Association of Science Teachers

About

 

About the AST

Constitution

You can download a pdf of the  Association of Science Teachers Constitution adopted at the AGM held on Friday, October 28, 2005 at Halifax West High School.

You can also download a pdf of the  Association of Science Teachers Operational Procedures adopted at the AGM held on Friday, October 28, 2005 at Halifax West High School.

 

Our Mission

To foster excellence in the practice of science teaching.

 

Our Beliefs

We believe that science education is an essential part of a complete public education.

We believe that every person has an innate desire and capacity to understand the interrelationships in nature and the universe.

We believe that science educators foster the sense of wonder by guiding the student to discover these relationships.

We believe that every student should be challenged to his/her maximum potential.

We believe that scientific and technological literacy is necessary for informed and responsible citizenry.

 

Our Vision

Philosophy
The human endeavour is increasingly shaped by science. Society will ensure that its members view science as an active process of inquiry leading to the betterment of all.

  • Relevant/Meaningful. Science education will provide a wide range of programs and activities that are relevant and meaningful to the learner.
  • Inclusive. Science education will encompass learners of all abilities, backgrounds, and interests and will provide opportunities for all students to be challenged.
  • Interdisciplinary. Science education will have a balanced perspective that fosters connections across the curriculum.
  • Gender Balance. Science will be presented in such a way that it will be interesting and relevant to the experiences of both males and females.
  • Visionary. Science education will be visionary, with consideration for environmental, global, and futuristic issues.
  • Life-Long. Science education will foster attitudes that promote life-long learning.
  • HumanisticScience education will manifest a humanistic perspective which allows students to confront and evaluate ethical issues.
  • S.T.S. Science education will embody the interrelationships among science, technology, and society.
  • Standards. Science education in Nova Scotia schools will be characterized by consistent and well- defined goals to be achieved by all students.

Participants

  • The Learner. Science education will develop in the learner the qualities of a scientifically literate individual. It will provide each learner the opportunity for
  • Intellectual Development. The learner will acquire the skills necessary to be scientifically and mathematically literate, to solve problems, and to think critically.
  • Personal/Social Development. The learner will develop a positive attitude toward science, will acquire the attitudes of a socially responsible individual, and will understand that safety is a personal responsibility.
  • Lifework Planning. The learner will develop an enterprising attitude in which the importance of risk- taking and creativity are recognized.
  • The Educator. Science educators will exemplify those qualities of dedicated professionals.
    • Professional Development. Science educators will recognize the value of ongoing professional development.
    • Current Trends. Science educators will recognize the importance of keeping current with advances in science and technology.
    • Qualifications. Science educators will have appropriate opportunities both prior to and during their teaching experiences to acquire the necessary background required for exemplary science teaching.
    • Collegiality. Science educators will have the opportunity to communicate, share and connect with other educators.
Program

Science education will provide a well-rounded program with objectives that reflect sound pedagogical principles.

  • Breadth of Curriculum. The science education will begin with a strong foundation in the elementary program. These basic scientific principles will be built upon in a program that offers continuity through to high school. The program will also ensure the successful transition to post-secondary pursuits.
  • Career Preparation. The science program will provide students the opportunity to explore possible career options in science, through programs such as Co-Op education and will also prepare them for life-long learning.
  • Global Perspective. The science program will embrace a global, environmental, and futuristic perspective in which students will develop qualities of socially responsible citizens.
  • Strategies for Program Delivery. Science will be taught as a process in which the learner is actively involved. It will offer interdisciplinary connections and will be relevant, meaningful, and inclusive for all learners.

Parameters

The delivery of an effective science program will require additional support under appropriate conditions.

  • Learning Environment. Science will be practiced in safe, healthy learning environments and under conditions in which students will have the opportunity to learn and practice safe procedures.
  • Equal access to appropriate technology. All students will have the opportunity to practice science using current and appropriate technology.

Our Goals

Goal 1. To promote and offer opportunities for professional development.

Action. The AST will provide, support, and/or encourage involvement in the following endeavours:

  • summer short courses
  • conference
  • week-end seminars (study groups)
  • newsletter/journal
  • incentive grants
  • lecture series
  • lobbying appropriate agencies for cooperative education opportunities for teachers
  • needs-assessment studies
  • task forces and/or curriculum committees
  • electronic networking

 

Goal 2. To promote and support positive student involvement in science and science-related activities.

Action. The AST will provide and/or promote:

  • funding for science fairs
  • funding for science olympics
  • developing of a clearing house list of appropriate speakers, agencies, projects, videos, etc.
  • student conferences
  • participation in national/regional competitions/exams

 

Goal 3. To provide support for teachers in existing and new programs.

Action. The AST will provide and/or promote:

  • summer short courses
  • conferences
  • newsletter/journal
  • development of list of speakers/agencies, etc.
  • collaboration with Department of Education in development of support mechanisms

Goal 4. To promote and establish the AST as a positive and active participant in the decision-making and goal-setting aspects of science education, both in Nova Scotia and nationally.

  • Action. The AST will:
  • promote our VISION statement as a model for other Associations to follow;
  • utilize all forms of media to foster public awareness of our aims, goals, and ongoing activities;
  • foster stronger links with post-secondary teacher-training institutions to work towards common goals in science education;
  • develop a closer working relationship with APICS (Atlantic Provinces Council on the Sciences) to achieve common goals in science education;
  • to develop working relationships with the business community in order to promote current, scientific and technological opportunities.
  • create stronger links with other Science Teachers Associations, both nationally and internationally, to promote a congenial atmosphere for sharing information and ideas for the advancement of science