April was a very busy month is the world of Zooniverse education. Here are a few highlights and photos.
We attended and presented at the annual National Science Teachers Association Conference in San Antonio April 11-14. Most conversations focused on the recent release of the new US Next Generation Science Standards (NGSS). Educators from all walks of life took some time to learn all about this exciting new development in science education. Getting up to speed on these new standards is definitely on our list of summer to-dos.
We spent most of the conference at our booth in the exhibit hall having great conversations with teachers about current Zooniverse projects, ZooTeach, the Galaxy Zoo Navigator, and the upcoming Planet Hunters Educators Guide. While not mingling with science teachers you can bet we took advantage of Texas-sized desserts (yes, that cinnamon roll was delicious).
The Chicago branch of the Zooniverse development team outgrew its office. We’ve recently moved into new digs on the museum floor. Not only is there more room, but we’re across from the classroom where field trip programs happen at the Adler! Seeing students engaged in science learning is a great motivator here at Zooniverse HQ.
Zoo Workshop 2
April 29th-30th saw fifty-five scientists, developers, educators, designers, moderators, and citizens science enthusiasts gatherat the Adler Planetarium to discuss all things Zooniverse. This meeting serves multiple purposes, first and foremost it’s a terrific opportunity to have face-to-face conversations with people usually dispersed around the globe. Even with Skype and Google Hang-Outs, sometimes you can’t beat sitting down and talking over a coffee.
Secondly, this meeting is a great opportunity to bring science team members behind upcoming projects into the Zooniverse fold. In his talk entitled Lifecycle of a Zooniverse Project, Rob Simpson gave the science teams behind upcoming projects a crash-course in what to expect over the lifetime of their project. The development team used this meeting to begin conversations with these science team members about the design and implementation of their projects. Not to give too much away, but there are some AMAZING projects in the pipeline).
Stay tuned for more from Zoo Workshop 2….