Join Edvotek at the NSTA National Conference on Science Education

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UPDATE:  The NSTA has cancelled their meeting due to the COVID-19 Pandemic.  Please see their website for more information.  We believe this is in the best interest for public health.  We hope to see you at a conference soon!

Edvotek has two days of hands-on professional development workshops scheduled at the NSTA National Conference on Science Education, which is being held in Boston, MA from April 2-5, 2020.

All of our workshops are detailed below.  Headed to the meeting?  A printable version of the schedule is available here.

Introducing Your Students to Gene Editing with CRISPR
April 2, 2020, 08:00 AM – 09:00 AM
Boston Convention & Exhibition Center, 157C

The development of CRISPR as a gene editing tool is one of the most exciting biotechnology breakthroughs of the past decade. Now you can learn how to incorporate this amazing technology into your classroom. We’ll review the biology behind CRISPR-Cas technology and examine the use of gene therapy to treat a patient suffering from cystic fibrosis. You’ll design guide RNAs to target a mutation in an essential gene, and then use electrophoresis to analyze preprepared DNA after CRISPR treatment.

Left at the Scene of the Crime: High School Forensics
April 2, 2020, 09:30 AM – 10:30 AM
Boston Convention & Exhibition Center, 157C

Help! The principal has been attacked in the art room! Your students become forensic scientists as they walk into a crime scene. Inspect the location of the crime using blood spatter analysis and then catch the criminal with DNA fingerprinting. This exciting workshop will include ways to incorporate biotechnology and gel electrophoresis into your classroom.

Transform Your Class into a Neuroscience Laboratory
April 2, 2020, 11:00 AM – 12:00 PM
Boston Convention & Exhibition Center, 157C

Neuroscience is one of the fastest growing fields in science today. Bring it directly into your classroom and make your students neuroscientists for the day! You’ll explore the neurodegenerative disorders Huntington’s and Alzheimer’s. First, we’ll run a genetic analysis on a family who may carry the Huntington gene using PCR and gel electrophoresis. Then, we’ll run an ELISA to explore the biology behind Alzheimer’s disease.

Setting Up a Biotechnology Lab: Where to Begin?
April 2, 2020, 12:30 PM – 01:30 PM
Boston Convention & Exhibition Center, 157C

Students should be equipped to understand, and contribute to, biotechnology innovations. However, setting up a biotechnology lab can be a huge undertaking. Between electrophoresis equipment, microscopes, water baths, and PCR machines, how do you know where to begin? You’ll hear from a biotechnology teacher who navigated setting up her biotechnology lab five years ago and has been successfully running it since! Learn about equipment, storage, experiments, and the benefits of hands-on labs.

Exploring STEAM with Transformation
April 2, 2020, 02:00 PM – 03:00 PM
Boston Convention & Exhibition Center, 157C

Transforming bacteria with plasmids that express brightly colored or fluorescent proteins is an unforgettable way to teach the central dogma of molecular biology. Why not take it a step further and see the art your students can create using their transformed bacteria? We’ll review tips and tricks to maximize classroom success and also ask you to dust off your painting skills! Artistic? Our favorite designs will win a free kit.

Sweet Science: Exploring Complex Mixtures with Biotechnology
April 2, 2020, 03:30 PM – 04:30 PM
Boston Convention & Exhibition Center, 157C

Explore biotechnology with this fun and interactive workshop. Unlock the color of candies by extracting their food dyes and separating them using agarose gel electrophoresis. We’ll also learn how to separate complex color combinations using TLC paper chromatography. By separating out the colors, students will learn about complicated mixtures, charges on molecules, and incorporating science into their everyday lives.

Teaching the Polymerase Chain Reaction (PCR) in One Class Period
April 3, 2020, 09:00 AM – 10:30 AM
Boston Convention & Exhibition Center, 157C

How are scientists able to identify genetic mutations and infectious agents? What technique is indispensable to both medical and life science labs? The answer is the Polymerase Chain Reaction (PCR)! Today, we can easily perform PCR in the classroom laboratory. We will amplify a small region of the bacteriophage lambda genome using PCR and analyze it using gel electrophoresis. This quick-and-easy experiment has been optimized so that the entire experiment can be completed in one 75-minute lab period.

Introduction to Forensic Science: Middle School Forensics
April 3, 2020, 11:00 AM – 12:00 PM
Boston Convention & Exhibition Center, 157C

Help! The window has been broken and the school laptops have been stolen! Your students become forensic scientists as they walk into a crime scene. Inspect the location of the theft using blood spatter analysis and then catch the criminal using simulated DNA fingerprinting. This exciting workshop will include ways to incorporate biotechnology and gel electrophoresis into your middle school classroom.

Introducing Your Students to Gene Editing with CRISPR
April 3, 2020, 12:30 PM – 01:30 PM
Boston Convention & Exhibition Center, 157C

The development of CRISPR as a gene editing tool is one of the most exciting biotechnology breakthroughs of the past decade. Now you can learn how to incorporate this amazing technology into your classroom. We’ll review the biology behind CRISPR-Cas technology and examine the use of gene therapy to treat a patient suffering from cystic fibrosis. You’ll design guide RNAs to target a mutation in an essential gene, and then use electrophoresis to analyze preprepared DNA after CRISPR treatment.

Cancer Investigators: Medical Diagnostics in Your Classroom
April 3, 2020, 02:00 PM – 03:00 PM
Boston Convention & Exhibition Center, 157C

Cancer contributes to almost one in every four deaths in the United States. Fortunately, innovations in biomedical research have improved our understanding of the differences between normal and cancer cells. We will use microscopy and electrophoresis to explore the hallmarks of cancer.

Pollution Solution: Teaching about Your Carbon Footprint
April 3, 2020, 03:30 PM – 04:30 PM
Boston Convention & Exhibition Center, 157C

Ocean currents, survival of animals and ecosystems, and many other elements are possible because Earth’s temperatures stay within a certain range. However, greenhouse gases—and in particular carbon dioxide—are increasing rapidly, causing higher temperatures and climate change. Carbon dioxide released into the atmosphere needs to be reduced by creating new energy habits and systems. We’ll be looking at ways to teach about reducing your carbon footprint and biotech innovations to curb pollution, such as biofuels.