Smithsonian Science Education Center Director Carol O'Donnell co-authored a public report on convergence education. The report is titled Convergence Eduation: A Guide to Transdisciplinary STEM Learning and Teaching on STEM Education and was released by the Interagency Working Group (IWCG) on Convergence Federal Coordination in STEM Subcommittee Committee on STEM Education of the National Science and Technology Council. In the report the IWCG developed a definition and overarching guidance related to convergence education.
Description: Today, educators are using the UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) to help
Operationalizing Sustainable Development: Local Strategies
On April 18th Smithsonian Science Education Center (SSEC) Director, Dr. Carol O’Donnell, served on a panel for the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine’s virtual workshop, Operationalizing Sustainable Development: Local Strategies. The panel was chaired by Dr. William Colglazier and focused on Education and Capacity Building. Dr. O’Donnell’s remarks:
On June 4th SSEC Director, Carol O’Donnell, provided the keynote address at the Leading Young Minds Follow-Up Meeting hosted by the Los Angeles United School District (LAUSD). LAUSD attended SSEC’s Strategic Planning Institute (SPI) in person in 2018 and then held their own SPI in LA in 2019. O’Donnell’s keynote sought to help school district attendees consider equity in their Action Plans. Over 39 teachers representing 20 schools in LAUSD attended this virtual event.
On March 17th SSEC Director, Carol O’Donnell, gave a talk at the STEM MENA conference. 80 attendees attended her presentation, which can be viewed here: Using the UN Sustainable Development Goals to Teach Inquiry-based STEM Education in a Post-Pandemic World
World Education Summit
Gen Z: The Conscious Generation
On December 1st, SSEC Director Carol O’Donnell was an invited panelist for the Bloomberg Sustainable Business Briefing “Gen Z: The Conscious Generation.” Led by a Bloomberg journalist discussing how to educate, inform, and support the workforce of the future, the panel examined how companies and Gen Z can connect to build a more sustainable working world of the future.
Home as A Place of Discovery
Homes are special places of discovery, abound with scientific phenomenon and engineering marvels. They are also places where student sensemaking and problem-finding are king; and intergenerational learning of science—where all generations can learn together (Lawson et al, 2019)—is common. A home is a place where anyone with a question can be a scientist.
Scarisbrick Hall School, UNICEF and the World Health Organization (WHO) hosted an online “Global Classroom” to help young people around the world learn more about COVID-19. The virtual event hosted schoolchildren from 193 countries invited to ask questions about the virus and pandemic.
Smithsonian Science Education Center Director, Carol O’Donnell, and Division Director for Curriculum & Communications, Brian Mandell, both presented at the event.
Annual IAP SEP Global Council Meeting
The Inter-Academy Panel in Science Education Programme (IAP SEP) held its annual meeting, virtually, on April 22nd. The focus of IAP SEP is the promotion of Inquiry-Based Science Education (IBSE) and also the improvement of science literacy among the general population through national academies of sciences as well as science museums and centers. O’Donnell has been a member of the council since 2015.
Spring 2020 Advisory Board Dinner & Meetings
The Smithsonian Science Education Center held its Spring 2020 Advisory Board meetings and dinner March 4th- 5th in Washington, DC. On Wednesday, March 4th, SSEC held a joint meeting between the board and its Ad-Hoc Committee on Higher Education Center. The group was welcomed by the interim Associate Provost for Education & Access, Ruki Neuhold-Ravikumar. This was the final meeting of the Ad-Hoc Committee, whose members include:
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