Biology Teachers Association of New Jersey

Our Mission is to Inspire and empower science educators.

December 2015- Joy Of Giving

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Outstanding Biology Teacher Award (OBTA)

Congratulations to Kate Heavers, from West Windsor-Plainsboro High School South, who is the recipient of The National Association of Biology Teachers- Outstanding Biology Teacher Award. Kate was honored at a Luncheon during the annual conference in Rhode Island.

BTANJ Upcoming November Workshop Offerings

All professional development workshops are FREE for members. Here is a list of the November workshops. Register for workshops using the form below. For more information, details, and future workshops visit our website.

Title: Introduction to Problem-Based Learning

Date & Time: December 3, 2015 4:30-6:00pm

Location: Waksman Institute, Rutgers University

Description: Careers of the future will look very different and our children will need to be prepared with the ability to problem solve, think critically, and work collaboratively in a team environment. PBL is a valuable engagement tool to increase student interest and academic performance in any content area and grade level. PBL enables students to go beyond the information given and establishes life-long learning skills. Participants will explore the nature of PBL and rationale for its use. Upon completion of this workshop participants have the opportunity to become part of a community of practice, a collaborative group of science teachers, who are creating and implementing PBL successfully in their classrooms.

Title: Implementing NGSS; looking at curriculum revision and alignment

Date & Time: December 5, 2015 10:00am-12:00pm

Location: Waksman Institute, Rutgers University

Description: Is your biology curriculum aligned with NGSS and new NJCC standards? Would you like to get some practice in evaluating your current curriculum and the NJ Model Curriculum in light of NGSS and NJCCS? If so, please join us for a workshop wherein we begin to tackle the task of revising your curriculum to make it truly NGSS and 21st century compliant.

Participate in Pilot Testing of Science Assessment Items

The American Association for the Advancement of Science's Project 2061 is recruiting eighth grade and high school science teachers who are able to pilot test multiple choice items with their students in the fall of 2015. We are currently developing NGSS-aligned assessment items to measure what students understand about evolution, including both natural selection and common ancestry. Your students’ responses to these assessment items will help us improve them and design additional items. The assessment will be administered online and should take no longer than 45 minutes to complete.

To participate, please complete the form at

Thank you,
Project 2061


Applications are now available for the chance to explore the Eastern Pacific Ocean with Dr. Robert Ballard’s team of explorers the Corps of Exploration. This FREE opportunity for students and educators of all types allows individuals to sail aboard the E/V Nautilus as the team participates in scientific exploration of the ocean using two deep sea remotely operated vehicles(ROVS). We have programs for high school students, college, graduate and recent graduates as well as formal and informal educators. Applications close throughout the month of January for the different programs. Each program has a detailed application packet with all the information regarding the program requirements and application process. You can find out more about the programs at and

Free lesson plans, hands-on activities, paper models, games and exercises - the best part is, they all meet NGSS, and Common Core standards. Come, review these materials and try them out with your students to teach them about biomolecular structures, immunology, and other topics in biology at an atomic level. These curricular material were developed by teachers in collaboration with scientists, clinicians, educators at Rutgers University alongside faculty and staff at the international repository for structural data, RCSB Protein Data Bank. If you are willing to provide feedback on these modules you can even earn certification for professional development!

Learn more about this in the curriculum-flyer below and register for free to participate.
Need more information? Write to Shuchi Dutta (

$1000 Scholarships for Amazon Rainforest PD Workshop

Get your explorer on and apply for a scholarship to explore the Amazon rainforest next summer!

Educator Academy in the Amazon Rainforest + Machu Picchu

The July 1-11, 2016 Educator Academy in the Amazon Rainforest of Peru is a cross-curricular professional development workshop for K-12 formal and informal educators to learn and use:

  • 21st Century Instruction: 5E Lesson Design ~ Inquiry-Based Exploration ~ STEM
  • Inquiry Protocols & Resources: Project Learning Tree ~ Cornell Lab of Ornithology ~ & More!
  • Global and Cultural Perspectives: Service Learning ~ Sustainability ~ Global Education

Join Al Stenstrup, Project Learning Tree; Nancy Trautmann, Cornell Lab of Ornithology; Christa Dillabaugh, Amazon Rainforest Workshops; and Dr. David Pearson, Wildlife Travellers’ Guide to Peru; and work side-by-side with scientists Dr. Steve Madigosky, Widener University; and Randy Morgan, Curator/Entomologist, Cincinnati Zoo as you:

  • Participate in citizen science projects and inquiry based field studies on a 1/4-mileRainforest Canopy Walkway in one of the most biologically diverse environments on the planet.
  • Spend a day in an Amazon village as you explore the complexities of sustainability and the role of education in creating a sustainable future for Amazon children.
  • Work with fellow educators to explore strategies for using the Amazon as a vehicle for incorporating STEM education, inquiry-based learning, and sustainability science education into your classroom.

PLT Certification, BirdSleuth resources and 50 ASU PD Hours included. Academic Credit and Machu Picchu Extension optional. $1000 scholarship deadline February 1st, 2016. Program cost is $1375 + air for scholarship recipients. Space is limited! Register early to secure your spot!

Get the details and download a syllabus and scholarship application at:

Contact or 1-800-431-2624 for more information.

Alliance for New Jersey Environmental Education (ANJEE) Conference

Friday, Jan. 22nd 2016 at 7am to Saturday, Jan. 23rd 2016 at 4pm

900 Scudders Mill Road

Plainsboro Township, NJ