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TIES Weekly Update–May 16 and May 23, 2017

TIES

Bertha Vazquez

May 25, 2017

The Teacher Institute for Evolutionary Science (TIES) stresses the importance of promoting teacher leadership in the United States. Here at TIES we feel that our fellow teachers are our own best resources. We are looking for high school and college biology educators who are interested in presenting our TIES workshops to middle school science teachers in their state. Our reasoning is that a middle school science teacher will typically cover many areas of science within his/her annual curriculum, including earth science, physical science, and life science. It is virtually impossible to become an expert in all of these areas, at least not initially. The purpose of TIES is to inform interested middle school science teachers about the most up-to-date concepts of natural selection, common ancestry, and diversity in order for them to confidently cover the topics in their classrooms and fulfill their curriculum requirements. In addition to providing science teachers with innovative professional development opportunities, TIES also has ready-to-use online resources for the classroom, including presentation slides, labs, guided reading assignments, and an exam.


  1. We have two more workshops confirmed thanks to Kenny Coogan. Please note that they are full-day events:
    • July 19, 2017, 9 AM-3 PM: Henry Doorly Zoo and Aquarium, Omaha, NE, presented by Emily Brown, Education Program Manager
    • September 16, 2017, 9 AM-4 PM: Greensboro Science Center, Greensboro, NC, presented by Alison F. Manka, and Melanie J. Lee-Brown, Ph.D. Professor of Biology Guilford College
    The next step is to make sure these presenters have enough materials for such a long session. This is the first time other presenters TTCs will present a full-day session.
  2. Five workshop proposals were sent out in the last two weeks. I wrote up proposals for workshops in South Carolina and Virginia. Three TIES Teacher Corps Members also wrote proposals for workshops in the last two weeks, in Maryland, Nebraska, and West Virginia. In the event these proposals are accepted, all five workshops would be presented by local TTCs. It’s getting harder and harder keeping these straight!

    In total, that’s 12 proposals currently pending:
      Florida
      Illinois
      Maryland
      Mississippi
      Missouri
      Nebraska
      North Carolina
      New Jersey
      South Carolina
      Texas
      Virginia
      West Virginia
  3. We have 3 new TIES Teacher Corp Members in West Virginia and another in Virginia. Information about TIES was sent out to teachers across the state in Idaho as well, but I have not received anything. Cheryl Hollinger is reaching out to teachers in Wyoming.
  4. I tried to ramp up the local promotion of Richard's May 27th Miami appearance at the Olympia Theater. We were at 845 tickets left when I asked Books & Books to include it in their newsletter and for our local NPR station to send out an e-mail blast to its membership. As of this morning, we have 680 tickets left. The local NPR station is doing a second e-mail blast/ticket giveaway today. The first one received 250 responses.

Bertha Vazquez

Bertha Vazquez's photo

Bertha Vazquez has been teaching middle school science in Miami-Dade County Public Schools for 24 years. She has BA in Biology from the University of Miami and a Master’s in Science Education from Florida International University. A seasoned traveler who has visited all seven continents, she enjoys introducing the world of nature and science to young, eager minds. An educator with National Board Certification, she is the recipient of several national and local honors, including the 2014 Samsung’s $150,000 Solve For Tomorrow Contest and The Charles C. Bartlett National Excellence in Environmental Award in 2009. She was Miami-Dade Science Teacher of the Year in 1997 and 2008 and was one of Florida’s 2015 finalists for the most prestigious science award in the country, The Presidential Award for Excellence in Mathematics and Science Teaching.