Smithsonian Voices

From the Smithsonian Museums

Katya Vines, PhD

Katya Vines, PhD, is the Manager of Curriculum Development at the Smithsonian Science Education Center (SSEC). Katya is responsible for writing new science publications for elementary and middle school students. Her journey to SSEC has spanned three continents and involved teaching 5 year olds up to undergraduates! After completing a BSc and PhD in Chemistry at the University of Liverpool, Katya took up research positions at the University of Barcelona and Oxford. While in Oxford she tutored undergraduates studying chemistry. After a brief period teaching middle school science she joined the academic publisher John Wiley and Sons as an Acquisitions Editor for Analytical Chemistry. She then moved into educational publishing, where she has been for 14 years with a short break in the middle to teach elementary science in Kenya. Prior to joining the SSEC in 2014, Katya worked at the International Baccalaureate, where she was responsible for developing inquiry-based resources for K-12 teachers and students. In her spare time Katya enjoys running (slowly), playing Mahjong, and making cocktails.

How To Design a Zoo Exhibit In Four Steps

Imagine you are asked to design a zoo exhibit for your local zoo. I know, this is a stretch but "bear" with me! Let’s break it down into the steps you might take if this were an engineering project. As with any engineering problem, the first thing you need to know are the requirements. Requirements are made up of criteria and constraints.