“Once language was available to describe social scenarios from memory and anticipations, we became Homo narratus. We have become psychological beings who are incapable of not narrating our experiences both to ourselves and each other.” —Alan Parry, 1997
People are natural storytellers. We are also natural story hearers. Narrative (story) is the preferred way humans structure complex knowledge. It’s also the oldest way we share both cultural and personal information. We are still addicted to narrative—think of blogs, books, TV, radio, movies, theater, and even video games. Yet curiously, education underuses narrative—a missed opportunity at best and a gross misconstruction of our educational systems at worst.
Position descriptions posted on ASTC’s job bank offer glimpses into the most valued qualifications for professionals in our science center and museum community. The needs of our member institutions are constantly evolving in response to increasingly diverse audiences, more challenging science topics, and new research on learning strategies. To succeed, we depend upon professionals who have the skills to respond to these changes. Read the rest of this entry »
ASTC and the Afterschool Alliance are pleased to announce the Lights On Afterschool Partnership Minigrant. This Noyce Foundation-funded program stems from the partnership formed between ASTC and the Afterschool Alliance as our Commitment to Action for the Clinton Global Initiative, an annual drive to find innovative solutions to promote economic recovery in the United States, including objectives in education and skill development. This minigrant program is designed to strengthen STEM learning partnerships between ASTC-member science centers in the United States and afterschool providers.
The 15th annual Lights On Afterschool celebration will be on October 23, 2014, with events taking place throughout October. Lights On Afterschool is the only nationwide event celebrating afterschool programs and their important role in the lives of children, families, and communities. Science centers are ideally placed to hold events as a part of Lights On Afterschool, and these grants will be used to support such events.
Eligibility requirements for the minigrant include:
Current membership in ASTC.
Science centers and museums must be based in the United States.
The identified afterschool partner must be a part of a larger afterschool program with multiple sites or be the statewide afterschool network.
Both partners should share an interest in developing or increasing their capacity for STEM programming for youth in out-of-school time programs.
Submission of a complete application that includes some basic demographic data about each partner organization, a narrative description of the proposed activity, an event date, and details about how the event will be promoted in the community.
View the recording of the informational webinar here to learn more about Lights On Afterschool and this minigrant opportunity.
For more information about the Lights On Afterschool Partnership Minigrants, check out the Request for Applications and the FAQ. The application deadline is 11:00 p.m. ET on Friday, August 22, 2014. Minigrant recipients will be announced in September 2014.
ASTC is pleased to announce the 2014 ASTC Diversity and Leadership Development Fellows. The Fellows are museum professionals from underrepresented groups, and will attend the 2014 ASTC Annual Conference to gain professional development experiences, a broader peer network, and the opportunity to acquire and hone their leadership skills. Ten new and five alumni fellows were selected. They are:
This interview appeared in the July/August 2014 issue of Dimensionsmagazine.
Strange noises in a Connecticut backyard, love affairs between tiny copepods, and chemicals that exist in the clouds between stars: These are a few of the subjects that Ari Danielhas turned into fascinating science stories. Daniel has united his lifelong passions for science and storytelling through his work as a freelance radio journalist (you may have heard him on (U.S.) National Public Radio) and digital associate producer at NOVA.He also hosts the Boston chapter of the Story Collider, in which other narrators take the stage to relay their science-related tales. Here, Daniel reveals how—and why—to find and share great scientific anecdotes with the public.
Read the full transcript, or listen to the podcast below.