)

When: Registration begins May 20
Where: Online

The Bridge to College courses for English language arts (ELA) and Mathematics are fourth-year (senior-level) courses designed for students scoring a Level 2 on the Smarter Balanced high school assessment (10th grade). Students who earn a “B” or better in the Bridge Course are eligible to enter credit-bearing coursework in any of the State of Washington Community and Technical Colleges.

Registration begins 5/20    Modeling Our World with Mathematics Summer Institute

When: Registration begins May 20
Where: Online

Modeling Our World with Mathematics (MOWWM) is a modularly-designed mathematics course developed locally by OSPI with input from educators across Washington, and is designed to follow Geometry. It contains career-connected thematic units where students use high school mathematics to analyze everyday life and work. The content and instructional strategies support increased attainment of the common core high school content standards while developing the standards for mathematical practice.

Happening in June

Applications for Fall Close 6/4   Rural Jobs Initiative of the Career and Technical Scholarship 

WSOS is excited to launch the Rural Jobs Initiative of the Career and Technical Scholarship. The inaugural cohort of Rural Jobs recipients will be selected from those Scholars accepted into the CTS program in June. This initiative will allow more scholarship dollars to go directly into the hands of rural students, particularly those who live furthest from the nearest community or technical college.

Eligibility for the Rural Jobs Initiative:

  • Be a resident of a rural county (all counties in Washington are considered rural EXCEPT King, Pierce, Snohomish, Kitsap, Thurston, Clark, Benton and Spokane) or have graduated from a high school in a school district of fewer than 2,000 enrolled students.
  • Be a resident student eligible for in-state tuition.
  • Enroll at a community and technical college located in a rural county.
  • Enroll in an eligible program that leads to a high-demand job in your community.
  • Have a family income that does not exceed 70% of Washington state’s median family income adjusted for family size.

Happening in July

7/22 – 7/24    Stay-In-stitute for Climate Change Education

When: July 22-24, 2020, Register by July 13
Where: Online
Cost: $150
Result: 20 hours of Continuing Education, 2 Graduate Credits (optional)
Scholarships available. Apply now.

This three-day experience will take you beyond your computer screen, and into your backyard and neighborhood to do authentic scientific and social data collection, move your body, and make observations of the world around you.

Join a network of teachers from across the country dedicated to teaching climate change as an interdisciplinary issue!

  • Prepare your students to be global citizens
  • Use phenomena and place-based learning to ignite curiosity
  • Support student engagement in climate solutions
  • Network with educators in climate change education


Learning Engagements for Families

Learning in Places, a project with the goal of creating more culturally and community relevant, field-based learning opportunities for students, has been posting weekly Learning Engagements for K-3 students and their families. These materials were designed to support students and their families to engage in science that matters in the places they live. The materials facilitate families to ask and explore “should we” questions that engage the intersection of natural and social phenomena in our everyday lives. The project is a partnership of University of Washington, Northwestern University, Seattle Public Schools, and Tilth Alliance.

NAAEE Webinar: “Plugged In: A Practical Guide to Moving Place-Based Education Online”

“What can learning look like when we’re separated from our classrooms and collections and the places we love? How can we support our students and communities-and maintain physical distancing? Educators Anna Kassinger, content strategist and information architect at Echo&Co and Emily Harris, research scientist at BSCS Science Learning presented this interactive session on principles, best practices, and field-tested examples for bringing place-based lessons online.”

Slides and notes can be downloaded at this Google Drive folder.

Responding to an Emerging Epidemic Through Science Education (REESE) Project

“Working with researchers from two universities, nine teachers designed high school science activities they hope will accomplish two things at once. Students will get the chance to study a natural phenomenon that’s meaningful in their lives – a key aim of the NGSS – and they’ll also get to process the pandemic’s impact on their lives.”

OpenSciEd Webinar Series: Staying Grounded When Teaching Remote

OpenSciEd has released a webinar series on remote teaching. A recent webinar focused on elements of the Problematizing Routine (i.e., a routine used when students encounter a gap in their knowledge they need to develop further) in a virtual setting, including foregrounding a new phenomenon or question, arguing for competing ideas, and determining a way to answer the question or competing explanations.

Archived Webinar:

How Native Communities are Harnessing the Internet to Share Traditional and Contemporary Knowledge with Students

From Indigenous language lessons streamed via Facebook Live to American Indian history lessons and oral traditions uploaded to YouTube, Native communities are sharing traditional and contemporary knowledge through the use of technology and social media platforms.


School Closures Changing Districts’ Methods, Terms for Bargaining With Unions

With distance learning possibly extending into fall, teacher contracts settled or being negotiated prior to school closures due to the coronavirus are now being reexamined. Talks have been structured differently based on the speed of the outbreak and holes in previous contracts, and some changes could last post-pandemic. (Education Dive, May 12)

Related Materials: COVID-19 Update: State Policy Responses and Other Executive Actions to the Coronavirus in Public Schools

School Meal Programs Seek Relief, Plan for Uncertain Summer

With an increase in families reporting financial insecurity, experts also expect more students to become eligible for free and reduced-price meals… Congress’ second relief package, the Families First Coronavirus Response Act, also included the Pandemic Electronic Benefit Transfer program to provide access to food for students who normally qualify for school subsidized meals. States have to submit applications for the program, and at this point, 19 states have been approved. (Education Dive, May 11)

Related Material: State Information Request: School Meal Programs

State Approaches to Secondary CTE Funding

While emergency grants for colleges and their students from the CARES Act have gotten much attention in the past few weeks, that funding isn’t the only stream of new federal money headed for higher education. The U.S. Department of Education also is planning to distribute $127.5 million as part of its Reimagining Workforce Preparation grant program. (Inside Higher Education, May 12)

Creating a system of professional learning that meets teachers’ needs: What a teacher survey says about the direction of science education

“Taking stock of teachers’ vision is important, because ultimately the long-term success of any reform depends on teacher buy-in. Educators may comply in the short term with mandates and reforms that are handed down from above, but real change demands sustained professional learning that teachers want to engage in. At the same time, if state leaders deem a particular goal – such as equity – to be important, then we need a way to measure progress toward that goal and discuss together how to improve.”