East Coweta HS: SPEARing STEM

Delivering the Future to Our Community & Our Students

SPEAR: Social Studies, Performance, English-Language, Arts, & Readiness

Science, Technology, Engineering & Mathematics

Volume 1, Issue 2


As a faculty, we have TWO major goals in our drive for STEM.

The FIRST is to obtain Coweta County Schools STEM certification for individual teachers. We encourage ALL teachers to participate in this certification.

The SECOND is our schoolwide STEM Program Certification through the GA Department of Education. The ECHS SPEARing STEM Committee is tackling this process, and you will be hearing more in your department meetings as we make progress.

In this newsletter you will find details on our two goals as well as the details of the ongoing STEM activities in which our students are currently immersed.

Join the Edmodo Group: ECHS SPEARing STEM

Please join our NEW EDMODO Group to access up-to-date information.
Use Group Code "teg3d6" OR the URL, which never expires.
(Group Codes eventually get locked). https://edmo.do/j/kziy6q

The Coweta STEM School Recognition Program for Teachers

The Coweta STEM School Recognition Program is open to teachers in ALL departments. To qualify as a Coweta STEM Classroom, you must complete FIVE STEM-based lesson plans per school year. Focus on two main components of your STEM lesson: one component being that there is a "DESIGN" element, in which students create a part of the activity in order to address a real-world situation. The other necessary component for non-math/science/tech teachers includes a "STEM" element. For math, science, technology teachers, there needs to be a "CROSS-CURRICULAR" activity involved. Once the five lessons, labs, or projects are completed, the teacher will submit an activity log. Find the details of what is required for YOUR STEM classroom on the SPEARing STEM Edmodo Page. Once you qualify as a STEM teacher, you earn the badge below to add to your email signature!

Teachers on a horizontal team often use many of the same lessons, and each teacher who implements the lesson can include it as one of the five lessons. Collaboration is a good thing!

We have a few teachers who are working on qualifying as a Coweta STEM Teacher by March 31 in order to be recognized at the STEM Symposium (see details below).

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The ECHS STEM Committee

We have officially branched out so that STEM is a schoolwide program here at ECHS.

The committee met on March 5 as a team, and Dr. Donald White, our CCSS Science Curriculum Coordinator laid the foundation for us. Our goal is to implement our new STEM project across all departments and all curriculum.

Committee members include:
Martha Milam, Patrick Sullivan, Stefanie Easterwood, Chris Sewell, Danielle Ratzlaff, Christine Poling, Todd Crafton, Kristin Price, Cathy Howard, Kelli Williams, Jan Melton, Cathrine Nolan.

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GA DOE State STEM Program Certification for ECHS: The PROJECT-BASED LEARNING Phase

ECHS is in the process of earning STEM Program Certification through the Georgia Department of Education. The newest facet of the program will be a project-based learning opportunity for all the students enrolled in our STEM Academy. Students will tackle the issue of the tri-state water wars. This project is certainly cross-curricular and will easily incorporate ALL of our departments

See http://fxn.ws/1kgj1Ys for an article from FOX News published just last month.

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Teacher Spotlight: Natalie Chastine

In the Social Studies Department, Natalie teaches Advanced Economics as well as World History. One of the projects that she assigns to her senior Economics students is an ideal STEM lesson. Students create unique business plans, and some of their work is featured below. Natalie is really close becoming a certified Coweta County Schools STEM teacher!
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GROWING the BRANCHES of a Successful STEM Program

Martha Milam, Stefanie Easterwood, and Cathrine Nolan conducted a presentation at the West GA RESA STEM Conference held on March 6,7 in Peachtree City. We spent two days learning with other educators as well as sharing all that we have accomplished at ECHS. Teachers, counselors, and administrators enjoyed the story of our ongoing journey, and educators from as far north as Cumming, GA want to visit our school and use some of our ideas! We also learned about a great new activity called the STEM Cafe, which Fulton County offers as a lively professional development opportunity. (Gourmet food is served.) Next year, we just might have a STEM Cafe right here at ECHS!

SEE the Prezi at: http://bit.ly/1chb9Wj

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Gold Name Badges - For YOU!

Do you see the pretigious name badges that we are wearing in the photo above? YOU can order one of these for yourself.

We have secured a price of $6 each for the badges. Please email martha.milam@cowetaschools.net by April 4 if you would like to order a badge. Make checks payable to ECHS. Also include the pertinent information, using the template below.

First, Last Name

East Coweta High School

"Department" Teacher - or Your TITLE


2nd Annual STEM Symposium

April 17, from 6:00 till 8:00 pm will be our second annual STEM Symposium at the Center for Performing and Visual Arts on Lower Fayetteville Road.

The STEM Sympsoium is our pep rally for all things math and science! Last year, Dr. Barker introduced the symposium, which is directed by Dr. Donald White. A representative from Congressman Lynn Westmoreland’s office also spoke, and then we had 4 student speakers, including one of our STEM interns from ECHS. The event is held at the Center for Performing and Visual Arts. Students present activities like Science Fair, robotics, Science Olympiad, Science Bowl, Math Team, Academic Bowl, etc. are all represented.

New this year will be the celebration of all the new STEM-certified teachers in Coweta County Schools. Anyone who qualifies as a STEM teacher by March 31 will be recognized. We will have at least 5 teachers from ECHS who will be honored, but it looks like we are adding a few more within the next couple of weeks!

The Latest Tweets on the EC Streets

Congrats to our own Coweta County Schools @dwhitesciguy for WINNING the West GA RESA #STEM LEADER of the YEAR!!! @echs2012. @WGARESASTEM

From @JeannetteHallam: Good luck to all our students taking the SAT today! You can do this. #ECHS

We are SO fortunate to have @dwhitesciguy . He's the backbone of all #STEM programs in our Coweta County School System.@echs2012

From @echs2012: @FoxNews: Water War: Southern states battle to keep faucets flowing http://fxn.ws/1gciC64 @marthavmilam Our project! #STEM

From @eccoacheast: Everyone in my mentor group .... Remember I am in trailer 10 .. See u tomorrow @echs2012

From @scondov: Back to work tomorrow on Haralson Island! You'll get my meaning when you get to school tomorrow! Good luck finding your way around kids!

From @ToddCrafton: @marthavmilam Already doing background research on our project! #STEM #ECHS

From @ECHSBANDINFO: Rise and shine marching Indians it's BOA day.... Bring it today - leave NOTHING to chance. You guys got this #hooked

RT @usnews: Math with ... music? Check out these ideas for incorporating music into core high school classes ow.ly/uGqul #STEM

@NatalieChastine I hear that u have a Cool #STEM lesson going on tomorrow 1st block. Can I stop by 4 a visit?

From @mickijbyrnes: Guess who wrote a fabulous Chaucer paper?! This gal-----> @ToriHunt3

From @ECSports: So far this school year, East Coweta is 5-1 against Newnan and 3-2 against Northgate in all team sports. #BleedPurpleandGold #GoIndians

The ECHS Science Olympiad TEAM @echscioly

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Our Big Tournament on Feb. 22 at Middle Georgia State College (formerly Macon State)

A STEM Lesson by Dr. Karen Pompeo


Karen shared a STEM lesson on Edmodo, on the High School STEM Page. Her lesson was titled "The Build a Boat & Hope it Floats!"

The best part of this lesson is that YOU could use it to address your own class standards. You could focus on various parts of the lesson, including WRITING-COMMUNICATION, HISTORICAL-CULTURAL aspect, FINANCIAL outlook, etc. It does NOT have to be a science-engineering lesson. Students could design a boat that travels down the Thames River, or a WWII bomber plane. Think about your subject, and modify the lesson to suit the needs of your classroom. The reason that this is a lesson is that students are creating an original design to address a real-world need.

Those of us who have already used the lesson can include this as one of our 5 STEM lessons for the year. Thanks, Karen!

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STEM Intern of the Month: Tori Hunt

Tori Hunt, one of our oustanding ECHS seniors, spent two blocks of her fall semester working as a STEM Intern at the new Piedmon-Newnan Hospital. Every morning she reported to the Hospital Pharmacy, and her responsibilities included making IV (intravenous fluid) bags, stocking product, and identifying drugs and medicines.

Since her internship, Tori has obtained a job working in the Publix Pharmacy as a Technician. Her employers have been impressed with her, and she has learned many of the real-life skills associated with working in a STEM field. Her internship is an awesome opportunity that she has the opportunity to demonstrate "Performance" and "Readiness" for life after high school.

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In Her Own Words

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Student Interviews by Drew Roberts

12th Grade Student Drew Roberts, a famous ECHOStager and aspiring journalist, has interviewed some of his ECHS teachers and classmates.

He posed the following QUESTION:

"What STEM activities are available to students at East Coweta HS?"

Jacob: STEM Internship for seniors

Ashley: Science Olympiad

Michael: Robotics Class, Pre-Engineering, or Aviation at the CEC

Mr. Post: All math and science classes at ECHS, CEC, or through dual enrollment

Courtney: Math & Science Academy (officially now the "STEM Academy") with Mrs. Nolan

Kayla: Healthcare Classes at the CEC (dental hygiene, first responder, nurses' aide)

Chandler: Environmental Club with Mrs. Ahmann

Presley: Mu Alpha Theta with Dr. Robinson

Andrew: Math Team with Mr. Joo

Mrs. Mohabir: The new science research course at the CEC

Ms. Conlin: Academic Bowl with Coach Crafton

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Staying Current with Our Professional Communities

For our January session of the Technology Professional Learning Group, Micki Byrnes and Martha Milam presented a lesson called "Staying Current with Our Professional Learning Communities". Our learners learned how to use Edmodo to stay in touch with other teachers in their subject matter. Great tools we discussed are Twitter, Pinterest, and websites like Edudemic and Edutopia. Yes - Twitter and Pinterest are really useful for education!

Check out the POWER POINT "Staying Current with Our Professional Learning Communities": ttp://bit.ly/1fQ558h

To see more tech tips, join our Edmodo Group.

Group code: igut2g or URL code: https://edmo.do/j/2xr4dp

Dates for Your Calendar

March 31 - deadline for Coweta STEM Teacher Certification in order to be honored at the STEM Symposium

April 4 - deadline for ordering a Gold STEM Name Badge

April 17 - STEM Symposium (6-8 pm)

May 30 - deadline for Coweta STEM Teacher Certification for the 2013-14 school year