National UTeach Alumni Network E-newsletter
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National UTeach Alumni Network

Explore the New and Improved UTeach Alumni Website

We are proud to announce the release of our completely revamped National UTeach Alumni Network website. The new site is designed with a fresh look and user-friendly navigation in mind. We encourage you to visit and explore all that the National UTeach Alumni Network has to offer.

National UTeach Alumni Network WebsiteCalling all bloggers! The new site includes our new blog, Inquiry-Minded. If you're interested in contributing to the blog, we're looking for posts about teaching advice, successes, failures, documented experiences, or funny stories to share with fellow alumni. Contact Julia O'Donnell for more details.

Thank You and Congrats!

Thanks to all of you who completed the UTeach Alumni Survey! About 1,000 alumni from UTeach programs at 25 universities nationwide responded, and you're making a huge difference in math and science classrooms across the country.

We are currently crunching the numbers and will share the survey results with you soon, so stay tuned. In the meantime, check out the newly published National Graduate Report, which is all about you, alumni of UTeach programs.

Congratulations to Tricia Klein, alumna of UKanTeach at the University of Kansas, and Molly Schaeffer, alumna of VolsTeach at the University of Tennessee, Knoxville, for winning the two free iPads. And congrats to Marie Samere, alumna of FSU-Teach at Florida State University, for winning the free trip to the 2015 UTeach Alumni Conference.

Alumni News

Tim EllisTim Ellis, alumnus of UKanTeach at the University of Kansas, was honored as his district's Horizon Teacher of the Year and was selected for a science-teaching fellowship from the Knowles Science Teaching Foundation. Tim teaches chemistry, anatomy, and physiology at Washburn Rural High School in Auburn-Washburn School District in Topeka, Kansas. Tim was recently profiled in The Topeka Capital-Journal.

Lauren GayLauren Gay, alumna of Teach North Texas at the University of North Texas and math teacher at Richardson High School in Richardson, Texas, is a recipient of the Texas Instruments Foundation Innovations in STEM Teaching Awards.

Jeff HigginbothamJeff Higginbotham, alumnus of FSU-Teach at Florida State University, has been teaching biology, science research, and marine science at Rockledge High School in Florida since fall 2011. He is emerging as a leader at his school, currently serving as the science department chair, and has made a number of presentations at the district, state, and national levels on topics such as argumentation in science and effective questioning strategies.

Brittany RoperBrittany Roper, alumna of UKanTeach at the University of Kansas, was honored as her district's Horizon Teacher of the Year. Brittany teaches biology and environmental science at Shawnee Heights High School in the Shawnee Heights School District in Tecumseh, Kansas.

Share your news! Send us announcements about your achievements, job changes, presentations, and publications.

NMSI Scholarships for Professional Development

Since 2007, the National Math and Science Initiative (NMSI) has provided financial support and advocacy for the expansion of UTeach programs across the country. NMSI is working with schools, districts, universities, and other partners to provide professional development resources and opportunities for the growing number of UTeach graduates looking to improve STEM instruction in their classrooms.  
Among the resources available are scholarships to attend NMSI’s Laying the Foundation teacher training program for grades 3-12—a content-based, teacher-to-teacher training program designed to increase academic rigor and improve the quality of math and science instruction.
Want to learn more? Complete this brief questionnaire to receive more information.National Math and Science Initiative Logo

Teaching Tip: Lessons Learned from Shadowing High School Students

If you haven't yet read the post by a veteran teacher who shadowed two students for two days, you should. The teacher of 14 years wrote, "It was so eye-opening that I wish I could go back to every class of students I ever had right now and change a minimum of ten things – the layout, the lesson plan, the checks for understanding."

Here are three key takeaways from the experience.
  1. Students sit all day, and sitting is exhausting.
  2. Students are sitting passively and listening during approximately 90 percent of their classes.
  3. Students feel a little bit like a nuisance all day long.
The post also includes ideas for your classroom that will help to improve this culture, such as:
  • Make a mandatory stretch break halfway through class
  • Offer brief, blitzkrieg-like mini-lessons with engaging, assessment-for-learning-type activities directly following
  • Set an egg timer every time you get up to talk and all eyes are on you; when the timer goes off, you are done

Apply for the UTeach Master of Arts in STEM Education

Working teachers can earn a master of arts in STEM Ed by taking coursework on the University of Texas at Austin campus in the summer and online during the academic year. This program was designed by UTeach faculty and master teachers and includes modularized coursework that can be completed in 2-3 summers, with a typical start date of June 11 and end date of August 11, depending on the courses selected. Limited scholarship funding may be available on a competitive basis.

More information is available at the STEM Education Summer Master's Open House on Saturday, December 13, 1-3 p.m., on the UT campus in SZB 316, or by contacting Jill Marshall, Catherine Riegle-Crumb, or Stephen Flynn.

Online, find additional information and application forms.
November 2014

How to Offer Engineering at Your School


UTeach Engineering at The University of Texas at Austin is proud to offer an innovative engineering course for high schools, Engineer Your World. This fully developed course Learn more about the course, the teacher support program, and a funding opportunity that can help offset your school's start-up costs.

UTeach Professional Development


Online Courses

Should I Flip My Classroom?
  • January 5-February 1
  • Continuing Education Credit: 4 hours
  • Course details
Introduction to Differentiated Instruction
  • January 5-February 1
  • Continuing Education Credit: 4 hours
  • Course details
Teaching with Tablets: Where Do I Start?
  • January 5-February 1
  • Continuing Education Credit: 4 hours
  • Course details
For more professional development opportunities, visit UTeach Professional Development or contact UTeach Professional Development Manager Carrie Culpepper.

Alumni Events

December 10
UTeach Austin Induction Professional Development
University of Texas at
Austin Campus

5:30-7:30 pm

December 13
UTeach Master's in STEM Ed Open House
University of Texas at
Austin Campus

1-3 pm

July 9-10, 2015
2nd Annual UTeach Alumni Conference
Commons Learning Center
The University of Texas
at Austin


Say Hi to UTeach at CAST


Texas science teachers, if you're going to the Texas Science Teachers Association Conference, CAST, in Dallas, November 20-22, be sure to stop by the UTeach booth (#1000) to say hi, get your UTeach Alumni ribbon, and pick up some swag. Hope to see you there!

Build on Your PBL Knowledge


Think Forward PBL Institute LogoLong-time, nationally recognized UTeach partner Manor New Technology High School has been a proving ground for innovative student engagement through project-based learning. And no other school in the country has been more successful. Think Forward offers intensive project based learning training based on the highly successful Manor New Technology instructional model. Check it out!

Apply for the $25,000 Fishman Prize

The Fishman Prize for Superlative Classroom Practice – named for acclaimed DC Public Schools teacher Shira Fishman – is an annual award for exceptionally effective teachers working in high-poverty public schools.

In addition to receiving $25,000 each, prize winners also participate in an intensive summer residency during which they reflect deeply on their classroom practice, explore the larger issues that shape their profession, and write a short paper on their teaching practices to share with other educators and leaders worldwide.

Apply by December 16.

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