Format Options


A one hour session that provides participants with the opportunity to explore a specific topic.  Presenters are encouraged to create workshops that are informal (i.e., allows for discussion) and participatory (i.e., interactive and hands-on).

Sharing  Showcase:

At the showcase, teachers will share in a marketplace-style setting. The format is less formal and more interactive, allowing for one-on-one interactions. While your ‘idea’  should be portable, and provide participants a quick glimpse into an idea they might implement in their own class. It could include a display, sample work, hands-on samples, interactive technology. Showcase presenters will be given a timeslot for the showcase, and will also have time to attend sessions.


An interactive station within the STAOPlayground designed to provide participants with an immersive experience or exploration during a designated time period.  Playground stations must be hands-on and provide an opportunity for teachers to “play”.  For example, a station could provide participants the opportunity to use a digital tool or to perform a STEAM activity.  STAOPlayground participants are responsible for providing materials/ equipment needed to run their session.    Playground participants will also have time to attend sessions.

Strands - STAO2017

The conference strands are chosen based on feedback from educators on the needs of Science educators right now. The Conference team will choose session proposals based on their alignment to the Strands. 

The Modern Classroom:

This strand is focused on exploring STEAM education and the possibilities of cross-curricular integration to develop the skills needed by students to be successful, scientifically-literate global citizens.  Topics in this strand may include: STEM/STEAM programs, makerspaces, integration of technology (probeware, devices, computers, software), robotics, coding, game-based learning, inquiry based learning, and critical thinking.

Creating Inclusive Learning Environments:

This strand is focused on creating science programs that meet the needs of all learners in our classrooms.  It also includes opportunities to examine diverse perspectives in science and science education.  Topics in this strand may include: meeting the needs of students in different pathways (workplace, college, university), English Language Learners, and/or students with Individual Education Plans, exploring First Nations and other diverse perspectives, and creating science classrooms that are safe for all students.

Enhancing Classroom Practice:  

This strand is focused on teaching and learning strategies, tools, tips, and tricks that help create exciting and engaging science programs for students.  Topics in this strand may include:  best practices; demonstrations; tips, tricks, and tools for the classroom; assessment and evaluation; and pedagogical documentation.

Connecting and Collaborating with Others:

This strand is focused on exploring the possibilities of connections and collaborations between science educators, colleagues, and community partners to develop authentic learning experiences for students.  Topics in this strand may include:  global connections, partnerships, collaborations, experiential learning, and networking sessions.

Exploring New Frontiers:

This strand is focused on staying abreast of current scientific research, and new trends in science education. Topics in this strand may include: new scientific discoveries, new approaches to science education, 21st century competencies, and leadership.

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