High School Science Textbooks

Moving Towards 2062 from 1862… Cultivating Our Future in a Volatile World

Written by Laura Lottes

Recently while visiting my family cemetery, nestled on a country hillside, I stood before my great grandfather August (Gus) H. Quade’s grave. He was born 100 years and three days before me, in the family home approximately 300 feet from the cemetery. I imagined what life was like on that autumn day in 1862 and what it was like for him growing up, living his life, and dying on the same land my entire family calls home. At that time President Abraham Lincoln was in office, the Commander in Chief during the Civil War. While soldiers bitterly battled one another, determined to preserve their way of life without surrendering to another’s beliefs, a young boy had his entire life ahead of him.

Gus would attend elementary school in a one room schoolhouse that was erected on our family’s land. Parcel 17 of Table Mound Township to be exact. It had all of the modern conveniences of a mid 1800s classroom. There were desks with ink wells, small slate boards, and a coat hook for every student. A large slate chalkboard graced the front of the classroom; there were a handful of textbooks, and a large map of the United States Territories. Gus received a solid education at the one room schoolhouse and would continue his education at Dubuque Senior High School, at that time located in Turner Hall. His education served him well as he grew into a successful businessman and farmer. The one room schoolhouse seems to have existed so long ago. We imagine only our great grandparents had such a rustic educational experience. When in fact, Gus’s children, grandchildren, and two of his great grandchildren received part or all of their elementary education at the same one room schoolhouse, the two great grandchildren being my two oldest siblings!!!

Leap forward to 1968 when I began kindergarten at a school that hosted approximately 500 kids. Still located in Table Mound Township, replacing the one room schoolhouse, we still had a large slate chalkboard at the front of the room! Ahhh, how slate stands the test of time. But now our learning tools progressed to overhead projectors, slide strips, movie projectors, books covering every subject for each student, and lockers! Education was mostly traditional during that time. Fortunately for my classmates and me, there were a few teachers who explored different methods of teaching and learning. We experienced hands-on science projects, and math was related to everyday life, incorporating language arts and financial literacy. For example, in fourth grade every child was taught how to write a check, balance a checkbook, and develop a personal budget. My school was actually considered a "test" school in the 1960s and 70s. The focus was on learning math and science in a real world context, and incorporating this method of learning into the curriculum. I applaud the innovative leaders and educators who had the foresight to challenge the traditional way of teaching and learning.

And now we find ourselves in 2013. Wow, education has progressed over the course of 50 years and not to mention the last 100 years. We’ve replaced our trusted slate boards with interactive white boards with which all students can actively partake in the learning. While content should be first and foremost in all curriculum, the platform for delivery has evolved at a rapid pace. Hands-on, experience-based, and real world learning will no longer just be an option, it will be a requirement in order for states to meet the criteria outlined in the Common Core State Standards (CCSS). Students will have opportunities to engage with their learning experiences that we never imagined possible in 1862. The turmoil of the Civil War has long passed, but unfortunately confusion and chaos is present in many forms in today’s society, especially in education. There are impoverished school districts in which the main focus is not necessarily on learning, but on living… students are concerned with basic survival, and hopefully how to become self sufficient and contribute to society. This is the reality for several school districts across our great country. Think about it, what format of education would be engaging and benefit students in these classrooms? Could that format be similar to the education I received in the mid 60s and 70s, which was a practical approach connecting learning to real life experiences? How about using this format in all classrooms, not just those located in low social economic areas? It’s visibly a logical method. That format also appears to support the kind of learning called for in the CCSS. Once again, I applaud the group of people who were innovative and courageous in challenging the traditional way of teaching and learning, and forging ahead developing and promoting the CCSS. Now our goal should be for all states to transform their schools to a learning environment that will cultivate innovative, self-sufficient learners. By embracing and implementing the CCSS, states will not only be giving a gift to our current generation, they will establish a solid foundation for our future generations to thrive in the ever changing world.

Looking to the near future… 2062. I can only imagine what our society, lives, and education will be like fifty years from now. History lays the foundation for our future. Today is tomorrow’s history. It’s imperative that we are all committed to developing our own advancements in life and in education for our future generations to expand upon. I challenge you to answer one question. What will your commitment and contribution be to the present and to the future?

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Involve Me and I Learn

Written by Jen Gilbert, Special Populations Liaison

“Tell me and I forget.  Teach me and I remember.  Involve me and I learn.”  –Benjamin Franklin

When I sat down to think about why I am so passionate about inquiry-based education I tried to come up with an example that sums up the experience for both teachers and students.  I remembered a colleague sharing a story about a conversation she had with a student.  She was working in a small group with special education students and she asked one of the students, “What do you think?”  The student’s response was, “I don’t know.”  She made it a teachable moment by telling the student that she was asking what they think about the topic, not what they know in terms of looking for any particular correct answer.  To me that was a powerful lesson for both of them.  How often do we ask our students what they think, and truly consider the response?  The reason I love inquiry-based science is that it allows students to think about ideas, explore ways to solve a problem, and make sense of it all in the context of the particular lesson.  In other words, the inquiry approach allows students to do science.

Working with special education students has allowed me a unique perspective on lesson design. Establishing lessons that are suited to meet the needs of special education students in the classroom will benefit ALL students in the classroom.  My first exposure to an inquiry-based curriculum in the classroom
was BSCS Biology: A Human Approach.  I remember opening up the textbook and seeing the first engage activity called “Cooperating like a Scientist” in the Being a Scientist opening section.  I saw the way the section was introduced and could not believe how much it was aligned to material I normally had to adapt for students.  Here was a program already designed with the learner in mind! I often see students struggle with biology lessons when they cannot connect the material to their everyday life.  If you watch a group of students play the “radar game,” you will see firsthand what it means to be immersed in a lesson!  Students become the investigators in these lessons; they are doing science rather than reading/writing about it. 

Have you ever had an experience where you can say to a student “Remember when we...,” where you refer back to a previous activity, and you can see the student recalling the activity?  Or perhaps they reply with details and a story about that particular day in class.  How often do we get the chance to hear from students about the impact a lesson has had, or see the connections they make?  I worked with a dozen high schools implementing BSCS Biology and feel so fortunate to have been in a position to see it on a regular basis.  From self-contained special education to general education classrooms without a cooperative team teacher, I have seen the impact of inquiry-based science on our students.  The students have to be actively engaged to participate in an activity.  When we use the inquiry model in our lessons, we ask our students to do science: to think and become problem-solvers.  I feel like I am empowering students to become lifelong learners, and I cannot imagine being in the classroom without using inquiry practices.

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Focus, Focus…uh, what?

Well, here’s one of my “mom’s perspective” blog entries. My son is now finishing the 6th grade, my how time flies, and with any luck he’ll make it to 7th grade. Just kidding, he’s still a good student, but something seems to happen to sixth grade boys’ brains about midway through the year…they fall out. Anyone else experienced that? I know I’m not alone. They lose focus, they look at you like you’re speaking a foreign language, etc. I know, it’s normal, they all go through it to some extent, but still there is plenty of focus for some things that he deems important, Xbox being chief among them. I’m thinking that an educational publishing company, like my very own employer, Kendall Hunt, might have a great new digital delivery mechanism for all sorts of eLearning products…if we could just make them all into video games, which is already being done, but feed them through those portals they think are “cool.” 

Seriously, what about tying digital mathematics programs into Call of Duty where you have to find the solution to math problems to advance in the game, or to even start the game?  Put the high school chemistry textbook, in ebook format, into Xbox and maybe they’ll read it with their friends…?  That’s it!! Make it so I can program the video game console to only let him through to his games after he’s done math and science!!  I know, I’m grasping at straws here, but with this digital generation, with whom we seem to need to speak only in 11 second sound bites, can learning materials within the PlayStation/Xbox/Wii platforms be far behind?  Is anyone doing it already?

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Happy Teacher Appreciation Week!

This is teacher appreciation week, and somehow it seems that as a mother and an employee of an educational publishing company, I should be and am extremely grateful to our teachers out there.  I just read a great article by Sally Ride, the first American woman in space about how grateful she is to her high school science teacher, and the vital importance of STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Math) in our educational system today in order for us to remain competitive in the future. You can find the article here: http://mashable.com/2012/05/08/sally-ride-stem-programs-teachers/.

On that page was a link to another article about teachers adjusting to digital learning environments. I’m just interested in what our readers think about things like digital science programs, eLearning, and the variety of content delivery systems now available for educational materials. Do they make your teaching lives easier? Is kids not having computers at home ever a problem? Do you find that you spend less money out of your own pockets when using online course materials? Submit a comment if you have an opinion.

And again, thank you for all you do!!!

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Attend an eConference this summer!

School's barely out in some areas of the country, but we know that many of you dedicated teachers are already thinking about what you need to do to be ready for the start of classes in the fall. Changes in curriculum, new content standards to address, and reassignments to a new grade level can often leave teachers feeling frazzled when it comes to preparing for a new school year.

That's why Kendall Hunt's Professional Development team created Happy Summer!its summer eConference program, which provides program-specific training by KH curriculum specialists. By using eLearning tools and digital delivery for our professional development programs, we can bring you the training you're seeking in an affordable, accessible way. There's no need to spend time and money traveling -- just pick the sessions you want and use your internet-ready computer to both register and attend! 

The summer eConference program has three tracks: Talented and Gifted, Math Trailblazers, and High School Science.  All sessions are interactive, include hands-on activities, and provide time for curriculum-related Q&A. 

The eConference program is just one more way that Kendall Hunt is working to meet the unique needs of its customers. We hope you'll continue to make us your single source for innovative digital publishing solutions and cost-effective, convenient professional development that ensures those solutions are implemented with fidelity. 

Enjoy your summer!

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On Our Way to NSTA!

Are you going? Kendall Hunt will be there! The National Science Teachers Association (NSTA) National Conference takes place in San Francisco March 9-12. The Kendall Hunt booth is number 1729, so be sure to stop by. You also won't want to miss our two workshops, one on BSCS Biology: A Human Approach, and one on our exciting new digital learning environment, Flourish.  You can find more information about those here.

 

Flourish will be in the spotlight, along with the four high school science programs, BSCS Biology: A Human Approach, Forensic Science for High School, Global Science, and KH Chemistry that are currently available in Flourish. Flourish is home to an ever-growing list of online course materials and digital learning resources and at NSTA you’ll see how affordable these products are when purchased digitally either as a complete curriculum, eChapters, or eUnits. When you visit our booth, you can sign up for a free trial of the program of your choice, and everyone who registers will be entered in a daily drawing to win a free classroom license for Global Science, Forensics or A Human Approach!

 

If you are unable to attend NSTA, we’ll miss you, but you can sign up for a free trial of Flourish at http://www.kendallhunt.com/freeflourishtrial. You’ll also find the same product-specific information we’ll be sharing in the booth through our free Inside Look  Webinar  series.

 

NSTA is always an exciting week. We get to visit with so many of the teachers using our science programs and share our programs for the first time with many others. Not to mention, of course, that the Moscone Convention Center is in the heart of fabulous San Francisco. We hope to see you there, so don’t forget to visit us at booth 1729!


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Flourish with Kendall Hunt!

Today I’m welcoming back Charley Cook, Vice President of Kendall Hunt Publishing’s PreK-12 Division, as our guest blogger. Charley would like to tell you a little about our new digital initiatives. Take it away, Charley.

 

Kendall Hunt Publishing has a strong history of being responsive to the needs of the educational marketplace. Over the years, we’ve worked closely with educators to develop products and services that not only align to national and state standards, but can also address and meet specific district requirements in terms of content, accessibility, and academic achievement. Some of these products include our curriculum for high ability learners, high school science textbooks and programs developed with our partner, BSCS, and our grade school mathematics program, Math Trailblazers, which integrates math, science, and language arts.

Like you, Kendall Hunt Publishing is dedicated to improving education and preparing students to successfully navigate a rapidly changing, technologically advanced world. So it should come as no surprise that Kendall Hunt has taken a proactive role in pioneering the development of groundbreaking digital learning solutions designed to more effectively engage students, support teachers, and involve parents in the educational process.

We’re extremely excited to announce the launch of Flourish, Kendall Hunt’s new digital learning network for students, teachers, and parents. Flourish integrates technology into all aspects of teaching and learning, and helps equip students with the skills they need to become productive citizens in the 21st century. Flourish is comprehensive, interactive, and economical, and features rich, research-based educational content along with a variety of tools that enhance learning, facilitate teaching, and increase communication both in the classroom and in the home. We hope you’ll take the time to explore its many features and benefits, because we know you will believe, as we do, that it can truly change the face of classroom learning.

Flourish is the first of many new, technology-driven products you can expect to see from Kendall Hunt in the near future.

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Social networks at school: educational value or distraction?

As an educational publishing company, Kendall Hunt must, of course, keep up with the trends and keep our business current. That’s the only way we can keep offering our outstanding high school science textbooks, elementary school textbooks, and higher education products.  

Of course one of the biggest topics of conversation around here is social media. How and when to use it, who uses it, etc. We are on We Are Teachers, a great online teacher community, but what about students? Some people are involved in a discussion about whether the use of classroom technology, such as online math and science curricula, an online elementary curriculum and the like, reflects what students are doing in their lives outside of school. We know that social media tools are considered a distraction at schools, so much so that many schools have blocked access to Facebook, MySpace and other online communities altogether. And with the growth of cyberbullying, it can become a real safety issue besides.

The other side of this coin is the collaborative nature or team/community building potential of these applications. Students working together toward a shared result, and all the educational benefits that come along with that. So is there a happy medium? Has your school found a way? Tell me about it!
 

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Middle School Math

That first day of school isn’t far away now, is it? My son starts 5th grade this Fall, which, due to a very crowded elementary school, is the first year of middle school in our town. While he’s pretty excited, I’m of course suffering from, “Ack, my baby’s going to middle school, where has the time gone?” syndrome.

All this talk about middle school got me looking in depth at Kendall Hunt Publishing’s middle school offerings this week. We talk a lot about high school science textbooks and elementary education books, but we don’t talk all that much about middle school. But have you checked out our new Math Innovations program? It’s amazing. It develops mathematical habits of mind, teaching students to think like mathematicians. It improves the reasoning and critical thinking skills that are crucial to success in the 21st century.

Math Innovations offers textbooks, but is also a robust online math curriculum with an array of technology options to enhance and supplement the text. Three grade levels and five units per grade allows for customized alignment to state and district standards. Check it out when you have a chance!!

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The Rhythm of Summer

As you float in the pool or sink the ball on the 8th hole, I’m sure the upcoming school year seems far off. But I have to ask this question, more out of curiosity than anything else: What do you do in the summer to prepare for the new school year? Is there a rhythm to your summer? If you’re a teacher of gifted students, my guess is preparing lesson plans for gifted and talented is at the top of your priority list. How about those of you who teach inquiry based science? Do you spend hours sitting on your deck pouring over physical science textbooks as you soak up the rays? Wait, I forgot, we’re not supposed to soak up the rays anymore, sorry.

 

No doubt that school is never far from your minds. Here at Kendall Hunt Publishing summer is actually our busiest time. It’s when we finalize all our new and revised titles, and begin filling orders from school districts and college bookstores around the country. There’s a rhythm to the summer here, starts out quietly enough then builds to a frenzy by the end of August. It’s kind of comforting. Not as comforting, mind you, as the rhythm of my hammock swinging back and forth between my two big maple trees, but hey, we take what we can get, right?

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Forget 1st Down and 10 Yards to Go, Get to Know 2nd and 7

I know that we usually talk about accelerated learning resources, elementary school textbooks, or high school science textbooks, but I thought we’d take a short break today so I can introduce to one of Kendall Hunt Publishing's author groups, the Second and Seven Foundation.

 

The 2nd and 7 Foundation is all about literacy. It was founded by three former Ohio State University student-athletes: Mike Vrabel, Luke Fickell, and Ryan Miller. They were standouts on The OSU football team and decided that they wanted to give back to the greater Columbus, Ohio community once their playing days there were over. They started out by conducting a football camp in the summer of 2000, the proceeds of which were used to purchase books for second grade students in seven Central Ohio elementary schools (that’s where the name, 2nd and 7 came from), in an effort to tackle illiteracy. As its founders passion for promoting literacy has grown, so has the foundation.

 


2nd and 7 Foundation’s Tackle Illiteracy program now includes reading to second graders in classrooms all over the country, and provides each of the children in those classrooms with a book to take home. The foundation targets schools with economically disadvantaged kids and communities where its founders feel they can make the biggest impact. The Ohio State University, the University of Toledo, the University of Notre Dame, the University of Michigan, the University of Wisconsin and the University of North Carolina have all been involved in reaching out to the community through this program, by allowing student-athletes to participate in the readings.

 

In my next post I’ll tell you about the foundation’s books, how many they have distributed and how you can get them for yourself. But for now, check out their website and the great work they’re doing and please consider supporting their efforts!


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More National Lab Day photos posted at Flickr.com

Just a quick post to let you know that I've posted a few pictures and descriptions from Kendall Hunt Publishing's National Lab Day activities on Flicker.com. You can go directly to them through this link: http://www.flickr.com/photos/kendallhunt. Be sure to check them out...this is the reason we got into to the science textbook publishing business in the first place!
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National Lab Day...time to get started for next year!

What did you do for National Lab Day? As Charley pointed out in his stint as guest blogger here the other day, Kendall Hunt Publishing took a leading role in supporting National Lab Day by volunteering in local classrooms. By all accounts, it was a big success. But we want it to be a bigger success next year.

 

Sure, there is some method to our madness, we have a whole bunch of inquiry based science products, from elementary school science textbooks to high school biology textbooks and everything in between, but beyond that, we really believe in the value and importance of inquiry based science. There’s nothing like getting kids “doing” science to help them learn. This is what’s behind our strong support of National Lab Day.

 

So start planning right now for next year. Here are some places you can find more information and plenty of ideas of how to get your students doing science:

And watch for a story about Kendall Hunt Publishing’s participation in National Lab Day on the NLD website…we submitted our NLD “success story” to them, so hopefully they’ll feature us soon!

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Kendall Hunt Participates in National Lab Day

Wednesday, May 12 marked the first annual National Lab Day, a nationwide initiative to build local communities of support that will foster ongoing collaborations among volunteers, students, and educators and bring discovery-based science experiences to students in grades K-12. Our guest blogger today is Charley Cook, Kendall Hunt’s vice president of Pre-K – 12 publishing. 
Charley writes:

As a strong supporter of National Lab Day, Kendall Hunt Publishing and its employees decided to recognize the inaugural event by spending time in classrooms working with students on hands-on science activities. Kendall Hunt is known for publishing research-based, NSF-funded, and inquiry-based science programs, so National Lab Day was a perfect opportunity for us to step to the forefront and lend a hand.

I had the opportunity to join fellow KH employees Joe Haverland, Pam Roth, and Wayne Schnier at John F. Kennedy Elementary School in Dubuque, IA, where we conducted hands-on science activities with their 1st and 4th grade classrooms.  Joe facilitated a Physical Science activity focusing on Equilibrium and Center of Gravity, which challenged the 4th grade students to work in groups to try to figure out a way to balance eight nails on the head of one nail. The students worked in pairs, which promoted teamwork that is critical to the inquiry process. It was great to walk around the classroom and hear students collaborating and sharing ideas. Although they were only 4th grade students, the problem-solving skills they exhibited are those they need to have to not only cope, but also be competitive as they advance through school and enter the working world. The students did a great job and by the end of the exercise, each group was successful in balancing all of the nails.

Wayne and Pam were in a “stickier” situation when they worked with the first graders on the “Gloop” activity from the BSCS TRACKS Investigating Properties Kit. Gloop is a mixture of glue, starch and borax that is sealed in a plastic container to keep moist and somewhat hardened that was made the day before the activity. Wayne and Pam made up 10 bags of Gloop for teams of two students to share. Before the students could open the bag, they had to guess what ingredients were in the gloop. That exercise provided an entertaining and informative classroom conversation. Next, the students were allowed to open the bag and then listed the properties of what was contained in gloop. They also tried to come up with ideas on how gloop could be used if it was manufactured for the public. The kids were having a great time with this activity. It is clear that the gloop itself adds to the excitement, but it makes science fun for kids and as you can imagine, they use all of their senses for this experiment.

For Kendall Hunt, National Lab Day was a big success. I was proud of the fact that our employees volunteered to spend time in these classrooms to help students experience science in a hands-on way and gain problem-solving skills that will last a lifetime. As a nation, we are learning how important science is if our country and its citizens are going to remain competitive in the future. At Kendall Hunt, we want to make Lab Day an everyday event for all students, and we are eager to play a role in their success.

To learn more about National Lab Day and how you can bring hands-on learning activities to classrooms in your community, click here. To learn about Kendall Hunt’s elementary school science textbooks and high school science textbooks, visit kendallhunt.com. 

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NSTA Booth Drawing Winners Announced

Three lucky educators are receiving a complementary set of Kendall Hunt inquiry based science products for their classrooms after entering a random drawing held during the recent national NSTA conference in Philadelphia. Entry forms were included in each conference attendee’s bag, and directed them to Kendall Hunt Publishing's booth where they could fill out the form, identify which of Kendall Hunt's products they’d like to win, from elementary school science textbooks to high school physics textbooks, and and enter the drawing. The winning educators and the products they selected are:

Rosa Gastiaburu, teacher at Medard H. Nelson Charter School , New Orleans, LA. Rosa selected a classroom set of Starry Night , an interactive astronomy DVD series for grades K-12.

Sandi Garrett, teacher at Camden Elementary School , Camden, MS. Sandi chose Kendall Hunt Science Readers, a series of leveled readers with content based on the National Science Education Standards, for her students in grades 4 and 5.

Jason Lazarow, teacher at Springton Lake Middle School, Media, PA.  Jason selected A Climate of Change, part of the BSCS Science: An Inquiry Approach series  for grades 9-12.

Congratulations to our three winners, and thanks to all who visited the Kendall Hunt Publishing booth and entered the drawing! 
 

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Is Everybody Ready for eBooks?

I've read several articles this week about online and e-books for the K-12 market. The current Texas governor recently stated that he doesn't see any reason for Texas to have printed books in four years. That's a pretty big statement in support of online learning.

What do you think about taking elementary education books, secondary school textbooks and the like and putting them in the digital world? At Kendall Hunt Publishing, we're big fans of digital learning for PreK-12. Let's face it, many printed textbooks are dated the minute they come off the press. School textbook publishers face this issue all the time. But if your "books" are online, especially if they're in a learning portal that can be continually updated, students can learn about the latest discovery in science without waiting for the next printing of their high school science textbook. That's only one of the many benefits to digital learning.

Do your schools use all printed material? Or a combination of print and digital?

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Get your students moving!!

I know we generally talk about high school science textbooks or accelerated learning resources, but I thought a momentary change of topic to something affecting so many of today’s students would be appropriate. Did you watch the first episode of Jamie Oliver’s new show about childhood obesity? It was a real eye opener, and quite alarming, especially in light of all the educational cuts that have been announced in the past few weeks. If you’re a teacher, I don’t have to tell you that specials are the first things to go, music, art, P.E., sadly on the chopping block in so many districts.

This all reminded me of GYMB4, the affordable and easy-to-implement classroom video workout program designed and tested specifically for Pre-K and elementary school students as young as 3 years old and up through all elementary school grades. GYMB4 (short for “Get Yourself Moving Before Learning”) workouts are fun, and at just 5 to 10 minutes long, they are easily incorporated into any classroom routine. The exercises are all age-appropriate (PreK-6) and no special equipment or extra floor space is required.

GYMB4 Get Yourself Moving Video
Teachers across the country are using the videos in their classrooms. They have told us that their students are calmer, more attentive, and better able to stay on task since they’ve started using GYMB4. I guess this makes sense since scientists have linked physical activity with brain function. (Seems like I should get up and move now!) Click this squirming button to the left to see the video introduction to GYMB4.

Anyway, check out their blog, you’ll learn all kinds of things about GYMB4 and getting kids moving. The GYMB4 website also offers video samples and more information. And you can purchase the videos on the Kendall Hunt Publishing website. Check it out and get moving!!
 

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NSTA a big hit in Philly!

I don’t travel much for work, and I’m okay with that at this point in my life, but I live vicariously through those who do travel far and wide for Kendall Hunt Publishing. Most recently, last week, in fact, we had a pack of KH staffers in the City of Brotherly Love for the NSTA National Convention. I understand our booth had tons of traffic and our inquiry based science workshops were quite popular.

The people staffing our booth said the interest in inquiry based science products, not just high school physics textbooks or high school biology textbooks, but in engaging, hands-on programs was really high and they were quite excited about it. Did you go? Did you stop to see my road-tripping colleagues? Tell me about it!

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Eco-Meet Uses Inquiry Based Science to Educate about Local Ecology

My son was recently invited to participate in an area Eco-Meet. They chose three fourth grade gifted students and two fifth grade students from each of the participating districts to make up that district’s team. This is quite the inquiry based science event, it seems! Each team member received a packet about an inch thick of materials they need to study to prepare. Additionally, they will be working with the gifted and talented teacher, who is the coach, each week leading up to the event in mid-May.

The Eco-Meet is a day long event held at a local park high above the Mississippi River. The park rangers and Army Corps of Engineers will involve the students in activities and presentations on different subjects, including Fish of the Mississippi. After each event, the teams will take a test. The tests will be graded and winners announced.

Wow, talk about accelerated learning resources! I can’t imagine how much these kids will learn by the time this is all done. And it doesn’t come straight out of an elementary school science textbook or gifted education books…they’re doing and learning. I’ll keep you posted on how it all goes. In the meantime, do your schools do anything like this? I’d love to hear about similar ideas that are happening out there!
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It's a Barn-Raising...for Inquiry Based Science!

So, as I think I've mentioned before, I'm the eMarketing Coordinator for Kendall Hunt Publishing. Part of that role involves managing the content on our website. So this week I received a request to put a link on our site to National Lab Day, which is billed as "A Barn-Raising for Hands-On Learning." I went to the site, http://www.nationallabday.org, and, wow, this is going to be amazing!

Here's a little more information taken right from the website: "National Lab Day is more than just a day. It's a nationwide initiative to build local communities of support that will foster ongoing collaborations among volunteers, students and educators. 

Volunteers, university students, scientists, engineers, other STEM professionals and, more broadly, members of the community are working together with educators and students to bring discovery-based science experiences to students in grades K-12."

There will be a nationwide celebration of this in early May with activities across the country. If you click on the "Projects" tab, you'll find that projects are posted from literally one end of the country to the other: Alaska to Florida, and California to Virginia. What a great way to encourage inquiry based science and the use of elementary school science textbooks, middle and high school chemistry and physics textbooks that use that learning model!

Kendall Hunt supports National Lab Day, so don't forget to check out all our inquiry based science programs! I'll keep you posted on what's coming up in the May celebration!
 

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