Vista Stem

April 2021

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The STEM Collaborative continues to build capacity and momentum! The group met April 6th. They had initial discussions around a computer science and science statement, making connections to the previous conversations about the overlap between the two. Dr. Chris Lowe from CSULB was the keynote speaker and did a fantastic job sharing about CSULB’s shark lab and research, sharing the connections between climate, computer science and the creativity necessary to do their work. You can view the presentation here. Vista teachers continue to meet monthly, creating deliverables in each pathway: NGSS, Computer Science and Climate Science. We are working to build and design a computer science pathway with professional development starting this summer for all elementary, middle and high school teachers.

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Our STEM Collaborative and teacher work groups have been working diligently to move STEM education forward in Vista. Teachers are collaborating on many projects in the areas of Next Generation Science Standards, Computer Science, and Climate Science.Thank you for celebrating Earth Day as a community!

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Computer Science TK-12 Summer Opportunity

  1. CS Fundamentals: June 12, 2021 - (9-12pm) - designated for anyone who would like an introductory course to offering CS from

  2. CS Discoveries: June 21-June 25, 2021 (9-4pm each day) - designated for 6-10 grades

  3. CS Principles: July 12-July 16, 2021 (9-4pm each day) - designated for anyone teaching AP CS Principles

  4. If you are interested, please submit the Vista support application here:

  5. Then, apply here:

All VUSD employees are invited to the 2021 NGSS Assessment Summer Institute!

The science team at the San Diego County Office of Education invites you to join us for

a summer of learning to support you in developing classroom assessment systems

aligned to the Next Generation Science Standards. The 2021 NGSS Assessment

Summer Institute is designed for grade-level (elementary) or course-alike (secondary)

teams to experience how to collaboratively build a system of support around the

implementation of instructional materials and three-dimensional assessments in

science. This institute will run on selected days from July 7 to July 20 with additional

follow-up sessions from August to December of 2021.

To register for a grade-level or course-alike district team, please visit:

2021 Life Science XP Education Symposium

April 28 - 29, 2021

The Biocom Institute Education Symposium brings together educators, nonprofits and industry partners who are reimagining Life Science/Biotech learning experiences in K-12 classrooms, schools and districts. The goal of the symposium is to experience and learn from these innovations first-hand with active practitioners and partner providers. Participants engage in a variety of professional learning and networking opportunities to connect with innovative educators and industry experts & scientists. We encourage every participant to share, connect and collaborate with attendees and presenters.

Click here for more information.

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Join us for a Virtual Family Bilingual Coding Night on May 27th 5:30-7:00 pm. Please share this opportunity with families!


Instruction will be given in both English and Spanish! You can join on a computer, chromebook, or tablet! Bring your family and friends to learn more about computer science! You can also be entered in a raffle for gift cards!

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If you have a colleague or a classroom that inspires you, please share by clicking the STEM Share image. We will share these celebrations monthly.

If you have questions or need information, please use the link to let us know!

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Therisa Cash, 3rd grade teacher at Casita Center, helped students take action with Monarch Butterflies. It started with Ms. Cash reading an article about the decline of Monarch butterflies in our world. The class was compelled to take action so students researched information and wrote a persuasive letter to the principal requesting for space and a budget/grant to support their action. They even designated an area of our garden that has been underutilized with weeds growing. After getting the support from the principal, students participated in removing all the weeds and preparing the soil for a pollinator garden! Many students in the class shared their passion with their families and one activist even brainstormed with her mom to see how they might be able to fundraise money to support the Monarch cause. In Josie's entrepreneurial spirit, she raised $600! The class was able to purchase not just any milkweed plants, but NATIVE ones to ensure that it is mirroring the environment of the Monarch butterflies' natural habitat. The student, with the guidance from Ms. Cash purchased plants and planted them in the area. The class monitors the lush area daily and have beautified it with decorative rocks and signs! They are looking forward to supporting Monarchs through their migratory path.
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We would love any support you can give to our STEM community. If you would like to donate your expertise, materials, or make a donation, please email