Monday, September 24, 2018

Coffee with a Geek Interview with Dr. Xiao-Ning Zhang

Coffee with a Geek Interview with Xiao-Ning Zhang
























WHEN:  September 26th, 2019
TIME:  9am-9:30am
Youtube Live Link

I saw a presentation by Dr. Zhang at Daemen College's STEAM Conference over the summer.  I was really impressed at how she took subjects that seem very complex, such as the science of DNA, and made creative hands-on activities to help students understand them.

I'm really excited to talk to her about her teaching methods, as well as her projects and work.  This session would be great for any teacher looking for inspiration and ideas on how to help students learn with creative activities and projects.

A little bit about Dr. Zhang in her own words:

Born in Tianjin, China.

Bachelor of Science in Biology and Master of Science in Biotechnology at Nanjing University.

PhD in Genetics at Fudan University in 2002. (both universities are similar in status in China as ivy league in the US)
Postdoctoral position at University of Pennsylvania and University of Maryland for a total of 7 years.
In Maryland, I also enrolled in Tai Sophia Institute (Now changed to Maryland University of Integrative Health) as a part-time student in the Applied Healing Arts program.
The years in Maryland got me thinking and reflecting on what I really want in my life and what I want as a career. For the first time, teaching came to the front page.
In 2009, I started a new position at St Bonaventure University, teaching courses
in biology while continuing the research I love with undergraduate students. I never dreamed of such a career before. But after teaching for a few months, I knew that this is what I have been looking for.
I started to get involved in STEM outreach from 2015. Working with colleagues st SBU, I have been organizing a summer teacher workshop for math and science teachers and a summer research program for high school students annually. Through these experience, I get to learn about the education system in the United States and listen to teacher’s needs. It motivates me to think of new
ways to teach and design new activities for teachers to take back to their home schools. Now I mainly work through WNY STEM HUB and WNY STEM Southern Tier Satellite Center at SBU to inspire and prepare the next generations.

How to Connect with Dr. Zhang

LinkedIn


Wednesday, September 19, 2018

Movies Educators Should Watch Episode 1: Red Folder

Many of you may know that I often like to pretend I am a movie critic.  For my children, I created a movie blog titled, "Movies I Want My Kids to See, and Why?"  It's a slow work in progress, but I wanted to have my children know a little about me through the movies I have enjoyed and which had meaning to me.

Well, I thought it might be nice to create a list of movies I think teachers should watch.  Am I an expert on movies?  Nope.  I'm just a teacher who likes to watch movies.  The movies I plan to highlight are movies, many of them short films, that made me really think about education.

So with that introduction, I'd like to showcase the Ben Kallam short film, "Red Folder"

Red Folder from Ben Kallam on Vimeo.


This film moved me on many levels.  First, cinematically, I was captivated by the scenery and character development as the main character, Joseph, is sent on a mission to find a red folder.  As he wanders through the school we learn more about him from the teachers and school staff that he meets.  Joseph is lost in many ways in this film.  But who is there to help him?  Is the system designed to help him?  Are the teachers capable of helping him?  Or are they and the system setting him up for failure?  What is his role in his success as a student? This film pushes those questions.  It will make your heart ache, but will it make a difference?