The Education and Public Outreach Group at Sonoma State is involved in many projects that promote the teaching and dissemination of science to schools and the general public. We support several NASA Space Science missions focused on the astrophysics of the high energy universe. In addition, we are currently developing an online college curriculum in Cosmology as well as a science/engineering curriculum for secondary students.
Recently we have begun development of new high school science curriculum for the US Department of Education in partnership with the Mendocino County schools. In this project students in all four years of high school will tackle the main themes of earth science, biology, chemistry and physics by designing their own studies using a suite of sensors of various kinds to study aspects of their environment or build laboratory experiments. This new set of curricula will be among the first developed in accordance with the Next Generation Science Standards and the Common Core; it will incorporate common ideas (cross-cutting themes) from the various branches of science and mathematics, and will explicitly include engineering practices. These new curricular materials will allow students to experience the process of science and to learn the many ways that different aspects of science impact one another and the world.
Our mission is to develop exciting formal and informal educational materials that inspire students in grades 5-14 to pursue STEM careers, to train teachers nation-wide in the classroom use of these materials, and to enhance science literacy for the general public, with a special focus on increasing the numbers of under-represented students in STEM.