A great deal of excitement often surrounds launching a new product, especially when you’re given the opportunity to see how it can benefit people and affect their lives in a positive way. During the pandemic, as distance learning quickly became the norm, we launched Venture, a simple and straightforward tool that classrooms could use as needed, without the headaches of “big picture” implementation.
However, due to a decline of face-to-face meetings and events, presenting our new idea to education leaders and classroom teachers proved to be a challenge. Emails and zoom conferences could only go so far to really showcasing the features and benefits of Venture.
Fortunately, the National Science Teachers Association (NSTA) was able to hold three regional conferences in a year. At the events held in Portland, Oregon, National Harbor, Maryland, and Los Angeles, California, we were able to talk directly to those who were implementing Next Generation Science Standards (NGSS), and most importantly, it gave us the opportunity to hear their specific needs and the challenges they face.
And we got an earful.
Implementation of the NGSS requires that classroom teachers develop engaging, inquiry-based activities that not only connect science to the real world, but also pull in cross-curricular connections. By design, these need to be both rich and open-ended.
Assessing the students’ performance on these tasks requires a less discrete methodology—where observations, discussion, interviews, and collaborations can make the Next Generation Science classroom a place of ambiguity and confusion.
When we developed Venture, we recognized the gap between data and information needed to be closed, the same way the disconnect between connection and communication needs to be solved. Looking to help enrich science instruction, our dynamic platform provides pre-made formative assessments that align to NGSS standards and offers a solution to many of these pain points.
Thanks to the staff at NSTA for making it all happen and giving us a chance to connect and learn from each other in person. We look forward to future opportunities to hear from the education community and find new ways to help cultivate innovation in the classroom.