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K-12 Educator Programs

Promoting science, technology, engineering and mathematics education among K-12 students is vital to meeting the nation’s needs for workers in the STEM fields. The need for students to be inspired to pursue careers in the STEM fields continues to grow, and ORAU is committed to providing the support necessary to improve education, research and innovation.

View the full 2021 Professional Development Calendar (.pdf)

STEM teachers from Kindergarten through high school, and others interested in the STEM fields, can choose from a number of professional development opportunities provided by ORAU.

Looking for Extreme Classroom Makeover?

Tools for Interactive Digital Learning 2.0New

Instruction Format: Virtual

In this hands-on workshop, you will learn about and test a variety of engaging digital tools to enhance your classroom instruction both in an in-person and digital setting. Did you come to the session last summer? No problem! These are ALL NEW tools for you to enjoy and utilize in your classroom!

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Mythical CartographyNew

Instruction Format: Hybrid

Cartography engages students to author maps that communicate information clearly, scientifically, and artfully. Teachers need quality professional development that incorporates geographic standards, visual arts standards, and social studies skills.This workshop will focus on learning the difference between projects and project based learning (PBL), the requirements for a quality PBL, available PBL resources, as well as assist teachers in the first stages of planning a PBL.

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App Design and Development New

Instruction Format: Virtual

The students we are teaching today are digital natives. In this workshop, teachers will learn how to inspire students to be creators of digital content instead of simply consumers of it. Using an app called Thunkable, participants will learn the basics of app development and discuss how to integrate this skill into classroom content in a meaningful way. This is an introductory workshop to app development, not intended for those who have a background already.

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Learning Blade for STEM - A free program provided to TN schools by the TSIN

Instruction Format: Virtual

In this workshop, we will cover all the different tools in Learning Blade and make sure the educator is ready and equipped to use the program at the start of their school year.

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Effective Use of Laptops and iPads for In-Person Instruction New

Instruction Format: Virtual

After a year of virtual and hybrid teaching, welcome back to the in-person classroom! In this session we'll talk about how to best integrate the new digital tools you've learned used over the past year with your students in face-to-face teaching. This session will cover the use of 1:1 devices and other digital platforms to enhance group work, productivity, classroom management, and engagement as we go back to school this fall.

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Creating with Canva New

Instruction Format: Virtual

Are you wanting to make your presentations, handouts, and classroom designs more engaging for your students? Participants will learn useful tips and skills in digital design with Canva to take your lesson to the next level and engage with your students. You’ll also learn ways students can collaborate together to seamlessly create designs and promote classroom engagement.

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Stress Reduction New

Instruction Format: Hybrid

Alyx Henry will be discussing stress management, with a particular emphasis on stress related to COVID on Friday, June 11th from 10:00am-12:00pm. Participants can join live or via zoom. We will do a brief stress assessment and then talk through causes of stress, coping with stress, and techniques that we can use in the classroom to reduce stress - our own and that of our students. Attendees will receive practical, actionable advice and resources along with a stress management goodie bag!

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Makerspace Made EasyNew

Instruction Format: Virtual

You've heard of the makerspace movement moving through the education world, but did you know that it’s not just about legos and straw towers? In this session we will discuss how to plan a maker project to engage your students through hands-on problem solving while still addressing your content standards.

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Wishes Granted: How Grants can get you the resources you need in your classroomNew

Instruction Format: Virtual

Have you ever wondered how to write a grant? Is it a task that just seems daunting or impossible with your current workload?  Whether private or public, there is money out there waiting for you! This presentation will share tips, tricks, and how to spend just one weekend a year on grant writing.

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WagiLabs – Ideas for Good

Instruction Format: In Person

ORISE has partnered with WagiLabs to provide professional development for elementary educators to create young, socially responsible, Kidpreneurs. The Kidpreneurs use design thinking to brainstorm “Ideas for Good” that creatively solve problems in their communities. Learn about the WagiGame that can get your kids thinking like Kidpreneurs and how this free resource could be used in afterschool setting or in your classroom!

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Student Ideas: Getting what is in their minds out for the world to see New

Instruction Format: Virtual

We each have our own lens of understanding and often our students have a valuable, unique way of solving problems in their communities. In this session, I will share the ways that I help my students take their big ideas and make them a reality through problem-based learning. Whether using art, prototyping, writing, diagramming, video or a combination, I encourage students to develop their ideas through various platforms. There are a variety of competitions that my students can choose to participate in to reach beyond the walls of our classrooms and communicate their amazing ideas to the world.      

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ARC High School Summer Math-Science-Technology InstituteFull

Instruction Format: Virtual
ARC High School Summer Math-Science-Technology Institute is a two-week, residential, hands-on institute sponsored by ARC and ORNL. Teachers participate in research projects with and under the supervision of ORNL scientists.
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Project Based Learning

Instruction Format: In Person

This workshop will focus on learning the difference between projects and project based learning (PBL), the requirements for a quality PBL, available PBL resources, as well as assist teachers in the first stages of planning a PBL.

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Tools for Assessment—Regardless of Assessment New

Instruction Format: Virtual

Professional development will be an interactive walk through on how to use Edulastic online (FREE) assessment. This website is ideal if you are teaching online, hybrid, or in-person. The live view teach portal have multiple features to target students who may need more support. This tool is good for any content area.

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Colorful and Sweet Chemistry

Instruction Format: Virtual
Color is used all the time and in many ways in chemistry.  You will use color to figure out what a substance is, to tell when it has changed, and to determine its strength.  In addition, you will learn about chemistry’s sweet side as you investigate certain properties of candy.
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Weekly Wonder New

Instruction Format: Virtual

Bring science processes and SEL alive using wonder and the natural world... and trade some screen time for GREEN time! Free online resources help in-person or virtual teachers access nature with students.  

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Vectors: Concepts and technologies to improve comprehension by appealing to vectors’ geometrical nature

Instruction Format: In Person
This workshop proposes a novel and unified teaching approach by relating a vector’s abstract nature of magnitude and direction to its geometric nature as length and unit vector.
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Project Wet

Instruction Format: In Person
Our Earth’s finite but renewable water resources affect the health and well-being of every person on the planet. That means we must protect, conserve and manage the water we have. This is a K-12 program with many excellent middle school and high school activities.  Upon completion of a 6-hour course you will receive a free copy of the Project Wet Curriculum and Activity Guide 2.0 ($39 value).
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3D Printing – Providing Enrichment to your STEM Programs – Intro/Basic Level New

Instruction Format: Virtual

This PD will be an interactive event that will answer several questions. What is 3D design and printing? Why would it benefit my STEM program? How do I actually build and print designs? and Where can I get an affordable 3D Printer for my program? We will use FREE software to design models as well as walk through how to upload a design and print it. This PD is designed for teachers with NO background in 3D printing or design.

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MUSE Knoxville Ozobots and StorytellingNew

Instruction Format: In Person

Using Ozobots, educators will learn how to use technology to promote creative writing for their students. Ozobots are small robots that use color, light and Blockly coding as a pathway. Teachers will learn to guide their students in creating  pathways that follow the adventures their students write. Educators will love exploring with Ozobots while weaving stories!

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