AMES, IA –This past weekend, the Iowa Space Grant Consortium hosted eight Iowa educators at the 25th annual Space Exploration Educators Conference at Space Center Houston. The educators included students preparing to be teachers, science teachers, an instructional coach, a media specialist and a faculty member from the University of Northern Iowa.
The conference provides ready to implement ideas for the classroom that can be used in all areas of education, not just science. Educators are empowered with knowledge through sessions led by astronauts, fellow educators, scientists and engineers who are passionate about what they do.
Clayton Anderson, former astronaut and senior lecturer at Iowa State University, was among the speakers at the conference. He led a training workshop that taught teachers how to think operationally and bring that thinking back into their classrooms.
“Young people are the future of our country. Educators who attend events like SEEC understand that they have the power to change a life. Giving their students proper educational tools and the knowledge to succeed in life is perhaps the most important thing we can do,” said Anderson. “My role as an astronaut allows me to give something back to educators from around the globe, who will impact thousands of young people’s lives. And, as most of them already know, I love educators… always have, always will.”
ISGC’s hosted team received unique, hands-on experiences like underwater diving sessions where they experienced microgravity and trained like real astronauts.
“We learned a wealth of information, are 100% inspired with STEM, and laughed with new friends the entire time,” said Beth Janssen, media specialist at AGWSR School in Ackley, Iowa, “I’ve never attended a conference in which you knew you were where you were meant to be.”
List of Attendees
Robyn Ploeger – Panorama Middle/High School
Kylee Boettcher – Panorama Middle/High School
Brenda Drake – AGWSR Community School
Beth Janssen – AGWSR Community School
Tori Wells – UNI Preservice
Tyler Brown – UNI Preservice
Ron Rinehart – UNI Science Ed. Faculty