The Northern Indiana Science, Mathematics and Engineering Collaborative

Guided Inquiry is our Focus

2011 News (and earlier)

10 December 2011: At our second successful Saturday 1-day Modeling workshop on Dec 3, we had a group of enthusiastic chemistry and biology modeling teachers from northern Indiana: the essential business included reports on events in the classrooms this Fall, and difficulties in convincing administrators about the modeling process - it is clearly important that principals and parents understand the activities of the children: we need to keep all parties "in the loop". We also agreed on optimum workshop schedules for the coming summer - funding all will be difficult - more news about that later in the month: timing, registration fees, stipends, instructors were discussed. We need to coordinate with the requests coming out of the November 12 workshop.
28 November 2011: A Saturday 1-day Modeling in Chemistry and Biology workshop takes place on Saturday, December 3rd at The University of Notre Dame Physics Department (Nieuwland room 202) - 9 am to 3:30 pm (lunch provided).
26 October 2011: A Saturday 1-day Modeling in Physics, Chemistry and Biology workshop takes place on Saturday, November 12 at The University High School in Carmel - 9 am to 3:30 pm (lunch provided). Click here for the AGENDA; please let me ( or Laura Slocum ( if you are planning to come (all high-school science teachers of Indiana are welcome). We will be discussing progress this school year, and plans for the summer 2012. A similar workshop will take place at Notre Dame on Saturday, 3 December 2011.
27 September 2011: "A good principal makes a good school" is a truism that is stated often - but how is a "good principal" defined? A recent New York Times article contains some good definitions...
15 September 2011: This year's Notre Dame Forum, "Reimagining School: to Nurture the Soul of a Nation", is a yearlong discussion on the profound and challenging questions that shape the national debate on K-12 education. Further info at "The ND Forum site"
Initial meetings/speakers:
September 26, 7 pm: Gov. Jeb Bush, the former governor of Florida, founder of the Foundation for Excellence in Education.
September 28, 3:30 pm: Wendy Kopp, Teach for America, Bishop Gerald Kicanas, Tucson Diocese, Randi Weingarten, American Federation of Teachers, Juan Rangel,UNO charter school network.
12 September 2011: In addition to the Vernier Labquests and probes now available at the Notre Dame library for all teachers who attended the workshops, we bring your attention to another classroom hardware source - NDLIGHTS -
This partnership between the Notre Dame Colleges of Engineering and Science makes donations to schools in need of laboratory equipment: part of our catholic mission of sharing equipment no longer used in the Notre Dame laboratories: the instrumentation is tested, and experimental scenarios and training to match the high school science curriculum are provided. Contact Michelle Joyce at (574)631-2786 or

31 August 2011: Just to note that we have settled on dates for our Saturday modeling workshops: the first will be on November 12th at University High School for modeling participants (physics, chemistry and biology) from central and southern Indiana; the second will take place on December 3rd at the University of Notre Dame - please reserve those dates - we expect to discuss what is happening in the modeling classrooms, and also discuss plans for the coming year and especially next summer - more details on the Saturday workshops will follow shortly.
6 August 2011: We have now completed all the 2011 workshops, and we are beginning to put the information from the workshops on the website:

1. For High School Modelers: The Chemistry modeling introductory modeling workshop and the beginning of our first-year biology modeling curriculum, including the lesson modules from the Marian and Notre Dame workshops. Click here for details, including some pictures and the schedule for Levi Torrison's introductory chemistry modeling workshop (at Notre Dame and at USI, Evansville).

2. The two Vernier Labquest 2011 workshops for the SBCSC Intermediate Center science teachers (grades 5-8). Note that the lesson plans from the 2010 workshops can also be found here. 5 April 2011: We have completed the transfer of our large collection of Vernier modules and other science teaching equipment (for grades 5 thru 12) as a "Special Collection" in the Notre Dame Libraries. This will make it possible for teachers to see what modules are available and to order loan modules on-line - Opening Ceremonies took place in May 2011...

Professional Development sessions for Middle School Science teachers
5 March 2011: We have just received MSP funding for these programs for 2011 and 2012 - further information shortly...
"Middle School Science with Vernier" workshops will be held in June - the weeks beginning the 13th and the 27th June - more weeks(in July) will be added if necessary

We are coordinating 9 separate
Modeling workshops for high school science teachers - June/July 2011

in Chemistry, Physics and Biology - open to all Indiana High School Science Teachers
1-week Introductory Programs in Chemistry and in Physics
2-week Intermediate Programs in Physics and Chemistry
1-week Developmental Programs in Biology
Sponsored by the Indiana DOE, I-STEM, NISMEC and the Universities of Notre Dame, Marian and Southern Indiana
The $1000 REGISTRATION FEE is also being paid (for Indiana teachers) by courtesy of IN-DOE
Registration deadline: 30 May 2011: for the application form and further details see Modeling PD in 2011 (MS2007 docx-file) Or see Modeling PD in 2011 (MS2003 doc-file)
More detailed information about these workshops and especially the "Biology Modeling Development" workshops will be posted shortly.
The Arizona State University Modeling site and a wealth of Modeling information can be found at

Information Message - 18 May 2011 to attendees of the summer 2011 Modeling workshops
Listing - 18 May 2011 - of attendees of the summer 2011 Modeling workshops (sorted by workshop)

Our summer program for middle school students: Sensing Our World 2011 is a continuation of the JINA Sensing our World Program of the past few years; with a new sponsorship from the Siemens Foundation and from NISMEC: This year we focus on "Science through Time".
The program for 6th to 9th grade students, takes place the week of June 20-24, 2011 at the University of Notre Dame:
Details of registration, etc can be found at: Sensing Our World 2011

Reports and descriptions of our Middle School workshops in the summer of 2010 at Notre Dame. These include lesson plans developed by the participants for 5-8th grade science classes utilizing Vernier modules.

The Winter/Spring 2010 NISMEC Newsletter

At the Century Center - the Building Awareness Symposium - 27 October, 2009, 9 am to 5 pm
A symposium arranged by the Indiana Department of Education - guest speakers include Chris Murphy,1st Source Bank, and Tony Bennett, Indiana Superintendent of Schools

Science, mathematics and arts guided inquiry lesson plans, utilizing the Rickey sculptures exhibits in downtown South Bend and at the Notre Dame Snite Museum of Art.
July 13 - 17, 2009 Notre Dame Workshop on Introduction to Modeling in Physics and the Physical Sciences- photos...
June 22-26, 2009 Notre Dame Workshop 2B on Guided Inquiry and Vernier Labquest Probes- photos...
June 19, 2009 Ivy Tech Workshop on Middle School Mathematics - George Rickey Day- photos...
June 1-5, 2009 Notre Dame Workshop 1B on Guided Inquiry and Vernier Labquest Probes- photos...

The Fall 2009 NISMEC Newsletter
Other News and archived newsletters

For further information about our organization, or for suggestions for further inclusions in this web-page, contact Gordon Berry at or 574-631-4012