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Nano Bite: September 2011

Welcome to the September Nano Bite, the monthly e-newsletter for the Nanoscale Informal Science Education Network (NISE Net).

What's new?
The NISE Network is making available a limited number of small, one-time awards to support initiatives by NISE Net partners to engage their local audiences in nanoscale science, engineering, and technology topics. Requests can be made for an award of up to $3,000 to fund a small project or be put towards a larger endeavour.

New Resources
A number of new programs have been added to the NISE Net Catalog. Some highlights include these frameworks and guides for longer-length programs:
  • High School Nanotechnology Summer Camp Framework: This program outlines a weeklong summer camp for high school students. It is hands-on, application based, and gives a broad overview of nanoscience/nanotechnology as a field with many career opportunities.

  • Nanotechnology Summer Camp (Ages 8-10) Framework: In this program, campers learn about nanoscale science and engineering through hands-on activities. The framework can be delivered in 5 half-day sessions, but they do not have to be delivered consecutively.

  • After School Framework: Initially developed to establish a partnership with a local Boys and Girls Club (see Process Evaluation below), this four-week After School Framework is designed for children between the ages of 8 to 12. It highlights NISE Net activities, demos and programs and provides the children with a basic understanding of and appreciation for nanoscale science concepts.

  • Process Evaluation of the Diversity, Equity, and Access Working Group's Partnership Pilot Project - Boys & Girls Clubs Guide: In 2010, the NISE Network's Diversity, Equity, and Access working group undertook a partnership pilot project to identify strategies for engaging youth from underrepresented backgrounds in nanoscale informal science learning experiences. To carry out the project, three museums developed partnerships to deliver programming at Boys & Girls clubs in their communities. This report provides case studies of how the partnerships developed over time and provides lessons learned to help guide informal educators working with Boys & Girls Clubs or similar afterschool programs.

Our public website, just got a fancy new makeover! The companion site to is geared toward the general public, aiming to provide clear, thoughtful, and engaging answers, resources, and information. 

Trusty is still the comprehensive site for professional audiences (museums, informal science educators, and scientists) to access NISE Net news, general information, and resources from our catalog. With that focus in mind, we encourage partners to start directing their audiences to the more public-friendly and easy-to-remember audiences can also follow us on Facebook ( and Twitter (@whatisnano) for entertaining and engaging nano-related facts, links, and commentary.

Want to create a link to the professional website or the public website on your own site? Then check out the new web-logos and embeddable widgets. To create a widget, go to, select the configuration of the widget you would like, and copy and paste the generated embed code to your website.
What Else?

→ ASTC Conference
The NISE Network will be hosting a number of events at this year's 2011 ASTC Annual Conference and we would love to see you there. For full details about NISE Net events at ASTC go to: Some highlights include:
  • Pre-Conference Workshop: The NISE Network is sponsoring a pre-conference workshop on Friday, October 14th 8am-4pm, entitled "Really Great Programming: Best Practices in Development, Delivery, and Evaluation". There is a $25 registration fee, and you can sign up when you register for the conference.
  • Baltimore Welcomes You! Reception - Happy Hour: NISE Net partners are invited to gather together on Friday, October 14th from 5-7pm at the Metropolitan Coffeehouse & Wine Bar.
  • Exhibit Hall - Booth #801: The NISE Net will have a booth in the exhibit hall featuring a prototype of the Nano mini-exhibition. Stop by for a visit Saturday the 15th or Sunday the 16th from 10:30am-5:00pm.
  • Partner Breakfast: The NISE Net is hosting a breakfast for staff from institutions that have been involved in our work. Please join us on Monday, October 17th from 7:45-8:45am at the Sheraton Baltimore City Center, Pratt Room to hear about our plans for the coming year, learn about new educational products and opportunities to get involved, and talk with other NISE Net partners from across the country. This is a great chance for staff from your institution who have not been as involved in the Network to learn more about what we do. Please RSVP here.
  • Conference Sessions: Go to for a list of conference sessions featuring NISE Net work and lessons learned.

 O Wow Moments with Mr. O
Getting a Sense of Smell: In this episode of O Wow Moments with Mr. O from the Children's Museum of Houston, participants play a little game called "Guess that Smell!" where they explore how their sense of smell works. It turns out that people are nanosensors - their noses actually sense molecules - things close to a billionth of a meter in size!

 Compressed - Ferrofluid and Bubbles
Kim Pimmel created this video, combining everyday soap bubbles with ferrofluid liquid to create an eerie tale, using macro lenses and time lapse techniques. Black ferrofluid and dye race through bubble structures, drawn through by the forces of capillary action and magnetism.

Partner Highlight
In 2008, Dennis Clougherty, a physics professor at the University of Vermont, called up nearby ECHO Lake Aquarium and Science Center to see if they would be interested in working together to host a NanoDays event. In the three years since, ECHO and UVM have developed an ongoing partnership. Click Here to read more about the partnership between them.

Nano in the News

Nano Techno Music Video

In a creative endeavour greatly surpassing the constraints of a Nano Haiku, a few members of the Explainer TV crew at the New York Hall of Science fell in love with nano and created their own song and music video about nano!

Nano Techno was also featured on as The Best Rap Song About Nanotech You'll Hear All Day.

Questions? Haikus? Contributions to the newsletter? Contact Eli Bossin at [email protected]

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