National Science Teachers Association and North South Studios Create Interactive Science Simulations to Narrow the Science Gap in US Schools

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The US spends more per capita on education than any other nation yet, by every measurement of math and science competence in grades K-12, it trails most of the countries of the world. Promoting excellence and innovation in science teaching and learning for all is not only NSTA's mission, it is an imperative for the future of our nation.

The North South team did a great job designing and programming our simulations and they really seemed to understand the material. When you are dealing with science content, that's a big plus

When the National Science Teachers Association (NSTA) approached North South Studios about working together on interactive science materials, North South's President, Bill Newell, was more than delighted. "Our staff has produced many online learning courses but we had never worked with an organization that was dedicated specifically to modeling excellence for educators. As long time producers of educational materials, we were acutely aware of the need for inspiring science content in our schools."

Though the underlying concepts--energy, light, photosynthesis, body systems, electricity--were complex, the process was simple. NSTA's consultants and staff, authored storyboards for lessons, animations and simulations. These were then discussed between the two teams and sketches and first drafts were exchanged. After receiving input from NSTA, North South Studios was able to run with the project and the simulations came to life quickly. "The North South team did a great job designing and programming our simulations and they really seemed to understand the material. When you are dealing with science content, that's a big plus," said Francis Eberle, executive director, NSTA.

Will these simulations impact the disturbing downward spiral of science education in the U.S.? Of course these alone are just a beginning. But ask any teacher looking for quality resources and they'll tell you that the materials provided by organizations like NSTA make a big difference in their ability to communicate and excite interest in science. "We hope we can do more projects together," concludes Newell. "We are proud to be able to contribute our talents to such a worthwhile cause."

About North South Studios
North South Studios is a full service media company that provides creative, content, engineering and business services to companies in the education, toy, technology, entertainment and finance industries. http://www.northsouthstudios.com

About NSTA
The Arlington, VA-based National Science Teachers Association (NSTA), http://www.nsta.org, is the largest professional organization in the world promoting excellence and innovation in science teaching and learning for all. NSTA's current membership includes more than 60,000 science teachers, science supervisors, administrators, scientists, business and industry representatives, and others involved in science education.

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Sarina Simon

Kate Meyer
National Science Teachers Association
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