Give the Gift of After School Science Classes

Attention parents and grandparents:

After school science class gift certificates are available and make a great gift; they can even be mailed to you for December 24 delivery if you order by 5 p.m. on Monday, December 22.

To order, register your child online, call the Michigan Tech cashier at 487-2247 to pay by credit card, and send an email to Joan Chadde at to request a gift certificate be mailed to your home address.

Classes are every Monday starting January 19 and run for six weeks. March 2 is reserved as a make-up day in the event of snow. Classes meet from 4:00 to 5:30 p.m. at the Great Lakes Research Center.

Grades 1–3 can sign up for Under Your Feet Rocks!, a class that will develop observation skills by having children examine the characteristics of different rocks, as well as learn about Earth science concepts and go on a dinosaur dig. Marcy Erickson, who earned her BS in Forest Resources and Applied Ecology and holds science teacher certification, is the instructor.

Grades 4–6 can sign up for Chemistry for Kids, a class introducing chemistry concepts without the intense math of the discipline. Chemical reaction, observation, and application are all covered, including solving a mock crime using chromatography. Denise Landsberg, a Tech graduate with a BS in Biological Sciences, is the instructor.

The cost is $75 per student. Call 7-3341 with any questions. Note: the Houghton school bus will drop students off at the GLRC by 3:45 p.m.

From Tech Today.

Winter Family Fun Night at Nara Nature Center and Park

Nara Nature Center
Nara Nature Center

What can you do with your family to celebrate winter and nature? K-6 students and their parents are invited to turn off their electronics and enjoy a fun evening together making nature crafts and taking a snowshoe night hike at the Nara Nature Center and Park. The event will take place from 6 to 7:30 p.m. on Monday, Dec. 15.

The nature crafts and snowshoe night hike activities will each be offered from 6:05 to 6:45 p.m. and from 6:50 to 7:30 p.m. Families may participate in one or both indoor and outdoor activities. The event is free, but donations are welcome. Craft supplies, hot chocolate and tea, as well as child and adult snowshoes will be provided while supplies last.

For the outdoor activity, families can take a hike in the woods, on foot or on snowshoes, listening and looking for signs of wildlife and viewing the night sky, as part of a naturalist-led hike at Nara Nature Park. IIf your have your own pair of snowshoes, please bring them. Dress warmly.

For the indoor activity, families can make several types of nature crafts to take home while enjoying the cozy warmth of the Nara Nature Center Chalet, including birchbark cutout ornaments.

The Winter Family Fun Night is coordinated by the Western UP Math and Science Center and the Michigan Tech Center for Science and Environmental Outreach. Use of the Nara Center is provided by the City of Houghton, and Bob and Ruth Nara.

This is the first in a monthly series of outdoor family fun nights and monthly family outings to be held on Saturday afternoons at the Nara Nature Center and the Maasto Hiihto Chalet over the coming year. These programs are funded by the Michigan Alliance of Environmental Professionals.

From Tech Today.

Family Engineering Night Held in Detroit

Family Engineering
Family Engineering

The Center for Science and Environmental Outreach, along with the Michigan Tech Society of Hispanic Professional Engineers student chapter, conducted a Family Engineering Night at Escuela Avancemos Academy in Southwest Detroit (Mexicantown) on Nov. 24. John Deere provided support for the event, which featured activities in both English and Spanish and offered a free dinner in the school’s cafeteria. Approximately 180 participated, including students in grades K-5 and their family members.

The following members of the Michigan Tech community presented at the event:

  • Uzi Mendez ’13 (Bio Med)
  • Michael Briseno (Bio Med/ECE), undergraduate student
  • Zoe Miller (CEE), master’s student
  • Gabriella Shirkey ’13 (HU)
  • Joan Chadde, director of the Center for Science and Environmental Outreach

From Tech Today.

Family Science Night Tomorrow

Family Science and Engineering Night
Family Science and Engineering Night

Come to the free K-5 Family Science and Engineering Night, tomorrow at 6 to 7:30 p.m., at the Portage Lake District Library. Michigan Tech science and engineering students will present two activity sessions.

  • Pre-K to Second Grade: “Buzzing Bees” and “What Floats Your Boat?” 6:05—6:45 p.m.
  • Third through Fifth Grade: “Be a Computer Programmer” and “Blood and Guts” 6:50–7:30 p.m.

For more information, call the Portage Lake District Library at 482-4570.

Family Science Night is conducted by the Western UP Center for Science, Mathematics and Environmental Education and Michigan Tech with funding from the Family Engineering Program and assistance from Portage Lake District Library Community Programs.

From Tech Today.

New Faculty Member Amy Lark


Amy Lark
Amy Lark

Amy Lark, PhD
Amy Lark joins the Department of Cognitive and Learning Sciences as an assistant professor. Lark comes to Michigan Tech from Michigan State University.

She received a PhD in Science Education and a master’s in zoology from Michigan State.

Lark belongs to the National Science Teachers Association, the Society for the Advancement of Biology Education Research and the Society for the Study of Evolution. She has been published in American Midland Naturalist and theJournal of Comparative Physiology.

Read more at Tech Today.

Educators Present on Forestry and Environmental Research

NAAEE ConferenceJoan Chadde attended the 43rd Annual North American Association for Environmental Education Conference this month in Ottawa, Canada, where she presented “Engaging Under-Represented Students in Urban Forest Stewardship.”

Also traveling with Chadde was Houghton High School science teacher, Lauri Davis (partner-teacher with the Center for Water and Society), who presented “Environmental Research Projects: Getting High School Student Intimate with Nature,” a project funded by the Lake Superior Stewardship Initiative.

From Tech Today.