“I Can’t Afford to Attend the Conference”
Yes, we have all heard that expression before. My response has always been, I can’t afford NOT to attend. STAO is far more than just a professional organization. It is a coming together of individuals who are striving to do an even better job back in their home schools. I have always maintained that teaching is the best profession in the world but it can also be the worst. It all depends on the individual.
Let’s face it, we all need a chance to recharge our batteries and a STAO conference presents such an opportunity. (Our conference is the largest yearly event of its kind for science teachers in Canada.) Where in the profession are you able to find such a large concentration of kindred spirits, looking for new ideas, thought-provoking demos, and ways to bring the curriculum to life than at a STAO conference?
I have only missed three annual STAO conferences in the past 50 years and that was because I spent 3 years teaching in East Africa. And yes, I can honestly say that I learned so much by attending.
This is not a trick question but what do Chris Hadfield, Jacques Cousteau, and Robert Bateman have in common? Answer – they have all presented at a STAO Conference. Once more, we have a lineup of outstanding presenters including our Plenary Speaker, Will Richardson, the Water Brothers, Barbara Arrowsmith-Young, Maureen Jennings, David Miller, the list goes on.
Do yourself a favour. Take a moment and check out the bios of the Featured Speakers. You will find them in the Conference Pre-planner as well as on the STAO website. And while you are on the website, take another moment and fill out the application form to attend the conference. If you do this, at the end of the day, your students will be the real winners. You, too, should be saying “I can’t afford NOT to attend.”