Pipiri Pānui / June Newsletter

Science Communicators Mike Stone and Jenny Rankine welcome your feedback and suggestions at


Profile of Palatasa Havea, MNZM 
Food technologist Professor Havea, now Pacific Dean at Massey University, led Fonterra’s world-beating research into changing whey protein, a very nutritious by-product of cheese making, so that it could be added to food products like yoghurt, energy drinks and protein bars. Yet this contributor to several scientific patents spent three years in fourth form. He is pictured here at Government House with his daughter Lueni. Download his publicly-available profile here.

NZ mammals - not only bats!

We know that New Zealand’s only current land mammals are native bats. But did you know that fossils of a small, mouse-like mammal have been found in the South Island? And that’s not all!  Download the NZASE research article here under Research resources; a members-only document.

Studying science investigations

Azra Moeed and Dayle Anderson studied science practicals in eight primary and secondary classrooms and a whare kura, enabling the science teachers involved to improve student learning from these activities - “hands-on, minds-on”. Download this NZASE article here under Pedagogy resources: a members-only document.
Using animals in science teaching
Just in time for science fair projects, download our new summary of whether you need ethics approval to use animals, with a handy flowchart. It was written by Sandy Jackson, approved by the Schools Animal Ethics Committee, and is available for all teachers.
Biology assessment webinar with NZQA
BEANZ members are invited to a zoom webinar with NZQA and Ministry of Education staff about support packages for assessment that has been impacted by COVID-19 restrictions. Panellists will also answer questions. Organised by BEANZ, the webinar is on Wednesday June 17 at 4pm. Register in advance and see the list of panellists. After registering, you will receive a confirmation email with details about how to join.
The New Zealand Garden Bird Survey is a great project for classroom groups. Students just need to count the birds they see in their backyards, local park, or school grounds for one hour between June 27 and July 5. This citizen science survey is organised by Manaaki Whenua Landcare Research. 
Watch the video or visit the survey website to download tally sheets, bird identification posters, and other resources. Select your site, your day, and your hour, record the highest number of each species seen or heard at one time, and submit your results to the survey website. 
Join the survey group on Facebook and see NZGB on Twitter and Instagram.
National survey on Lab Manager role
The Waikato region of PPTA is asking Heads of Science to respond to its national, 5-minute, online survey about the resourcing of the Lab Manager role.
The deadline is Wednesday June 17; if Heads of Science are unavailable, the lab manager or principal could complete it. Results will be reported in a conference paper to the PPTA conference.

Open access SET articles

NZCER has made a series of articles for these COVID-19 times available free from its journal SET: Research information for teachers. Topics include leadership, wellbeing, digital learning, resilience, games and playing, learning at home, culturally responsive pedagogy, and more.
BLAKE Young Leader Awards
These awards recognise young New Zealanders (Years 5-8) who lead positive change in their community towards a sustainable future for Aotearoa. Primary and intermediate schools nationally are asked to nominate one promising young Kiwi leader for a BLAKE Young Leader Award. Award presentations to each of those leaders will take place in September across the country.
Applications close on Friday 10 July. Nominate a student by logging into the site.
For more information email Courtney Davies or phone (09) 307 8875.

KUDOS Secondary Science Teacher Award

This award for educators in the Waikato and the Bay of Plenty recognises a science educator or secondary school science teacher who has significantly enhanced the understanding and appreciation of science in the wider community, including secondary school students. Decisions are based on science curriculum materials, science learning tools, or effective science pedagogy that have led to outcomes in the science community.
Nominate teachers by July 20, and the 2020 Kudos Awards Gala Dinner will be held on September 10 at the Claudelands Event Centre, Hamilton.
ANZCCART essay or rap competition
This competition aims to inspire secondary students to think critically about the role of animal research in society, and to engage with the challenges of animal use. Prizes are $100, $75 and $50; first, second and third prize entries will be published on the ANZCCART website.
The deadline is September 21 and winning essays will be announced on November 23. Essays must be original, of no more than 1,500 words, and need to respond to two questions. Students can also submit poetry, visual presentations with text, media clips, songs, rap or other musical presentations that answer those questions. See the competition website for details and email your entries.
New Participatory Science Platform (PSP) projects
Sixteen newly-funded community research projects from the Otago, Taranaki and South Auckland PSP rounds are starting in those regions, and more new projects from the South Auckland round will be announced from June 22. 
They include monitoring the digestion of buried cotton underpants to investigate soil health in North East Otago; impacts of climate change in the Queenstown Lakes district; monitoring sharks, kaka, red-billed gulls and long-tailed bats in Otago, and taonga species around marine reserves, invertebrates, frogs, and little blue penguins in Taranaki; as well as stream health, rat traps, vision science, wireless connectivity, a school orchard and sensory garden, and coastal litter. Read about these projects in Otago and Taranaki.
In Otago, PSP seed funding up to $2,000 is still available to develop ideas into research plans for projects in 2021. Visit their website or email Claire Concannon.

Peter Spratt, 1950-2007

Science teacher and educator Peter Spratt was a longtime Executive Officer of NZASE, and a hugely influential Education Officer at the Royal Society Te Apārangi. He initiated and contributed to many science education organisations, fairs, awards and fellowships, codes and conferences. Download former NZASE President Jenny Pollock's talk about his impact from the Science Technicians Association of NZ conference in October 2019.

Pipiri events relevant to Science

Science events are picking up with Level 1 - see the listing on our website.
Copyright © 2020 New Zealand Association of Science Educators, All rights reserved.

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