2011 NSTA National Conference Keynote Address

NSTA National Conference
March 10-13, 2011
San Francisco, California


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Dr. Jeff Goldstein, NCESSE Center Director, is giving the Keynote address at the 2011 National Science Teachers Association (NSTA) National Conference to be held in San Francisco March 10-13, 2011.

Post Conference Update: Jeff’s Keynote address at the 2011 NSTA National Conference was attended by 6,000 teachers of science. The Keynote was remixed by Symphony of Science into a 3-minute music video “We’ve Got To Be That Light – A Gift To America’s Teachers” which can be viewed in the right column on this website, or at YouTube (see also the version with Spanish subtitles). Jeff wrote a Blog on the Universe post on the Keynote Address, and a post on why the music video was created.

Misadventures of a First Year Teacher
San Francisco Examiner


San Francisco Address:

Science – It’s Not a Book of Knowledge … It’s a Journey

Every parent remembers that magical time when our children first began to speak, that moment marking the beginning of unending questions. In our children we can see our humanity — our innate curiosity — and recognize the obvious … that we are born to explore!

Science, in all its seeming complexity, is nothing but a means to organize curiosity. A way to empower one’s self to ask the gift of a question, and to hone the art that allows navigation through the noise of the universe around us in quest of an answer. It is an emotional, joyful, and wondrous journey that hopefully allows the traveler to pull back the veil of nature just a little, see how she operates, and celebrate the accomplishment.

Science education is no different. It is the means by which we immerse our children in the act of journey by letting them do science, and acknowledging it is their journey. As teachers, our sweet reward is seeing the joys of learning wash over them. And as teachers, we are charged with nothing less than patiently and gently launching the explorations of an entire generation.

The journey is written in our genes … the book of knowledge is not.
What should that reveal about both science and science education?


Links to some relevant essays by Dr. Jeff in advance of the conference:

A very personal thank you to teachers everywhere.
The Art of Teaching (at Huffington Post)

Our place in the greater universe and the sacred role of teachers.
The Nature of Our Existence

I’m obviously biased, but here’s an essay I think teachers of science should read.
The Power of Models

Social Media, a powerful tool for education. School districts across America – we need to bring education into the 21st Century.
The Remarkable Power of Twitter: A Water Cooler for the 21st Century

Do Americans understand what is at risk if we don’t take science and tech education seriously? (At Huffington Post)
Troubled about America’s Future

We need many flavors of heroes, and not just athletes, musicians, and movie stars. How about …
Scientists and Engineers as Heroes

Maybe the human race needs some humility.
The Address of a Self-Important World: Humanity Needs a Reality Check

In my mind, education is the answer to many things.
September 8 and September 11: Joy, Pain, and Hope