Education conference season (NSTA22)

It’s that time of year. Spring showers and pollen overload. Volatile weather in the form of severe thunderstorms and tornado watch alerts. Staggered spring break schedules. School year closing. Standardized testing. Graduation ceremonies. Seemingly every professional organization’s annual conference or meeting.

I’ve been trying to balance all of this with regular work and home life. It’s been tough.

But today I’m here to recap the amazing time I had at the National Science Teachers Association annual conference held at the end of March in Houston, Texas. It was my first in-person conference since February 2020 and my first time in Houston. It wasn’t a bad drive from Baton Rouge and it took us more than the scheduled 4 hours since we were traveling with a 7-month old baby.

We were required to use the Clear Health app (same app used by Clear in the airport) to get a green verification screen to be cleared for a wristband each day of the conference. This clearance involved answering daily covid-related questions as well as either being fully vaccinated or having a negative PCR test no more than 48 hours prior to the start of the conference. Masks were required in the convention center as well. These precautions made me feel sooooo much better about going!

Both of my sessions were well attended! The first one was in a smaller room and had about 10 attendees, which was to be expected (and why it was a smaller room). The second one was a hands-on demonstration session in a larger room and we had approximately 40 attendees. There was great dialog and interaction in both sessions. I loved the questions, comments, and resources shared by other science educators!!

The exhibit hall is always a blast at NSTA! I get so excited because there are major companies that always come with goodies for teachers. I was able to get a free, book personally autographed onsite for my baby boy. I can’t wait until he is old enough to understand that he has an autographed copy of a book. There were also several companies that I didn’t know about sharing some great resources and new developed products to improve science teaching. I can’t wait to share what I’ve learned in the next few weeks!

Overall, I had a blast and can’t wait until NSTA23!

Stassi the STEM Educator!

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