February 2022: Taking Action! Student Generation of Solutions to Local Environmental Problems

This month’s theme explores STEM learning anchored by local, field-based data collection harnessed towards actionable impacts, such as the creation of solutions to local environmental challenges. The theme’s playlist, webinar, and follow-up discussion include dialogue about how local environmental phenomena are selected and what tools can be used for students’ field-based data collection, analyses, and solution generation. Materials will also explore how teachers can support students’ learning opportunities that recognize the cultural and sociotechnical values influencing data collection and that attend to local problems that directly affect students’ lives. View Synthesis >>

Theme's playlist

Expert Panel

February 2022: Taking Action! Student Generation of Solutions to Local Environmental Problems


Recorded: Feb. 7, 2022 at 3:00 PM EST

Description: This Online Panel will explore STEM learning anchored by local, field-based data collection harnessed towards actionable impacts, such as the creation of solutions to local environmental challenges.

View Recording & Bios     Join the Discussion!



Read the discussion related to this theme.
Public Discussion
  • Icon for: James Callahan

    James Callahan

    February 7, 2022 | 03:56 p.m.

    Looking forward to the action programs working together in the year ahead.  Sharing on approaches, resources, networking.  STEM for All Video Showcase is always outstanding!


    Panelists and hosts.  Thank you for the beautiful discussion today!!

  • Icon for: Rebecca Clark Uchenna

    Rebecca Clark Uchenna

    February 10, 2022 | 09:31 a.m.

    James, thank you for joining us on Monday! It was wonderful to hear all about your energy efficiency programing. Can you remind me how you got started? How did you find partners in the DC area? I hope you consider creating a video for the Showcase; I know the community would love to hear about your work! 

  • Icon for: Nancy Songer

    Nancy Songer

    February 8, 2022 | 09:39 a.m.

    Hello everyone, and welcome to theTaking Action discussion! 

    I enjoyed hearing how different projects introduce place-based and phenomena-centered activities. One team shared an idea called SMART, which was a way to help students select good research questions to gather data and evidence about and conduct analyses towards designing solutions.

    What ways do you launch your activities?

    Do students identify the research questions or are these organized or filtered by instructors, scientists, or community members?


  • Icon for: Kirby Whittington

    Kirby Whittington

    February 8, 2022 | 02:41 p.m.

    Hi everyone and thank you so much for joining the continued discussion. It was wonderful to hear the different ways that everyone is helping students to take action in their communities. 

    One of the questions I have been pondering since the panel was: what tools and knowledge do teachers need most when working with projects that ask students to take action in their communities? 

    Two big points were made during the discussion yesterday. Specifically tools around data collection and analysis as well as teacher professional development materials to help foster the use of data in the classroom. But others ones that have come to mind are knowledge of the complex problems, tools for connecting with community and stakeholders, etc. Are there other things that teachers need in order to foster these types of activities

  • Icon for: Rebecca Clark Uchenna

    Rebecca Clark Uchenna

    February 9, 2022 | 09:57 a.m.

    Hello everyone, thank you for joining us on Monday for the panel and breakout discussions! For those who were not able to make it "live", feel free to check out the recording of the webinar. 

    One aspect of citizen science I have been working on is how computational thinking (CT) is integrated into natural sciences. My challenge for you is to think through how CT can be applied to your projects. During the panel we also talked about an interdisciplinary approach to science in the classroom. Teachers - do you integrate different subjects into your science classroom; if so, how? Is it successful?    

  • Icon for: Daniel Damelin

    Daniel Damelin

    February 9, 2022 | 10:17 a.m.

    I think computational thinking can be integrated through modeling, both the use of models of phenomena/systems, and also through the student creation of computational models. One way we try to support that some of my projects is through the use of SageModeler, a free web-based tool that has been developed over a couple of NSF-funded grants: https://sagemodeler.concord.org

  • February 10, 2022 | 07:29 a.m.

    Jambo everyone, it was a privilege for me to participate in this program considering my profession, as a tour operator and library director.  I found it necessary to participate because of the passion I have to assist students, especially those from vulnerable families, to access quality education.  I learned a lot from each one of you. I have taken note of 2 particular tools mentioned here - SageModeler and CODAP.  Just a brief profile of what I do, that I coordinate a network of school 8 secondary and 4 primary schools.  Through friends like you, we support the schools with unlimited internet connectivity and computers in order to improve computer literacy in the community.  We also upgrade their libraries for a conducive reading environment and support them with books.  We introduce the schools to STEM programs such as IC4  https://multiplex.videohall.com/presentations/1986 and much more.  I am interested to work with each one of you and I would also like to exchange contacts with @Larisa Schelkin.  Our theme on the environment for this year is TAKING CARE OF OUR WORLD.  Thank you.

  • Icon for: Rebecca Clark Uchenna

    Rebecca Clark Uchenna

    February 11, 2022 | 04:48 p.m.

    Hello Elphas, thank you for joining us on Monday, it was so nice to meet you during the breakout session! CODAP is a great data tool as well as Tuva Labs and Data Classroom. Tuva Labs and Data Classroom in particular have nice entry level datasets and training modules for elementary and young middle school students.

    I would love to learn more about your tour operations and how you connect with students and the community. Do you work with local school groups? Do you integrate your tour operation with your library director and computer literacy work? I have so many questions! 

    Thank you again for tuning in from Kenya!  

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