Winning entries of the April 2015 “Teaching Tools Proposal” competition

Earlier this year we announced a competition for proposals for the “Teaching Tools in Plant Biology” series of educational articles published by The Plant Cell. We had many excellent proposals submitted from which we selected three for further development. Sound intriguing? The competition has additional submission deadlines of August 31 and December 31 2015, and … Read more

Teaching Tools tackles Micronutrients and Metals

The latest Teaching Tool in Plant Biology explores the theme of “Micronutrients and Metals”. By definition, the micronutrients (Fe, Cu, Zn, Mn, Mo, Ni, B, Si and Cl) are essential for plant life, and most are also essential for human and other animal life. About a quarter of cellular proteins are metalloproteins that associate tightly … Read more

Nurturing the Next Generation of Innovators in Plant Biology

Practical Learning for Bright Young Minds: The Master Plant Science Team (MPST) program is a mentoring program under the aegis of PlantingScience sponsored by National Science Foundation and supported by several professional societies, including ASPB. The goal for MPST is to facilitate more robust learning experiences among middle and high school students in United States. … Read more

WILD Fascination of Plants

Our day-to-day life here at Western Institute for Leadership Development (WILD) is infused with the study and appreciation of plants. Several school-wide, year-round projects reflect our belief that the study of botany, ecology, and the environment is fundamental to an education that provides young people with the knowledge and skills needed to become leaders and changemakers … Read more

Learn Plant Biology – It’s All in the Touch

Multi-sensory Explorations Imagine picking your favorite fruits and vegetables at the market – blindfolded! What about selecting one Golden Delicious apple from a truckload of 40,000 Red Delicious apples – again blindfolded! Might make you think how important one of our senses, sight, is to our everyday activities. That’s why lessons and activities in the … Read more

Experimental Plant Sciences (EPS): Seven universities, one graduate school

By Hanna Rovenich and Setareh Mohammadin of the EPS PhD council. Benefits of a Netherlands-wide multi-university graduate school The interuniversity Graduate School ‘Experimental Plant Sciences‘ (EPS) trains over 300 PhD candidates at any given time across seven different universities including Wageningen University, Radboud University Nijmegen, the Free University of Amsterdam, the University of Amsterdam, Leiden … Read more

Feeding the Planet Summit 2015 #FoodFWD

Hosted by Planet Forward*, the 2015 Feeding the Planet Summit (April 23-24) offered cross-curricular options to help foster sustainable solutions for feeding 9.6 billion by 2050. Meeting Infographics feature key input and interactions from all participants. Topics include how research science, diversity breakthroughs, cross-cutting innovation, storytelling, and even parody (e.g. I’m Farming & I Grow … Read more

SURF 2015: the next wave of undergraduate research

The 2015 Summer Undergraduate Research Fellowship program results are in! Congratulations  to all the students listed below. Also, kudos and thanks to each student’s dedicated SURF mentor. SURF AWARD RECIPIENTS Doctoral-Granting Institutions Kevin Bird, University of Missouri   Allison Butt, Worcester Polytechnic Institute   Hailey Cambra, Worcester Polytechnic Institute   Maxwell Choka, Queen’s University   … Read more

ROOTOPOWER School Workshop: ‘Vegetables do not grow in the fridge’

On March 26th CEBAS-CSIC, the coordinating partner of the European Project ROOTOPOWER, organized an educational workshop in the Primary School ‘Maristas’, Murcia (Spain). With this activity, young students were able to put themselves in the shoes a scientist and learn how science can help to improve our lives. ROOTOPOWER (www.rootopower.eu), a Knowledge Based Bio-Economy project … Read more

An Egg-speriment: volunteering with ASPB at the White House Easter Egg Roll

I did an experiment this week. In and of itself, this is nothing unique for a graduate student. My experiment was brief, has not been replicated, and is based on a small sample size. But the results are too good to not share. I started by asking my lab mates, “Who wants to plant some … Read more

Advice from a Postdoc: Take Advantage of Mentoring Opportunities with the PlantingScience Online Program

One aspect of my research training and career development that I am very passionate about is the opportunity to mentor students. As such, I am always looking for opportunities to get involved with students at earlier stages in their education. So when I discovered PlantingScience.org, an online mentoring resource which was advertised on the American … Read more

Digital teaching tools and global learning communities (F1000Research article)

We’ve now been publishing “Teaching Tools in Plant Biology” for five years, and it’s clear that this feature of The Plant Cell is being used across the world; the articles are regularly accessed from sites in more than 100 countries (the figure shows 2014 country distribution). We recently ran a survey to find out how … Read more

Share your enthusiasm! Teaching Tools submission competition

For years we’ve been asking people how they define a great teacher. One trait that repeatedly comes up is “enthusiasm.” Nobody enthuses about plants better than plant scientists, so we’re offering you a chance to “share your enthusiasm”. Have you got a passion for plant science? Do you have a favorite paper, experiment, topic, or … Read more

Fascination of Plants Day: Undergraduate Involvement at University of Maryland

Students in the University of Maryland-Baltimore Campus (UMBC) Plant Molecular Biology course taught by Prof. Hua Lu can earn extra-point opportunities for the course this semester by participating in the Fascination of Plants Day on May 18th. The class will conduct events on the UMBC campus, such as making a poster to show how great plants … Read more

Family Science Festival – ASPB spreads FoPD inspiration at AAAS Family Science Days in San Jose, CA

On February 14-15, visitors to the ASPB interactive exhibit on plant science will use plants to explore genetics and DNA. Kids of all ages also will play games that underscore how critical plants are to our planet and our daily lives. With plant-y interests primed, booth visitors will be invited to share Fascination of Plants … Read more

From SURF to Turf

Summer Undergraduate Research Fellowship launches a research career spanning from aquatic algae to organic agriculture Fledgling Research As an undergraduate majoring in Biology at the University of Maryland, I was excited to explore the research opportunities that my school had to offer. My grandfather had taught as a plant physiology professor at Loyola University Maryland, … Read more

From chemistry to current events: The six macronutrients that make up a plant (N, P, K, Mg, S & Ca)

In the second of three Teaching Tools in Plant Biology spanning the topic of Plant Nutrition, we examine how macronutrients affect plant growth. Specifically, we look at (1) the availability of nutrients in the soil along with the effects of soil microbes and physical properties on their availability; (2) nutrient uptake from the external environment, … Read more

Participatory Art in the Veggie Garden

1st Pennsylvania plan shared for Fascination of Plants Day 2015! WoMo Artists, Maryann Worrell (Arcadia University) & Doug Mott will build a participatory installation called Crisis Farm: Seed to Table. With help from the Street Road Artists Space, this portable garden & gallery exhibition aim to cultivate community-wide fascination with essential elements of our natural … Read more