Sample records for k-12 science classrooms

  1. Problem-Based Learning in the Life Science Classroom, K-12 (United States)

    McConnell, Tom; Parker, Joyce; Eberhardt, Janet


    "Problem-Based Learning in the Life Science Classroom, K-12" offers a great new way to ignite your creativity. Authors Tom McConnell, Joyce Parker, and Janet Eberhardt show you how to engage students with scenarios that represent real-world science in all its messy, thought-provoking glory. The scenarios prompt K-12 learners to immerse…

  2. Scientists in the Classroom Mentor Model Program - Bringing real time science into the K - 12 classroom (United States)

    Worssam, J. B.


    Field research finally within classroom walls, data driven, hands on with students using a series of electronic projects to show evidence of scientific mentor collaboration. You do not want to miss this session in which I will be sharing the steps to develop an interactive mentor program between scientists in the field and students in the classroom. Using next generation science standards and common core language skills you will be able to blend scientific exploration with scientific writing and communication skills. Learn how to make connections in your own community with STEM businesses, agencies and organizations. Learn how to connect with scientists across the globe to make your classroom instruction interactive and live for all students. Scientists, you too will want to participate, see how you can reach out and be a part of the K-12 educational system with students learning about YOUR science, a great component for NSF grants! "Scientists in the Classroom," a model program for all, bringing real time science, data and knowledge into the classroom.

  3. Science Communication versus Science Education: The Graduate Student Scientist as a K-12 Classroom Resource (United States)

    Strauss, Jeff; Shope, Richard E., III; Terebey, Susan


    Science literacy is a major goal of science educational reform (NRC, 1996; AAAS, 1998; NCLB Act, 2001). Some believe that teaching science only requires pedagogical content knowledge (PCK). Others believe doing science requires knowledge of the methodologies of scientific inquiry (NRC, 1996). With these two mindsets, the challenge for science educators is to create models that bring the two together. The common ground between those who teach science and those who do science is science communication, an interactive process that galvanizes dialogue among scientists, teachers, and learners in a rich ambience of mutual respect and a common, inclusive language of discourse . The dialogue between science and non-science is reflected in the polarization that separates those who do science and those who teach science, especially as it plays out everyday in the science classroom. You may be thinking, why is this important? It is vital because, although not all science learners become scientists, all K-12 students are expected to acquire science literacy, especially with the implementation of the No Child Left Behind Act of 2001 (NCLB). Students are expected to acquire the ability to follow the discourse of science as well as connect the world of science to the context of their everyday life if they plan on moving to the next grade level, and in some states, to graduate from high school. This paper posits that science communication is highly effective in providing the missing link for K-12 students cognition in science and their attainment of science literacy. This paper will focus on the "Science For Our Schools" (SFOS) model implemented at California State Univetsity, Los Angeles (CSULA) as a project of the National Science Foundation s GK-12 program, (NSF 2001) which has been a huge success in bridging the gap between those who "know" science and those who "teach" science. The SFOS model makes clear the distinctions that identify science, science communication, science

  4. Problem-Based Learning in the Physical Science Classroom, K-12 (United States)

    McConnell, Tom J.; Parker, Joyce; Eberhardt, Janet


    "Problem-Based Learning in the Physical Science Classroom, K-12" will help your students truly understand concepts such as motion, energy, and magnetism in true-to-life contexts. The book offers a comprehensive description of why, how, and when to implement problem-based learning (PBL) in your curriculum. Its 14 developmentally…

  5. Climate Change Education Today in K-12: What's Happening in the Earth and Space Science Classroom? (United States)

    Holzer, M. A.; National Earth Science Teachers Association


    Climate change is a highly interdisciplinary topic, involving not only multiple fields of science, but also social science and the humanities. There are many aspects of climate change science that make it particularly well-suited for exploration in the K-12 setting, including opportunities to explore the unifying processes of science such as complex systems, models, observations, change and evolution. Furthermore, this field of science offers the opportunity to observe the nature of science in action - including how scientists develop and improve their understanding through research and debate. Finally, climate change is inherently highly relevant to students - indeed, students today will need to deal with the consequences of the climate change. The science of climate change is clearly present in current science education standards, both at the National level as well as in the majority of states. Nonetheless, a significant number of teachers across the country report difficulties addressing climate change in the classroom. The National Earth Science Teachers Association has conducted several surveys of Earth and space science educators across the country over the past several years on a number of issues, including their needs and concerns, including their experience of external influences on what they teach. While the number of teachers that report external pressures to not teach climate change science are in the minority (and less than the pressure to not teach evolution and related topics), our results suggest that this pressure against climate change science in the K-12 classroom has grown over the past several years. Some teachers report being threatened by parents, being encouraged by administrators to not teach the subject, and a belief that the "two sides" of climate change should be taught. Survey results indicate that teachers in religious or politically-conservative districts are more likely to report difficulties in teaching about climate change than in

  6. Scientific Participation at the Poles: K-12 Teachers in Polar Science for Careers and Classrooms (United States)

    Crowley, S.; Warburton, J.


    PolarTREC (Teachers and Researchers Exploring and Collaborating) is a National Science Foundation (NSF) funded program in which K-12 teachers participate in hands-on field research experiences in the polar regions. PolarTREC highlights the importance of involving teachers in scientific research in regards to their careers as educators and their ability to engage students in the direct experience of science. To date, PolarTREC has placed over 90 teachers with research teams in the Arctic and Antarctic. Published results of our program evaluation quantify the effect of the field experience on the teachers' use of the real scientific process in the classroom, the improvement in science content taught in classrooms, and the use of non-fiction texts (real data and science papers) as primary learning tools for students. Teachers and students both report an increase of STEM literacy in the classroom content, confidence in science education, as well as a markedly broadened outlook of science as essential to their future. Research conducted with science teams affirms that they are achieving broader impacts when PolarTREC teachers are involved in their expeditions. Additionally, they reported that these teachers making vital contributions to the success of the scientific project.

  7. Assessment Strategies for Implementing Ngss in K12 Earth System Science Classrooms (United States)

    McAuliffe, C.


    Several science education researchers have led assessment efforts that provide strategies particularly useful for evaluating the threedimensional learning that is central to NGSS (DeBarger, A. H., Penuel, W. R., Harris, C. J., Kennedy, C. K., 2016; Knight, A. M. & McNeill, K. L., 2015; McNeill, K. L., KatshSinger, R. & Pelletier, P., 2015; McNeill K.L.,, 2015; McNeill, K.L., & Krajcik, J.S., 2011; Penuel, W., 2016). One of the basic premises of these researchers is that, "Assessment is a practice of argument from evidence based on what students say, do, and write" and that "the classroom is the richest place to gather evidence of what students know (Penuel, W., 2016). The implementation of the NGSS in Earth System Science provides a unique opportunity for geoscience education researchers to study student learning and contribute to the development of this research as well as for geoscience educators to apply these approaches and strategies in their own work with K12 inservice and preservice educators. DeBarger, A. H., Penuel, W. R., Harris, C. J., Kennedy, C. K. (2016). Building an Assessment Argument to Design and Use Next Generation Science Assessments in Efficacy Studies of Curriculum Interventions. American†Journal†of†Evaluation†37(2) 174192Æ Knight, A. M. & McNeill, K. L. (2015). Comparing students' individual written and collaborative oral socioscientific arguments. International Journal of Environmental and Science Education.10(5), 23647. McNeill, K. L., KatshSinger, R. & Pelletier, P. (2015). Assessing science practices-Moving your class along a continuum. Science Scope. McNeill, K.L., & Krajcik, J.S. (2011). Supporting Grade 5-8 Students in Constructing Explanations in Science: The Claim, Evidence, and Reasoning Framework for Talk and Writing. Upper Saddle River, New Jersey: Pearson. Penuel, W. (2016). Classroom Assessment Strategies for NGSS Earth and Space Sciences. Implementing†the†NGSS†Webinar†Series, February 11, 2016.

  8. K--12 science educator perception of instructing students with learning disabilities in the regular classroom (United States)

    Holliday-Cashwell, Janet Rose


    Selected K--12 public school science educators in 14 eastern North Carolina counties were surveyed to examine their perceptions of their undergraduate preparation programs with regard to instructing students with learning disabilities in the regular classroom. A quantitative study, this research examined science educator preparedness in instructing students with learning disabilities by evaluating educator perception in regard to mainstrearned and inclusive educational settings. Specifically, two null hypotheses were tested. Null hypothesis I stated a significant difference does not exist between selected North Carolina K--12 science educators' perceptions of their undergraduate teacher education preparation programs and their perceptions of their abilities to instruct students needing accommodations on behalf of their learning disabilities in mainstrearned or inclusive settings. Participants' responses to perception as well as value statements regarding opinions, adaptations, and undergraduate training with respect to mainstreaming and inclusion were evaluated through t-test analyses of 22 Likert-scale items. Null hypothesis 1 was not accepted because a statistically significant difference did exist between the educators' perceptions of their undergraduate training and their perceived abilities to instruct students with learning disabilities in mainstreamed or inclusive settings. Null hypothesis 2 stated a significant difference does not exist between selected North Carolina K--12 science educators' attained educational level; grade level currently taught, supervised or chaired; and years of experience in teaching science, supervising science education, and/or chairing science departments in selected North Carolina public schools and their opinions of their undergraduate teacher education program with regard to instructing students with learning disabilities in mainstreamed or inclusive educational settings. Null hypothesis 2 was evaluated through an analysis of

  9. Tech-Savvy Science Education? Understanding Teacher Pedagogical Practices for Integrating Technology in K-12 Classrooms (United States)

    Hechter, Richard; Vermette, Laurie Anne


    This paper examines the technology integration practices of Manitoban K-12 inservice science educators based on the Technological, Pedagogical, and Content knowledge (TPACK) framework. Science teachers (n = 433) completed a 10-item online survey regarding pedagogical beliefs about technology integration, types of technology used, and how often…

  10. Technology Integration in K-12 Science Classrooms: An Analysis of Barriers and Implications (United States)

    Hechter, Richard P.; Vermette, Laurie Anne


    This paper examines the barriers to technology integration for Manitoban K-12 inservice science educators (n = 430) based on a 10-item online survey; results are analyzed according to teaching stream using the Technology, Pedagogy, and Content Knowledge (TPACK) framework. Quantitative descriptive statistics indicated that the leading barriers…

  11. Problem-Based Learning in the Earth and Space Science Classroom, K-12 (United States)

    McConnell, Tom J.; Parker, Joyce; Eberhardt, Janet


    If you've ever asked yourself whether problem-based learning (PBL) can bring new life to both your teaching and your students' learning, here's your answer: Yes. This all-in-one guide will help you engage your students in scenarios that represent real-world science in all its messy, thought-provoking glory. The scenarios will prompt K-12 students…

  12. The Ocean Acidification Curriculum Collection - sharing ocean science resources for k-12 classrooms (United States)

    Williams, P.


    The fish and shellfish provided by ecosystems that abound in the waters of Puget Sound have sustained the Suquamish Tribe for millennia. However, years of development, pollution and over-harvest have reduced some fish and shellfish populations to just a fraction of their former abundance. Now, ocean acidification (OA) and climate change pose additional threats to these essential natural resources. Ocean acidification can't be stopped; however, many of the other human-caused stressors to ocean health can. If human behaviors that harm ocean health can be modified to reduce impacts, fish populations and ecosystems could become more resilient to the changing ocean conditions. School is arguably the best place to convey the ideas and awareness needed for people to adopt new behaviors. Students are open to new ideas and they influence their peers and parents. In addition, they are captive audiences in classrooms for many years.The Suquamish Tribe is helping to foster new generations of ocean stewards by creating an online searchable database ( This site is designed to facilitate finding, reviewing and sharing free educational materials on OA. At the same time, the Next Generation Science Standards (NGSS) were released providing a great opportunity to get new materials into classrooms. OA provides highly appropriate context to teach many of the ideas in the new standards making it attractive to teachers looking for interesting and relevant materials. In this presentation, we will demonstrate how teachers can use the site as a place to find and share materials on OA. We will also present a framework developed by teachers for understanding OA, its impacts, and the many ways students can help ease the impacts on ocean ecosystems. We will provide examples of how OA can be used as context and content for the NGSS and finally, we will discuss the failures and successes on our journey to get relevant materials into the classroom.

  13. Integrating local environmental research into K-12 science classrooms and the value of graduate student-educator partnerships (United States)

    Ward, N. D.; Petrik-Finley, R.


    Collaboration between researchers and K-12 educators enables an invaluable exchange of teaching philosophies and educational tools. Programs that partner graduate students with K-12 educators serve the dual purpose of training future educators and providing K-12 students with unique opportunities and perspectives. The benefits of this type of partnership include providing students with enhanced educational experiences and positive student-mentor relationships, training STEM graduate students in effective teaching strategies, and providing teachers with a firsthand resource for scientific information and novel educational materials. Many high school students have had little exposure to science beyond the classroom. Frequent interactions with "real-life" scientists can help make science more approachable and is an effective strategy for promoting science as a career. Here I describe my experiences and several lessons designed as a NSK GK-12 fellow. For example, a month-long unit on biogeochemical principles was framed as a crime scene investigation of a fish kill event in Hood Canal, Washington, in which students were given additional pieces of evidence to solve the mystery as they satisfied checkpoints in their understanding of key concepts. The evidence pieces included scientific plots, maps, datasets, and laboratory exercises. A clear benefit of this investigation-style unit is that students were able to learn the material at their individual pace. This structure allowed for a streamlined integration of differentiated materials such as simplified background readings or visual learning aids for struggling students or more detailed news articles and primary literature for more advanced students. Although the NSF GK-12 program has been archived, educators and researchers should pursue new partnerships, leveraging local and state-level STEM outreach programs with the goal of increasing national exposure of the societal benefits of such synergistic activities.

  14. Integrating iPad Technology in Earth Science K-12 Outreach Courses: Field and Classroom Applications (United States)

    Wallace, Davin J.; Witus, Alexandra E.


    Incorporating technology into courses is becoming a common practice in universities. However, in the geosciences, it is difficult to find technology that can easily be transferred between classroom- and field-based settings. The iPad is ideally suited to bridge this gap. Here, we fully integrate the iPad as an educational tool into two…

  15. The GLOBE Carbon Project: Integrating the Science of Carbon Cycling and Climate Change into K-12 Classrooms. (United States)

    Ollinger, S. V.; Silverberg, S.; Albrechtova, J.; Freuder, R.; Gengarelly, L.; Martin, M.; Randolph, G.; Schloss, A.


    The global carbon cycle is a key regulator of the Earth's climate and is central to the normal function of ecological systems. Because rising atmospheric CO2 is the principal cause of climate change, understanding how ecosystems cycle and store carbon has become an extremely important issue. In recent years, the growing importance of the carbon cycle has brought it to the forefront of both science and environmental policy. The need for better scientific understanding has led to establishment of numerous research programs, such as the North American Carbon Program (NACP), which seeks to understand controls on carbon cycling under present and future conditions. Parallel efforts are greatly needed to integrate state-of-the-art science on the carbon cycle and its importance to climate with education and outreach efforts that help prepare society to make sound decisions on energy use, carbon management and climate change adaptation. Here, we present a new effort that joins carbon cycle scientists with the International GLOBE Education program to develop carbon cycle activities for K-12 classrooms. The GLOBE Carbon Cycle project is focused on bringing cutting edge research and research techniques in the field of terrestrial ecosystem carbon cycling into the classroom. Students will collect data about their school field site through existing protocols of phenology, land cover and soils as well as new protocols focused on leaf traits, and ecosystem growth and change. They will also participate in classroom activities to understand carbon cycling in terrestrial ecosystems, these will include plant- a-plant experiments, hands-on demonstrations of various concepts, and analysis of collected data. In addition to the traditional GLOBE experience, students will have the opportunity to integrate their data with emerging and expanding technologies including global and local carbon cycle models and remote sensing toolkits. This program design will allow students to explore research

  16. K-12 STEM Educators and the Inclusive Classroom


    Li, Songze


    The United States public schools promote inclusion and educational equity among diverse student populations. Considerable and growing numbers of students with categorical disabilities and Limited English Proficiency (LEP) are enrolled in regular classrooms. The systemic barriers in learning that they have could impact teacher perceptions and decisions about teaching practices as well as the teaching profession. These students have challenged K-12 science, technology, engineering, and mathemat...

  17. Increasing ocean sciences in K and 1st grade classrooms through ocean sciences curriculum aligned to A Framework for K-12 Science Education, and implementation support. (United States)

    Pedemonte, S.; Weiss, E. L.


    Ocean and climate sciences are rarely introduced at the early elementary levels. Reasons for this vary, but include little direct attention at the national and state levels; lack of quality instructional materials; and, lack of teacher content knowledge. Recent recommendations by the National Research Council, "revise the Earth and Space sciences core ideas and grade band endpoints to include more attention to the ocean whenever possible" (NRC, 2012, p. 336) adopted in the Next Generation Science Standards (NGSS), may increase the call for ocean and climate sciences to be addressed. In response to these recommendations' and the recognition that an understanding of some of the Disciplinary Core Ideas (DCIs) would be incomplete without an understanding of processes or phenomena unique to the ocean and ocean organisms; the ocean Literacy community have created documents that show the alignment of NGSS with the Ocean Literacy Principles and Fundamental Concepts (Ocean Literacy, 2013) as well as the Ocean Literacy Scope and Sequence for Grades K-12 (Ocean Literacy, 2010), providing a solid argument for how and to what degree ocean sciences should be part of the curriculum. However, the percentage of science education curricula focused on the ocean remains very low. This session will describe a new project, that draws on the expertise of curriculum developers, ocean literacy advocates, and researchers to meet the challenges of aligning ocean sciences curriculum to NGSS, and supporting its implementation. The desired outcomes of the proposed project are to provide a rigorous standards aligned curricula that addresses all of the Life Sciences, and some Earth and Space Sciences and Engineering Design Core Ideas for Grades K and 1; and provides teachers with the support they need to understand the content and begin implementation. The process and lessons learned will be shared.

  18. What Is (Or Should Be) Scientific Evidence Use in K-12 Classrooms? (United States)

    McNeill, Katherine L.; Berland, Leema


    Research and reform efforts frequently identify evidence as an essential component of science classroom instruction to actively engage students in science practices. Despite this agreement on the primacy of evidence, there is a lack of consensus around what counts as "evidence" in k-12 classrooms (e.g., ages 5-18): scholarship and…

  19. University of Maine’s Follow a Researcher™ Program: Using Graduate Student Field Research as a Framework to Incorporate Next Generation Science Standards (NGSS) Practices in the K-12 Classroom


    Kaluzienski, Lynn; Hamley, Catherine; Rodda, Charles; Kranich, Gregory; Wilson, Laura


    Follow a Researcher™ is an innovative University of Maine 4-H program that connects youth with a graduate student who is conducting field research in a remote location. Using technology and social media, K-12 classrooms have an unprecedented opportunity to get to know a student researcher. Youth engage in the research process and witness NGSS Science and Engineering Practices in action.

  20. Cool Science Explains a Warming World: Using Ice Core Science to Bridge the Gap Between Researchers and the K-12 Classroom (United States)

    Huffman, L. T.


    Changing ice has urgent implications for people around the world. The Ice Drilling Program Office (IDPO) provides scientific leadership and oversight of ice coring and drilling activities funded by the US National Science Foundation and also has goals to enhance education and communication of current research information. In a time when misinformation is rampant and climate change science is suspect, it is essential that students receive accurate scientific information and engage in learning activities that model complex ideas through engaging and age appropriate ways, while also learning to validate and recognize reliable sources. The IDPO Education and Outreach (EO) office works to create resources, activities and professional development that bridge the gap between ice core science research and educators and their students. Ice core science is on the cutting edge of new discoveries about climate change and understanding better the past to predict the future. Hands-on inquiry activities based on ice core data allow teachers to lead their students to new discoveries about climate secrets hidden deep in the ice. Capitalizing on the inherent interest in the extremes of the Polar Regions, IDPO materials engage students in activities aligned with NGSS standards. Ice drilling technologies make an ideal platform for intertwining engineering concepts and practices with science research to meet the SEP (Science and Engineering Practices) in the NGSS. This session will highlight how the IDPO EO office has built a community of ice core scientists willing to take part in education and outreach projects and events and share some of the resources available to K-12 educators. We will highlight some of the successes and lessons learned as we continually evolve our work toward more effective science education and communication highlighting ice core and climate change science.

  1. Involving Practicing Scientists in K-12 Science Teacher Professional Development (United States)

    Bertram, K. B.


    The Science Teacher Education Program (STEP) offered a unique framework for creating professional development courses focused on Arctic research from 2006-2009. Under the STEP framework, science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM) training was delivered by teams of practicing Arctic researchers in partnership with master teachers with 20+ years experience teaching STEM content in K-12 classrooms. Courses based on the framework were offered to educators across Alaska. STEP offered in-person summer-intensive institutes and follow-on audio-conferenced field-test courses during the academic year, supplemented by online scientist mentorship for teachers. During STEP courses, teams of scientists offered in-depth STEM content instruction at the graduate level for teachers of all grade levels. STEP graduate-level training culminated in the translation of information and data learned from Arctic scientists into standard-aligned lessons designed for immediate use in K-12 classrooms. This presentation will focus on research that explored the question: To what degree was scientist involvement beneficial to teacher training and to what degree was STEP scientist involvement beneficial to scientist instructors? Data sources reveal consistently high levels of ongoing (4 year) scientist and teacher participation; high STEM content learning outcomes for teachers; high STEM content learning outcomes for students; high ratings of STEP courses by scientists and teachers; and a discussion of the reasons scientists indicate they benefited from STEP involvement. Analyses of open-ended comments by teachers and scientists support and clarify these findings. A grounded theory approach was used to analyze teacher and scientist qualitative feedback. Comments were coded and patterns analyzed in three databases. The vast majority of teacher open-ended comments indicate that STEP involvement improved K-12 STEM classroom instruction, and the vast majority of scientist open-ended comments

  2. Designing Successful Science Contests for K-12 (United States)

    Schwerin, T.; Colleton, N.


    Contests can engage, motivate, instruct and inspire students of all grade levels and interests. What are the ingredients necessary for a successful science contest? The Institute for Global Environmental Strategies (IGES) has recommendations for designing science-based competitions that are both fun and educational for for elementary and secondary students. These recommendations were developed as a result of IGES' experience gained through two annual student competitions that focus on Earth science topics: An annual art contest, for grades 2-4, challenges U.S. students to explore a specific Earth science topic. For example, past themes have included Polar Explorations: Going to Extremes (2006); Connect-4: Air, Land, Water, and Life (2005); and Picture Me: What Kind of Earth Explorer Would I Be? (2004). The contest supports national science education standards for grades K-4, and includes suggested classroom activities, books, and movies. The Thacher Scholarship was founded in 2000 by IGES in honor of the late Peter S. Thacher, a former IGES board member and leader in promoting the use of satellite remote sensing. The $4,000 scholarship is awarded to exceptional high school students displaying the best use of satellite remote sensing in understanding our changing planet.

  3. The Engaged Microbiologist: Bringing the Microbiological Sciences to the K-12 Community. (United States)

    Westenberg, David J


    Exposing K-12 students to cutting edge science that impacts their daily lives can bring classroom lessons to life. Citizen-science projects are an excellent way to bring high-level science to the classroom and help satisfy one of the cornerstone concepts of the Next Generation Science Standards (NGSS), "engaging in practices that scientists and engineers actually use." This can be a daunting task for teachers who may lack the background or resources to integrate these projects into the classroom. This is where scientific societies such as the American Society for Microbiology (ASM) can play a critical role. ASM encourages its members to engage with the K-12 community by providing networking opportunities and resources for ASM members and K-12 teachers to work together to bring microbiology into the classroom. Journal of Microbiology & Biology Education.

  4. Overcoming Constraints of Building Successful Partnerships Incorporating STEM Research Into K-12 Classrooms (United States)

    Radencic, S.; McNeal, K. S.; Pierce, D.; Hare, D.


    The Initiating New Science Partnerships in Rural Education (INSPIRE) program at Mississippi State University (MSU), funded by the NSF Graduate STEM Fellows in K-12 Education (GK12) program, focuses on the advancement of Earth and Space science education in K-12 classrooms. INSPIRE is currently in its second year of partnering ten graduate students from the STEM fields of Geosciences, Engineering and Chemistry at MSU with five teachers from local, rural school districts. The five year project serves to increase inquiry and technology experiences in science and math while enhancing graduate student's communication skills as they create interactive lessons linking their STEM research focus to the state and national standards covered in the classrooms. Each graduate student is responsible for the development of two lessons each month of the school year that are then published on the INSPIRE project webpage,, where they are a free resource for any K-12 classroom teacher seeking innovative activities for their classrooms. Many of the participating teachers and graduate students share activities developed with non-participating teachers, expanding INSPIRE's outreach throughout the local community. Numerous challenges were met during the formation of the program as well as throughout the first year in which the project management team worked together to find solutions ensuring that INSPIRE maintained successful partnerships for all involved. Proposed solutions of the following key components were identified by INSPIRE through the development, implementation, and continuous evaluation (internal and external) of the first year of the program as areas that can pose challenges to the construction of strong relationships between STEM research and K-12 classrooms: initializing the partnerships with the K-12 classrooms and STEM graduate fields at the university; maintaining strong partnerships; providing appropriate training and support; developing sound

  5. K-12 Teacher Perceptions Regarding the Flipped Classroom Model for Teaching and Learning (United States)

    Gough, Evan; DeJong, David; Grundmeyer, Trent; Baron, Mark


    A great deal of evidence can be cited from higher education literature on the effectiveness of the flipped classroom; however, very little research was discovered on the flipped classroom at the K-12 level. This study examined K-12 teachers' perceptions regarding the flipped classroom and differences in teachers' perceptions based on grade level…

  6. Nihithewak Ithiniwak, Nihithewatisiwin and science education: An exploratory narrative study examining Indigenous-based science education in K--12 classrooms from the perspectives of teachers in Woodlands Cree community contexts (United States)

    Michell, Herman Jeremiah

    This study was guided by the following research questions: What do the stories of teachers in Nihithewak (Woodlands Cree) school contexts reveal about their experiences and tendencies towards cultural and linguistic-based pedagogical practices and actions in K-12 classrooms? How did these teachers come to teach this way? How do their beliefs and values from their experiences in science education and cultural heritage influence their teaching? Why do these teachers do what they do in their science classroom and instructional practices? The research explores Indigenous-based science education from the perspectives and experiences of science teachers in Nihithewak school contexts. Narrative methodology (Clandinin & Connelly, 2000) was used as a basis for collecting and analyzing data emerging from the research process. The results included thematic portraits and stories of science teaching that is connected to Nihithewak and Nihithewatisiwin (Woodlands Cree Way of Life). Major data sources included conversational interviews, out-of-class observations and occasional in-class observations, field notes, and a research journal. An interview guide with a set of open-ended and semi-structured questions was used to direct the interviews. My role as researcher included participation in storied conversations with ten selected volunteer teachers to document the underlying meanings behind the ways they teach science in Nihithewak contexts. This research is grounded in socio-cultural theory commonly used to support the examination and development of school science in Indigenous cultural contexts (Lemke, 2001; O'Loughlin, 1992). Socio-cultural theory is a framework that links education, language, literacy, and culture (Nieto, 2002). The research encapsulates a literature review that includes the history of Aboriginal education in Canada (Battiste & Barman, 1995; Kirkness, 1992; Perley, 1993), Indigenous-based science education (Cajete, 2000; Aikenhead, 2006a), multi

  7. Enriching K-12 Science and Mathematics Education Using LEGOs (United States)

    Williams, Keeshan; Igel, Irina; Poveda, Ronald; Kapila, Vikram; Iskander, Magued


    This paper presents a series of illustrative LEGO Mindstorms-based science and math activities, developed under an NSF GK-12 Fellows project, for elementary, middle, and high school grades. The activities, developed by engineering and science graduate Fellows in partnership with K-12 teachers, are grade appropriate, address pertinent learning…

  8. An Exploratory Study on K-12 Teachers' Use of Technology and Multimedia in the Classroom (United States)

    Martin, Florence; Carr, Marsha L.


    21st century has seen new technology and multimedia made available for integration in K-12 classrooms. This exploratory study examines K-12 teachers' use of technology and multimedia in the classroom in two southern counties in the Southeastern United States. The purpose of the study was to answer the following five research questions: 1) What…

  9. Meteorites for K-12 Classrooms: NASA Meteorite Educational Materials (United States)

    Lindstrom, M.; Allen, J.


    The fall of a new meteorite is an event that catches the interest of the public in matters of science. The threat of a huge impact like last year's comet Shoemaker-Levy 9 gives us all reason to evaluate such potential risks. NASA's meteorite educational materials use our natural interest in rocks from space to present classroom activities on planetary science. The meteorite educational package includes a meteorite sample disk, a teachers's guide and a slide set. The sample disk is a lucite disk containing chips of six different kinds of meteorites (3 chondrites, achondrite, iron, stony-iron). EXPLORING METEORITE MYSTERIES is a teacher's guide with background information and 19 hands-on or heads-on activities for grades 4-12. It was prepared in a partnership of planetary scientists and teachers. The slide set consists of 48 slides with captions to be used with the activities. The materials will be available in Fall 1995. Teachers may obtain a loan of the whole package from NASA Teacher Resource Centers; researchers may borrow them from the JSC meteorite curator. The booklet is available separately from the same sources, and the slide set will be available from NASA CORE. EXPLORING METEORITE MYSTERIES is an interdisciplinary planetary science unit which teaches basic science concepts and techniques together with math, reading, writing and social studies The activities are done in a variety of different teaching styles which emphasize observation, experimentation and critical thinking. The activities are ideal for middle schools where teaming makes interdisciplinary units desireable, but most of the activities can be easily modified for grade levels from upper elementary through high school. Meteorites are a natural subject for interdisciplinary teaching because their study involves all fields of science and offers fascinating historical accounts and possibilities for creative expression. Topics covered in EXPLORING METEORITE MYSTERES are centered around basic

  10. Soil Science Society of America - K-12 Outreach (United States)

    Lindbo, David L.; Loynachan, Tom; Mblia, Monday; Robinson, Clay; Chapman, Susan


    The Soil Science Society of America created its K12 Committee in 2006 in part to compliment the Dig It! The Secrets of Soil exhibit that opened in July 2008 at the Smithsonian's Institution's Nation Museum of Natural History (of which SSS was a founding sponsor). The committee's work began quickly with a website designed to provide resources for K12 teachers. The first accomplishments included reviewing and posting links to web based information already available to teachers. These links were sorted by subject and grade level to make it easier for teachers to navigate the web and find what they needed quickly. Several presentations and lessons designed for K12 teachers were also posted at this time. Concurrent with this effort a subcommittee review and organized the national teaching standards to show where soils could fit into the overall K12 curriculum. As the website was being developed another subcommittee developed a soils book (Soil! Get the Inside Scoop, 2008) to further compliment the Dig It! exhibit. This was a new endeavor for SSSA having never worked with the non-academic audience in developing a book. Peer-reviews of this book included not only scientist but also students in order to make sure the book was attractive to them. Once the book was published and the website developed it became clear more outreach was needed. SSSA K12 Committee has attended both the National Science Teachers Association (since 2008) the USA Science and Engineering Festival (since 2010) with exhibits and workshops. It has cooperated and contributed to the American Geologic Institutes' Earth Science Week materials with brochures and lesson plans and with National Association of Conservation Districts by providing peer-review and distribution of materials. The most recent developments from the committee include a web redesign that is more student and teacher friendly, the development of a peer-review system to publish K12 Lesson Plans, and finally the publication of a new soils

  11. Building Motivation in the K-12 Art Classroom (United States)

    Andrews, Page


    Student motivation is a universal challenge among teachers of every instructional level and content area. Motivation, particularly in the art classroom, is a challenge for many art educators. My study looks to unwind the intricate web of student motivation and to identify effective motivational strategies that art educators use on a daily basis…

  12. Career education attitudes and practices of K-12 science educators (United States)

    Smith, Walter S.

    A random sample of 400 K-12 science educators who were members of the National Science Teachers Association were surveyed regarding their attitude toward and practice of career education in their science teaching. These science teachers rejected a narrowly vocational view, favoring instead a conception of career education which included self-perception, values analysis, and vocational skills objectives. The science educators affirmed the importance of career education for a student's education, asserted career education ought to be taught in their existing science courses, and expressed a willingness to do so. Fewer than one-third of the science teachers, however, reported incorporating career education at least on a weekly basis in their science lessons. The major impediment to including more career education in science teaching was seen to be their lack of knowledge of methods and materials relevant to science career education, rather than objections from students, parents, or administrators; their unwillingness; or their evaluation of career education as unimportant. Thus, in order to improve this aspect of science teaching, science teachers need more concrete information about science career education applications.

  13. Strategies for Integrating Content from the USGCRP Climate and Health Assessment into the K-12 Classroom (United States)

    Haine, D. B.


    That the physical environment shapes the lives and behaviors of people is certainly not news, but communicating the impact of a changing climate on human health and predicting the trajectory of these changes is an active area of study in public health. From air quality concerns to extreme heat to shifts in the range of disease vectors, there are many opportunities to make connections between Earth's changing climate and human health. While many science teachers understand that addressing human health impacts as a result of a changing climate can provide needed relevance, it can be challenging for teachers to do so given an already packed curriculum. This session will share instructional strategies for integrating content from the USGCRP Climate and Health Assessment (CHA) by enhancing, rather than displacing content related to climate science. This presentation will feature a data interpretation activity developed in collaboration with geoscientists at the University of North Carolina's Gillings School of Public Health to convey the connection between air quality, climate change and human health. This classroom activity invites students to read excerpts from the CHA and interpret data presented in the scientific literature, thus promoting scientific literacy. In summarizing this activity, I will highlight strategies for effectively engaging geoscientists in developing scientifically rigorous, STEM-focused educational activities that are aligned to state and national science standards and also address the realities of the science classroom. Collaborating with geoscientists and translating their research into classroom activities is an approach that becomes more pertinent with the advent of the Next Generation Science Standards (NGSS). Thus, the USGCRP Climate and Health Assessment represents an opportunity to cultivate science literacy among K-12 students while providing relevant learning experiences that promote integration of science and engineering practices as

  14. Explaining Technology Integration in K-12 Classrooms: A Multilevel Path Analysis Model (United States)

    Liu, Feng; Ritzhaupt, Albert D.; Dawson, Kara; Barron, Ann E.


    The purpose of this research was to design and test a model of classroom technology integration in the context of K-12 schools. The proposed multilevel path analysis model includes teacher, contextual, and school related variables on a teacher's use of technology and confidence and comfort using technology as mediators of classroom technology…

  15. CESAME: Providing High Quality Professional Development in Science and Mathematics for K-12 Teachers (United States)

    Hickman, Paul


    It is appropriate that after almost half a century of Science and Mathematics education reform we take a look back and a peek forward to understand the present state of this wonderfully complex system. Each of the components of this system including teaching, professional development, assessment, content and the district K-12 curriculum all need to work together if we hope to provide quality science, mathematics and technology education for ALL students. How do the state and national standards drive the system? How do state policies on student testing and teacher licensure come into play? How do we improve the preparation, retention and job satisfaction of our K-12 teachers? What initiatives have made or are making a difference? What else needs to be done? What can the physics community do to support local efforts? This job is too big for any single organization or individual but we each can contribute to the effort. Our Center at Northeastern University, with support from the National Science Foundation, has a sharply defined focus: to get high quality, research-based instructional materials into the hands of K-12 classroom teachers and provide the support they need to use the materials effectively in their classrooms.

  16. A Review of Computer Science Resources for Learning and Teaching with K-12 Computing Curricula: An Australian Case Study (United States)

    Falkner, Katrina; Vivian, Rebecca


    To support teachers to implement Computer Science curricula into classrooms from the very first year of school, teachers, schools and organisations seek quality curriculum resources to support implementation and teacher professional development. Until now, many Computer Science resources and outreach initiatives have targeted K-12 school-age…

  17. Cool Science: K-12 Climate Change Art Displayed on Buses (United States)

    Chen, R. F.; Lustick, D. S.; Lohmeier, J.; Thompson, S. R.


    Cool science is an art contest where K12 students create placards (7" x 22") to educate the public about climate change. Students are prompted to create their artwork in response to questions such as: What is the evidence for climate change? How does climate change impact your local community? What can you do to reduce the impacts of climate change? In each of three years, 500-600 student entrees have been submitted from more than 12 school districts across Massachusetts. A panel of judges including scientists, artists, rapid transit representatives, and educators chooses elementary, middle, and high school winners. Winners (6), runners-up (6), and honorable mentions (12) and their families and teachers are invited to an annual Cool Science Award Ceremony to be recognized and view winning artwork. All winning artwork is posted on the Cool Science website. The winning artwork (2 per grade band) is converted into placards (11" x 28") and posters (2.5' x 12') that are placed on the inside (placards) and outside (posters) of buses. Posters are displayed for one month. So far, Cool Science was implemented in Lowell, MA where over 5000 public viewers see the posters daily on the sides of Lowell Rapid Transit Authority (LRTA) buses, making approximately 1,000,000 impressions per year. Cool Science acts to increase climate literacy in children as well as the public, and as such promotes intergenerational learning. Using art in conjunction with science learning about climate change appears to be effective at engaging not just traditionally high achieving science students, but also those interested in the creative arts. Hearing winners' stories about how they created their artwork and what this contest meant to them supports the idea that Cool Science attracts a wide diversity of students. Parents discuss climate change with their children. Multiple press releases announcing the winners further promotes the awareness of climate change throughout school districts and their

  18. GIS in the K-12 Classroom: Research Agenda from EDGIS '96


    National Center for Geographic Information and Analysis; National Council for Geographic Education (NCGE); Technical Education Research Centers (TERC)


    This meeting of education researchers and teachers immediately followed the November 1996 Annual Meeting of the National Council for Geographic Education (NCGE) in Santa Barbara, California. Participants explored the issues facing the use of Geographic Information Systems (GIS) in the K-12 classroom and developed a research agenda related to Pedagogy Issues, Curriculum Issues, Software Issues, and Cognitive Issues.

  19. Impact of Adopt-a-Classroom Partnerships between K-12 and University Faculty (United States)

    Smith, Elizabeth; Kindall, Heather D.; Carter, Vinson; Beachner, Maggie


    There is often a disconnect between K-12 schools and postsecondary institutions. While this gap has grown consistently, the need for collaboration between systems is greater than ever. The Adopt-A-Classroom program was created to address the need for greater university faculty involvement in public schools by providing opportunities for…

  20. Teaching and Learning with Mobile Computing Devices: Case Study in K-12 Classrooms (United States)

    Grant, Michael M.; Tamim, Suha; Brown, Dorian B.; Sweeney, Joseph P.; Ferguson, Fatima K.; Jones, Lakavious B.


    While ownership of mobile computing devices, such as cellphones, smartphones, and tablet computers, has been rapid, the adoption of these devices in K-12 classrooms has been measured. Some schools and individual teachers have integrated mobile devices to support teaching and learning. The purpose of this qualitative research was to describe the…

  1. Are Learning Assistants Better K-12 Science Teachers? (United States)

    Gray, Kara E.; Webb, David C.; Otero, Valerie K.


    This study investigates how the undergraduate Learning Assistant (LA) experience affects teachers' first year of teaching. The LA Program provides interested science majors with the opportunity to explore teaching through weekly teaching responsibilities, an introduction to physics education research, and a learning community within the university. Some of these LAs are recruited to secondary science teacher certification programs. We hypothesized that the LA experience would enhance the teaching practices of the LAs who ultimately become teachers. To test this hypothesis, LAs were compared to a matched sample of teachers who completed the same teacher certification program as the LAs but did not have the LA "treatment." LAs and "non-LAs" were compared through interviews, classroom observations, artifact packages, and observations made with Reformed Teacher Observation Protocol (RTOP) collected within the first year of teaching. Some differences were found; these findings and their implications are discussed.

  2. Muchas Caras: Engaging Spanish Speakers in the Planetarium and K-12 Classroom (United States)

    Traub-Metlay, Suzanne; Salas, F.


    Reaching out to Spanish speakers is increasingly vital to workforce development and public support of space science projects. Fiske Planetarium offers Spanish translations of our newest planetarium shows, such as "Las Muchas Caras del Telescopio Hubble” ("The Many Faces of Hubble") and "Tormenta Espacial” ("Space Storm"). Funded by NASA, "Las Muchas Caras...” showcases the people involved in successful use of the Hubble Space Telescope. From building and launching HST to how proposals are selected and data analyzed, "Las Muchas Caras...” engages viewers to see themselves in careers related to space science. Detailed interviews with real people who work with HST reveal the humanity behind the science. Awesome imagery provided by HST inspires viewers to look at the night sky themselves. In partnership with NASA's TIMED mission, LASP and Space Science Institute, Fiske Planetarium translated its original planetarium show - "Space Storm” - into "Tormenta Espacial". This show explores the Sun-Earth connection and explains how solar activity affects technology and life on Earth. Solar scientists from NOAA's Space Environment Center and the University of Colorado at Boulder contributed to provide scientific accuracy. Show content and accompanying educational materials are aligned with state and national science standards. Curricular materials extend the planetarium experience into the K-12 classroom so that students inspired and engaged by the show continue to see real-life applications and workplace opportunities. Fiske Planetarium offers "Las Muchas Caras...” and "Tormenta Espacial” to other planetariums at a minimal rate, including technical support for the life of the show. Versions of "The Many Faces of Hubble” and "Space Storm” are available with no spoken dialogue so that languages other than English or Spanish may be accommodated.

  3. The Effectiveness of Educational Technology Applications for Enhancing Mathematics Achievement in K-12 Classrooms: A Meta-Analysis. Educator's Summary (United States)

    Center for Research and Reform in Education, 2012


    This review summarizes research on the effects of technology use on mathematics achievement in K-12 classrooms. The main research questions included: (1) Do education technology applications improve mathematics achievement in K-12 classrooms as compared to traditional teaching methods without education technology?; and (2) What study and research…

  4. Digital Media for STEM Learning: Developing scientific practice skills in the K-12 STEM classroom with resources from WGBH and PBS LearningMedia (United States)

    Foster, J.; Connolly, R.


    WGBH's "Bringing the Universe to America's Classrooms" project is a 5-year effort to design, produce and evaluate digital media tools and resources that support scientific practice skills in diverse K-12 learners. Resources leverage data and content from NASA and WGBH signature programs, like NOVA, into sound instructional experiences that provide K-12 STEM teachers with free, quality resources for teaching topics in the Earth and Space Sciences. Resources address the content and practices in the new K-12 Framework for Science Education and are aligned with the NGSS. Participants will learn about design strategies, findings from our evaluation efforts, and how to access free resources on PBS LearningMedia.

  5. National Center for Mathematics and Science - K-12 education research (United States)

    Reasoning in the Elementary Grades Classroom Assessment as the Basis for Teacher Change (CATCH) Statistics motion, calculus, statistics, genetics, evolution, astronomy, and other topics. Teacher professional populations in California, Massachusetts, and Wisconsin are examining (a) children's mathematical and

  6. Outstanding Science Trade Books for Students K-12 (United States)

    Texley, Juliana


    Today's classrooms have no real walls! Students explore the world on field trips, during virtual journeys on the world wide web, and through the books they read. These pathways help them fly to the ends of the universe to satisfy their scientific curiosity. Again this year, the professionals of the NSTA/CBC Review Panel for Outstanding Science…

  7. Evolution: Its Treatment in K-12 State Science Curriculum Standards (United States)

    Lerner, L. S.


    State standards are the basis upon which states and local schools build curricula. Usually taking the form of lists of what students are expected to learn at specified grades or clusters of grades, they influence statewide examinations, textbooks, teacher education and credentialing, and other areas in which states typically exercise control over local curriculum development. State science standards vary very widely in overall quality.1,2 This is especially true in their treatment of evolution, both in the life sciences and to a somewhat lesser extent in geology and astronomy. Not surprisingly, a detailed evaluation of the treatment of evolution in state science standards3 has evoked considerably more public interest than the preceding studies of overall quality. We here consider the following questions: What constitutes a good treatment of evolution in science standards and how does one evaluate the standards? Which states have done well, and which less well? What nonscientific influences have been brought to bear on standards, for what reasons, and by whom? What strategies have been used to obscure or distort the role of evolution as the central organizing principle of the historical sciences? What are the effects of such distortions on students' overall understanding of science? What can the scientific community do to assure the publication of good science standards and to counteract attacks on good science teaching? 1. Lerner, L. S., State Science Standards: An Appraisal of Science Standards in 36 States, The Thomas B. Fordham Foundation, Washington, D.C., March 1998. 2. Lerner, L. S. et al ., The State of State Standards 2000, ibid., January 2000. 3. Lerner, L. S., Good Science, Bad Science: Teaching Evolution In the States, ibid., September 2000.

  8. One-to-One Technology in K-12 Classrooms: A Review of the Literature from 2004 through 2014 (United States)

    Harper, Ben; Milman, Natalie B.


    This literature review examined empirical research conducted between 2004 and 2014 regarding 1:1 technologies in K-12 educational settings. Our overarching research question was: What does research tell us about 1:1 technology in K-12 classrooms? We used the constant-comparative method to analyze, code, and induce themes from 46 relevant articles.…

  9. The Windows to the Universe Project: Using the Internet to Support K-12 Science Education (United States)

    Gardiner, L.; Johnson, R.; Bergman, J.; Russell, R.; Genyuk, J.; La Grave, M.


    The World Wide Web can be a powerful tool for reaching the public as well as students and teachers around the world, supporting both formal and informal science education. The Windows to the Universe Project, initiated in 1995, provides a case study of approaches for the use of the web to support earth and space science education and literacy efforts. Through the use of innovative approaches such as easy to use design, multi-level content, and science concepts presented in a broader background context that includes connections to culture and the humanities, Windows to the Universe is an accessible format for individuals of various ages and learning styles. A large global audience regularly uses the web site to learn about earth and space science as well as related humanities content such as myths from around the world. User surveys show that the site has over 4 millions users per year, 65 percent of which are K-12 teachers and students. Approximately 46 percent of users access the site once per week or more. Recently, we have had the opportunity to expand our efforts while we continue to update existing content based on new scientific findings and events. Earth science content on Windows to the Universe is currently growing with a new geology section and development efforts are underway to expand our space weather content with a new curriculum. Educational games allow users to learn about space in a playful context, and an online journaling tool further integrates literacy into the learning experience. In addition, we are currently translating the entire Windows to the Universe web site into Spanish. We have included educators in the project as co-designers from its inception, and by aggressively utilizing and providing professional development opportunities for teachers, the web site is now used in thousands of classrooms around the world. In the past year we have continued to support K-12 educators by adding to our suite of classroom activities and leading

  10. Educational Technology: A Review of the Integration, Resources, and Effectiveness of Technology in K-12 Classrooms

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Adolph Delgado


    Full Text Available There is no questioning that the way people live, interact, communicate, and conduct business is undergoing a profound, rapid change. This change is often referred to as the “digital revolution,” which is the advancement of technology from analog, electronic and mechanical tools to the digital tools available today. Moreover, technology has begun to change education, affecting how students acquire the skill sets needed to prepare for college and a career and how educators integrate digital technological instructional strategies to teach. Numerous studies have been published discussing the barriers of integrating technology, the estimated amount of investment that is needed in order to fully support educational technology, and, of course, the effectiveness of technology in the classroom. As such, this article presents a critical review of the transitions that technology integration has made over the years; the amount of resources and funding that has been allocated to immerse school with technology; and the conflicting results presented on effectiveness of using is technology in education. Through synthesis of selected themes, we found a plethora of technological instructional strategies being used to integrate technology into K-12 classrooms. Also, though there have been large investments made to integrate technology into K-12 classrooms to equip students with the skills needed to prepare for college and a career, the practical use of this investment has not been impressive. Lastly, several meta-analyses showed promising results of effectiveness of technology in the classroom. However, several inherent methodological and study design issues dampen the amount of variance that technology accounts for.

  11. From the field to classrooms: Scientists and educators collaborating to develop K-12 lessons on arctic carbon cycling and climate change that align with Next Generation Science Standards, and informal outreach programs that bring authentic data to informal audiences. (United States)

    Brinker, R.; Cory, R. M.


    Next Generation Science Standards (NGSS) calls for students across grade levels to understand climate change and its impacts. To achieve this goal, the NSF-sponsored PolarTREC program paired an educator with scientists studying carbon cycling in the Arctic. The data collection and fieldwork performed by the team will form the basis of hands-on science learning in the classroom and will be incorporated into informal outreach sessions in the community. Over a 16-day period, the educator was stationed at Toolik Field Station in the High Arctic. (Toolik is run by the University of Alaska, Fairbanks, Institute of Arctic Biology.) She participated in a project that analyzed the effects of sunlight and microbial content on carbon production in Artic watersheds. Data collected will be used to introduce the following NGSS standards into the middle-school science curriculum: 1) Construct a scientific explanation based on evidence. 2) Develop a model to explain cycling of water. 3) Develop and use a model to describe phenomena. 4) Analyze and interpret data. 5) A change in one system causes and effect in other systems. Lessons can be telescoped to meet the needs of classrooms in higher or lower grades. Through these activities, students will learn strategies to model an aspect of carbon cycling, interpret authentic scientific data collected in the field, and conduct geoscience research on carbon cycling. Community outreach sessions are also an effective method to introduce and discuss the importance of geoscience education. Informal discussions of firsthand experience gained during fieldwork can help communicate to a lay audience the biological, physical, and chemical aspects of the arctic carbon cycle and the impacts of climate change on these features. Outreach methods will also include novel use of online tools to directly connect audiences with scientists in an effective and time-efficient manner.

  12. Cataclysms and Catastrophes: A Case Study of Improving K-12 Science Education Through a University Partnership (United States)

    Fennell, T.; Ellins, K. K.; Morris, M.; Christeson, G.


    The K-12 science teacher is always seeking ways of improving and updating their curriculum by integrating the latest research into their most effective classroom activities. However, the daily demands of delivering instruction to large numbers of students coupled with the rapid advances in some fields of science can often overwhelm this effort. The NSF-sponsored Cataclysms and Catastrophes curriculum, developed by scientists from the The University of Texas at Austin Institute for Geophysics (UTIG) and Bureau of Economic Geology (BEG), middle and high school teachers, and UT graduate students (NSF GK-12 fellows) working together through the GK-12 program, is a textbook example of how universities can facilitate this quest, benefiting education at both K-12 and university levels. In 1992, "The Great K-T Extinction Debate" was developed as an activity in the Planet Earth class at the Liberal Arts and Science Academy of Austin as an interdisciplinary approach to science. Taking advantage of the media attention generated by the impact scenario for the K-T extinction, the activity consists of students participating in a simulated senate hearing on the potential causes of the K-T extinction and their implications for society today. This activity not only exposes students to the wide range of science involved in understanding mass extinctions, but also to the social, political and economic implications when this science is brought into the public arena and the corresponding use of data in decision making and disaster preparedness. While "The Great K-T Extinction Debate" was always a popular and effective activity with students, it was in desperate need of updating to keep pace with the evolving scientific debate over the cause of the K-T extinction and the growing body of impact evidence discovered over the past decade. By adding two inquiry-based learning activities that use real geophysical data collected by scientists studying the buried Chicxulub feature as a

  13. C-MORE Science Kits: Putting Technology in the Hands of K-12 Teachers and Students (United States)

    Achilles, K.; Weersing, K.; Daniels, C.; Puniwai, N.; Matsuzaki, J.; Bruno, B. C.


    The Center for Microbial Oceanography: Research and Education (C-MORE) is a NSF Science and Technology Center based at the University of Hawaii. The C-MORE education and outreach program offers a variety of resources and professional development opportunities for science educators, including online resources, participation in oceanography research cruises, teacher-training workshops, mini-grants to incorporate microbial oceanography-related content and activities into their classroom and, most recently, C- MORE science kits. C-MORE science kits provide hands-on classroom, field, and laboratory activities related to microbial oceanography for K-12 students. Each kit comes with complete materials and instructions, and is available free of charge to Hawaii's public school teachers. Several kits are available nationwide. C-MORE science kits cover a range of topics and technologies and are targeted at various grade levels. Here is a sampling of some available kits: 1) Marine Murder Mystery: The Case of the Missing Zooxanthellae. Students learn about the effect of climate change and other environmental threats on coral reef destruction through a murder-mystery experience. Participants also learn how to use DNA to identify a suspect. Grades levels: 3-8. 2) Statistical sampling. Students learn basic statistics through an exercise in random sampling, with applications to microbial oceanography. The laptops provided with this kit enable students to enter, analyze, and graph their data using EXCEL. Grades levels: 6-12. 3) Chlorophyll Lab. A research-quality fluorometer is used to measure the chlorophyll content in marine and freshwater systems. This enables students to compare biomass concentrations in samples collected from various locations. Grades levels: 9-12. 4) Conductivity-Temperature-Depth (CTD). Students predict how certain variables (e.g., temperature, pressure, chlorophyll, oxygen) vary with depth. A CTD, attached to a laptop computer, is deployed into deep water

  14. A phenomenological case study concerning science teacher educators' beliefs and teaching practices about culturally relevant pedagogy and preparing K-12 science teachers to engage African American students in K-12 science (United States)

    Underwood, Janice Bell

    Due to the rising diversity in today's schools, science teacher educators (STEs) suggest that K-12 teachers must be uniquely prepared to engage these students in science classrooms. Yet, in light of the increasing white-black science achievement gap, it is unclear how STEs prepare preservice teachers to engage diverse students, and African Americans in particular. Therefore, the purpose of this study was to find out how STEs prepare preservice teachers to engage African American students in K-12 science. Thus, using the culturally relevant pedagogy (CRP) framework, this phenomenological case study explored beliefs about culturally relevant science teaching and the influence of reported beliefs and experiences related to race on STEs' teaching practices. In the first phase, STE's in a mid-Atlantic state were invited to participate in an electronic survey. In the second phase, four participants, who were identified as exemplars, were selected from the survey to participate in three semi-structured interviews. The data revealed that STEs were more familiar with culturally responsive pedagogy (CResP) in the context of their post-secondary classrooms as opposed to CRP. Further, most of the participants in part one and two described modeling conventional ways they prepare their preservice teachers to engage K-12 students, who represent all types of diversity, without singling out any specific race. Lastly, many of the STEs' in this study reported formative experiences related to race and beliefs in various manifestations of racism have impacted their teaching beliefs and practices. The findings of this study suggest STEs do not have a genuine understanding of the differences between CRP and CResP and by in large embrace CResP principles. Secondly, in regards to preparing preservice teachers to engage African American students in science, the participants in this study seemed to articulate the need for ideological change, but were unable to demonstrate pedagogical changes

  15. Developing Partnerships between Higher Education Faculty, K-12 Science Teachers, and School Administrators via MSP initiatives: The RITES Model (United States)

    Caulkins, J. L.; Kortz, K. M.; Murray, D. P.


    The Rhode Island Technology Enhanced Science Project (RITES) is a NSF-funded Math and Science Partnership (MSP) project that seeks to improve science education. RITES is, at its core, a unique partnership that fosters relationships between middle and high school science teachers, district and school administrators, higher education (HE) faculty members, and science education researchers. Their common goal is to enhance scientific inquiry, increase classroom technology usage, and improve state level science test scores. In one of the more visible examples of this partnership, middle and high school science teachers work closely with HE science faculty partners to design and teach professional development (PD) workshops. The PD sessions focus on technology-enhanced scientific investigations (e.g. use of probes, online simulations, etc.), exemplify inquiry-based instruction, and relate expert content knowledge. Teachers from these sessions express substantial satisfaction in the program, report increased comfort levels in teaching the presented materials (both via post-workshop surveys), and show significant gains in content knowledge (via pre-post assessments). Other benefits to this kind of partnership, in which K-12 and HE teachers are considered equals, include: 1) K-12 teachers are empowered through interactions with HE faculty and other science teachers in the state; 2) HE instructors become more informed not only about good pedagogical practices, but also practical aspects of teaching science such as engaging students; and 3) the PD sessions tend to be much stronger than ones designed and presented solely by HE scientists, for while HE instructors provide content expertise, K-12 teachers provide expertise in K-12 classroom practice and implementation. Lastly, the partnership is mutually beneficial for the partners involved because both sides learn practical ways to teach science and inquiry at different levels. In addition to HE faculty and K-12 science teacher

  16. Using Off-the-Shelf Gaming Controllers For Computer Control in the K-12 Classroom (United States)

    Bourgoin, N. L.; Withee, J.; Segee, M.; Birkel, S. D.; Albee, E.; Koons, P. O.; Zhu, Y.; Segee, B.


    In the classroom, the interaction between students, teachers, and datasets is becoming more game like. Software such as GoogleEarth allow students to interact with data on a more personal level; allowing them the dynamically change variables, move arbitrarily, and personalize their experience with the datasets. As this becomes more immersive, traditional software control such as keyboard and mouse begin to hold the student back in terms of intuitive interfacing with the data. This is a problem that has best been tackled by modern gaming systems such as the Wii, XBox 360, and Playstation 3 Systems. By utilizing the solutions given by these gaming systems, it is possible to further a students immersion with a system. Through an NSF ITEST (Information and Technology Experiences for Students and Teachers) grant, researchers at the University of Maine have experimented with using the game controller that is used for interacting with the Nintendo Wii (often called a Wiimote) with existing geodynamic systems in an effort to eases interaction with these systems. Since these game controllers operate using Bluetooth, a common protocol in computing, Wiimotes can easily communicate with existing laptop computers that are issued to Maine students. This paper describes the technical requirements, setup, and usage of Wiimotes as an input device to complex geodynamical systems for use in the K-12 classroom.

  17. Outstanding Science Trade Books for Students K-12: Books Published in 2015 (United States)

    Science and Children, 2016


    Science teachers and mentors continue to be challenged to meet the high expectations of "A Framework for K-12 Science Education" and the "Next Generation Science Standards" ("NGSS"). Indeed the "Framework" urges to help learners "[build] progressively more sophisticated explanations of natural…

  18. K-12 STEM Educator Autonomy: An Investigation of School Influence and Classroom Control (United States)

    Ernst, Jeremy V.; Williams, Thomas O.; Clark, Aaron C.; Kelly, Daniel P.; Sutton, Kevin


    Over the past decade, teacher autonomy within the formal educational system has been a central topic of discussion among educational stakeholders. This study explored influence over school policy and classroom control (teacher autonomy) among in-service science, technology, and mathematics (STM) educators within the United States. The National…

  19. A Groundwater project for K-12 schools: Bringing research into the classroom (United States)

    Rodak, C. M.; Walsh, M.; Gensic, J.


    Simple water quality test kits were used in a series of K-12 classrooms to demonstrate scientific processes and to motivate learning in K-12 students. While focused on student learning, this project also allowed collection of regional data on groundwater quality (primarily nitrate) in the study area. The project consisted of development and administration of a weeklong groundwater quality unit introduced to K-12 schools in northern Indiana and taught by a graduate student in an engineering discipline. The structure of the week started with an introduction to basic groundwater concepts modified for the specific grade level; for this project the students ranged from grades 4-12. In addition to groundwater basics, the purpose of the collection of the water quality data, as well as relevance to the research of the graduate student, were outlined. The students were then: (i) introduced to two simple water quality testing methods for nitrates, (ii) required to hypothesize as to which method will likely be "better" in application, and (iii) asked to practice using these two methods under laboratory conditions. Following practice, the students were asked to discuss their hypotheses relative to what was observed during the practice focusing on which testing method was more accurate and/or precise. The students were then encouraged to bring water samples from their home water system (many of which are on private wells) to analyze within groups. At the end of the week, the students shared their experience in this educational effort, as well as the resulting nitrate data from numerous groundwater wells (as collected by the students). Following these discussions the data were added to an online database housed on a wiki sponsored by the Notre Dame Extended Research Community ( These data were plotted using the free service MapAList to visually demonstrate to the students the spatial distribution of the data and how their results have

  20. The Elephant in the (Class)Room: Parental Perceptions of LGBTQ-Inclusivity in K-12 Educational Contexts (United States)

    Ullman, Jacqueline; Ferfolja, Tania


    While little is known about parental beliefs and desires regarding LGBTQ-inclusive education, assumptions about these appear to justify teachers', curriculum writers' and policy makers' silences regarding sexuality and gender diversity in the K-12 classroom. Thus, in order to better inform educators' practices, this paper presents an analysis of…

  1. How to Implement Rigorous Computer Science Education in K-12 Schools? Some Answers and Many Questions (United States)

    Hubwieser, Peter; Armoni, Michal; Giannakos, Michail N.


    Aiming to collect various concepts, approaches, and strategies for improving computer science education in K-12 schools, we edited this second special issue of the "ACM TOCE" journal. Our intention was to collect a set of case studies from different countries that would describe all relevant aspects of specific implementations of…

  2. Living in a Materials World: Materials Science Engineering Professional Development for K-12 Educators

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Anne Seifert; Louis Nadelson


    Advances in materials science are fundamental to technological developments and have broad societal impacs. For example, a cellular phone is composed of a polymer case, liquid crystal displays, LEDs, silicon chips, Ni-Cd batteries, resistors, capacitors, speakers, microphones all of which have required advances in materials science to be compacted into a phone which is typically smaller than a deck of cards. Like many technological developments, cellular phones have become a ubiquitous part of society, and yet most people know little about the materials science associated with their manufacture. The probable condition of constrained knowledge of materials science was the motivation for developing and offering a 20 hour fourday course called 'Living in a Materials World.' In addition, materials science provides a connection between our every day experiences and the work of scientists and engineers. The course was offered as part of a larger K-12 teacher professional development project and was a component of a week-long summer institute designed specifically for upper elementary and middle school teachers which included 20 hour content strands, and 12 hours of plenary sessions, planning, and collaborative sharing. The focus of the institute was on enhancing teacher content knowledge in STEM, their capacity for teaching using inquiry, their comfort and positive attitudes toward teaching STEM, their knowledge of how people learn, and strategies for integrating STEM throughout the curriculum. In addition to the summer institute the participating teachers were provided with a kit of about $300 worth of materials and equipment to use to implement the content they learned in their classrooms. As part of this professional development project the participants were required to design and implement 5 lesson plans with their students this fall and report on the results, as part of the continuing education course associated with the project. 'Living in a

  3. A review of Computer Science resources for learning and teaching with K-12 computing curricula: an Australian case study (United States)

    Falkner, Katrina; Vivian, Rebecca


    To support teachers to implement Computer Science curricula into classrooms from the very first year of school, teachers, schools and organisations seek quality curriculum resources to support implementation and teacher professional development. Until now, many Computer Science resources and outreach initiatives have targeted K-12 school-age children, with the intention to engage children and increase interest, rather than to formally teach concepts and skills. What is the educational quality of existing Computer Science resources and to what extent are they suitable for classroom learning and teaching? In this paper, an assessment framework is presented to evaluate the quality of online Computer Science resources. Further, a semi-systematic review of available online Computer Science resources was conducted to evaluate resources available for classroom learning and teaching and to identify gaps in resource availability, using the Australian curriculum as a case study analysis. The findings reveal a predominance of quality resources, however, a number of critical gaps were identified. This paper provides recommendations and guidance for the development of new and supplementary resources and future research.

  4. Energy Project Professional Development: Promoting Positive Attitudes about Science among K-12 Teachers (United States)

    Robertson, Amy D.; Daane, Abigail R.


    Promoting positive attitudes about science among teachers has important implications for teachers' classroom practice and for their relationship to science as a discipline. In this paper, we report positive shifts in teachers' attitudes about science, as measured by the Colorado Learning Attitudes about Science (CLASS) survey, over the course of…

  5. The Development of a Conceptual Framework for New K-12 Science Education Standards (Invited) (United States)

    Keller, T.


    The National Academy of Sciences has created a committee of 18 National Academy of Science and Engineering members, academic scientists, cognitive and learning scientists, and educators, educational policymakers and researchers to develop a framework to guide new K-12 science education standards. The committee began its work in January, 2010, released a draft of the framework in July, 2010, and intends to have the final framework in the first quarter of 2011. The committee was helped in early phases of the work by consultant design teams. The framework is designed to help realize a vision for science and engineering education in which all students actively engage in science and engineering practices in order to deepen their understanding of core ideas in science over multiple years of school. These three dimensions - core disciplinary ideas, science and engineering practices, and cross-cutting elements - must blend together to build an exciting, relevant, and forward looking science education. The framework will be used as a base for development of next generation K-12 science education standards.

  6. Addressing the NETS*S in K-12 Classrooms: Implications for Teacher Education (United States)

    Niederhauser, Dale S.; Lindstrom, Denise L.; Strobel, Johannes


    The National Educational Technology Standards for Students (NETS*S) were developed to provide guidelines for effective and meaningful technology use with K-12 students. In the present study we used the NETS*S as a framework to analyze ways that teachers integrated instructional technology use and provided opportunities for their students to…

  7. Addressing the Nets for Students through Constructivist Technology Use in K-12 Classrooms (United States)

    Niederhauser, Dale S.; Lindstrom, Denise L.


    The National Educational Technology Standards for Students promote constructivist technology use for K-12 students in U.S. schools. In this study, researchers reported on 716 cases in which teachers described technology-based activities they conducted with their students. Narrative analysis was used to examine case transcripts relative to the…

  8. Using "Journeys in Film" to Bring Authentic STEM Activities to the K-12 Classroom. (United States)

    Rock, B. N.


    The "Journeys in Film" project brings important films and documentaries ("The Martian," "Hidden Figures," "River of Gold" and others) and curriculum-based, educational support activities to the classroom. Faculty from the University of New Hampshire, in partnership with selected local middle and high school teachers, developed a STEM Lesson Plan for Journeys in Film" focused on the soon-to-released documentary "River of Gold" which highlights tropical deforestation and illegal gold mining activities in the Peruvian jungles of the Amazon Basin. Using film clips (the Trailer) from the movie and the Lesson Plan, this approach allows pre-college students to learn how to use "Google Earth" to monitor chang-over-time and to quantify the areas of deforestation and mining using multi-date NOAA/USGS Landsat Thematic Mapper and ESA Copernicus satellite data. This approach will allow students to dconduct authentic hands-on science and mathematics to address a wide range of social and environmental issues associated with tropical deforestation in Peru.

  9. Neuroscience & the Classroom: Making Connections. A Video Course for Grades K-12 Teachers and School Counselors (United States)

    Annenberg Learner, 2012


    Exciting developments in the field of neuroscience are leading to a new understanding of how the brain works that is beginning to transform teaching in the classroom. "Neuroscience & the Classroom: Making Connections" brings together researchers and educators in a dialog about how insights into brain function can be harnessed by teachers for use…

  10. NGSS-Aligned, K-12 Climate Science Curricula, taught with citizen science and teacher-led inquiry methods (United States)

    Zainfeld, S.


    Teacher-led inquiry into student learning is a promising method of formative assessment to gain insight into student achievement. NGSS-aligned K-12 Climate Science curricula taught with citizen science and teacher-led inquiry methods are described, along with results from a scientist-teacher collaboration survey.

  11. Increasing participation in the Earth sciences through engagement of K-12 educators in Earth system science analysis, inquiry and problem- based learning and teaching (United States)

    Burrell, S.


    Given low course enrollment in geoscience courses, retention in undergraduate geoscience courses, and granting of BA and advanced degrees in the Earth sciences an effective strategy to increase participation in this field is necessary. In response, as K-12 education is a conduit to college education and the future workforce, Earth science education at the K-12 level was targeted with the development of teacher professional development around Earth system science, inquiry and problem-based learning. An NSF, NOAA and NASA funded effort through the Institute for Global Environmental Strategies led to the development of the Earth System Science Educational Alliance (ESSEA) and dissemination of interdisciplinary Earth science content modules accessible to the public and educators. These modules formed the basis for two teacher workshops, two graduate level courses for in-service teachers and two university course for undergraduate teacher candidates. Data from all three models will be presented with emphasis on the teacher workshop. Essential components of the workshop model include: teaching and modeling Earth system science analysis; teacher development of interdisciplinary, problem-based academic units for implementation in the classroom; teacher collaboration; daily workshop evaluations; classroom observations; follow-up collaborative meetings/think tanks; and the building of an on-line professional community for continued communication and exchange of best practices. Preliminary data indicate increased understanding of Earth system science, proficiency with Earth system science analysis, and renewed interest in innovative delivery of content amongst teachers. Teacher-participants reported increased student engagement in learning with the implementation of problem-based investigations in Earth science and Earth system science thinking in the classroom, however, increased enthusiasm of the teacher acted as a contributing factor. Teacher feedback on open

  12. Project BioEYES: Accessible Student-Driven Science for K-12 Students and Teachers. (United States)

    Shuda, Jamie R; Butler, Valerie G; Vary, Robert; Farber, Steven A


    BioEYES, a nonprofit outreach program using zebrafish to excite and educate K-12 students about science and how to think and act like scientists, has been integrated into hundreds of under-resourced schools since 2002. During the week-long experiments, students raise zebrafish embryos to learn principles of development and genetics. We have analyzed 19,463 participating students' pre- and post-tests within the program to examine their learning growth and attitude changes towards science. We found that at all grade levels, BioEYES effectively increased students' content knowledge and produced favorable shifts in students' attitudes about science. These outcomes were especially pronounced in younger students. Having served over 100,000 students, we find that our method for providing student-centered experiences and developing long-term partnerships with teachers is essential for the growth and sustainability of outreach and school collaborations.

  13. Secrets of the Sediments: Using ANDRILL's Scientific Adventure on Ice to Transfer Climate Change Science to K-12 Audiences (United States)

    Huffman, L. T.; Dahlman, L.; Frisch-Gleason, R.; Harwood, D.; Pound, K.; Rack, F.; Riesselman, C.; Trummel, E.; Tuzzi, E.; Winter, D.


    Antarctica's harsh environment and the compelling story of living and working there, provides the backdrop for hooking the interest of young learners on science research and the nature of science. By using the adventure stories of today's researcher-explorers, teachers accompanying the ANDRILL team have taken the technical science of drilling rock cores to understand the history of climate change and the advance and retreat of the Antarctic ice sheet, and translated it for non-technical audiences from K-12 school children, to adult community groups. In order to understand the important issues surrounding global climate change, members of the public need access to accurate and relevant information, high quality educational materials, and a variety of learning opportunities in different learning environments. By taking lessons learned from early virtual polar adventure learning expeditions like Will Steger's Trans-Antarctic Expedition, coupled with educators-in-the-field programs like TEA (Teachers Experiencing Antarctica and the Arctic), ARMADA and Polar Trec, ANDRILL's Education and Outreach Program has evolved into successful and far-reaching integrated education projects including 1) the ARISE (ANDRILL Research Immersion for Science Educators) Program, 2) Climate Change Student Summits, 3) the development of Flexhibit (flexible exhibit) teaching resources, 4) virtual online learning communities, and 5) partnering young researchers with teachers and classrooms. Formal evaluations indicate lasting interest in science studies on the part of students and an increase in teachers' scientific background knowledge.

  14. Energy Project professional development: Promoting positive attitudes about science among K-12 teachers

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Amy D. Robertson


    Full Text Available Promoting positive attitudes about science among teachers has important implications for teachers’ classroom practice and for their relationship to science as a discipline. In this paper, we report positive shifts in teachers’ attitudes about science, as measured by the Colorado Learning Attitudes about Science (CLASS survey, over the course of their participation in a professional development course that emphasized the flexible use of energy representations to understand real world scenarios. Our work contributes to the larger effort to make the case that professional development matters for teacher learning and attitudes.

  15. An Investigation of Factors Influencing Student Use of Technology in K-12 Classrooms Using Path Analysis (United States)

    Ritzhaupt, Albert D.; Dawson, Kara; Cavanaugh, Cathy


    The purpose of this research was to examine the effects of teachers' characteristics, school characteristics, and contextual characteristics on classroom technology integration and teacher use of technology as mediators of student use of technology. A research-based path model was designed and tested based on data gathered from 732 teachers from…

  16. Are K-12 school environments harming students with obesity? A qualitative study of classroom teachers. (United States)

    Kenney, Erica L; Redman, Morgan T; Criss, Shaniece; Sonneville, Kendrin R; Austin, S Bryn


    Weight bias can negatively impact health, and schools may be risky environments for students with obesity. We aimed to explore teachers' perceptions of the school experiences and academic challenges of students with obesity. We conducted interviews with 22 teachers in the Northeast, mid-Atlantic, and Midwest in July-August 2014. All interviews were transcribed verbatim, coded, and analyzed for important themes by two researchers using the immersion/crystallization approach. Most teachers felt that students with obesity were more likely to have academic difficulties. Two main perceptions of the reasons for these difficulties emerged: (1) obesity led to lower self-esteem that caused students to participate less, and (2) poorer nutrition, increased screen time, and reduced physical activity were simultaneously causing obesity and poorer academic performance. A few teachers described colleagues who felt students with obesity were not as motivated to work hard in school as their peers. Many teachers described school health promotion efforts focused on weight reduction that could exacerbate weight stigma and risk of disordered eating. Students with obesity, particularly girls, may be at risk for negative social and academic experiences in K-12 schools and may be perceived as struggling academically by their teachers.

  17. BiteScis: Connecting K-12 teachers with science graduate students to produce lesson plans on modern science research (United States)

    Battersby, Cara


    Many students graduate high school having never learned about the process and people behind modern science research. The BiteScis program addresses this gap by providing easily implemented lesson plans that incorporate the whos, whats, and hows of today's scienctific discoveries. We bring together practicing scientists (motivated graduate students from the selective communicating science conference, ComSciCon) with K-12 science teachers to produce, review, and disseminate K-12 lesson plans based on modern science research. These lesson plans vary in topic from environmental science to neurobiology to astrophysics, and involve a range of activities from laboratory exercises to art projects, debates, or group discussion. An integral component of the program is a series of short, "bite-size" articles on modern science research written for K-12 students. The "bite-size" articles and lesson plans will be made freely available online in an easily searchable web interface that includes association with a variety of curriculum standards. This ongoing program is in its first year with about 15 lesson plans produced to date.

  18. Nasa's Operation Icebridge and Remote Sensing Techniques in the K-12 Classroom as a STEM Integration Project (United States)

    McCarthy, K.


    NASA's Operation IceBridge (OIB), the largest airborne survey of Earth's polar ice uses remote sensing methods to collect data on changing sea and land ice. PolarTREC teacher Kelly McCarthy joined the team during the 2016 Spring Arctic Campaign. This presentation explores ways in which k-12 students were engaged in the work being done by OIB through classroom learning experiences, digital communications, and independent research. Initially, digital communication including chats via NASA's Mission Tools Suite for Education (MTSE) platform was leveraged to engage students in the daily work of OIB. Two lessons were piloted with student groups during the 2016-2017 academic year both for students who actively engaged in communications with the team during the expedition and those who had no prior connections to the field. All of the data collected on OIB missions is stored for public use in a digital portal on the National Snow and Ice Data Center (NSIDC) website. In one lesson, 10th-12th grade students were guided through a tutorial to learn how to access data and begin to develop a story about Greenland's Jakobshavn Glacier using pre-selected data sets, Google's MyMaps app, and independent research methods. In the second lesson, 8th grade students were introduced to remote sensing, first through a discussion on vocabulary using productive talk moves and then via a demonstration using Vernier motion detectors and a graph matching simulation. Students worked in groups to develop procedures to map a hidden surface region (boxed assortment of miscellaneous objects) using a Vernier motion sensor to simulate sonar. Students translated data points collected from the motion sensor into a vertical profile of the simulated surface region. Both lessons allowed students a way to engage in two of the most important components of OIB. The ability to work with real data collected by the OIB team provided a unique context through which students gained skill and overcame challenges in

  19. Tormenta Espacial: Engaging Spanish Speakers in the Planetarium and K-12 Classroom (United States)

    Salas, F.; Duncan, D.; Traub-Metlay, S.


    Reaching out to Spanish speakers is increasingly vital to workforce development and public support of space science projects. Building on a successful partnership with NASA's TIMED mission, LASP and Space Science Institute, Fiske Planetarium has translated its original planetarium show - ``Space Storm'' - into ``Tormenta Espacial.''

  20. Muchas Caras: Engaging Spanish Speakers in the Planetarium and K--12 Classroom (United States)

    Traub-Metlay, S.; Salas, F.; Duncan, D.


    Reaching out to Spanish speakers is increasingly vital to workforce development and public support of space science projects. Fiske Planetarium offers Spanish translations of our newest planetarium shows, such as ``Las Personas del Telescopio Hubble'' (``The Many Faces of Hubble'') and ``Tormenta Espacial'' (``Space Storm'').

  1. Mobile STEMship Discovery Center: K-12 Aerospace-Based Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics (STEM) Mobile Teaching Vehicle (United States)


    AND SUBTITLE Mobile STEMship Discovery Center: K-12 Aerospace-Based Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics (STEM) Mobile Teaching Vehicle...Center program to be able to expose Science Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) space-inspired science centers for DC Metro beltway schools

  2. A program to enhance k-12 science education in ten rural New York school districts. (United States)

    Goodell, E; Visco, R; Pollock, P


    The Rural Partnership for Science Education, designed by educators and scientists in 1991 with funding from the National Institutes of Health, works in two rural New York State counties with students and their teachers from kindergarten through grade 12 to improve pre-college science education. The Partnership is an alliance among ten rural New York school districts and several New York State institutions (e.g., a regional academic medical center; the New York Academy of Sciences; and others), and has activities that involve around 4,800 students and 240 teachers each year. The authors describe the program's activities (e.g., summer workshops for teachers; science exploration camps for elementary and middle-school students; enrichment activities for high school students). A certified science education specialist directs classroom demonstrations throughout the academic year to support teachers' efforts to integrate hands-on activities into the science curriculum. A variety of evaluations over the years provides strong evidence of the program's effectiveness in promoting students' and teachers' interest in science. The long-term goal of the Partnership is to inspire more rural students to work hard, learn science, and enter the medical professions.

  3. Businesses assisting K--12 science instruction: Four case studies of long-term school partnerships (United States)

    van Trieste, Lynne M.

    Businesses lack enough qualified applicants to fill the increasing need for scientists and engineers while educators lack many resources for science programs in K-12 schools. This series of case studies searched for successful collaborations between the two in four geographic locations: Boise, Idaho; Dallas, Texas; Los Angeles County, California, and Orange County, California. These science education partnerships were investigated to gain an understanding of long-term partnership structure, functioning and evaluation methods. Forty-nine individual interviews with representatives from the groups of stakeholders these programs impact were also conducted. Stakeholder groups included students, teachers, parents, school administrators, business liaisons, and non-profit representatives. Several recurring themes in these partnerships reinforced the existing literature research findings. Collaboration and communication between partners, teacher professional development, the need for more minority and female representation in physical science careers, and self-efficacy in relation to how people come to view their scientific abilities, are among these themes. Topics such as program replication, the importance of role models, programs using "hands-on" activities, reward systems for program participants, and program outcome measurement also emerged from the cases investigated. Third-party assistance by a non-profit entity is occurring within all of these partnerships. This assistance ranges from a service providing material resources such as equipment, lesson plans and meeting space, to managing the partnership fundraising, program development and evaluations. Discussions based upon the findings that support or threaten sustainment of these four partnerships, what a "perfect" partnership might look like, and areas in need of further investigation conclude this study.

  4. Teaching and Learning about Complex Systems in K-12 Science Education: A Review of Empirical Studies 1995-2015 (United States)

    Yoon, Susan A.; Goh, Sao-Ee; Park, Miyoung


    The study of complex systems has been highlighted in recent science education policy in the United States and has been the subject of important real-world scientific investigation. Because of this, research on complex systems in K-12 science education has shown a marked increase over the past two decades. In this systematic review, we analyzed 75…

  5. Transfer of Active Learning Strategies from the Teacher Education Classroom to PreK-12th Grade Classrooms (United States)

    Pepper, Kaye; Blackwell, Sarah; Monroe, Ann; Coskey, Shawn


    In this study, researchers investigated the influence of modeling active learning strategies in an introductory foundations teacher preparation course: 1) on teacher candidates' perceptions of participating in active learning in the college classroom, 2) on participants' acquisition of course content, and 3) on participants' later use of active…

  6. Lunar and Planetary Science XXXV: Engaging K-12 Educators, Students, and the General Public in Space Science Exploration (United States)


    The session "Engaging K-12 Educators, Students, and the General Public in Space Science Exploration" included the following reports:Training Informal Educators Provides Leverage for Space Science Education and Public Outreach; Teacher Leaders in Research Based Science Education: K-12 Teacher Retention, Renewal, and Involvement in Professional Science; Telling the Tale of Two Deserts: Teacher Training and Utilization of a New Standards-based, Bilingual E/PO Product; Lindstrom M. M. Tobola K. W. Stocco K. Henry M. Allen J. S. McReynolds J. Porter T. T. Veile J. Space Rocks Tell Their Secrets: Space Science Applications of Physics and Chemistry for High School and College Classes -- Update; Utilizing Mars Data in Education: Delivering Standards-based Content by Exposing Educators and Students to Authentic Scientific Opportunities and Curriculum; K. E. Little Elementary School and the Young Astronaut Robotics Program; Integrated Solar System Exploration Education and Public Outreach: Theme, Products and Activities; and Online Access to the NEAR Image Collection: A Resource for Educators and Scientists.

  7. Team Mentoring for Interdisciplinary Team Science: Lessons From K12 Scholars and Directors. (United States)

    Guise, Jeanne-Marie; Geller, Stacie; Regensteiner, Judith G; Raymond, Nancy; Nagel, Joan


    Mentoring is critical for academic success. As science transitions to a team science model, team mentoring may have advantages. The goal of this study was to understand the process, benefits, and challenges of team mentoring relating to career development and research. A national survey was conducted of Building Interdisciplinary Research Careers in Women's Health (BIRCWH) program directors-current and former scholars from 27 active National Institutes of Health (NIH)-funded BIRCWH NIH K12 programs-to characterize and understand the value and challenges of the team approach to mentoring. Quantitative data were analyzed descriptively, and qualitative data were analyzed thematically. Responses were received from 25/27 (93%) program directors, 78/108 (72%) current scholars, and 91/162 (56%) former scholars. Scholars reported that team mentoring was beneficial to their career development (152/169; 90%) and research (148/169; 88%). Reported advantages included a diversity of opinions, expanded networking, development of stronger study designs, and modeling of different career paths. Challenges included scheduling and managing conflicting opinions. Advice by directors offered to junior faculty entering team mentoring included the following: not to be intimidated by senior mentors, be willing to navigate conflicting advice, be proactive about scheduling and guiding discussions, have an open mind to different approaches, be explicit about expectations and mentors' roles (including importance of having a primary mentor to help navigate discussions), and meet in person as a team. These findings suggest that interdisciplinary/interprofessional team mentoring has many important advantages, but that skills are required to optimally utilize multiple perspectives.

  8. Blended learning in K-12 mathematics and science instruction -- An exploratory study (United States)

    Schmidt, Jason

    Blended learning has developed into a hot topic in education over the past several years. Flipped classrooms, online learning environments, and the use of technology to deliver educational content using rich media continue to garner national attention. While generally well accepted and researched in post-secondary education, not much research has focused on blended learning in elementary, middle, and high schools. This thesis is an exploratory study to begin to determine if students and teachers like blended learning and whether or not it affects the amount of time they spend in math and science. Standardized achievement test data were also analyzed to determine if blended learning had any effect on test scores. Based on student and teacher surveys, this population seems to like blended learning and to work more efficiently in this environment. There is no evidence from this study to support any effect on student achievement.

  9. The AGI-ASU-NASA Triad Program for K-12 Earth and Space Science Education (United States)

    Pacheco, H. A.; Semken, S. C.; Taylor, W.; Benbow, A. E.


    The NASA Triad program of the American Geological Institute (AGI) and Arizona State University School of Earth and Space Exploration (ASU SESE) is a three-part effort to promote Earth and space science literacy and STEM education at the national level, funded by NASA through a cooperative agreement starting in 2010. NASA Triad comprises (1) infusion of NASA STEM content into AGI's secondary Earth science curricula; (2) national lead teacher professional development workshops; and (3) an online professional development guide for teachers running NASA STEM workshops. The Triad collaboration draws on AGI's inquiry-based curriculum and teacher professional-development resources and workforce-building programs; ASU SESE's spectrum of research in Mars and Moon exploration, astrobiology, meteoritics, Earth systems, and cyberlearning; and direct access to NASA facilities and dynamic education resources. Triad milestones to date include integration of NASA resources into AGI's print and online curricula and two week-long, national-scale, teacher-leader professional development academies in Earth and space sciences presented at ASU Dietz Museum in Tempe and NASA Johnson Space Flight Center in Houston. Robust front-end and formative assessments of these program components, including content gains, teacher-perceived classroom relevance, teacher-cohort lesson development, and teacher workshop design, have been conducted. Quantitative and qualitative findings from these assessment activities have been applied to identify best and most effective practices, which will be disseminated nationally and globally through AGI and NASA channels.

  10. Earth system science K-12 scientist-student partnerships using paleontological materials (United States)

    Harnik, P. G.; Ross, R. M.; Chiment, J. J.; Sherpa, J. M.


    Reducing the discrepancy between the dynamic science that researchers experience and the static fact-driven science education in which k-12 students participate at school is an important component to national science education reform. Scientist-student partnerships (SSPs) involving whole classes in Earth systems research provide a solution to this problem, but existing models have often lacked rigorous scientific data quality control and/or evaluation of pedagogical effectiveness. The Paleontological Research Institution has been prototyping two SSPs with an eye toward establishing protocols to insure both scientific and educational quality of the partnership. Data quality analysis involves making statistical estimates of data accuracy and employing robust statistical techniques for answering essential questions with noisy data. Educational evaluation takes into account affective variables, such as student motivation and interest, and compares the relative pedagogical effectiveness of SSPs with more traditional hands-on activities. Paleontology is a natural subject for scientist-student partnerships because of its intrinsic appeal to the general public, and because its interdisciplinary content serves as a springboard for meeting science education standards across the physical and life sciences. The "Devonian Seas" SSP involves classes in identifying fossil taxa and assessing taphonomic characteristics from Devonian-aged Hamilton Group shales in Central New York. The scientific purpose of the project is to establish at high stratigraphic resolution the sequence of dysoxic biofacies composition, which will shed light on the sensitivity of epeiric sea communities to environmental (e.g., sea level) changes. The project is undertaken in upper elementary school and secondary school Earth science classes, and in some cases has involved field-based teacher training and collection of samples. Students in small teams collaborate to identify taxa within the samples, then

  11. Creating User-Friendly Tools for Data Analysis and Visualization in K-12 Classrooms: A Fortran Dinosaur Meets Generation Y (United States)

    Chambers, L. H.; Chaudhury, S.; Page, M. T.; Lankey, A. J.; Doughty, J.; Kern, Steven; Rogerson, Tina M.


    During the summer of 2007, as part of the second year of a NASA-funded project in partnership with Christopher Newport University called SPHERE (Students as Professionals Helping Educators Research the Earth), a group of undergraduate students spent 8 weeks in a research internship at or near NASA Langley Research Center. Three students from this group formed the Clouds group along with a NASA mentor (Chambers), and the brief addition of a local high school student fulfilling a mentorship requirement. The Clouds group was given the task of exploring and analyzing ground-based cloud observations obtained by K-12 students as part of the Students' Cloud Observations On-Line (S'COOL) Project, and the corresponding satellite data. This project began in 1997. The primary analysis tools developed for it were in FORTRAN, a computer language none of the students were familiar with. While they persevered through computer challenges and picky syntax, it eventually became obvious that this was not the most fruitful approach for a project aimed at motivating K-12 students to do their own data analysis. Thus, about halfway through the summer the group shifted its focus to more modern data analysis and visualization tools, namely spreadsheets and Google(tm) Earth. The result of their efforts, so far, is two different Excel spreadsheets and a Google(tm) Earth file. The spreadsheets are set up to allow participating classrooms to paste in a particular dataset of interest, using the standard S'COOL format, and easily perform a variety of analyses and comparisons of the ground cloud observation reports and their correspondence with the satellite data. This includes summarizing cloud occurrence and cloud cover statistics, and comparing cloud cover measurements from the two points of view. A visual classification tool is also provided to compare the cloud levels reported from the two viewpoints. This provides a statistical counterpart to the existing S'COOL data visualization tool

  12. The Effectiveness of Educational Technology Applications for Enhancing Mathematics Achievement in K-12 Classrooms: A Meta-Analysis. Best Evidence Encyclopedia (BEE) (United States)

    Cheung, Alan C. K.; Slavin, Robert E.


    The use of educational technology in K-12 classrooms has been gaining tremendous momentum across the country since the 1990s. Many school districts have been investing heavily in various types of technology, such as computers, mobile devices, internet access, and interactive whiteboards. Almost all public schools have access to the internet and…

  13. The Practical Application of E-Portfolios in K-12 Classrooms: An Exploration of Three Web 2.0 Tools by Three Teachers (United States)

    Karlin, Michael; Ozogul, Gamze; Miles, Stacy; Heide, Saul


    Portfolios used in K-12 classrooms give students the opportunity to collect, showcase, and reflect upon the work they have completed throughout a class or program. With the advent of the digital age, e-portfolios have allowed for this process to be conducted online through the use of Web 2.0 tools, offering a number of advantages and features that…

  14. The Astronomy and Space Science Concept Inventory: Assessment Instruments Aligned with the K-12 National Science Standards (United States)

    Sadler, Philip M.


    We report on the development of an item test bank and associated instruments based on those K-12 national standards which involve astronomy and space science. Utilizing hundreds of studies in the science education research literature on student misconceptions, we have constructed 211 unique items that measure the degree to which students abandon such ideas for accepted scientific views. Piloted nationally with 7599 students and their 88 teachers spanning grades 5-12, the items reveal a range of interesting results, particularly student difficulties in mastering the NRC Standards and AAAS Benchmarks. Teachers generally perform well on items covering the standards of the grade level at which they teach, exhibiting few misconceptions of their own. Teachers dramatically overestimate their students’ performance, perhaps because they are unaware of their students’ misconceptions. Examples are given showing how the developed instruments can be used to assess the effectiveness of instruction and to evaluate the impact of professional development activities for teachers.

  15. Ground Truth Studies - A hands-on environmental science program for students, grades K-12 (United States)

    Katzenberger, John; Chappell, Charles R.


    The paper discusses the background and the objectives of the Ground Truth Studies (GTSs), an activity-based teaching program which integrates local environmental studies with global change topics, utilizing remotely sensed earth imagery. Special attention is given to the five key concepts around which the GTS programs are organized, the pilot program, the initial pilot study evaluation, and the GTS Handbook. The GTS Handbook contains a primer on global change and remote sensing, aerial and satellite images, student activities, glossary, and an appendix of reference material. Also described is a K-12 teacher training model. International participation in the program is to be initiated during the 1992-1993 school year.

  16. Collaboration Between Astronomers at UT Austin and K-12 Teachers: Connecting the Experience of Observing and Research with the Classroom (United States)

    Finkelstein, Keely D.; Sneden, Christopher; Hemenway, Mary Kay; Preston, Sandra; EXES Teachers Associate Program


    McDonald Observatory has a long history of providing teacher professional development (PD), and recently we have developed a new workshop model for more advanced participants. By choosing a select group of middle and high school teachers from those previously involved in our past PD programs, we have created a joint workshop / observing run program for them. After traveling to the observatory, the teachers participate in an actual observing run with a research astronomer. The teachers are trained first-hand how to take observations, operate the telescope, set up the instrument, and monitor observing conditions. The teachers are fully put in the role of observer. They are also given background information before and during the workshop related to the science and data they are helping to collect. The teachers work in teams to both perform the nightly observations with an astronomer, but to also perform new interactive classroom activities with education staff, and use other telescopes on the mountain. This is a unique experience for teachers since it allows them to take the resources and experiences directly back to their classrooms and students. They can directly relate to their students what skills for specific careers in STEM fields are needed. Evaluation from these workshops shows that there is: increased content knowledge among participants, greater impact that will be passed on to their students, and an authentic research experience that can't be replicated in other PD settings. In addition, not only is this program beneficial to the teachers, but this group is benefit to the education program of McDonald Observatory. Building on an existing PD program (with a 16 year history) we have the opportunity to test out new products and new education endeavors with this devoted group of well-trained teachers before bringing them to wider teacher and student audiences. This program is currently supported by the NSF grant AST-1211585 (PI Sneden).

  17. Cycle for Science: An informal outreach program connecting K-12 students with renewable energy and physics through miniature 3D-printed, solar-powered bicycles (United States)

    Woods-Robinson, R.; Case, E.


    Engaging communities with renewable energy is key to fighting climate change. Cycle for Science, an innovative STEM outreach organization, has reached more than 3,000 K-12 students across the United States by bringing early-career female scientists into classrooms to teach basic physics and solar energy engineering through hands-on, DIY science activities. We designed a fleet of miniature, 3D-printed, solar-powered bicycles called "Sol Cycles" to use as teaching tools. Traveling by bicycle, Cycle for Science has brought them to rural and urban communities across the U.S. in two major efforts so far: one traversing the country (2015), and one through central California (2017). The program involves (1) introducing the scientists and why they value science, (2) running a skit to demonstrate how electrons and photons interact inside the solar panel, (3) assembling the Sol Cycles, (4) taking students outdoors to test the effects of variables (e.g. light intensity) on the Sol Cycles' movement, (5) and debriefing about the importance of renewable energy. In addition to physics and solar energy, the lessons teach the scientific process, provide tactile engagement with science, and introduce a platform to engage students with climate change impacts. By cycling to classrooms, we provide positive examples of low-impact transportation and a unique avenue for discussing climate action. It was important that this program extend beyond the trips, so the lesson and Sol Cycle design are open source to encourage teachers and students to play, change and improve the design, as well as incorporate new exercises (e.g. could you power the bicycle by wind?). Additionally, it has been permanently added to the XRaise Lending Library at Cornell University, so teachers across the world can implement the lesson. By sharing our project at AGU, we aim to connect with other scientists, educators, and concerned citizens about how to continue to bring renewable energy lessons into classrooms.

  18. One Step Closer to Mars with Aquaponics: Cultivating Citizen Science in K12 Schools (United States)

    Kolattukudy, Maria; Puranik, Niyati; Sane, Nishant; Bisht, Kritika; Saffat, Nabeeha; Gupta, Anika; McHugh, Anne; Detweiler, Angela; Bebout, Brad; Everroad, R. Craig


    The Microbial Ecology and Biogeochemistry Research Laboratory at NASA Ames Research Center focuses primarily on the nutrient cycling and diversity of complex microbial communities. NASA is interested in the composition and functioning of microbial mat communities as these processes fundamentally shape the form and function of these analogs for the earliest forms of life on Earth (3.6 billion years ago), and likely will on other planets as well. Aquaponics systems are supported by microbial communities who perform many complex ecosystem services, including cycling nitrogen. Microbes are integral to the stability and productivity of aquaponics systems, which are analogous to microbial communities in food production systems that are essential for building efficient life support systems for long-distance space travel. Students at Meadow Park Middle School created 10 parallel aquaponics systems and took temporal microbial samples to characterize whether any macro-ecology variables impacted or changed the microbial diversity of these systems. Students additionally created a website so that other classrooms can pursue similar projects in their own schools ( Our lab at NASA Ames has sequenced water samples from each of the 10 tanks at 3 timepoints using a MinION sequencer. MPMS students will be involved in the analysis of the bioinformatics data generated through this collaboration. Our ongoing collaboration aims to collect and analyze data in the classroom setting that has utility for research scientists, while involving students as collaborators in the research process.

  19. Math and Science Education for the California Workforce: It Starts with K-12 (United States)

    EdSource, 2008


    Workforce projections worldwide show a growing need for people with strong backgrounds in math and science. As the eighth largest economy in the world, California benefits particularly from enterprises in the "STEM" fields (science, technology, engineering, and mathematics). How well California's current public school students are…

  20. Connecting the Pioneers, Current Leaders and the Nature and History of Space Weather with K-12 Classrooms and the General Public (United States)

    Ng, C.; Thompson, B. J.; Cline, T.; Lewis, E.; Barbier, B.; Odenwald, S.; Spadaccini, J.; James, N.; Stephenson, B.; Davis, H. B.; Major, E. R.; Space Weather Living History


    The Space Weather Living History program will explore and share the breakthrough new science and captivating stories of space environments and space weather by interviewing space physics pioneers and leaders active from the International Geophysical Year (IGY) to the present. Our multi-mission project will capture, document and preserve the living history of space weather utilizing original historical materials (primary sources). The resulting products will allow us to tell the stories of those involved in interactive new media to address important STEM needs, inspire the next generation of explorers, and feature women as role models. The project is divided into several stages, and the first stage, which began in mid-2011, focuses on resource gathering. The goal is to capture not just anecdotes, but the careful analogies and insights of researchers and historians associated with the programs and events. The Space Weather Living History Program has a Scientific Advisory Board, and with the Board's input our team will determine the chronology, key researchers, events, missions and discoveries for interviews. Education activities will be designed to utilize autobiographies, newspapers, interviews, research reports, journal articles, conference proceedings, dissertations, websites, diaries, letters, and artworks. With the help of a multimedia firm, we will use some of these materials to develop an interactive timeline on the web, and as a downloadable application in a kiosk and on tablet computers. In summary, our project augments the existing historical records with education technologies, connect the pioneers, current leaders and the nature and history of space weather with K-12 classrooms and the general public, covering all areas of studies in Heliophysics. The project is supported by NASA award NNX11AJ61G.

  1. Diffusing Innovations: Adoption of Serious Educational Games by K-12 Science Teachers (United States)

    Vallett, David; Annetta, Leonard; Lamb, Richard; Bowling, Brandy


    Innovation is a term that has become widely used in education; especially as it pertains to technology infusion. Applying the corporate theory of diffusing innovation to educational practice is an innovation in itself. This mixed-methods study examined 38 teachers in a science educational gaming professional development program that provided…

  2. Computer Science in K-12 School Curricula of the 2lst Century: Why, What and When? (United States)

    Webb, Mary; Davis, Niki; Bell, Tim; Katz, Yaacov J.; Reynolds, Nicholas; Chambers, Dianne P.; Syslo, Maciej M.


    In this paper we have examined the position and roles of Computer Science in curricula in the light of recent calls for curriculum change and we have proposed principles and issues to consider in curriculum design as well as identifying priority areas for further research. The paper is based on discussions within and beyond the International…

  3. CAREER Educational Outreach: Inquiry-based Atmospheric Science Lessons for K-12 students (United States)

    Courville, Z.; Carbaugh, S.; Defrancis, G.; Donegan, R.; Brown, C.; Perovich, D. K.; Richter-Menge, J.


    Climate Comics is a collaborative outreach effort between the Montshire Museum of Science, in Norwich, VT, the Cold Regions Research and Engineering Laboratory (CRREL) research staff, and freelance artist and recent graduate of the Center for Cartoon Studies in White River Junction, VT, Sam Carbaugh. The project involves the cartoonist, the education staff from the museum, and researchers from CRREL creating a series of comic books with polar science and research themes, including sea ice monitoring, sea ice albedo, ice cores, extreme microbial activity, and stories and the process of fieldwork. The aim of the comic series is to provide meaningful science information in a comic-format that is both informative and fun, while highlighting current polar research work done at the lab. The education staff at the Montshire Museum develops and provides a series of hands-on, inquiry-based activity descriptions to complement each comic book, and CRREL researchers provide science background information and reiterative feedback about the comic books as they are being developed. Here, we present the motivation for using the comic-book medium to present polar research topics, the process involved in creating the comics, some unique features of the series, and the finished comic books themselves. Cartoon illustrating ways snow pack can be used to determine past climate information.

  4. Extending the Pathway: Building on a National Science Foundation Workforce Development Project for Underserved k-12 Students (United States)

    Slattery, W.; Smith, T.


    With new career openings in the geosciences expected and a large number of presently employed geoscientists retiring in the next decade there is a critical need for a new cadre of geoscientists to fill these positions. A project funded by the National Science Foundation titled K-12 Students, Teachers, Parents, Administrators and Higher Education Faculty: Partners Helping Rural Disadvantaged Students Stay on the Pathway to a Geoscience Career involving Wright State University and the Ripley, Lewis, Union, Huntington k-12 school district in Appalachian Ohio took led to dozens of seventh and eighth grade students traveling to Sandy Hook, New Jersey for a one week field experience to study oceanography with staff of the New Jersey Sea Grant Consortium. Teachers, parent chaperones, administrators and university faculty accompanied the students in the field. Teachers worked alongside their students in targeted professional development during the weeklong field experience. During the two academic years of the project, both middle school and high school teachers received professional development in Earth system science so that all students, not just those that were on the summer field experience could receive enhanced science learning. All ninth grade high school students were given the opportunity to take a high school/college dual credit Earth system science course. Community outreach provided widespread knowledge of the project and interest among parents to have their children participate. In addition, ninth grade students raised money themselves to fund a trip to the International Field Studies Forfar Field Station on Andros Island, Bahamas to study a tropical aquatic system. Students who before this project had never traveled outside of Ohio are currently discussing ways that they can continue on the pathway to a geoscience career by applying for internships for the summer between their junior and senior years. These are positive steps towards taking charge of their

  5. `INCLUDING' Partnerships to Build Authentic Research Into K-12 Science Education (United States)

    Turrin, M.; Lev, E.; Newton, R.; Xu, C.


    Opportunities for authentic research experiences have been shown effective for recruiting and retaining students in STEM fields. Meaningful research experiences entail significant time in project design, modeling ethical practice, providing training, instruction, and ongoing guidance. We propose that in order to be sustainable, a new instructional paradigm is needed, one that shifts from being top-weighted in instruction to a distributed weight model. This model relies on partnerships where everyone has buy-in and reaps rewards, establishing broadened networks for support, and adjusting the mentoring model. We use our successful Secondary School Field Research Program as a model for this new paradigm. For over a decade this program has provided authentic geoscience field research for an expanding group of predominantly inner city high school youth from communities underrepresented in the sciences. The program has shifted the balance with returning participants now serving as undergraduate mentors for the high school student `researchers', providing much of the ongoing training, instruction, guidance and feedback needed. But in order to be sustainable and impactful we need to broaden our base. A recent NSF-INCLUDES pilot project has allowed us to expand this model, linking schools, informal education non-profits, other academic institutions, community partners and private funding agencies into geographically organized `clusters'. Starting with a tiered mentoring model with scientists as consultants, teachers as team members, undergraduates as team leaders and high school students as researchers, each cluster will customize its program to reflect the needs and strengths of the team. To be successful each organization must identify how the program fits their organizational goals, the resources they can contribute and what they need back. Widening the partnership base spreads institutional commitments for research scientists, research locations and lab space

  6. Exploring Pre-Service Teachers' Beliefs about Using Web 2.0 Technologies in K-12 Classroom (United States)

    Sadaf, Ayesha; Newby, Timothy J.; Ertmer, Peggy A.


    This qualitative study explored pre-service teachers' behavioral, normative, and control beliefs regarding their intentions to use Web 2.0 technologies in their future classrooms. The Theory of Planned Behavior (TPB) was used as the theoretical framework (Ajzen, 1991) to understand these beliefs and pre-service teachers' intentions for why they…

  7. A Library approach to establish an Educational Data Curation Framework (EDCF) that supports K-12 data science sustainability (United States)

    Branch, B. D.; Wegner, K.; Smith, S.; Schulze, D. G.; Merwade, V.; Jung, J.; Bessenbacher, A.


    It has been the tradition of the libraries to support literacy. Now in the realm of Executive Order, Making Open and Machine Readable the New Default for Government Information, May 9, 2013, the library has the responsibility to support geospatial data, big data, earth science data or cyber infrastructure data that may support STEM for educational pipeline stimulation. (Such information can be found at Provided is an Educational Data Curation Framework (EDCF) that has been initiated in Purdue research, geospatial data service engagement and outreach endeavors for future consideration and application to augment such data science and climate literacy needs of future global citizens. In addition, this endorsement of this framework by the GLOBE program may facilitate further EDCF implementations, discussion points and prototypes for libraries. In addition, the ECDF will support teacher-led, placed-based and large scale climate or earth science learning systems where such knowledge transfer of climate or earth science data is effectively transferred from higher education research of cyberinfrastructure use such as, NOAA or NASA, to K-12 teachers and school systems. The purpose of this effort is to establish best practices for sustainable K-12 data science delivery system or GLOBE-provided system ( where libraries manage the data curation and data appropriateness as data reference experts for such digital data. Here, the Purdue University Libraries' GIS department works to support soils, LIDAR and water science data experiences to support teacher training for an EDCF development effort. Lastly, it should be noted that the interdisciplinary collaboration and demonstration of library supported outreach partners and national organizations such the GLOBE program may best foster EDCF development. This trend in data

  8. Role of Public Outreach in the University Science Mission: Publishing K-12 Curriculum, Organizing Tours, and Other Methods of Engagement (United States)

    Dittrich, T. M.


    Much attention has been devoted in recent years to the importance of Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math (STEM) education in K-12 curriculum for developing a capable workforce. Equally important is the role of the voting public in understanding STEM-related issues that impact public policy debates such as the potential impacts of climate change, hydraulic fracturing in oil and gas exploration, mining impacts on water quality, and science funding. Since voted officials have a major impact on the future of these policies, it is imperative that the general public have an understanding of the basic science behind these issues. By engaging with the public in a more fundamental way, university students can play an important role in educating the public while at the same time enhancing their communication skills and gaining valuable teaching experience. I will talk about my own experiences in (1) evaluating and publishing water chemistry and hazardous waste cleanup curriculum on the K-12 engineering platform, (2) organizing public tours of water and energy sites (e.g., abandoned mine sites, coal power plants, wastewater treatment plants, hazardous waste treatment facilities), and (3) other outreach and communication activities including public education of environmental issues through consultations with customers of a landscaping/lawn mowing company. The main focus of this presentation will be the role that graduate students can play in engaging and educating their local community and lessons learned from community projects (Dittrich, 2014; 2012; 2011). References: Dittrich, T.M. 2014. Adventures in STEM: Lessons in water chemistry from elementary school to graduate school. Abstract ED13E-07 presented at 2014 Fall Meeting, AGU, San Francisco, Calif., 15-19 Dec. Dittrich, T.M. 2012. Collaboration between environmental water chemistry students and hazardous waste treatment specialists on the University of Colorado-Boulder campus. Abstract ED53C

  9. Integrating NASA Dryden Research Endeavors into the Teaching-Learning of Mathematics in the K-12 Classroom via the WWW (United States)

    Ward, Robin A.


    The primary goal of this project was to continue populating the currently existing web site developed in 1998 in conjunction with the NASA Dryden Flight Research Center and California Polytechnic State University, with more mathematics lesson plans and activities that K-12 teachers, students, home-schoolers, and parents could access. All of the activities, while demonstrating some mathematical topic, also showcase the research endeavors of the NASA Dryden Flight Research Center. The website is located at: The secondary goal of this project was to share the web-based activities with educators at various conferences and workshops. To address the primary goal of this project, over the past year, several new activities were posted on the web site and some of the existing activities were enhanced to contain more video clips, photos, and materials for teachers. To address the project's secondary goal, the web-based activities were showcased at several conferences and workshops. Additionally, in order to measure and assess the outreach impact of the web site, a link to the web site was established in April 2001, which allowed for the collection of traffic statistics against the web site (such as the domains of visitors, the frequency of visitors to this web site, etc.) Provided is a description of some of the newly created activities posted on the web site during the project period of 2001-2002, followed by a description of the conferences and workshops at which some of the web-based activities were showcased. Next is a brief summary of the web site's traffic statistics demonstrating its worldwide educational impact, followed by a listing of some of the awards and accolades the web site has received.

  10. ESSEA as an Enhancement to K-12 Earth Systems Science Efforts at San José State University (United States)

    Messina, P.; Metzger, E. P.; Sedlock, R. L.


    San José State University's Geology Department has implemented and maintained a two-fold approach to teacher education efforts. Both pre-service and in-service populations have been participants in a wide variety of content-area enrichment, training, and professional development endeavors. Spearheading these initiatives is the Bay Area Earth Science Institute (BAESI); organized in 1990, this program has served more than 1,000 teachers in weekend- and summer-workshops, and field trips. It sustains a network of Bay Area teachers via its Website (, newsletter, and allows teachers to borrow classroom-pertinent materials through the Earth Science Resource Center. The Department has developed a course offering in Earth Systems Science (Geology 103), which targets pre-service teachers within SJSU's multiple-subject credential program. The curriculum satisfies California subject matter competency requirements in the geosciences, and infuses pedagogy into the syllabus. Course activities are intended for pre-service and in-service teachers' adaptation in their own classrooms. The course has been enhanced by two SJSU-NASA collaborations (Project ALERT and the Sun-Earth Connection Education Forum), which have facilitated incorporation of NASA data, imagery, and curricular materials. SJSU's M.A. in Natural Science, a combined effort of the Departments of Geology, Biology, and Program in Science Education, is designed to meet the multi-disciplinary needs of single-subject credential science teachers by providing a flexible, individually-tailored curriculum that combines science course work with a science education project. Several BAESI teachers have extended their Earth science knowledge and teaching skills through such projects as field guides to local sites of geological interest; lab-based modules for teaching about earthquakes, rocks and minerals, water quality, and weather; and interactive online materials for students and teachers of science. In

  11. Some Reflections on "Going beyond the Consensus View" of the Nature of Science in K-12 Science Education (United States)

    Berkovitz, Joseph


    Hodson and Wong (2017, this issue) argue that, though the nature of science (NOS) is now an established focus of school science education and a key element in defining scientific literacy, "the consensus view" of NOS misrepresents contemporary scientific practice. They then propose a number of alternative approaches to science curriculum…

  12. Improving Climate Literacy Using The Ice Sheet System Model (ISSM): A Prototype Virtual Ice Sheet Laboratory For Use In K-12 Classrooms (United States)

    Halkides, D. J.; Larour, E. Y.; Perez, G.; Petrie, K.; Nguyen, L.


    Statistics indicate that most Americans learn what they will know about science within the confines of our public K-12 education system and the media. Next Generation Science Standards (NGSS) aim to remedy science illiteracy and provide guidelines to exceed the Common Core State Standards that most U.S. state governments have adopted, by integrating disciplinary cores with crosscutting ideas and real life practices. In this vein, we present a prototype ';Virtual Ice Sheet Laboratory' (I-Lab), geared to K-12 students, educators and interested members of the general public. I-Lab will allow users to perform experiments using a state-of-the-art dynamical ice sheet model and provide detailed downloadable lesson plans, which incorporate this model and are consistent with NGSS Physical Science criteria for different grade bands (K-2, 3-5, 6-8, and 9-12). The ultimate goal of this website is to improve public climate science literacy, especially in regards to the crucial role of the polar ice sheets in Earth's climate and sea level. The model used will be the Ice Sheet System Model (ISSM), an ice flow model developed at NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory and UC Irvine, that simulates the near-term evolution of polar ice sheets (Greenland and Antarctica) and includes high spatial resolution capabilities and data assimilation to produce realistic simulations of ice sheet dynamics at the continental scale. Open sourced since 2011, ISSM is used in cutting edge cryosphere research around the globe. Thru I-Lab, students will be able to access ISSM using a simple, online graphical interface that can be launched from a web browser on a computer, tablet or smart phone. The interface will allow users to select different climate conditions and watch how the polar ice sheets evolve in time under those conditions. Lesson contents will include links to background material and activities that teach observation recording, concept articulation, hypothesis formulation and testing, and

  13. K-12 Students' Perceptions of Scientists: Finding a Valid Measurement and Exploring Whether Exposure to Scientists Makes an Impact (United States)

    Hillman, Susan J.; Bloodsworth, Kylie H.; Tilburg, Charles E.; Zeeman, Stephan I.; List, Henrietta E.


    This study was launched from a National Science Foundation GK-12 grant in which graduate fellows in Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics (STEM) are placed in classrooms to engage K-12 students in STEM activities. The investigation explored whether the STEM Fellows' presence impacted the K-12 students' stereotypical image of a…

  14. Science beyond the Classroom Boundaries (United States)

    Feasey, Rosemary; Bianchi, Lynne


    There have been many years of innovation in primary science education. Surprisingly, however, most of this has taken place within the confines of the classroom. What primary science has not yet done with universal success is step outside the classroom boundaries to use the school grounds for teaching and learning across all aspects of the science…

  15. K-12 Education (United States)

    products laboratories publications nisee b.i.p. members education FAQs links education Education Program Internships K-12 Education Contact the PEER Education Program PEER's Educational Affiliates Student Design Competition Student Leadership Council Classes and Other Educational Activities Site Map Search K-12 Education

  16. Connecting Cultures & Classrooms. K-12 Curriculum Guide: Language Arts, Science, Social Studies. Indian Education for All (United States)

    Fox, Sandra J., Ed.


    This curriculum guide is but one of the resources that the Montana Office of Public Instruction is providing to help teachers implement Indian Education for All. The philosophy of this document promotes the use of Indian literature as an instructional tool. There are no textbooks presently for including aspects of Montana Indian cultures into the…

  17. Learning Science beyond the Classroom. (United States)

    Ramey-Gassert, Linda


    Examines a cross-section of craft knowledge and research-based literature of science learning beyond the classroom. Describes informal science education programs, and discusses implications for science teaching, focusing on the importance of informal science learning for children and in-service and preservice teachers. Proposes a model for…

  18. An Exploration of the Pay Levels Needed to Attract Students with Mathematics, Science and Technology Skills to a Career in K-12 Teaching

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Anthony Milanowski


    Full Text Available In an exploratory study (Note 1 of the role of salary level and other factors in motivating undergraduate math, science, and technology majors to consider a career as a K-12 teacher, the salary level students said would motivate them to consider a career in teaching was related to the salary expected in their chosen non-teaching occupation, but not to three of the Big 5 personality dimensions of extroversion, agreeableness, and openness, nor concern for others or career risk aversion. An annual starting salary 45% above the local average would attract 48% of the sophomore students and 37% of the juniors. Focus group results suggested that low pay was an important reason for not considering K-12 teaching, but that perceived job demands and abilities and interests were also important reasons for not being attracted to a teaching career.

  19. Inspiring the Next Generation: Astronomy Catalyzes K12 STEM Education (United States)

    Borders, Kareen; Thaller, Michelle; Winglee, Robert; Borders, Kyla


    K-12 educators need effective and relevant astronomy professional development. NASA's Mission Science provides innovative and accessible opportunities for K-12 teachers. Science questions involve scale and distance, including Moon/Earth scale, solar system scale, and distance of objects in the universe. Teachers can gain an understanding of basic telescopes, the history of telescopes, ground and satellite based telescopes, and models of JWST Telescope. An in-depth explanation of JWST and Spitzer telescopes gave participants background knowledge for infrared astronomy observations. During teacher training, we taught the electromagnetic spectrum through interactive stations. The stations included an overview via lecture and power point, the use of ultraviolet beads to determine ultraviolet exposure, the study of lenticulars and diagramming of infrared data, looking at visible light through diffraction glasses and diagramming the data, protocols for using astronomy based research in the classroom, and infrared thermometers to compare environmental conditions around the observatory. An overview of LIDAR physics was followed up by a simulated LIDAR mapping of the topography of Mars.We will outline specific steps for K-12 infrared astronomy professional development, provide data demonstrating the impact of the above professional development on educator understanding and classroom use, and detail future plans for additional K-12 professional development.Funding was provided by Washington STEM, NASA, and the Washington Space Grant Consortium.

  20. An Exploration of the Pay Levels Needed to Attract Students with Mathematics, Science and Technology Skills to a Career in K-12 Teaching


    Anthony Milanowski


    In an exploratory study (Note 1) of the role of salary level and other factors in motivating undergraduate math, science, and technology majors to consider a career as a K-12 teacher, the salary level students said would motivate them to consider a career in teaching was related to the salary expected in their chosen non-teaching occupation, but not to three of the Big 5 personality dimensions of extroversion, agreeableness, and openness, nor concern for others or career risk aversion. An ann...

  1. Science literacy programs for K-12 teachers, public officials, news media and the public. Final report, 1994--1997

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)



    On 12 July 94, The Institute for Science and Society received the above titled grant for $300,000 with an additional $323,000 awarded 14 August 95. The Institute completed the programs provided by the Department of Energy grant on 28 February 97. These programs for teachers, public officials, news media and the public will continue through 31 December 97 with funding from other sources. The Institute is a non-profit 501-c-3 corporation. It was organized {open_quotes}... to help increase science literacy in all segments of the population and contribute to a more rational atmosphere than now exists for the public consideration of societal issues involving science and technology, both regional and national.{close_quotes} Institute personnel include the Honorable Mike McCormack, Director; Joan Harris, Associate Director; Kim Freier, Ed.D, Program Manager; and Sharon Hunt, Executive Secretary.

  2. Modeling-Oriented Assessment in K-12 Science Education: A Synthesis of Research from 1980 to 2013 and New Directions (United States)

    Namdar, Bahadir; Shen, Ji


    Scientific modeling has been advocated as one of the core practices in recent science education policy initiatives. In modeling-based instruction (MBI), students use, construct, and revise models to gain scientific knowledge and inquiry skills. Oftentimes, the benefits of MBI have been documented using assessments targeting students' conceptual…

  3. Educating for Social Justice: Perspectives from Library and Information Science and Collaboration with K-12 Social Studies Educators (United States)

    Naidoo, Jamie Campbell; Sweeney, Miriam E.


    Library and Information Science (LIS) as a discipline is guided by core values that emphasize equal access to information, freedom of expression, democracy, and education. Importantly, diversity and social responsibility are specifically called out as foundations of the profession (American Library Association, 2004). Following from this, there…

  4. Using a Non-Equivalent Groups Quasi Experimental Design to Reduce Internal Validity Threats to Claims Made by Math and Science K-12 Teacher Recruitment Programs (United States)

    Moin, Laura


    The American Recovery and Reinvestment Act national policy established in 2009 calls for ``meaningful data'' that demonstrate educational improvements, including the recruitment of high-quality teachers. The scant data available and the low credibility of many K-12 math/science teacher recruitment program evaluations remain the major barriers for the identification of effective recruitment strategies. Our study presents a methodology to better evaluate the impact of recruitment programs on increasing participants' interest in teaching careers. The research capitalizes on the use of several control groups and presents a non-equivalent groups quasi-experimental evaluation design that produces program effect claims with higher internal validity than claims generated by current program evaluations. With this method that compares responses to a teaching career interest question from undergraduates all along a continuum from just attending an information session to participating (or not) in the recruitment program, we were able to compare the effect of the program in increasing participants' interest in teaching careers versus the evolution of the same interest but in the absence of the program. We were also able to make suggestions for program improvement and further research. While our findings may not apply to other K-12 math/science teacher recruitment programs, we believe that our evaluation methodology does and will contribute to conduct stronger program evaluations. In so doing, our evaluation procedure may inform recruitment program designers and policy makers.

  5. Defining the requisite knowledge for providers of in-service professional development for K--12 teachers of science: Refining the construct (United States)

    Tucker, Deborah L.

    Purpose. The purpose of this grounded theory study was to refine, using a Delphi study process, the four categories of the theoretical model of the comprehensive knowledge base required by providers of professional development for K-12 teachers of science generated from a review of the literature. Methodology. This grounded theory study used data collected through a modified Delphi technique and interviews to refine and validate the literature-based knowledge base required by providers of professional development for K-12 teachers of science. Twenty-three participants, experts in the fields of science education, how people learn, instructional and assessment strategies, and learning contexts, responded to the study's questions. Findings. By "densifying" the four categories of the knowledge base, this study determined the causal conditions (the science subject matter knowledge), the intervening conditions (how people learn), the strategies (the effective instructional and assessment strategies), and the context (the context and culture of formal learning environments) surrounding the science professional development process. Eight sections were added to the literature-based knowledge base; the final model comprised of forty-nine sections. The average length of the operational definitions increased nearly threefold and the number of citations per operational definition increased more than twofold. Conclusions. A four-category comprehensive model that can serve as the foundation for the knowledge base required by science professional developers now exists. Subject matter knowledge includes science concepts, inquiry, the nature of science, and scientific habits of mind; how people learn includes the principles of learning, active learning, andragogy, variations in learners, neuroscience and cognitive science, and change theory; effective instructional and assessment strategies include constructivist learning and inquiry-based teaching, differentiation of instruction

  6. The Influence of Content Filtering and Teachers' Self-Efficacy on the Level of Use of the Internet in K-12 Classrooms (United States)

    Goines, Erika Kristine Kelly


    As the ideas behind traditional learning change the content delivery methods used by teachers should adapt as well. Teachers are being asked to find ways of introducing and relating the material to students in the web world that many digital natives live in outside of the classroom walls. To prevent the misuse of Internet inside of the classroom…

  7. Frameworks Shaping an Online Professional Development Program for K-12 Teachers of ELLs: Toward Supporting the Sharing of Ideas for Empowering Classroom Teachers Online (United States)

    Smith, Sedef Uzuner


    In efforts to maintain America's global competitiveness in the knowledge-based economy, teacher professional development has moved to center stage. With increasing numbers of English language learners (ELLs) in U.S. schools, several states have adopted mandatory professional development for classroom teachers to equip them with the knowledge…

  8. Understanding children's science identity through classroom interactions (United States)

    Kim, Mijung


    Research shows that various stereotypes about science and science learning, such as science being filled with hard and dry content, laboratory experiments, and male-dominated work environments, have resulted in feelings of distance from science in students' minds. This study explores children's experiences of science learning and science identity. It asks how children conceive of doing science like scientists and how they develop views of science beyond the stereotypes. This study employs positioning theory to examine how children and their teacher position themselves in science learning contexts and develop science identity through classroom interactions. Fifteen students in grades 4-6 science classrooms in Western Canada participated in this study. Classroom activities and interactions were videotaped, transcribed, and analysed to examine how the teacher and students position each other as scientists in the classroom. A descriptive explanatory case analysis showed how the teacher's positioning acted to develop students' science identity with responsibilities of knowledge seeking, perseverance, and excitement about science.


    Valla, Jeffrey M; Williams, Wendy M


    The under-representation of women and ethnic minorities in Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics (STEM) education and professions has resulted in a loss of human capital for the US scientific workforce and spurred the development of myriad STEM educational intervention programs. Increased allocation of resources to such programs begs for a critical, prescriptive, evidence-based review that will enable researchers to develop optimal interventions and administrators to maximize investments. We begin by providing a theoretical backdrop for K-12 STEM programs by reviewing current data on under-representation and developmental research describing individual-level social factors undergirding these data. Next, we review prototypical designs of these programs, highlighting specific programs in the literature as examples of program structures and components currently in use. We then evaluate these interventions in terms of overall effectiveness, as a function of how well they address age-, ethnicity-, or gender-specific factors, suggesting improvements in program design based on these critiques. Finally, program evaluation methods are briefly reviewed and discussed in terms of how their empirical soundness can either enable or limit our ability to delineate effective program components. "Now more than ever, the nation's changing demographics demand that we include all of our citizens in science and engineering education and careers. For the U.S. to benefit from the diverse talents of all its citizens, we must grow the pipeline of qualified, underrepresented minority engineers and scientists to fill positions in industry and academia."-Irving P. McPhail..

  10. The Iowa K-12 Climate Science Education Initiative: a comprehensive approach to meeting in-service teachers' stated needs for teaching climate literacy with NGSS (United States)

    Stanier, C. O.; Spak, S.; Neal, T. A.; Herder, S.; Malek, A.; Miller, Z.


    The Iowa Board of Education voted unanimously in 2015 to adopt NGSS performance standards. The CGRER - College of Education Iowa K-12 Climate Science Education Initiative was established in 2016 to work directly with Iowa inservice teachers to provide what teachers need most to teach climate literacy and climate science content through investigational learning aligned with NGSS. Here we present teachers' requests for teaching climate with NGSS, and an approach to provide resources for place-based authentic inquiry on climate, developed, tested, and refined in partnership with inservice and preservice teachers. A survey of inservice middle school and high school science teachers was conducted at the 2016 Iowa Council of Teachers of Mathematics/Iowa Academy of Sciences - Iowa Science Teaching Section Fall Conference and online in fall 2016. Participants (n=383) were asked about their prior experience and education, the resources they use and need, their level of comfort in teaching climate science, perceived barriers, and how they address potential controversy. Teachers indicated preference for professional development on climate content and complete curricula packaged with lessons and interactive models aligned to Iowa standards, as well as training on instructional strategies to enhance students' ability to interpret scientific evidence. We identify trends in responses by teaching experience, climate content knowledge and its source, grade level, and urban and rural districts. Less than 20% of respondents reported controversy or negativity in teaching climate to date, and a majority were comfortable teaching climate science and climate change, with equal confidence in teaching climate and other STEM content through investigational activities. We present an approach and materials to meet these stated needs, created and tested in collaboration with Iowa teachers. We combine professional development and modular curricula with bundled standards, concepts, models, data

  11. A New Era of Science Education: Science Teachers' Perceptions and Classroom Practices of Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics (STEM) Integration (United States)

    Wang, Hui-Hui

    Quality STEM education is the key in helping the United States maintain its lead in global competitiveness and in preparing for new economic and security challenges in the future. Policymakers and professional societies emphasize STEM education by legislating the addition of engineering standards to the existing science standards. On the other hand, the nature of the work of most STEM professionals requires people to actively apply STEM knowledge to make critical decisions. Therefore, using an integrated approach to teaching STEM in K-12 is expected. However, science teachers encounter numerous difficulties in adapting the new STEM integration reforms into their classrooms because of a lack of knowledge and experience. Therefore, high quality STEM integration professional development programs are an urgent necessity. In order to provide these high quality programs, it is important to understand teachers' perceptions and classroom practices regarding STEM integration. A multiple-case study was conducted with five secondary school science teachers in order to gain a better understanding of teachers' perceptions and classroom practices in using STEM integration. This study addresses the following research questions: 1) What are secondary school science teachers' practices of STEM integration? 2) What are secondary science teachers' overall perceptions of STEM integration? and 3) What is the connection between secondary science teachers' perceptions and understanding of STEM integration with their classroom practices? This research aims to explore teachers' perceptions and classroom practices in order to set up the baseline for STEM integration and also to determine STEM integration professional development best practices in science education. Findings from the study provide critical data for making informed decision about the direction for STEM integration in science education in K-12.

  12. Earth Exploration Toolbook Workshops: Web-Conferencing and Teleconferencing Professional Development Bringing Earth Science Data Analysis and Visualization Tools to K-12 Teachers and Students (United States)

    McAuliffe, C.; Ledley, T.


    The Earth Exploration Toolbook (EET) Workshops Project provides a mechanism for teachers and students to have successful data-using educational experiences. In this professional development project, teachers learn to use National Science Digital Library (NSDL), the Digital Library for Earth System Education (DLESE), and an Earth Exploration Toolbook (EET) chapter. In an EET Data Analysis Workshop, participants walk through an Earth Exploration Toolbook (EET) chapter, learning basic data analysis techniques and discussing ways to use Earth science datasets and analysis tools with their students. We have offered twenty-eight Data Analysis Workshops since the project began. The total number of participants in the twenty-eight workshops to date is three hundred eleven, which reflects one hundred eighty different teachers participating in one or more workshops. Our workshops reach middle and high school teachers across the United States at schools with lower socioeconomic levels and at schools with large numbers of minority students. Our participants come from thirty-eight different states including Alaska, Maine, Florida, Montana, and many others. Eighty-six percent of our participants are classroom teachers. The remaining fourteen percent are staff development specialists, university faculty, or outreach educators working with teachers. Of the classroom teachers, one third are middle school teachers (grades 6 to 8) and two thirds are high school teachers (grades 9 to 12.) Thirty-four percent of our participants come from schools where minority populations are the majority make up of the school. Twenty-five percent of our participants are at schools where the majority of the students receive free or reduced cost lunches. Our professional development workshops are helping to raise teachers' awareness of both the Digital Library for Earth System Education (DLESE) and the National Science Digital Library (NSDL). Prior to taking one of our workshops, forty-two percent of

  13. Exploring alternative assessment strategies in science classrooms

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Michèle Stears


    Full Text Available The knowledge children bring to the classroom or construct in the classroom may find expression in a variety of activities and is often not measurable with the traditional assessment instruments used in science classrooms. Different approaches to assessment are required to accommodate the various ways in which learners construct knowledge in social settings. In our research we attempted to determine the types of outcomes achieved in a Grade 6 classroom where alternative strategies such as interactive assessments were implemented. Analyses of these outcomes show that the learners learned much more than the tests indicate, although what they learnt was not necessarily science. The implications for assessment are clear: strategies that assess knowledge of science concepts, as well as assessment of outcomes other than science outcomes, are required if we wish to gain a holistic understanding of the learning that occurs in science classrooms.

  14. From Laboratories to Classrooms: Involving Scientists in Science Education (United States)

    DeVore, E. K.


    Scientists play a key role in science education: the adventure of making new discoveries excites and motivates students. Yet, American science education test scores lag behind those of other industrial countries, and the call for better science, math and technology education is widespread. Thus, improving American science, math and technological literacy is a major educational goal for the NSF and NASA. Today, funding for research often carries a requirement that the scientist be actively involved in education and public outreach (E/PO) to enhance the science literacy of students, teachers and citizens. How can scientists contribute effectively to E/PO? What roles can scientists take in E/PO? And, how can this be balanced with research requirements and timelines? This talk will focus on these questions, with examples drawn from the author's projects that involve scientists in working with K-12 teacher professional development and with K-12 curriculum development and implementation. Experiences and strategies for teacher professional development in the research environment will be discussed in the context of NASA's airborne astronomy education and outreach projects: the Flight Opportunities for Science Teacher EnRichment project and the future Airborne Ambassadors Program for NASA's Stratospheric Observatory for Infrared Astronomy (SOFIA). Effective partnerships with scientists as content experts in the development of new classroom materials will be described with examples from the SETI Institute's Life in the Universe curriculum series for grades 3-9, and Voyages Through Time, an integrated high school science course. The author and the SETI Institute wish to acknowledge funding as well as scientific and technical support from the National Science Foundation, the National Aeronautics and Space Administration, the Hewlett Packard Company, the Foundation for Microbiology, and the Combined Federated Charities.

  15. Females and STEM: Determining the K-12 Experiences that Influenced Women to Pursue STEM Fields (United States)

    Petersen, Anne Marie

    In the United States, careers in the fields of Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics (STEM) are increasing yet there are not enough trained personnel to meet this demand. In addition, of those that seek to pursue STEM fields in the United States, only 26% are female. In order to increase the number of women seeking STEM based bachelor's degrees, K-12 education must provide a foundation that prepares students for entry into these fields. The purpose of this phenomenological study was to determine the perceived K-12 experiences that influenced females to pursue a STEM field. Twelve college juniors or seniors seeking a degree in Biology, Mathematics, or Physics were interviewed concerning their K-12 experiences. These interviews were analyzed and six themes emerged. Teacher passion and classroom characteristics such as incorporating challenging activities played a significant role in the females' decisions to enter STEM fields. Extra-curricular activities such as volunteer and mentor opportunities and the females' need to benefit others also influenced females in their career choice. Both the formal (within the school) and informal (outside of the traditional classroom) pipeline opportunities that these students encountered helped develop a sense of self-efficacy in science and mathematics; this self-efficacy enabled them to persist in pursuing these career fields. Several participants cited barriers that they encountered in K-12 education, but these barriers were primarily internal as they struggled with overcoming self-imposed obstacles in learning and being competitive in the mathematics and science classrooms. The experiences from these female students can be used by K-12 educators to prepare and encourage current female students to enter STEM occupations.

  16. Teaching and Learning in the Mixed-Reality Science Classroom (United States)

    Tolentino, Lisa; Birchfield, David; Megowan-Romanowicz, Colleen; Johnson-Glenberg, Mina C.; Kelliher, Aisling; Martinez, Christopher


    As emerging technologies become increasingly inexpensive and robust, there is an exciting opportunity to move beyond general purpose computing platforms to realize a new generation of K-12 technology-based learning environments. Mixed-reality technologies integrate real world components with interactive digital media to offer new potential to combine best practices in traditional science learning with the powerful affordances of audio/visual simulations. This paper introduces the realization of a learning environment called SMALLab, the Situated Multimedia Arts Learning Laboratory. We present a recent teaching experiment for high school chemistry students. A mix of qualitative and quantitative research documents the efficacy of this approach for students and teachers. We conclude that mixed-reality learning is viable in mainstream high school classrooms and that students can achieve significant learning gains when this technology is co-designed with educators.

  17. Laboratory Safety Guide for Arkansas K-12 Schools. (United States)

    Arkansas State Dept. of Education, Little Rock.

    This document presents laboratory safety rules for Arkansas K-12 schools which were developed by the Arkansas Science Teachers Association (ASTA) and the Arkansas Department of Education (ADE). Contents include: (1) "Laboratory Safety Guide for Arkansas K-12 Schools"; (2) "Safety Considerations"; (3) "Safety Standards for Science Laboratories";…

  18. Classifying K-12 Blended Learning (United States)

    Staker, Heather; Horn, Michael B.


    The growth of online learning in the K-12 sector is occurring both remotely through virtual schools and on campuses through blended learning. In emerging fields, definitions are important because they create a shared language that enables people to talk about the new phenomena. The blended-learning taxonomy and definitions presented in this paper…

  19. The SERC K12 Educators Portal to Teaching Activities and Pedagogic Approaches (United States)

    Larsen, K.; Kirk, K. B.; Manduca, C. A.; Ledley, T. S.; Schmitt, L.


    The Science Education Resource Center (SERC) has created a portal to information for K12 educators to provide high-quality grade level appropriate materials from a wide variety of projects and topics. These materials were compiled across the SERC site, showcasing materials that were created for, or easily adaptable to, K12 classrooms. This resource will help support implementation of Next Generation Science Standards by assisting educators in finding innovative resources to address areas of instruction that are conceptually different than previous national and state science standards. Specifically, the K12 portal assists educators in learning about approaches that address the cross-cutting nature of science concepts, increasing students quantitative reasoning and numeracy skills, incorporating technology such as GIS in the classroom, and by assisting educators of all levels of K12 instruction in using relevant and meaningful ways to teach science concepts. The K12 portal supports educators by providing access to hundreds of teaching activities covering a wide array of science topics and grade levels many of which have been rigorously reviewed for pedagogic quality and scientific accuracy. The portal also provides access to web pages that enhance teaching practices that help increase student's system thinking skills, make lectures interactive, assist instructors in conducting safe and effective indoor and outdoor labs, providing support for teaching energy and climate literacy principles, assisting educators in addressing controversial content, provide guidance in engaging students affective domain, and provides a collection of tools for making teaching relevant in 21st century classrooms including using GIS, Google Earth, videos, visualizations and simulations to model and describe scientific concepts. The portal also provides access to material for specific content and audiences by (1) Supporting AGIs 'Map your World' week to specifically highlight teaching

  20. Science Students' Classroom Discourse: Tasha's Umwelt (United States)

    Arnold, Jenny


    Over the past twenty-five years researchers have been concerned with understanding the science student. The need for such research is still grounded in contemporary issues including providing opportunities for all students to develop scientific literacy and the failure of school science to connect with student's lives, interests and personal identities. The research reported here is unusual in its use of discourse analysis in social psychology to contribute to an understanding of the way students make meaning in secondary school science. Data constructed for the study was drawn from videotapes of nine consecutive lessons in a year-seven science classroom in Melbourne, post-lesson video-stimulated interviews with students and the teacher, classroom observation and the students' written work. The classroom videotapes were recorded using four cameras and seven audio tracks by the International Centre for Classroom Research at the University of Melbourne. Student talk within and about their science lessons was analysed from a discursive perspective. Classroom episodes in which students expressed their sense of personal identity and agency, knowledge, attitude or emotion in relation to science were identified for detailed analysis of the function of the discourse used by students, and in particular the way students were positioned by others or positioned themselves. This article presents the discursive Umwelt or life-space of one middle years science student, Tasha. Her case is used here to highlight the complex social process of meaning making in science classrooms and the need to attend to local moral orders of rights and duties in research on student language use, identity and learning in science.

  1. Science for Girls: Successful Classroom Strategies (United States)

    Goetz, Susan Gibbs


    "Science for Girls: Successful Classroom Strategies" looks at how girls learn, beginning with the time they are born through both the informal and formal education process. In the author's current role as professor of science education, Dr. Goetz has surveyed hundreds of female elementary education majors in their junior and senior year of…

  2. Science Specialists or Classroom Teachers: Who Should Teach Elementary Science? (United States)

    Levy, Abigail Jurist; Jia, Yueming; Marco-Bujosa, Lisa; Gess-Newsome, Julie; Pasquale, Marian


    This study examined science programs, instruction, and student outcomes at 30 elementary schools in a large, urban district in the northeast United States in an effort to understand whether there were meaningful differences in the quality, quantity and cost of science education when provided by a science specialist or a classroom teacher. Student…

  3. `Models of' versus `Models for'. Toward an Agent-Based Conception of Modeling in the Science Classroom (United States)

    Gouvea, Julia; Passmore, Cynthia


    The inclusion of the practice of "developing and using models" in the Framework for K-12 Science Education and in the Next Generation Science Standards provides an opportunity for educators to examine the role this practice plays in science and how it can be leveraged in a science classroom. Drawing on conceptions of models in the philosophy of science, we bring forward an agent-based account of models and discuss the implications of this view for enacting modeling in science classrooms. Models, according to this account, can only be understood with respect to the aims and intentions of a cognitive agent (models for), not solely in terms of how they represent phenomena in the world (models of). We present this contrast as a heuristic— models of versus models for—that can be used to help educators notice and interpret how models are positioned in standards, curriculum, and classrooms.

  4. How to Get Successfully Involved with K-12 Education (United States)

    Duncan, D.; Fraknoi, A.; Bennett, M.


    Many astronomers now have some involvement in K-12 education, either through their children, through large projects with an education or outreach office, or through an educational component to their own grants. Some may need to incorporate education components into future proposals. For those new to education, it can be difficult to decide how best to use their limited resources without "re-inventing the wheel." Some astronomers are comfortable taking a direct role in the classroom or working with teachers, others prefer developing web-based or printed materials, while still others wouldrather work with local schools of education to enhance the training of future teachers. Which of these roles is most useful? In this session, participants will learn what has worked well in the past, with special attention paid to ways in which astronomers' and physicists' training and instincts may fail them when working in education. Invited teachers will describe their classrooms and how astronomers can be most helpful to them. Sample (successful) activities will be demonstrated, and information given about the wide range of existing astronomy and space-science education programs around the country. A full menu of useful ways that astronomers can get involved will be presented, as well as the organizations and institutions which can help in devising a meaningful education program. Handouts will include a catalog of national astronomy education projects, a list of educational web sites, information about the NASA OSS education brokers and facilitators, examples of successful educational materials, and a listing of roles astronomers have played or could play to enhance K-12 education. Registration is required; see the AAS Education WWW page or email

  5. Designing Computer-Supported Complex Systems Curricula for the Next Generation Science Standards in High School Science Classrooms

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Susan A. Yoon


    Full Text Available We present a curriculum and instruction framework for computer-supported teaching and learning about complex systems in high school science classrooms. This work responds to a need in K-12 science education research and practice for the articulation of design features for classroom instruction that can address the Next Generation Science Standards (NGSS recently launched in the USA. We outline the features of the framework, including curricular relevance, cognitively rich pedagogies, computational tools for teaching and learning, and the development of content expertise, and provide examples of how the framework is translated into practice. We follow this up with evidence from a preliminary study conducted with 10 teachers and 361 students, aimed at understanding the extent to which students learned from the activities. Results demonstrated gains in students’ complex systems understanding and biology content knowledge. In interviews, students identified influences of various aspects of the curriculum and instruction framework on their learning.

  6. The Metamorphosis by K. (12)

    CERN Multimedia

    CERN Bulletin


    In the last issue of the Bulletin we reported on the first run of the new NA62 experiment. In this issue, we go behind the scenes to take a look at the production of the experiment's new kaon beam.   The start of the K12 beam line as seen during the installation of the shielding. 10-2, 10-3, 10-4, 10-5, 10-6 mbar… send in the protons! Since Thursday 1 November, the P42 beam line of the SPS has once again been sending protons to the beryllium target to produce the K12 kaon beam line eagerly awaited by the NA62 collaboration. This was no trivial matter! The first step was to clear the decks by dismantling the entire H10 beam line and NA60 experiment, as well as most of the NA48 experiment - representing some 1000 tonnes of equipment in total! Next came the complete renovation of the infrastructure, which dated back to 1979. The operation called on the expertise of virtually all branches of the EN and GS departments, as well as the Radiation Protection group: from ...

  7. Science Fiction in the Classroom. (United States)

    Brake, Mark; Thornton, Rosi


    Considers science fiction as an imaginative forum to focus on the relationships between science, culture, and society. Outlines some of the ways in which using the genre can help achieve a dynamic and pluralistic understanding of the nature and evolution of science. (Author/KHR)

  8. Creating Next Generation Teacher Preparation Programs to Support Implementation of the Next Generation Science Standards and Common Core State Standards in K-12 Schools: An Opportunity for the Earth and Space Sciences (United States)

    Geary, E. E.; Egger, A. E.; Julin, S.; Ronca, R.; Vokos, S.; Ebert, E.; Clark-Blickenstaff, J.; Nollmeyer, G.


    A consortium of two and four year Washington State Colleges and Universities in partnership with Washington's Office of the Superintendent of Public Instruction (OSPI), the Teachers of Teachers of Science, and Teachers of Teachers of Mathematics, and other key stakeholders, is currently working to improve science and mathematics learning for all Washington State students by creating a new vision for STEM teacher preparation in Washington State aligned with the Next Generation Science Standards (NGSS) and the Common Core State Standards (CCSS) in Mathematics and Language Arts. Specific objectives include: (1) strengthening elementary and secondary STEM Teacher Preparation courses and curricula, (2) alignment of STEM teacher preparation programs across Washington State with the NGSS and CCSS, (3) development of action plans to support implementation of STEM Teacher Preparation program improvement at Higher Education Institutions (HEIs) across the state, (4) stronger collaborations between HEIs, K-12 schools, government agencies, Non-Governmental Organizations, and STEM businesses, involved in the preparation of preservice STEM teachers, (5) new teacher endorsements in Computer Science and Engineering, and (6) development of a proto-type model for rapid, adaptable, and continuous improvement of STEM teacher preparation programs. A 2015 NGSS gap analysis of teacher preparation programs across Washington State indicates relatively good alignment of courses and curricula with NGSS Disciplinary Core Ideas and Scientific practices, but minimal alignment with NGSS Engineering practices and Cross Cutting Concepts. Likewise, Computer Science and Sustainability ideas and practices are not well represented in current courses and curricula. During the coming year teams of STEM faculty, education faculty and administrators will work collaboratively to develop unique action plans for aligning and improving STEM teacher preparation courses and curricula at their institutions.

  9. Pedagogical Relationship in Secondary Social Science Classrooms (United States)

    Girard, Brian James


    This study investigates two high school social science classrooms in order to better understand the pedagogical relationships among teachers, students, and disciplinary content, and how teachers can influence students' opportunities to learn disciplinary literacy. Drawing on conceptual resources from sociocultural theories of learning and…

  10. Using Infographics in the Science Classroom (United States)

    Davidson, Rosemary


    As a chemistry teacher, Rosemary Davidson has found "infographics" (information graphics) successfully engage her students in science--not only in carrying out the research for classroom projects but also in presenting the results of their research to their peers. This article will help teachers integrate student-created infographics…

  11. Scientists Involved in K-12 Education (United States)

    Robigou, V.


    The publication of countless reports documenting the dismal state of science education in the 1980s, and the Third International Mathematics and Science Study (TIMMS) report (1996) called for a wider involvement of the scientific community in K-12 education and outreach. Improving science education will not happen without the collaboration of educators and scientists working in a coordinated manner and it requires a long-term, continuous effort. To contribute effectively to K-12 education all scientists should refer to the National Science Education Standards, a set of policies that guide the development of curriculum and assessment. Ocean scientists can also specifically refer to the COSEE recommendations ( that led to the creation of seven regional Centers for Ocean Sciences Education Excellence. Scientists can get involved in K-12 education in a multitude of ways. They should select projects that will accommodate time away from their research and teaching obligations, their talent, and their interest but also contribute to the education reform. A few examples of effective involvement are: 1) collaborating with colleagues in a school of education that can lead to better education of all students and future teachers, 2) acting as a resource for a national program or a local science fair, 3) serving on the advisory board of a program that develops educational material, 4) speaking out at professional meetings about the value of scientists' involvement in education, 5) speaking enthusiastically about the teaching profession. Improving science education in addition to research can seem a large, overwhelming task for scientists. As a result, focusing on projects that will fit the scientist's needs as well as benefit the science reform is of prime importance. It takes an enormous amount of work and financial and personnel resources to start a new program with measurable impact on students. So, finding the right opportunity is a priority, and stepping

  12. Everyday classroom assessment practices in science classrooms in Sweden (United States)

    Gómez, María del Carmen; Jakobsson, Anders


    The focus of this study is to examine to what extent and in what ways science teachers practice assessment during classroom interactions in everyday activities in an upper-secondary school in Sweden. We are science teachers working now with a larger research project on assessment in science education that seeks to examine teachers' assessment practices in the upper-secondary school. Framing questions include: are teachers performing an integrated assessment of students' skills as the national curriculum mandates? If so, what do the instructional discourses look like in those situations and what are students' experiences regarding their agency on learning and assessment? We emphasize the social, cultural and historic character of assessment and sustain a situated character of learning instead of the notion that learning is "stored inside the head". Teacher led lessons in three science classrooms were video-recorded and analyzed by combining ethnographic and discourse methods of analysis. Both methods are appropriate to the theoretical foundation of our approach on learning and can give some answers to questions about how individuals interact socially, how their experience is passed on to next generations through language and how language use may reveal cultural changes in the studied context. Making the study of action in a classroom the focal point of sociocultural analysis supports the examination of assessment processes and identification of the social roles in which teachers and students are immersed. Such an approach requires observations of how teachers act in authentic teaching situations when they interact with their students in classroom making possible to observe negotiation processes, agencies when both teachers and students are involved in every-day activities. Our study showed that teachers mostly ignored students' questions and that students solved their own problems by helping each other. Teachers did not provide opportunities for students to discuss

  13. Tablets in K-12 Education: Integrated Experiences and Implications (United States)

    An, Heejung, Ed.; Alon, Sandra, Ed.; Fuentes, David, Ed.


    The inclusion of new and emerging technologies in the education sector has been a topic of interest to researchers, educators, and software developers alike in recent years. Utilizing the proper tools in a classroom setting is a critical factor in student success. "Tablets in K-12 Education: Integrated Experiences and Implications"…

  14. Designing GIS Learning Materials for K-12 Teachers (United States)

    Hong, Jung Eun


    Although previous studies have proven the usefulness and effectiveness of geographic information system (GIS) use in the K-12 classroom, the rate of teacher adoption remains low. The identified major barrier to its use is a lack of teachers' background and experience. To solve this limitation, many organisations have provided GIS-related teacher…

  15. Exploring the Effectiveness of Online Education in K-12 Environments (United States)

    Heafner, Tina L., Ed.; Hartshorne, Richard, Ed.; Petty, Teresa, Ed.


    The integration of technology in classrooms is rapidly emerging as a way to provide more educational opportunities for students. As virtual learning environments become more popular, evaluating the impact of this technology on student success is vital. "Exploring the Effectiveness of Online Education in K-12 Environments" combines…

  16. Engineering Education in K-12 Schools (United States)

    Spence, Anne


    Engineers rely on physicists as well as other scientists and mathematicians to explain the world in which we live. Engineers take this knowledge of the world and use it to create the world that never was. The teaching of physics and other sciences as well as mathematics is critical to maintaining our national workforce. Science and mathematics education are inherently different, however, from engineering education. Engineering educators seek to enable students to develop the habits of mind critical for innovation. Through understanding of the engineering design process and how it differs from the scientific method, students can apply problem and project based learning to solve the challenges facing society today. In this talk, I will discuss the elements critical to a solid K-12 engineering education that integrates science and mathematics to solve challenges throughout the world.

  17. NSF GK-12 Fellows as Mentors for K-12 Teachers Participating in Field Research Experiences (United States)

    Ellins, K.; Perry, E.


    The University of Texas Institute for Geophysics (UTIG) recognizes the value of providing educational opportunities to K-12 teachers who play a critical role in shaping the minds of young people who are the future of our science. To that end, UTIG established the "Texas Teachers in the Field" program in 2000 to formalize the participation of K-12 teachers in field programs that included UTIG scientists. In 2002, "Texas Teachers in the Field" evolved through UTIG's involvement in a University of Texas at Austin GK-12 project led by the Environmental Sciences Institute, which enabled UTIG to partner a subset of GK-12 Fellows with teachers participating in geophysical field programs. During the three years of the GK-12 project, UTIG successfully partnered four GK-12 Fellows with five K-12 teachers. The Fellows served as mentors to the teachers, as liaisons between UTIG scientists leading field programs and teachers and their students, and as resources in science, mathematics, and technology instruction. Specifically, Fellows prepared teachers and their students for the field investigations, supervised the design of individual Teacher Research Experience (TRE) projects, and helped teachers to develop standards-aligned curriculum resources related to the field program for use in their own classrooms, as well as broader distribution. Although all but one TRE occurred during the school year, Texas school districts and principals were willing to release teachers to participate because the experience and destinations were so extraordinary (i.e., a land-based program in Tierra del Fuego, Argentina; and research cruises to the Southeast Caribbean Sea and Hess Deep in the Pacific Ocean) and carried opportunities to work with scientists from around the world. This exceptional collaboration of GK-12 Fellows, K-12 teachers and research scientists enriches K-12 student learning and promotes greater enthusiasm for science. The level of mentoring, preparation and follow-up provided

  18. Science Learning outside the Classroom (United States)

    Robelen, Erik W.; Sparks, Sarah D.; Cavanagh, Sean; Ash, Katie; Deily, Mary-Ellen Phelps; Adams, Caralee


    As concern mounts that U.S. students lack sufficient understanding of science and related fields, it has become increasingly clear that schools can't tackle the challenge alone. This special report explores the field often called "informal science education," which is gaining broader recognition for its role in helping young people…

  19. Avatar in the Science Classroom (United States)

    Siegel, Deborah


    Students love pop culture, which is often full of science and scientific concepts that may or may not be correctly presented. When teachers tie a science project to a movie, TV series, or song, they help guide students toward correct interpretations. And, more important, teachers stimulate their creativity by tapping into their culture. This…

  20. Science in the Bilingual Classroom (United States)

    Gutierrez, Patricia A.


    One in seven children in the United States speaks a language other than English at home. Their difficulties with English may seem like a barrier to science education. But science education can be the impetus they need to overcome their difficulties with English. With sidebars by Isabel Hawkins and George Musser.

  1. Interdisciplinary Science in the Classroom (United States)

    French, L. M.; Lopresti, V. C.; Papali, P.


    The practice of science is by its very nature interdisciplinary. Most school curricula, however, present science as a "layer cake" with one year each of biology, chemistry, earth science, and physics. Students are too often left with a fragmented, disjointed view of the sciences as separate and distinct bodies of information. The continuity of scientific thought and the importance of major ideas such as energy, rates of change, and the nature of matter are not seen. We describe two efforts to integrate the sciences in a middle school curriculum and in an introductory science course for prospective elementary teachers. Introductory physical science for eighth graders at the Park School has three major units: "Observing the Sky", "The Nature of Matter", and "The Nature of Light". The course moves from simple naked-eye observations of the Sun and Moon to an understanding of the apparent motions of the Sun and of the Earth's seasons. In "The Nature of Matter", students construct operational definitions of characteristic properties of matter such as density, boiling point, solubility, and flame color. They design and perform many experiments and conclude by separating a mixture of liquids and solids by techniques such as distillation and fractional crystallization. In studying flame tests, students learn that different materials have different color "signatures" and that the differences can be quantified with a spectroscope. They then observe solar absorption lines with their spectroscopes and discover which elements are present in the Sun. Teachers of young children are potentially some of the most powerful allies in increasing our country's scientific literacy, yet most remain at best uneasy about science. At Wheelock College we are designing a course to be called "Introduction to Natural Science" for elementary education majors. We will address special needs of many in this population, including science anxiety and poor preparation in mathematics. A broad conceptual

  2. Expanding the Reach of the Coastal Ocean Science Classroom to Teachers through Teleducation (United States)

    Macko, S.; Szuba, T.


    In a first of its kind connectivity, using high speed internet connections, a summer class in Oceanography was live, interactively broadcast (teleducation) to Arcadia High School on the Eastern Shore of Virginia, allowing teachers in the Accomack County School District to receive university credit without leaving their home classrooms 250 miles from UVA. This project was an outreach and education program with a partner in the K-12 schools on the Eastern Shore of Virginia. It endeavored to build a community knowledgeable of the importance the ocean plays daily in our lives, and our own impact on the ocean. By establishing teleducation linkages with the Eastern Shore High Schools we were rigorously testing the live-Internet-based classroom with earth science teachers enabling them to remotely participate in University of Virginia classes in Oceanography. The classes were designed on a faculty development basis or to allow the teachers to acquire NSTA certification in Earth Science Education. While not without small problems of interruptions in connectivity or the occasional transmission of hardcopies of materials, the approach was seen to be extremely successful. The ability to reach school districts and teachers that are in more remote locations and with fewer resources is clearly supported by this venture. Currently we are planning to link multiple classrooms in the next iteration of this work, intending to offer the expanded classroom in more distant college-based classrooms where Ocean Sciences is a desired portion of the curriculum, but is presently only occasionally offered owing to limited resources.

  3. Interest, Motivation and Attitude towards Science and Technology at K-12 Levels: A Systematic Review of 12?Years of Educational Research (United States)

    Potvin, Patrice; Hasni, Abdelkrim


    The relationship that exists between students and science and technology (S&T) is a complex and important one. If it is positive, then social, economic and environmental consequences are to be expected. Yet, many problems of interest/motivation/attitude (I/M/A) towards S&T have been recorded. A lot of research has been conducted on this…

  4. Science education beyond the classroom

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Harle, E.J.; Van Natta, D.; Powell, M.L.


    The Yucca Mountain Site Characterization Project (YMP) sponsors a variety of classroom-oriented projects and activities for teachers who request them. Also available, though, are extra-curricular programs. One notably successful program is a workshop designed to award girl and boy scouts with geology and atomic energy merit badges. There was a tremendous response to this workshop--it attracted 450 requests within the first week of its announcement. Since October 1991, the YMP has sponsored five such girl scout workshops and four boy scout workshops, attended by a total of 400 scouts. These workshops demonstrate that highly technical subjects can be taught simply through hands-on activities. The idea behind them is not to teach scouts what to think but, rather, how to think. For adults meanwhile, the YMP offers a monthly lecture series, with each lecture averaging 45 minutes in length with 35 people in attendance. These lectures center on such subjects as volcanoes, earthquakes and hydrology. They are usually delivered by YMP technical staff members, who have learned that complex technical issues are best addressed in a small-group format

  5. K-12 Local Network (LAN) Design Guide

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Horton, Cody


    ...) educators preparing to design and implement LANs in K-12 schools and libraries. Data was collected during the implementation of LANs in K-12 schools of the Monterey Peninsula Uniform School District (MPUSD...

  6. Roles of Teachers in Orchestrating Learning in Elementary Science Classrooms (United States)

    Zhai, Junqing; Tan, Aik-Ling


    This study delves into the different roles that elementary science teachers play in the classroom to orchestrate science learning opportunities for students. Examining the classroom practices of three elementary science teachers in Singapore, we found that teachers shuttle between four key roles in enabling student learning in science. Teachers…

  7. Bringing Inquiry Science to K-5 Classrooms (United States)

    Schachtel, Paula L.; Messina, D. L.; McDermott, L. C.


    As a science coach in the Seattle School District, I am responsible for helping other elementary teachers teach science. For several years, I have been participating in a program that consists of intensive NSF Summer Institutes and an ongoing academic-year Continuation Course. Teachers in this program work through modules in Physics by Inquiry, a research-based curriculum developed by the Physics Education Group at the University of Washington.1 I will discuss how this type of professional development has deepened my understanding of topics in physical science, helped me to teach science by inquiry to my own students, and enabled me to assist my colleagues in implementing inquiry science in their K-5 classrooms. Sponsored by Lillian C. McDermott. 1. A research-based curriculum developed by L.C. McDermott and the Physics Education Group at the University of Washington, Physics by Inquiry, New York, NY, John Wiley & Sons, Inc. (1996.)

  8. Flipped Classrooms for Advanced Science Courses (United States)

    Tomory, Annette; Watson, Sunnie Lee


    This article explains how issues regarding dual credit and Advanced Placement high school science courses could be mitigated via a flipped classroom instructional model. The need for advanced high school courses will be examined initially, followed by an analysis of advanced science courses and the reform they are experiencing. Finally, it will conclude with an explanation of flipped classes as well as how they may be a solution to the reform challenges teachers are experiencing as they seek to incorporate more inquiry-based activities.

  9. Engineering Education in the Science Classroom: A Case Study of One Teacher's Disparate Approach with Ability-Tracked Classrooms (United States)

    Schnittka, Christine G.


    Currently, unless a K-12 student elects to enroll in technology-focused schools or classes, exposure to engineering design and habits of mind is minimal. However, the "Framework for K-12 Science Education," published by the National Research Council in 2011, includes engineering design as a new and major component of the science content…

  10. Teaching Planetary Sciences in Bilingual Classrooms (United States)

    Lebofsky, L. A.; Lebofsky, N. R.


    Planetary sciences can be used to introduce students to the natural world which is a part of their lives. Even children in an urban environment are aware of such phenomena as day and night, shadows, and the seasons. It is a science that transcends cultures, has been prominent in the news in recent years, and can generate excitement in young minds as no other science can. It also provides a useful tool for understanding other sciences and mathematics, and for developing problem solving skills which are important in our technological world. However, only 15 percent of elementary school teachers feel very well qualified to teach earth/space science, while better than 80% feel well qualified to teach reading; many teachers avoid teaching science; very little time is actually spent teaching science in the elementary school: 19 minutes per day in K--3 and 38 minutes per day in 4--6. While very little science is taught in elementary and middle school, earth/space science is taught at the elementary level in less than half of the states. Therefore in order to teach earth/space science to our youth, we must empower our teachers, making them familiar and comfortable with existing materials. Tucson has another, but not unique, problem. The largest public school district, the Tucson Unified School District (TUSD), provides a neighborhood school system enhanced with magnet, bilingual and special needs schools for a school population of 57,000 students that is 4.1% Native American, 6.0% Black, and 36.0% Hispanic (1991). This makes TUSD and the other school districts in and around Tucson ideal for a program that reaches students of diverse ethnic backgrounds. However, few space sciences materials exist in Spanish; most materials could not be used effectively in the classroom. To address this issue, we have translated NASA materials into Spanish and are conducting a series of workshops for bilingual classroom teachers. We will discuss in detail our bilingual classroom workshops

  11. Biological design in science classrooms (United States)

    Scott, Eugenie C.; Matzke, Nicholas J.


    Although evolutionary biology is replete with explanations for complex biological structures, scientists concerned about evolution education have been forced to confront “intelligent design” (ID), which rejects a natural origin for biological complexity. The content of ID is a subset of the claims made by the older “creation science” movement. Both creationist views contend that highly complex biological adaptations and even organisms categorically cannot result from natural causes but require a supernatural creative agent. Historically, ID arose from efforts to produce a form of creationism that would be less vulnerable to legal challenges and that would not overtly rely upon biblical literalism. Scientists do not use ID to explain nature, but because it has support from outside the scientific community, ID is nonetheless contributing substantially to a long-standing assault on the integrity of science education. PMID:17494747

  12. College science teachers' views of classroom inquiry (United States)

    Brown, Patrick L.; Abell, Sandra K.; Demir, Abdulkadir; Schmidt, Francis J.


    The purposes of this study were to (a) gain an understanding of the views of inquiry held by faculty members involved in undergraduate science teaching and (b) describe the challenges, constraints, and opportunities that they perceived in designing and teaching inquiry-based laboratories. Participants included 19 college professors, representing both life and physical science disciplines, from (a) 2-year community college, (b) small, private nonprofit liberal arts college, (c) public master's granting university, and (d) public doctoral/research extensive university. We collected data through semistructured interviews and applied an iterative data analysis process. College science faculty members held a full and open inquiry view, seeing classroom inquiry as time consuming, unstructured, and student directed. They believed that inquiry was more appropriate for upper level science majors than for introductory or nonscience majors. Although faculty members valued inquiry, they perceived limitations of time, class size, student motivation, and student ability. These limitations, coupled with their view of inquiry, constrained them from implementing inquiry-based laboratories. Our proposed inquiry continuum represents a broader view of inquiry that recognizes the interaction between two dimensions of inquiry: (a) the degree of inquiry and (b) the level of student directedness, and provides for a range of inquiry-based classroom activities.

  13. Global Learning and Observation to Benefit the Environment (GLOBE) Mission EARTH (GME) program delivers climate change science content, pedagogy, and data resources to K12 educators, future teachers, and professional development providers. (United States)

    Ostrom, T.


    This presentation will include a series of visuals that discuss how hands-on learning activities and field investigations from the the Global Learning and Observation to Benefit the Environment (GLOBE) Mission EARTH (GME) program deliver climate change science content, pedagogy, and data resources to K12 educators, future teachers, and professional development providers. The GME program poster presentation will also show how teachers strengthen student preparation for Science, Technology, Engineering, Art and Mathematics (STEAM)-related careers while promoting diversity in the future STEM workforce. In addition to engaging students in scientific inquiry, the GME program poster will show how career exploration and preparation experiences is accomplished through direct connection to scientists and real science practices. The poster will show which hands-on learning activities that are being implemented in more than 30,000 schools worldwide, with over a million students, teachers, and scientists collecting environmental measurements using the GLOBE scientific protocols. This poster will also include how Next Generation Science Standards connect to GME learning progressions by grade strands. The poster will present the first year of results from the implementation of the GME program. Data is currently being agrigated by the east, midwest and westen regional operations.

  14. Math, Science, and Engineering Integration in a High School Engineering Course: A Qualitative Study (United States)

    Valtorta, Clara G.; Berland, Leema K.


    Engineering in K-12 classrooms has been receiving expanding emphasis in the United States. The integration of science, mathematics, and engineering is a benefit and goal of K-12 engineering; however, current empirical research on the efficacy of K-12 science, mathematics, and engineering integration is limited. This study adds to this growing…

  15. Science, mathematics and technology education in the US: a perspective from the "frontlines of the classroom to national policy"

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    R. A. Pertzborn


    Full Text Available In the past decade significant emphasis has been placed on increasing the involvement and influence of the professional scientific community in America's K-12 classrooms. The origins of this thrust have arisen from a variety of real and perceived crises occurring in America's K-12 classrooms. Projections for the nation's future workforce needs indicate an increased demand for science and technically literate workers, while fewer of the nation's students are pursuing advanced degrees in these academic areas of expertise. In an effort to address these issues and to impact the overall understanding and quality of science, math and technology education, several of the federal agencies have increasingly included a percentage of research funding devoted to the objective of improving the quality of kindergarten through Grade 12 (K-12, see Table 1 formal education and informal public outreach. To this end, NASA's Space Science Enterprise in particular has demonstrated a successful implementation approach and has been a national leader in forging strong partnerships with the education community to address these concerns.

  16. One-to-one iPad technology in the middle school mathematics and science classrooms (United States)

    Bixler, Sharon G.

    Science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) education has become an emphasized component of PreK-12 education in the United States. The US is struggling to produce enough science, mathematics, and technology experts to meet its national and global needs, and the mean scores of science and mathematics students are not meeting the expected levels desired by our leaders (Hossain & Robinson, 2011). In an effort to improve achievement scores in mathematics and science, school districts must consider many components that can contribute to the development of a classroom where students are engaged and growing academically. Computer technology (CT) for student use is a popular avenue for school districts to pursue in their goal to attain higher achievement. The purpose of this study is to examine the use of iPads in a one-to-one setting, where every student has his own device 24/7, to determine the effects, if any, on academic achievement in the areas of mathematics and science. This comparison study used hierarchical linear modeling (HLM) to examine three middle schools in a private school district. Two of the schools have implemented a one-to-one iPad program with their sixth through eighth grades and the third school uses computers on limited occasions in the classroom and in a computer lab setting. The questions addressed were what effect, if any, do the implementation of a one-to-one iPad program and a teacher's perception of his use of constructivist teaching strategies have on student academic achievement in the mathematics and science middle school classrooms. The research showed that although the program helped promote the use of constructivist activities through the use of technology, the one-to-one iPad initiative had no effect on academic achievement in the middle school mathematics and science classrooms.

  17. CosmoQuest: Training Educators and Engaging Classrooms in Citizen Science through a Virtual Research Facility (United States)

    Buxner, Sanlyn; Bracey, Georgia; Summer, Theresa; Cobb, Whitney; Gay, Pamela L.; Finkelstein, Keely D.; Gurton, Suzanne; Felix-Strishock, Lisa; Kruse, Brian; Lebofsky, Larry A.; Jones, Andrea J.; Tweed, Ann; Graff, Paige; Runco, Susan; Noel-Storr, Jacob; CosmoQuest Team


    CosmoQuest is a Citizen Science Virtual Research Facility that engages scientists, educators, students, and the public in analyzing NASA images. Often, these types of citizen science activities target enthusiastic members of the public, and additionally engage students in K-12 and college classrooms. To support educational engagement, we are developing a pipeline in which formal and informal educators and facilitators use the virtual research facility to engage students in real image analysis that is framed to provide meaningful science learning. This work also contributes to the larger project to produce publishable results. Community scientists are being solicited to propose CosmoQuest Science Projects take advantage of the virtual research facility capabilities. Each CosmoQuest Science Project will result in formal education materials, aligned with Next Generation Science Standards including the 3-dimensions of science learning; core ideas, crosscutting concepts, and science and engineering practices. Participating scientists will contribute to companion educational materials with support from the CosmoQuest staff of data specialists and education specialists. Educators will be trained through in person and virtual workshops, and classrooms will have the opportunity to not only work with NASA data, but interface with NASA scientists. Through this project, we are bringing together subject matter experts, classrooms, and informal science organizations to share the excitement of NASA SMD science with future citizen scientists. CosmoQuest is funded through individual donations, through NASA Cooperative Agreement NNX16AC68A, and through additional grants and contracts that are listed on our website,

  18. Sample classroom activities based on climate science (United States)

    Miler, T.


    We present several activities developed for the middle school education based on a climate science. The first activity was designed to teach about the ocean acidification. A simple experiment can prove that absorption of CO2 in water increases its acidity. A liquid pH indicator is suitable for the demonstration in a classroom. The second activity uses data containing coordinates of a hurricane position. Pupils draw a path of a hurricane eye in a tracking chart (map of the Atlantic ocean). They calculate an average speed of the hurricane, investigate its direction and intensity development. The third activity uses pictures of the Arctic ocean on September when ice extend is usually the lowest. Students measure the ice extend for several years using a square grid printed on a plastic foil. Then they plot a graph and discuss the results. All these activities can be used to improve the natural science education and increase the climate change literacy.

  19. The flipped classroom: practices and opportunities for health sciences librarians. (United States)

    Youngkin, C Andrew


    The "flipped classroom" instructional model is being introduced into medical and health sciences curricula to provide greater efficiency in curriculum delivery and produce greater opportunity for in-depth class discussion and problem solving among participants. As educators employ the flipped classroom to invert curriculum delivery and enhance learning, health sciences librarians are also starting to explore the flipped classroom model for library instruction. This article discusses how academic and health sciences librarians are using the flipped classroom and suggests opportunities for this model to be further explored for library services.

  20. Streaming Seismograms into Earth-Science Classrooms (United States)

    Ammon, C. J.


    Seismograms are the fundamental observations upon which seismology is based; they are central to any course in seismology and important for any discussion of earthquake-related phenomena based on seismic observations. Advances in the collection and distribution of seismic data have made the use of research-quality seismograms in any network capable classroom feasible. The development of large, deep seismogram archives place an unprecedented quantity of high-quality data within reach of the modern classroom environment. I describe and discuss several computer tools and classroom activities that I use in introductory (general education) and advanced undergraduate courses that present near real-time research-quality seismic observations in the classroom. The Earth Motion Monitor Application (EMMA), is a MacOS application that presents a visually clear seismogram display that can be projected in classrooms with internet access. Seismic signals from thousands of station are available from the IRIS data center and the bandwidth can be tailored to the particular type of signal of interest (large event, low frequencies; small event, high frequencies). In introductory classes for non-science students, the near realtime display routinely shows magnitude 4.0-5.0 earthquake-generated signals, demonstrating to students the frequency of earthquake occurrence. Over the next few minutes as the waves travel through and across the planet, their arrival on the seismogram display provides some basic data for a qualitative estimate of the event's general location. When a major or great earthquake occurs, a broad-band display of signals from nearby stations can dramatically and dynamically illuminate the frequent activity associated with the aftershock sequence. Routine use of the display (while continuing the traditional classroom activities) provides students with a significant dose of seismogram study. Students generally find all the signals, including variations in seismic

  1. Life Skills from the Perspectives of Classroom and Science Teachers (United States)

    Kurtdede-Fidan, Nuray; Aydogdu, Bülent


    The aim of this study is to determine classroom and science teachers' views about life skills. The study employed phenomenological method. The participants of the study were 24 teachers; twelve of them were classroom teachers and the remaining were science teachers. They were working at public schools in Turkey. The participants were selected…

  2. NASA-OAI HPCCP K-12 Program (United States)


    The NASA-OAI High Performance Communication and Computing K- 12 School Partnership program has been completed. Cleveland School of the Arts, Empire Computech Center, Grafton Local Schools and the Bug O Nay Ge Shig School have all received network equipment and connections. Each school is working toward integrating computer and communications technology into their classroom curriculum. Cleveland School of the Arts students are creating computer software. Empire Computech Center is a magnet school for technology education at the elementary school level. Grafton Local schools is located in a rural community and is using communications technology to bring to their students some of the same benefits students from suburban and urban areas receive. The Bug O Nay Ge Shig School is located on an Indian Reservation in Cass Lake, MN. The students at this school are using the computer to help them with geological studies. A grant has been issued to the friends of the Nashville Library. Nashville is a small township in Holmes County, Ohio. A community organization has been formed to turn their library into a state of the art Media Center. Their goal is to have a place where rural students can learn about different career options and how to go about pursuing those careers. Taylor High School in Cincinnati, Ohio was added to the schools involved in the Wind Tunnel Project. A mini grant has been awarded to Taylor High School for computer equipment. The computer equipment is utilized in the school's geometry class to computationally design objects which will be tested for their aerodynamic properties in the Barberton Wind Tunnel. The students who create the models can view the test in the wind tunnel via desk top conferencing. Two teachers received stipends for helping with the Regional Summer Computer Workshop. Both teachers were brought in to teach a session within the workshop. They were selected to teach the session based on their expertise in particular software applications.

  3. The Earth Science for Tomorrows Classroom (United States)

    Shanskiy, Merrit


    The Earth sciences comprises many fascinating topics that is teached to different age level pupils/students in order to bring hard core science closer to their daily life. With developing possibilities in IT, multimedia overall electronic sector the teachers/lecturers have continuous possibilities to accomplish novel approaches and utilize new ideas to make science more interesting for students in all ages. Emerging, from personal experiences, the teaching of our surrounding Environment can be very enjoyable. In our everyday life the SOIL remains invisible. The soil is covered by plant cover which makes the topic somewhat in distant that is not "visible" to an eye and its importance is underestimated. In other hand, the SOIL is valuable primary resource for food production and basis of life for healthy environment. From several studies have found that because its complications, SOIL related topics are not very often chosen topic for course or diploma works by students. The lower-school students are very open to environmental topics accordingly to the grades. Here, the good results can be obtained through complimentary materials creation, like story telling and drawing books and puzzles. The middle/ and upper/school students will experience "real science" being able to learn what the science is about which often can play a important role on making choices for future curriculum completion at university level. Current presentation shares the ideas of selected methods that had showed successful results on different Earth Science topics teaching (biodiversity, growing substrates, green house gas emissions). For some ideas the presentation introduces also the further developmental possibilities to be used in teaching at Tomorrows Classroom.

  4. The Green Pages: Environmental Education Activities K-12. (United States)

    Clearing, 1990


    Presented are 37 environmental science activities for students in grades K-12. Topics include water pollution, glaciers, protective coloration, shapes in nature, environmental impacts, recycling, creative writing, litter, shapes found in nature, color, rain cycle, waste management, plastics, energy, pH, landfills, runoff, watersheds,…

  5. Initiating New Science Partnerships in Rural Education (INSPIRE) Brining STEM Research to 7th-12th Grade Science and Math Classrooms (United States)

    Radencic, S.; McNeal, K. S.; Pierce, D.


    The Initiating New Science Partnerships in Rural Education (INSPIRE) program at Mississippi State University (MSU), funded by the NSF Graduate STEM Fellows in K-12 Education (GK12) program, focuses on the advancement of Earth and Space science education in K-12 classrooms. INSPIRE currently in its third year of partnering ten graduate students each year from the STEM fields of Geosciences, Engineering, Physics and Chemistry at MSU with five teachers from local, rural school districts. The five year project serves to enhance graduate student's communication skills as they create interactive lessons linking their STEM research focus to the state and national standards covered in science and math classrooms for grades 7-12 through inquiry experiences. Each graduate student is responsible for the development of two lessons each month of the school year that include an aspect of their STEM research, including the technologies that they may utilize to conduct their STEM research. The plans are then published on the INSPIRE project webpage,, where they are a free resource for any K-12 classroom teacher seeking innovative activities for their classrooms and total over 300 lesson activities to date. Many of the participating teachers and graduate students share activities developed with non-participating teachers, expanding INSPIRE's outreach of incorporating STEM research into activities for K-12 students throughout the local community. Examples of STEM research connections to classroom topics related to earth and ocean science include activities using GPS with GIS for triangulation and measurement of area in geometry; biogeochemical response to oil spills compared to organism digestive system; hydrogeology water quality monitoring and GIS images used as a determinant for habitat suitability in area water; interactions of acids and bases in the Earth's environments and surfaces; and the importance of electrical circuitry in an electrode used in

  6. Initiating New Science Partnerships in Rural Education: STEM Graduate Students Bring Current Research into 7th-12th Grade Science Classrooms (United States)

    Radencic, S.; Dawkins, K. S.; Jackson, B. S.; Walker, R. M.; Schmitz, D.; Pierce, D.; Funderburk, W. K.; McNeal, K.


    Initiating New Science Partnerships in Rural Education (INSPIRE), a NSF Graduate K-12 (GK-12) program at Mississippi State University, pairs STEM graduate students with local K-12 teachers to bring new inquiry and technology experiences to the classroom ( The graduate fellows prepare lessons for the students incorporating different facets of their research. The lessons vary in degree of difficulty according to the content covered in the classroom and the grade level of the students. The focus of each lesson is directed toward the individual research of the STEM graduate student using inquiry based designed activities. Scientific instruments that are used in STEM research (e.g. SkyMaster weather stations, GPS, portable SEM, Inclinometer, Soil Moisture Probe, Google Earth, ArcGIS Explorer) are also utilized by K-12 students in the activities developed by the graduate students. Creativity and problem solving skills are sparked by curiosity which leads to the discovery of new information. The graduate students work to enhance their ability to effectively communicate their research to members of society through the creation of research linked classroom activities, enabling the 7-12th grade students to connect basic processes used in STEM research with the required state and national science standards. The graduate students become respected role models for the high school students because of their STEM knowledge base and their passion for their research. Sharing enthusiasm for their chosen STEM field, as well as the application techniques to discover new ideas, the graduate students stimulate the interests of the classroom students and model authentic science process skills while highlighting the relevance of STEM research to K-12 student lives. The measurement of the student attitudes about science is gathered from pre and post interest surveys for the past four years. This partnership allows students, teachers, graduate students, and the public to

  7. Spontaneous Play and Imagination in Everyday Science Classroom Practice (United States)

    Andrée, Maria; Lager-Nyqvist, Lotta


    In science education, students sometimes create and engage in spontaneous science-oriented play where ideas about science and scientists are put to use. However, in previous research, little attention has been given to the role of informal spontaneous play in school science classrooms. We argue that, in order to enhance our understanding of…

  8. Using an Interdisciplinary Approach to Enhance Climate Literacy for K-12 Teachers (United States)

    Hanselman, J. A.; Oches, E. A.; Sliko, J.; Wright, L.


    The Next Generation Science Standards (2014) will begin to change how K-12 teachers teach science. Using a scaffolding approach, the standards focus on a depth of knowledge across multiple content areas. This philosophy should encourage inquiry-based teaching methods, provided the teacher has both the knowledge and the confidence to teach the content. Although confidence to teach science is high among secondary science (biology, general science, chemistry) teachers, depth of knowledge may be lacking in certain areas, including climate science. To address this issue, a graduate course in climate science (Massachusetts Colleges Online Course of Distinction award winner) was developed to include inquiry-based instruction, connections to current research, and interdisciplinary approaches to teaching science. With the support of the InTeGrate program (SERC) at Carleton College, a module was developed to utilize cli-fi (climate science present in fictional literature) and related climate data. Graduate students gain an appreciation of scientific communication and an understanding of climate data and its connection to societal issues. In addition, the graduate students also gain the ability to connect interdisciplinary concepts for a deeper understanding of climate science and have the opportunity. By the end of the course, the graduate students use the content learned and the examples of pedagogical tools to develop their own activities in his or her classroom.

  9. Discovery stories in the science classroom (United States)

    Arya, Diana Jaleh

    School science has been criticized for its lack of emphasis on the tentative, dynamic nature of science as a process of learning more about our world. This criticism is the guiding force for this present body of work, which focuses on the question: what are the educational benefits for middle school students of reading texts that highlight the process of science in the form of a discovery narrative? This dissertation traces my journey through a review of theoretical perspectives of narrative, an analysis of first-hand accounts of scientific discovery, the complex process of developing age-appropriate, cohesive and engaging science texts for middle school students, and a comparison study (N=209) that seeks to determine the unique benefits of the scientific discovery narrative for the interest in and retained understanding of conceptual information presented in middle school science texts. A total of 209 middle school participants in nine different classrooms from two different schools participated in the experimental study. Each subject read two science texts that differed in topic (the qualities of and uses for radioactive elements and the use of telescopic technology to see planets in space) and genre (the discovery narrative and the "conceptually known exposition" comparison text). The differences between the SDN and CKE versions for each topic were equivalent in all possible ways (initial introduction, overall conceptual accuracy, elements of human interest, coherence and readability level), save for the unique components of the discovery narrative (i.e., love for their work, acknowledgement of the known, identification of the unknown and the explorative or experimental process to discovery). Participants generally chose the discovery narrative version as the more interesting of the two texts. Additional findings from the experimental study suggest that science texts in the form of SDNs elicit greater long-term retention of key conceptual information, especially

  10. Teaching and Learning Science in Authoritative Classrooms: Teachers' Power and Students' Approval in Korean Elementary Classrooms (United States)

    Lee, Jeong-A.; Kim, Chan-Jong


    This study aims to understand interactions in Korean elementary science classrooms, which are heavily influenced by Confucianism. Ethnographic observations of two elementary science teachers' classrooms in Korea are provided. Their classes are fairly traditional teaching, which mean teacher-centered interactions are dominant. To understand the power and approval in science classroom discourse, we have adopted Critical Discourse Analysis (CDA). Based on CDA, form and function analysis was adopted. After the form and function analysis, all episodes were analyzed in terms of social distance. The results showed that both teachers exercised their power while teaching. However, their classes were quite different in terms of getting approval by students. When a teacher got students' approval, he could conduct the science lesson more effectively. This study highlights the importance of getting approval by students in Korean science classrooms.

  11. Cultivation of science identity through authentic science in an urban high school classroom (United States)

    Chapman, Angela; Feldman, Allan


    This study examined how a contextually based authentic science experience affected the science identities of urban high school students who have been marginalized during their K-12 science education. We examined students' perceptions of the intervention as an authentic science experience, how the experience influenced their science identity, as well as their perceptions about who can do science. We found that the students believed the experience to be one of authentic science, that their science identity was positively influenced by participation in the experience, and that they demonstrated a shift in perceptions from stereotypical to more diverse views of scientists. Implications for science education are discussed.

  12. Classroom Animals Provide More than Just Science Education (United States)

    Herbert, Sandra; Lynch, Julianne


    Keeping classroom animals is a common practice in many classrooms. Their value for learning is often seen narrowly as the potential to involve children in learning biological science. They also provide opportunities for increased empathy, as well as socio-emotional development. Realization of their potential for enhancing primary children's…

  13. Plickers: A Formative Assessment Tool for K-12 and PETE Professionals (United States)

    Krause, Jennifer M.; O'Neil, Kason; Dauenhauer, Brian


    Classroom response systems have become popular in K-12 and higher education settings in recent years in order to gauge student learning. The physical education environment is unique in that it is difficult to manage the technology associated with these systems, and therefore, student assessment can be cumbersome. A free classroom response system…

  14. Silencing of Voices in a Swedish Science Classroom (United States)

    Ramos de Robles, S. Lizette


    From a sociocultural perspective, I discuss data from a Swedish science classroom presented in María Gómez's article "Student Explanations of their Science Teachers' Assessments, Grading Practices, and How they learn Science". In this discussion, I focus on the need to change existing conceptions of assessment in the teaching and…

  15. Copyright Updates for K-12 Librarians (United States)

    Johnson, Wendell G.


    Copyright concerns continue to bedevil K-12 librarians, who are often called upon to act as the copyright officers in public schools. This article describes recent copyright developments of concern to these librarians in three areas: a recent court case involving a university library, pending legislation supported by ALA, and a regulatory update.…

  16. Energy Retrofit for Aging K-12 Schools. (United States)

    3D/International, Houston, TX.

    Successfully retrofitting aging K-12 schools using energy conservation measures (ECM) that can improve the physical plant and reduce energy consumption are explored. Topics explore how certain ECM measures can benefit educational facilities, why retrofitting begun sooner rather than later is important, how to finance the retrofit program, and the…

  17. Approaching K-12 Online Education in Pennsylvania (United States)

    Vadell, Kathryn


    The purpose of this study is to determine how K-12 schools are addressing the need to accommodate online learners in Pennsylvania. It is built upon a review of literature focusing on educational legislation, the personalization of online learning and online learning solutions. The study posed 21 questions utilizing a mixed methods approach to…

  18. K-12 Mathematics and the Web (United States)

    Glazer, Evan


    The Web offers numerous learning resources and opportunities for K-12 mathematics education. This paper discusses those resources and opportunities. Discussion includes (a) asynchronous and synchronous communication tools, (b) the use of data sets to make connections between mathematics concepts and real-world applications, and (c) interactive…

  19. Mathematics and Science Learning Opportunities in Preschool Classrooms (United States)

    Piasta, Shayne B.; Pelatti, Christina Yeager; Miller, Heather Lynnine


    Research findings The present study observed and coded instruction in 65 preschool classrooms to examine (a) overall amounts and (b) types of mathematics and science learning opportunities experienced by preschool children as well as (c) the extent to which these opportunities were associated with classroom and program characteristics. Results indicated that children were afforded an average of 24 and 26 minutes of mathematics and science learning opportunities, respectively, corresponding to spending approximately 25% of total instructional time in each domain. Considerable variability existed, however, in the amounts and types of mathematics and science opportunities provided to children in their classrooms; to some extent, this variability was associated with teachers’ years of experience, teachers’ levels of education, and the socioeconomic status of children served in the program. Practice/policy Although results suggest greater integration of mathematics and science in preschool classrooms than previously established, there was considerable diversity in the amounts and types of learning opportunities provided in preschool classrooms. Affording mathematics and science experiences to all preschool children, as outlined in professional and state standards, may require additional professional development aimed at increasing preschool teachers’ understanding and implementation of learning opportunities in these two domains in their classrooms. PMID:25489205

  20. Classroom

    Indian Academy of Sciences (India)

    "Classroom" is equally a forum for raising broader issues and sharing personal experiences and viewpoints on matters related to teaching and learning science. ! Quantum Theory of the Doppler Effed. Generally text books give only the wave ...

  1. Classroom

    Indian Academy of Sciences (India)

    "Classroom" is equally a foru11J. for raising broader issues and sharing personal experiences and viewpoints on matters related to teaching and learning science. Point Set Topological ... a new way of looking at this problem and we will prove.

  2. Classroom

    Indian Academy of Sciences (India)

    responses, or both. "Classroom" is equally a forum for raising broader issues and sharing personal experiences and viewpoints on matters related to teaching and learning science. ... I shall give the solution to the problem, along with relevant.

  3. Classroom

    Indian Academy of Sciences (India)

    in a classroom situation. We may suggest strategies for dealing with them, or invite responses, or both. ... research, could then both inject greater vigour into teaching of ... ture, forestry and fishery sciences, management of natural resources.

  4. Infrared Astronomy Professional Development for K-12 Educators: WISE Telescope (United States)

    Borders, Kareen; Mendez, B. M.


    K-12 educators need effective and relevant astronomy professional development. WISE Telescope (Wide-Field Infrared Survey Explorer) and Spitzer Space Telescope Education programs provided an immersive teacher professional development workshop at Arecibo Observatory in Puerto Rico during the summer of 2009. As many common misconceptions involve scale and distance, teachers worked with Moon/Earth scale, solar system scale, and distance of objects in the universe. Teachers built and used basic telescopes, learned about the history of telescopes, explored ground and satellite based telescopes, and explored and worked on models of WISE Telescope. An in-depth explanation of WISE and Spitzer telescopes gave participants background knowledge for infrared astronomy observations. We taught the electromagnetic spectrum through interactive stations. The stations included an overview via lecture and power point, the use of ultraviolet beads to determine ultraviolet exposure, the study of WISE lenticulars and diagramming of infrared data, listening to light by using speakers hooked up to photoreceptor cells, looking at visible light through diffraction glasses and diagramming the data, protocols for using astronomy based research in the classroom, and infrared thermometers to compare environmental conditions around the observatory. An overview of LIDAR physics was followed up by a simulated LIDAR mapping of the topography of Mars. We will outline specific steps for K-12 infrared astronomy professional development, provide data demonstrating the impact of the above professional development on educator understanding and classroom use, and detail future plans for additional K-12 professional development. Funding was provided by WISE Telescope, Spitzer Space Telescope, Starbucks, Arecibo Observatory, the American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics, and the Washington Space Grant Consortium.

  5. One Model for Scientist Involvement in K-12 Education: Teachers Experiencing Antarctica and the Arctic Program (United States)

    Meese, D.; Shipp, S. S.; Porter, M.; Bruccoli, A.


    Scientists involved in the NSF-funded Teachers Experiencing Antarctica and the Arctic (TEA) Program integrate a K-12 science teacher into their polar field project. Objectives of the program include: having the science teacher immersed in the experience of research; 2) through the teacher, leveraging the research experience to better inform teaching practices; and 3) sharing the experience with the broader educational and general community. The scientist - or qualified team member - stays involved with the teacher throughout the program as a mentor. Preparation of the teacher involves a week-long orientation presented by the TEA Program, and a two week pre-expedition visit at the scientist's institution. Orientation acquaints teachers with program expectations, logistical information, and an overview of polar science. While at the scientist's institution, the teacher meets the team, prepares for the field, and strengthens content knowledge. In the field, the teacher is a team member and educational liaison, responding to questions from students and colleagues by e-mail, and posting electronic journals describing the research experience. Upon return, the teachers work closely with colleagues to bring the experience of research into classrooms through creation of activities, design of longer-term student investigations, and presentations at scientific, educational, and community meetings. Interaction with the scientific team continues with a visit by the scientist to the teacher's classrooms, collaboration on presentations at scientific meetings, and consultation on classroom activities. In some cases, the teacher may participate in future expeditions. The involvement by scientists in mentor relationships, such as those of the TEA Program, is critical to improving science education. Many teachers of science have not had the opportunity to participate in field research, which offers valuable first-hand experience about the nature of science, as well as about specific

  6. Strategies for Effective Implementation of Science Models into 6-9 Grade Classrooms on Climate, Weather, and Energy Topics (United States)

    Yarker, M. B.; Stanier, C. O.; Forbes, C.; Park, S.


    As atmospheric scientists, we depend on Numerical Weather Prediction (NWP) models. We use them to predict weather patterns, to understand external forcing on the atmosphere, and as evidence to make claims about atmospheric phenomenon. Therefore, it is important that we adequately prepare atmospheric science students to use computer models. However, the public should also be aware of what models are in order to understand scientific claims about atmospheric issues, such as climate change. Although familiar with weather forecasts on television and the Internet, the general public does not understand the process of using computer models to generate a weather and climate forecasts. As a result, the public often misunderstands claims scientists make about their daily weather as well as the state of climate change. Since computer models are the best method we have to forecast the future of our climate, scientific models and modeling should be a topic covered in K-12 classrooms as part of a comprehensive science curriculum. According to the National Science Education Standards, teachers are encouraged to science models into the classroom as a way to aid in the understanding of the nature of science. However, there is very little description of what constitutes a science model, so the term is often associated with scale models. Therefore, teachers often use drawings or scale representations of physical entities, such as DNA, the solar system, or bacteria. In other words, models used in classrooms are often used as visual representations, but the purpose of science models is often overlooked. The implementation of a model-based curriculum in the science classroom can be an effective way to prepare students to think critically, problem solve, and make informed decisions as a contributing member of society. However, there are few resources available to help teachers implement science models into the science curriculum effectively. Therefore, this research project looks at

  7. Metacognitive Strategies in the Introduction to Political Science Classroom (United States)

    Lusk, Adam


    This article examines metacognitive-based teaching strategies and provides preliminary evidence about their effectiveness in the political science classroom. In a 2013 Fall semester Introduction to Political Science course, three metacognitive-based teaching strategies were designed and implemented for improving student learning through greater…

  8. Students' Regulation of Their Emotions in a Science Classroom (United States)

    Tomas, Louisa; Rigano, Donna; Ritchie, Stephen M.


    Research aimed at understanding the role of the affective domain in student learning in classrooms has undergone a recent resurgence due to the need to understand students' affective response to science instruction. In a case study of a year 8 science class in North Queensland, students worked in small groups to write, film, edit, and produce…

  9. Implementing Concepts of Pharmaceutical Engineering into High School Science Classrooms (United States)

    Kimmel, Howard; Hirsch, Linda S.; Simon, Laurent; Burr-Alexander, Levelle; Dave, Rajesh


    The Research Experience for Teachers was designed to help high school science teachers develop skills and knowledge in research, science and engineering with a focus on the area of pharmaceutical particulate and composite systems. The experience included time for the development of instructional modules for classroom teaching. Results of the…

  10. Supporting Three-Dimensional Science Learning: The Role of Curiosity-Driven Classroom Discourse (United States)

    Johnson, Wendy Renae


    The National Research Council's "Framework for K-12 Science Education" (2011) presents a new vision for science education that calls for the integration of the three dimensions of science learning: science and engineering practices, crosscutting concepts, and disciplinary core ideas. Unlike previous conceptions of science learning that…

  11. A Framework for Quality K-12 Engineering Education: Research and Development (United States)

    Moore, Tamara J.; Glancy, Aran W.; Tank, Kristina M.; Kersten, Jennifer A.; Smith, Karl A.; Stohlmann, Micah S.


    Recent U.S. national documents have laid the foundation for highlighting the connection between science, technology, engineering and mathematics at the K-12 level. However, there is not a clear definition or a well-established tradition of what constitutes a quality engineering education at the K-12 level. The purpose of the current work has been…

  12. Applying the Quadratic Usage Framework to Research on K-12 STEM Digital Learning Resources (United States)

    Luetkemeyer, Jennifer R.


    Numerous policymakers have called for K-12 educators to increase their effectiveness by transforming science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) learning and teaching with digital resources and tools. In this study we outline the significance of studying pressing issues related to use of digital resources in the K-12 environment and…

  13. Mapping Science in Discourse-based Inquiry Classrooms (United States)

    Yeneayhu, Demeke Gesesse

    Abstract The purpose of this study was to investigate how discourse-based inquiry science lessons provided opportunities for students to develop a network of semantic relations among core ideas and concepts in science. It was a naturalistic inquiry classroom lessons observation study on three science teachers--- a middle school science teacher and two high school physics teachers in an urban school district located in the Western New York region. Discourse and thematic analysis drawn from the theory of Systemic Functional Linguistics were utilized as guiding framework and analysis tools. Analysis of the pre-observation and post-observation interviews of the participant teachers revealed that all of the three teachers participated in at least one inquiry-based science teaching teacher professional development program and they all thought their classroom teaching practice was inquiry-based. Analysis of their classroom lesson videos that each participant teacher taught on a specific science topic revealed that the middle school teacher was found to be a traditional teacher-dominated classroom whereas the two high school physics teachers' classroom teaching approach was found to be discourse-based inquiry. One of the physics teachers who taught on a topic of Magnetic Interaction used relatively structured and guided-inquiry classroom investigations. The other physics teacher who taught on a topic of Color Mixing utilized open-ended classroom investigations where the students planned and executed the series of classroom science investigations with minimal guidance from the teacher. The traditional teacher-based classroom communicative pattern was found to be dominated by Triadic Dialogue and most of the science thematics were jointly developed by the teacher and the students, but the students' role was limited to providing responses to the teacher's series questions. In the guided-inquiry classroom, the common communicative pattern was found to be True Dialogue and most

  14. Initiating New Science Partnerships in Rural Education (INSPIRE): Enhancing Scientific Communication by Bringing STEM Research into the Classroom (United States)

    Pierce, D.; Radencic, S.; Funderburk, W. K.; Walker, R. M.; Jackson, B. S.; Dawkins, K. S.; Schmitz, D.; Bruce, L. M.; McNeal, K.


    INSPIRE, a five-year partnership between Mississippi State University and three local school districts, is designed to strengthen the communication skills of graduate Fellows in geosciences, physics, astronomy, chemistry, and engineering as they incorporate their research into inquiry-based lessons in 7th - 12th grade science and math classrooms. All lesson plans designed and taught by the graduate Fellows must include one or more connections to their research, and these connections must be demonstrated to the students during the lessons. International research partnerships with Australia, the Bahamas, England, and Poland provide valuable opportunities for graduate Fellows to conduct field work abroad and allow our partner teachers to have authentic research experiences that they can bring back to their classrooms. Program effectiveness has been examined using pre- and post-year attitudinal surveys, formal lesson plan documents, Fellow and teacher journals, focus group meetings with a project evaluator, and direct observation of Fellow-led classroom activities. Analyses of data gathered during the past four years of the partnership will be presented that examine the diversity in approaches taken by Fellows to communicate big ideas, changes in the ability of Fellows to find connections between their research and classroom lessons while keeping them aligned with state and national standards, and the quality of the mentorship provided to the Fellows by our partner teachers. INSPIRE is funded by the Graduate K-12 (GK-12) STEM Fellowship Program of the National Science Foundation (Award No. DGE-0947419).

  15. Science Teacher Beliefs and Classroom Practice Related to Constructivism in Different School Settings (United States)

    Savasci, Funda; Berlin, Donna F.


    Science teacher beliefs and classroom practice related to constructivism and factors that may influence classroom practice were examined in this cross-case study. Data from four science teachers in two schools included interviews, demographic questionnaire, Classroom Learning Environment Survey (preferred/perceived), and classroom observations and…

  16. The Ripple Effect: Exploring How a Joint Science Specialist/TOSA Can Change Classroom Teachers' Instructional Practices through Project-Based Learning (United States)

    Gradias, Jean

    In 2013, California became one of the first states to adopt the rigorous Next Generation Science Standards (NGSS). However, the current state of science instruction does not support the conceptual shifts of the NGSS, which call for consistent science instruction K-12, increased inquiry, subject integration, as well as science instruction that connects students to their communities and their world. Therefore, teachers are in need of instructional support for science teaching that can enable them to achieve these higher expectations. This dissertation explored whether implementing a Project-Based Learning (PBL)-centered science specialist changed classroom teachers' frequency of science instruction and use of instructional strategies that support NGSS science delivery. In addition, this study examined how providing a PBL science specialist supported teachers in their comfort with using these more rigorous instructional strategies. Five elementary teachers participated in an action research project conducted over the course of a school year. The frequency with which teachers used the following instructional strategies was analyzed: connecting science to real world phenomena, accessing community resources, integrating science into other subject areas, and using inquiry in science instruction. Quantitative and qualitative data revealed that a PBL science specialist does support classroom teachers in implementing teaching practices aligned to the conceptual shifts implicated by the NGSS; however, individual growth rates varied by instructional strategy. The results of this study provide a foundation for the legitimacy of utilizing a PBL-focused science specialist to support teachers in shifting their instructional practices in order to achieve the Next Generation Science Standards.

  17. Examining classroom interactions related to difference in students' science achievement (United States)

    Zady, Madelon F.; Portes, Pedro R.; Ochs, V. Dan


    The current study examines the cognitive supports that underlie achievement in science by using a cultural historical framework (L. S. Vygotsky (1934/1986), Thought and Language, MIT Press, Cambridge, MA.) and the activity setting (AS) construct (R. G. Tharp & R. Gallimore (1988), Rousing minds to life: Teaching, learning and schooling in social context, Cambridge University Press, Cambridge, MA.) with its five features: personnel, motivations, scripts, task demands, and beliefs. Observations were made of the classrooms of seventh-grade science students, 32 of whom had participated in a prior achievement-related parent-child interaction or home study (P. R. Portes, M. F. Zady, & R. M. Dunham (1998), Journal of Genetic Psychology, 159, 163-178). The results of a quantitative analysis of classroom interaction showed two features of the AS: personnel and scripts. The qualitative field analysis generated four emergent phenomena related to the features of the AS that appeared to influence student opportunity for conceptual development. The emergent phenomenon were science activities, the building of learning, meaning in lessons, and the conflict over control. Lastly, the results of the two-part classroom study were compared to those of the home science AS of high and low achievers. Mismatches in the AS features in the science classroom may constrain the opportunity to learn. Educational implications are discussed.

  18. Do science coaches promote inquiry-based instruction in the elementary science classroom? (United States)

    Wicker, Rosemary Knight

    The South Carolina Mathematics and Science Coaching Initiative established a school-based science coaching model that was effective in improving instruction by increasing the level of inquiry-based instruction in elementary science classrooms. Classroom learning environment data from both teacher groups indicated considerable differences in the quality of inquiry instruction for those classrooms of teachers supported by a science coach. All essential features of inquiry were demonstrated more frequently and at a higher level of open-ended inquiry in classrooms with the support of a science coach than were demonstrated in classrooms without a science coach. However, from teacher observations and interviews, it was determined that elementary schoolteacher practice of having students evaluate conclusions and connect them to current scientific knowledge was often neglected. Teachers with support of a science coach reported changes in inquiry-based instruction that were statistically significant. This mixed ethnographic study also suggested that the Mathematics and Science Coaching Initiative Theory of Action for Instructional Improvement was an effective model when examining the work of science coaches. All components of effective school infrastructure were positively impacted by a variety of science coaching strategies intended to promote inquiry. Professional development for competent teachers, implementation of researched-based curriculum, and instructional materials support were areas highly impacted by the work of science coaches.

  19. Interstellar Molecules in K-12 Education (United States)

    Kuiper, T. B. H.; Hofstadter, M. D.; Levin, S. M.; MacLaren, D.


    The Lewis Center for Educational Research (LCER) and the Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL) collaborate in a K-12 educational project in which students conduct observations for several research programs led by radio astronomers. The Goldstone-Apple Valley Radio Telescope (GAVRT) program provides participating teachers with curriculum elements, based on the students' observing experiences, which support national and state academic standards. The current program is based on 2.2-GHz and 8.4-GHz radiometric observations of variable sources. The research programs monitor Jupiter, Uranus, and a selected set of quasars. The telescope is a decommissioned NASA Deep Space Network antenna at Goldstone, California. In the next three years, a second telescope will be added. This telescope will at least operate at the above frequencies as well as 6 GHz and 12 GHz. Possibly, it will operate in a continuous band from 1.2 GHz to 14 GHz. In either case, the telescope will be able to observe at least the 6.6-GHz and 12.2-GHz methanol maser lines. The success of the GAVRT program depends critically on the participation of scientists committed to the research who have the ability and enthusiasm for interacting with K-12 students, typically through teleconferences. The scientists will initially work with the LCER staff to create curriculum elements around their observing program.

  20. The book of science mysteries classroom science activities to support student enquiry-based learning

    CERN Document Server

    McOwan, Peter; Olivotto, Cristina


    In this booklet, you will be introduced to an exciting new way to teach science in your classroom. The TEMI project (Teaching Enquiry with Mysteries Incorporated) is an EU-funded project that brings together experts in teacher training from across Europe to help you introduce enquiry-based learning successfully in the classroom and improve student engagement and skills.

  1. A Longitudinal Study of Implementing Reality Pedagogy in an Urban Science Classroom: Effects, Challenges, and Recommendations for Science Teaching and Learning (United States)

    Borges, Sheila Ivelisse

    Statistics indicate that students who reside in forgotten places do not engage in science-related careers. This is problematic because we are not tapping into diverse talent that could very well make scientific strides and because there is a moral obligation for equity as discussed in Science for all (AAAS, 1989). Research suggests that one of the reasons for this disparity is that students feel alienated from science early on in their K--12 education due to their inability to connect culturally with their teachers (Tobin, 2001). Urban students share an urban culture, a way of knowing and being that is separate from that of the majority of the teacher workforce whom have not experienced the nuances of urban culture. These teachers have challenges when teaching in urban classrooms and have a myriad of difficulties such as classroom management, limited access to experienced science colleagues and limited resources to teach effectively. This leads them to leaving the teaching profession affecting already high teacher attrition rates in urban areas (Ingersol, 2001). In order to address these issues a culturally relevant pedagogy, called reality pedagogy (Emdin, 2011), was implemented in an urban science classroom using a bricolage (Denzin & Lincoln, 2005) of different theories such as social capital (Bourdieu, 1986) and critical race theory (Ladson-Billings & Tate, 1995), along with reality pedagogy to construct a qualitative sociocultural lens. Reality pedagogy has five tools, which are cogenerative dialogues, coteaching, cosmopolitanism, context, and content. In this longitudinal critical ethnography a science teacher in an alternative teaching certification program was supported for two years as she implemented the tools of reality pedagogy with her urban students. Findings revealed that the science teacher enacted four racial microaggressions against her students, which negatively affected the teacher-student relationship and science teaching and learning. As the

  2. Hal in the Classroom: Science Fiction Films. (United States)

    Amelio, Ralph J.

    The articles in this book provide political, social, sociological, psychological, sexual, mythical, literary, and filmic approaches to the study of science fiction film. "Journey into Science Fiction" by W. Johnson and "The Imagination of Disaster" by S. Sontag treat broadly the essentials of science fiction films. "For the Future: The Science…

  3. Building "Science Capital" in the Classroom (United States)

    Nomikou, Effrosyni; Archer, Louise; King, Heather


    In this article we share insights from our ongoing research on the concept of "science capital"--a term that refers to an individual's science-related resources and dispositions. We have been working in collaboration with secondary teachers in England to explore the applications of the concept in science teaching practice. Underpinned by…

  4. Laboratory Notebooks in the Science Classroom (United States)

    Roberson, Christine; Lankford, Deanna


    Lab notebooks provide students with authentic science experiences as they become active, practicing scientists. Teachers gain insight into students' understanding of science content and processes, while students create a lasting personal resource. This article provides high school science teachers with guidelines for implementing lab notebooks in…

  5. A Theoretical Understanding of the Literature on Student Voice in the Science Classroom (United States)

    Laux, Katie


    Background: Incorporating student voice into the science classroom has the potential to positively impact science teaching and learning. However, students are rarely consulted on school and classroom matters. This literature review examines the effects of including student voice in the science classroom. Purpose: The purpose of this literature…

  6. Collaborative CPD and inquiry-based science in the classroom

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Nielsen, Birgitte Lund

    on the teaching of science and on collaboration. Qualitative data obtained by following the same teacher teaching Science & Technology from 4th to 6th grade are used to discuss changes in her classroom practice; in particular concerning inquiry-based methods shown in earlier QUEST-research to be understood......Continuous Professional Development (CPD) is crucial for reforming science teaching, but more knowledge is needed about how to embed CPD in teachers’ daily work. The Danish QUEST-project is a long-term collaborative CPD-project designed informed by research and with activities changing rhythmically...... between seminars, individual trials in own classroom, and collaborative activities in the science-team at local schools. The QUEST research is aimed at understanding the relation between individual and social changes. In this study, quantitative data are used to compare the perceived effect from QUEST...

  7. Cultivating characters (moral value) through internalization strategy in science classroom (United States)

    Ibrahim, M.; Abadi


    It is still in a crucial debate that characters play an important learning outcome to be realized by design. So far, most people think that characters were reached as nurturance effect with the assumption that students who are knowledgeable and skillful will have good characters automatically. Lately, obtained evidence that this assumption is not true. Characters should be taught deliberately or by design. This study was designed to culture elementary school students’ characters through science classroom. The teaching-learning process was conducted to facilitate and bridge the students from the known (concrete images: Science phenomena) to the unknown (abstract ideas: characters: care, and tolerance. Characters were observed five weeks before and after the intervention. Data were analyzed from observation of 24 students in internalization strategy-based courses. Qualitative and quantitative data suggested that the internalization strategy that use of science phenomena to represent abstract ideas (characters) in science classroom positively cultivating characters.

  8. Intelligent Design in the Public School Science Classroom (United States)

    Hickey, Wesley D.


    The ongoing battle to insert intelligent causes into the science classrooms has been met with political approval and scientific rejection. Administrators in the United States need to be aware of the law related to creationism and intelligent design in order to lead in local curricular battles. Although unlikely to appease the ID proponents, there…

  9. Fostering Critical Thinking Practices at Primary Science Classrooms in Nepal (United States)

    Acharya, Kamal Prasad


    This article examines the socio-cultural activities that have direct and indirect impacts on critical thinking practices in primary science classrooms and what kinds of teachers' activities help to foster the development of critical thinking practices in children. Meanwhile, the constructivist and the socio-cultural theoretical dimensions have…

  10. Continuing Professional Development and Learning in Primary Science Classrooms (United States)

    Fraser, Christine A.


    This article explores the effects of continuing professional development (CPD) on teachers' and pupils' experiences of learning and teaching science in primary classrooms. During 2006-2007, quantitative and qualitative data were elicited from two primary teachers in Scotland using questionnaires, semi-structured interviews and video-stimulated…

  11. The Effectiveness of a Technology-Enhanced Flipped Science Classroom (United States)

    Sezer, Baris


    This study examined the effect on the learning and motivation of students of a flipped classroom environment enriched with technology. A mixed research design using a pretest or posttest experimental model, combined with qualitative data, was conducted in a public middle school in Turkey for 2 weeks (three class hours) within a science course.…

  12. Backyard Botany: Using GPS Technology in the Science Classroom (United States)

    March, Kathryn A.


    Global Positioning System (GPS) technology can be used to connect students to the natural world and improve their skills in observation, identification, and classification. Using GPS devices in the classroom increases student interest in science, encourages team-building skills, and improves biology content knowledge. Additionally, it helps…

  13. Teaching and learning science in linguistically diverse classrooms (United States)

    Moore, Emilee; Evnitskaya, Natalia; Ramos-de Robles, S. Lizette


    In this paper we reflect on the article, Science education in a bilingual class: problematising a translational practice, by Zeynep Ünsal, Britt Jakobson, Bengt-Olav Molander and Per-Olaf Wickman (Cult Stud Sci Educ, 10.1007/s11422-016-9747-3). In their article, the authors present the results of a classroom research project by responding to one main question: How is continuity between everyday language and the language of science construed in a bilingual science classroom where the teacher and the students do not speak the same minority language? Specifically, Ünsal et al. examine how bilingual students construe relations between everyday language and the language of science in a class taught in Swedish, in which all students also spoke Turkish, whereas the teacher also spoke Bosnian, both being minority languages in the context of Swedish schools. In this forum, we briefly discuss why close attention to bilingual dynamics emerging in classrooms such as those highlighted by Ünsal et al. matters for science education. We continue by discussing changing ontologies in relation to linguistic diversity and education more generally. Recent research in bilingual immersion classroom settings in so-called "content" subjects such as Content and Language Integrated Learning, is then introduced, as we believe this research offers some significant insights in terms of how bilingualism contributes to knowledge building in subjects such as science. Finally, we offer some reflections in relation to the classroom interactional competence needed by teachers in linguistically diverse classrooms. In this way, we aim to further the discussion initiated by Ünsal et al. and to offer possible frameworks for future research on bilingualism in science education. In their article, Ünsal et al. conclude the analysis of the classroom data by arguing in favor of a translanguaging pedagogy, an approach to teaching and learning in which students' whole language repertoires are used as

  14. Impact of Guided Notes on Achievement in K-12 and Special Education Students (United States)

    Larwin, Karen H.; Dawson, Daniel; Erickson, Matthew; Larwin, David A.


    The common practice of using of guided notes in the K-12 and special education classroom is not fully appreciated or understood. In an effort to add to the existing research about this phenomenon, the current investigation expands on previously published research and one previously published meta-analysis that examined the impact of guided notes…

  15. Analysis of 3D Modeling Software Usage Patterns for K-12 Students (United States)

    Wu, Yi-Chieh; Liao, Wen-Hung; Chi, Ming-Te; Li, Tsai-Yen


    In response to the recent trend in maker movement, teachers are learning 3D techniques actively and bringing 3D printing into the classroom to enhance variety and creativity in designing lectures. This study investigates the usage pattern of a 3D modeling software, Qmodel Creator, which is targeted at K-12 students. User logs containing…

  16. Mixed Methods Evaluation of Statewide Implementation of Mathematics Education Technology for K-12 Students (United States)

    Brasiel, Sarah; Martin, Taylor; Jeong, Soojeong; Yuan, Min


    An extensive body of research has demonstrated that the use in a K-12 classroom of technology, such as the Internet, computers, and software programs, enhances the learning of mathematics (Cheung & Slavin, 2013; Cohen & Hollebrands, 2011). In particular, growing empirical evidence supports that certain types of technology, such as…

  17. Preparing for Online Teaching: Web-Based Assessment and Communication Skills in K12 (United States)

    DeNisco, Alison


    Students are doing less hand-raising and more clicking as online classes become increasingly popular in K12 instruction, both in combination with brick-and-mortar classrooms and in independent full-time virtual schools. With online instruction comes a change in the nature of teaching, communicating with, and assessing students. As schools move to…

  18. iPads in K-12 Schools: A Grounded Theory Study of Value (United States)

    Townsend, Mary Beth


    This qualitative grounded theory study investigated the value of iPads in K-12 schools when used in one-to-one ratios. The purpose of the study was to understand the perspectives of teachers using iPads in one-to-one ratios for teaching and learning in the classroom and administrators responsible for the implementation of these devices. The…

  19. Integrating the iPod Touch in K-12 Education: Visions and Vices (United States)

    Banister, Savilla


    Advocates of ubiquitous computing have long been documenting classroom benefits of one-to-one ratios of students to handheld or laptop computers. The recent sophisticated capabilities of the iPod Touch, iPhone, and iPad have encouraged further speculation on exactly how K-12 teaching and learning might be energized by such devices. This paper…

  20. An Exploratory Study of the Ascendancy of Women to the Position of K-12 Superintendent (United States)

    Hanson, Karen M.


    Despite earning over half of the doctoral degrees in education, women are underrepresented in the position of K-12 superintendent. In 2000, although 72% of all classroom teachers were female, only 14% of all superintendents in the United States were women. Research indicates that women experience barriers in their ascendancy to superintendent.…

  1. Turkish Preservice Science Teachers' Socioscientific Issues-Based Teaching Practices in Middle School Science Classrooms (United States)

    Genel, Abdulkadir; Topçu, Mustafa Sami


    Background: Despite a growing body of research and curriculum reforms including socioscientific issues (SSI) across the world, how preservice science teachers (PST) or in-service science teachers can teach SSI in science classrooms needs further inquiry. Purpose: The purpose of this study is to describe the abilities of PSTs to teach SSI in middle…

  2. Question Asking in the Science Classroom: Teacher Attitudes and Practices (United States)

    Eshach, Haim; Dor-Ziderman, Yair; Yefroimsky, Yana


    Despite the wide agreement among educators that classroom learning and teaching processes can gain much from student and teacher questions, their potential is not fully utilized. Adopting the view that reporting both teachers' (of varying age groups) views and actual classroom practices is necessary for obtaining a more complete view of the phenomena at hand, the present study closely examines both cognitive and affective domains of: (a) teachers' views (via interviews) concerning: (1) importance and roles of teacher and student questions, (2) teacher responses, and (3) planning and teacher training; and (b) teachers' actual practices (via classroom observations) concerning: (1) number and (2) level of teacher and student questions, as well as (3) teachers' responses to questions. The data were collected from 3 elementary, 3 middle, and 3 high school science teachers and their respective classroom students. The findings lay out a wide view of classroom questioning and teachers' responses, and relate what actually occurs in classes to teachers' stated views. Some of the study's main conclusions are that a gap exists between how science researchers and teachers view the role of teacher questions: the former highlight the cognitive domain, while the latter emphasize the affective domain.

  3. Controversial Issues in the Science Classroom (United States)

    Owens, David C.; Sadler, Troy D.; Zeidler, Dana L.


    As the partisan divide becomes more toxic to civil discourse, the role of science in that conversation also suffers from collateral damage, becoming suspect at best, and marginalized at worse, in terms of its contribution to resolving issues rooted in science having national and global significance. The authors suggest ameliorating that damage by…

  4. 4E x 2 Instructional Model: Uniting Three Learning Constructs to Improve Praxis in Science and Mathematics Classrooms (United States)

    Marshall, Jeff C.; Horton, Bob; Smart, Julie


    After decades of research endorsing inquiry-based learning, at best only moderate success has been noted in creating effective systemic implementation in K-12 classrooms. Thus, teachers need to be better equipped in how to bring this transformation to their own classrooms. Changing beliefs and overcoming external obstacles encourages the use of…

  5. "Flipping" educational technology professional development for K-12 educators (United States)

    Spencer, Daniel

    As the demand for more effective professional development increases in K-12 schools, trainers must adjust their training methods to meet the needs of their teacher learners. Just as lecture-heavy, teacher-centered instruction only meet the learning needs of a small minority of students, "sit and get" professional development rarely results in the teachers gaining the skills and confidence necessary to use technology effectively in their instruction. To resolve the frustrations of teachers related to ineffective professional development, a "Flipped PD" training model was developed based on the learning needs of adult learners, the integration of technological, pedagogical, and content knowledge (TPACK), learning activities, and the Flipped Classroom concept. Under this model, training shifts from a passive, trainer-centered format, to an active, learner-centered format where teachers learn to use technology in their classrooms by first focusing on pedagogical issues, then choosing the options that work best for addressing those issues in their unique situation, and completing "learn-by-doing" projects. Those who participate in "Flipped PD" style trainings tend to have more confidence upon completion that they can use the tools they were trained on in their teaching, as well as believe that the PD was engaging and a good use of their time.

  6. Retaining K-12 Online Teachers: A Predictive Model for K-12 Online Teacher Turnover (United States)

    Larkin, Ingle M.; Lokey-Vega, Anissa; Brantley-Dias, Laurie


    The purpose of this study was to measure and explore factors influencing K-12 online teachers' turnover intentions, with job satisfaction and organizational commitment serving as moderating variables. Using Fishbein and Ajzen's Theory of Reasoned Action and Planned Behavior (1975), this study was conducted in public, private, charter, for-profit,…

  7. Science Fiction in the Political Science Classroom: A Comment (United States)

    Landers, Clifford E.


    Science fiction can be used for introducing and analyzing political concepts at the undergraduate level for either a specialized theory-oriented course such as Political Science Fiction or an Introduction to Political Science course. (Author/RM)

  8. K-12 educational outcomes of immigrant youth. (United States)

    Crosnoe, Robert; Turley, Ruth N López


    The children from immigrant families in the United States make up a historically diverse population, and they are demonstrating just as much diversity in their experiences in the K-12 educational system. Robert Crosnoe and Ruth López Turley summarize these K-12 patterns, paying special attention to differences in academic functioning across segments of the immigrant population defined by generational status, race and ethnicity, and national origin. A good deal of evidence points to an immigrant advantage in multiple indicators of academic progress, meaning that many youths from immigrant families outperform their peers in school. This apparent advantage is often referred to as the immigrant paradox, in that it occurs despite higher-than-average rates of social and economic disadvantages in this population as a whole. The immigrant paradox, however, is more pronounced among the children of Asian and African immigrants than other groups, and it is stronger for boys than for girls. Furthermore, evidence for the paradox is far more consistent in secondary school than in elementary school. Indeed, school readiness appears to be one area of potential risk for children from immigrant families, especially those of Mexican origin. For many groups, including those from Latin America, any evidence of the immigrant paradox usually emerges after researchers control for family socioeconomic circumstances and youths' English language skills. For others, including those from Asian countries, it is at least partially explained by the tendency for more socioeconomically advantaged residents of those regions to leave their home country for the United States. Bilingualism and strong family ties help to explain immigrant advantages in schooling; school, community, and other contextual disadvantages may suppress these advantages or lead to immigrant risks. Crosnoe and Turley also discuss several policy efforts targeting young people from immigrant families, especially those of Latin

  9. Ideas and Activities for Recycling Education for Grades K-12. (United States)

    Ayers, Jerry B., Ed.; Olberding, April H., Ed.

    In June 1997, Tennessee Technological University's Center for Manufacturing Research conducted a one-week program on plastics recycling for science teachers. The purpose of the program was to increase the teachers' basic knowledge about the importance of recycling plastics and to better prepare the teachers for teaching recycling in the classroom.…

  10. Classroom Demonstrations in Materials Science/Engineering. (United States)

    Hirschhorn, J. S.; And Others

    Examples are given of demonstrations used at the University of Wisconsin in a materials science course for nontechnical students. Topics include crystal models, thermal properties, light, and corrosion. (MLH)

  11. Classroom Implementation of Science, Technology, Engineering ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Zimbabwe Journal of Educational Research ... Understanding science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) education as a ... life skills in general and scientific literacy, along with a productive disposition and sense of social ...

  12. Negotiating Science and Engineering: An Exploratory Case Study of a Reform-Minded Science Teacher (United States)

    Guzey, S. Selcen; Ring-Whalen, Elizabeth A.


    Engineering has been slowly integrated into K-12 science classrooms in the United States as the result of recent science education reforms. Such changes in science teaching require that a science teacher is confident with and committed to content, practices, language, and cultures related to both science and engineering. However, from the…

  13. Modelling Spark Integration in Science Classroom

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Marie Paz E. Morales


    Full Text Available The study critically explored how a PASCO-designed technology (SPARK ScienceLearning System is meaningfully integrated into the teaching of selected topics in Earth and Environmental Science. It highlights on modelling the effectiveness of using the SPARK Learning System as a primary tool in learning science that leads to learning and achievement of the students. Data and observation gathered and correlation of the ability of the technology to develop high intrinsic motivation to student achievement were used to design framework on how to meaningfully integrate SPARK ScienceLearning System in teaching Earth and Environmental Science. Research instruments used in this study were adopted from standardized questionnaires available from literature. Achievement test and evaluation form were developed and validated for the purpose of deducing data needed for the study. Interviews were done to delve into the deeper thoughts and emotions of the respondents. Data from the interviews served to validate all numerical data culled from this study. Cross-case analysis of the data was done to reveal some recurring themes, problems and benefits derived by the students in using the SPARK Science Learning System to further establish its effectiveness in the curriculum as a forerunner to the shift towards the 21st Century Learning.

  14. Silencing of voices in a Swedish science classroom (United States)

    Ramos de Robles, S. Lizette


    From a sociocultural perspective, I discuss data from a Swedish science classroom presented in María Gómez's article "Student Explanations of their Science Teachers' Assessments, Grading Practices, and How they learn Science". In this discussion, I focus on the need to change existing conceptions of assessment in the teaching and learning of science. Next, I talk about the importance of taking into consideration the dialectic between agency and passivity as filters in order to understand what student silence may signify in science classes as well as in relation to their perceptions of assessment. I conclude with the importance of the teacher's role in developing formative assessment, along with the challenges in developing assessments which transform science education into a relevant field of knowledge for both students and society at large.

  15. Enhancing Teacher and Student Engagement and Understanding of Marine Science Through Classroom Citizen Science Projects (United States)

    Goodale, T. A.


    Overview This paper presentation shares findings from a granted funded project that sought to expand teacher content knowledge and pedagogy within the fields of marine science and coastal resource management through the implementation of classroom citizen science projects. A secondary goal was to increase middle and high school student interest and participation in marine science and natural resources research. Background A local science & engineering fair has seen a rapid decline in secondary student participants in the past four years. Research has demonstrated that when students are a part of a system of knowledge production (citizen science) they become much more aware, involved and conscious of scientific concepts compared to traditional school laboratory and nature of science activities. This project's primary objectives were to: (a) enhance teacher content expertise in marine science, (b) enrich teacher professional learning, (c) support citizen science classroom projects and inspire student activism and marine science engagement. Methods Project goals were addressed through classroom and meaningful outdoor educational experiences that put content knowledge into field based practices. Teachers learned to apply thier expanded content knowlege through classroom citizen science projects that focus on marine resource conservation issues such as fisheries management, water quality, turtle nesting and biodiversity of coastal ecosystems. These projects would eventually become potential topics of citizen science research topics for their students to pursue. Upon completion of their professional development, participants were urged to establish student Marine Science clubs with the goal of mentoring student submissions into the local science fair. Supplemental awards were possible for the students of project participants. Findings Based on project measures participants significantly increased their knowledge and awareness of presented material marine science and

  16. Changes in science classrooms resulting from collaborative action research initiatives (United States)

    Oh, Phil Seok

    Collaborative action research was undertaken over two years between a Korean science teacher and science education researchers at the University of Iowa. For the purpose of realizing science learning as envisioned by constructivist principles, Group-Investigations were implemented three or five times per project year. In addition, the second year project enacted Peer Assessments among students. Student perceptions of their science classrooms, as measured by the Constructivist Learning Environment Survey (CLES), provided evidence that the collaborative action research was successful in creating constructivist learning environments. Student attitudes toward science lessons, as examined by the Enjoyment of Science Lessons Scale (ESLS), indicated that the action research also contributed to developing more positive attitudes of students about science learning. Discourse analysis was conducted on video-recordings of in-class presentations and discussions. The results indicated that students in science classrooms which were moving toward constructivist learning environments engaged in such discursive practices as: (1) Communicating their inquiries to others, (2) Seeking and providing information through dialogues, and (3) Negotiating conflicts in their knowledge and beliefs. Based on these practices, science learning was viewed as the process of constructing knowledge and understanding of science as well as the process of engaging in scientific inquiry and discourse. The teacher's discursive practices included: (1) Wrapping up student presentations, (2) Addressing misconceptions, (3) Answering student queries, (4) Coaching, (5) Assessing and advising, (6) Guiding students discursively into new knowledge, and (7) Scaffolding. Science teaching was defined as situated acts of the teacher to facilitate the learning process. In particular, when the classrooms became more constructivist, the teacher intervened more frequently and carefully in student activities to fulfill a

  17. 3-D Teaching of Climate Change: An innovative professional learning model for K-12 teachers (United States)

    Stapleton, M.; Wolfson, J.; Sezen-Barrie, A.


    In spite of the presumed controversy over the evidence for climate change, the recently released Next Generation Science Standards (NGSS) for K-12 include a focus on climate literacy and explicitly use the term `climate change.' In addition to the increased focus on climate change, the NGSS are also built upon a new three dimensional framework for teaching and learning science. Three dimensional learning has students engaging in scientific and engineering practices (Dimension 1), while using crosscutting concepts (Dimension 2) to explore and explain natural phenomena using disciplinary core ideas (Dimension 3). The adoption of these new standards in many states across the nation has created a critical need for on-going professional learning as in-service science educators begin to implement both climate change instruction and three dimensional teaching and learning in their classrooms. In response to this need, we developed an innovative professional learning model for preparing teachers to effectively integrate climate change into their new curriculum and engage students in three dimensional learning. Our professional learning model utilized ideas that have emerged from recent science education research and include: a) formative assessment probes for three dimensional learning that monitor students' progress; b) collaboration with scientists with expertise in climate science to understand the domain specific ways of doing science; and c) development of a community of practice for in-service teachers to provide feedback to each other on their implementation. In this poster presentation, we will provide details on the development of this professional learning model and discuss the affordances and challenges of implementing this type of professional learning experience.

  18. Cosmic Times: Astronomy History and Science for the Classroom (United States)

    Lochner, James C.; Mattson, B.


    Cosmic Times is a series of curriculum support materials and classroom activities for upper middle school and high school students which teach the nature of science by exploring the history of our understanding of the universe during the past 100 years. Starting with the confirmation of Einstein's theory of gravity in 1919 to the current conundrum posed by the discovery of dark energy, Cosmic Times examines the discoveries, the theories, and the people involved in this changing [understanding] of the universe. Cosmic Times takes the form of 6 posters, each resembling the front page of a newspaper from a particular time in this history with articles describing the discoveries. Each poster is accompanied by 4-5 classroom lessons which enable students to examine the science concepts behind the discoveries, develop techniques to improve science literacy, and investigate the nature of science using historical examples. Cosmic Times directly connects with the IYA theme of Astronomy in the Classroom, as well as the general theme of the impact of astronomy history. Cosmic Times has been developed with a freelance writer to write the articles for the posters, a group of teachers to develop the lessons, and evaluator to provide testing of the materials with a group of rural teachers in underserved communities. This poster presentation previews the Cosmic Times materials, which are posted on as they become available. Cosmic Times is funded in part via a NASA IDEAS grant.

  19. Using Virtual Reality to Bring Ocean Science Field Experiences to the Classroom and Beyond (United States)

    Waite, A. J.; Rosenberg, A.; Frehm, V.; Gravinese, P.; Jackson, J.; Killingsworth, S.; Williams, C.


    While still in its infancy, the application of virtual reality (VR) technology to classroom education provides unparalleled opportunities to transport students to otherwise inaccessible localities and increase awareness of and engagement in STEAM fields. Here we share VR programming in development by the ANGARI Foundation, a 501(c)(3) nonprofit committed to advancing ocean science research and education. ANGARI Foundation's series of thematic VR films features the research of ocean scientists from onboard the Foundation's research vessel, R/V ANGARI. The films are developed and produced through an iterative process between expedition scientists, the film production team, and ANGARI staff and Educator Council members. Upon completion of filming, the K-12 and informal educators of ANGARI's Educator Council work with ANGARI staff and affiliated scientists to develop and implement standards-aligned (e.g. Next Generation Science Standards and International Baccalaureate) lesson plans for the classroom. The goal of ANGARI Foundation's VR films is to immerse broad audiences in the marine environment, while actively engaging them in the at-sea scientific methods of expert scientists, ultimately increasing knowledge of our oceans and promoting their conservation. The foundation's VR films and developed lessons are made available for free to the public via YouTube and While South Florida educators may request that ANGARI Foundation visit their classrooms and bring the necessary headsets to run the experience, the Foundation is also partnering with VR hardware companies to facilitate the acquisition and adoption of VR headsets by schools in the U.S. and abroad. In this presentation we will share our most recent VR film that highlights coral reef ecosystems and the Florida Reef Tract, taking an interdisciplinary approach to investigating how it has changed over time and the issues and opportunities it currently faces. We will also discuss classroom

  20. Girls Doing Science: A Case Study of Science Literacy in All-Female Middle Grade Classrooms (United States)

    Faller, Susan Elisabeth

    In the face of low adolescent literacy rates (NCES, 2012), concerns about the nation's prospects of remaining competitive in science and technology (Hill, Corbett, & St. Rose, 2010), a persistent gender gap in science (NCES, 2012; Reilly, 2012), and the continued rollout of college- and career-ready standards, there is a need to focus on adolescent girls' science literacy. Such science literacy involves not only general knowledge about science, but also the ability to engage in the advanced reading and writing practices fundamental to doing science (Norris & Phillips, 2003). In this thesis, I present three articles with findings that respond to this need. They are the results of a multiple-case embedded (Yin, 2009) study that I conducted over the course of 7 months in four science classrooms (grades 5 through 8; 50 students) taught by a single teacher in a small all-female middle school. I collected in-depth data focused on science literacy from multiple sources, including (a) fieldnotes (Emerson, Fretz & Shaw, 2011), (b) videorecorded classroom observations (102 classes, 113 hours, recorded on 29 days), (c) a survey of all students, (d) semi-structured interviews with the subsample of 12 focal students (ranging from 18 to 37 minutes) and (e) photographs of classroom artifacts and student work. In the first article, I provide a window into standard literacy practices in science classrooms by examining the reading and writing genres to which students are exposed. In the second article, I examine how a teacher's language and instructional practices within her classrooms, and popular images of science from the world beyond their classrooms might shape adolescent girls' science identities. Finally, in the third article, I explore different aspects of science identity using the words of three case study students. Taken together, these studies fill gaps in the literature by investigating science literacy in an understudied context, all-female classrooms. In addition

  1. Engineering Design Skills Coverage in K-12 Engineering Program Curriculum Materials in the USA (United States)

    Chabalengula, Vivien M.; Mumba, Frackson


    The current "K-12 Science Education framework" and "Next Generation Science Standards" (NGSS) in the United States emphasise the integration of engineering design in science instruction to promote scientific literacy and engineering design skills among students. As such, many engineering education programmes have developed…

  2. Informal Science Learning in the Formal Classroom (United States)

    Walsh, Lori; Straits, William


    In this article the authors share advice from the viewpoints of both a formal and informal educator that will help teachers identify the right Informal Science Institutions (ISIs)--institutions that specialize in learning that occurs outside of the school setting--to maximize their students' learning and use informal education to their…

  3. University Students' Perceptions of Their Science Classrooms (United States)

    Kaya, Osman Nafiz; Kilic, Ziya; Akdeniz, Ali Riza


    The purpose of this study was to investigate the dimensions of the university students' perceptions of their science classes and whether or not the students' perceptions differ significantly as regards to the gender and grade level in six main categories namely; (1) pedagogical strategies, (2) faculty interest in teaching, (3) students interest…

  4. Blogging in the Political Science Classroom (United States)

    Lawrence, Christopher N.; Dion, Michelle L.


    Weblogs (or blogs), as a form of communication on the Internet, have recently risen in prominence but may be poorly understood by both faculty and students. This article explains how blogs differ from other online communication tools and how political science faculty can make use of blogs in their classes. The focus is on using blogs as part of…

  5. Engaging Nature of Science to Preservice Teachers through Inquiry-Based Classroom (United States)

    Nuangchalerm, Prasart


    Inquiry-based classroom is widely distributed in the school science based on its useful and effective instruction. Science teachers are key elements allowing students to have scientific inquiry. If teachers understand and imply inquiry-based learning into science classroom, students will learn science as scientific inquiry and understand nature of…

  6. The materiality of materials and artefacts used in science classrooms

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Cowie, Bronwen; Otrel-Cass, Kathrin; Moreland, Judy

    Material objects and artefacts receive limited attention in science education (Roehl, 2012) though they shape emerging interactions. This is surprising given science has material and a social dimensions (Pickering, 1995) whereby new knowledge develops as a consensus explanation of natural phenomena...... that is mediated significantly through materials and instruments used. Here we outline the ways teachers deployed material objects and artefacts by identifying their materiality to provide scenarios and resources (Roth, 2005) for interactions. Theoretical framework We use Ingold's (2011) distinction between...... materials as natural objects in this world and artefacts as manmade objects. We are aware that in a classroom material objects and artefacts shape, and are shaped by classroom practice through the way they selectively present scientific explanations. However, materials and artefacts have no intrinsic...

  7. Project LAUNCH: Bringing Space into Math and Science Classrooms (United States)

    Fauerbach, M.; Henry, D. P.; Schmidt, D. L.


    Project LAUNCH is a K-12 teacher professional development program, which has been created in collaboration between the Whitaker Center for Science, Mathematics and Technology Education at Florida Gulf Coast University (FGCU), and the Florida Space Research Institute (FSRI). Utilizing Space as the overarching theme it is designed to improve mathematics and science teaching, using inquiry based, hands-on teaching practices, which are aligned with Florida s Sunshine State Standards. Many students are excited about space exploration and it provides a great venue to get them involved in science and mathematics. The scope of Project LAUNCH however goes beyond just providing competency in the subject area, as pedagogy is also an intricate part of the project. Participants were introduced to the Conceptual Change Model (CCM) [1] as a framework to model good teaching practices. As the CCM closely follows what scientists call the scientific process, this teaching method is also useful to actively engage institute participants ,as well as their students, in real science. Project LAUNCH specifically targets teachers in low performing, high socioeconomic schools, where the need for skilled teachers is most critical.

  8. Interchangeable Positions in Interaction Sequences in Science Classrooms

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Carol Rees


    Full Text Available Triadic dialogue, the Initiation, Response, Evaluation sequence typical of teacher /student interactions in classrooms, has long been identified as a barrier to students’ access to learning, including science learning. A large body of research on the subject has over the years led to projects and policies aimed at increasing opportunities for students to learn through interactive dialogue in classrooms. However, the triadic dialogue pattern continues to dominate, even when teachers intend changing this. Prior quantitative research on the subject has focused on identifying independent variables such as style of teacher questioning that have an impact, while qualitative researchers have worked to interpret the use of dialogue within the whole context of work in the classroom. A recent paper offers an alternative way to view the triadic dialogue pattern and its origin; the triadic dialogue pattern is an irreducible social phenomenon that arises in a particular situation regardless of the identity of the players who inhabit the roles in the turn-taking sequence (Roth & Gardner, 2012. According to this perspective, alternative patterns of dialogue would exist which are alternative irreducible social phenomena that arise in association with different situations. The aim of this paper is to examine as precisely as possible, the characteristics of dialogue patterns in a seventh-eighth grade classroom during science inquiry, and the precise situations from which these dialogue patterns emerge, regardless of the staffing (teacher or students in the turn-taking sequence. Three different patterns were identified each predominating in a particular situation. This fine-grained analysis could offer valuable insights into ways to support teachers working to alter the kinds of dialogue patterns that arise in their classrooms.

  9. Examining student-generated questions in an elementary science classroom (United States)

    Diaz, Juan Francisco, Jr.

    This study was conducted to better understand how teachers use an argument-based inquiry technique known as the Science Writing Heuristic (SWH) approach to address issues on teaching, learning, negotiation, argumentation, and elaboration in an elementary science classroom. Within the SWH framework, this study traced the progress of promoting argumentation and negotiation (which led to student-generated questions) during a discussion in an elementary science classroom. Speech patterns during various classroom scenarios were analyzed to understand how teacher--student interactions influence learning. This study uses a mixture of qualitative and quantitative methods. The qualitative aspect of the study is an analysis of teacher--student interactions in the classroom using video recordings. The quantitative aspect uses descriptive statistics, tables, and plots to analyze the data. The subjects in this study were fifth grade students and teachers from an elementary school in the Midwest, during the academic years 2007/2008 and 2008/2009. The three teachers selected for this study teach at the same Midwestern elementary school. These teachers were purposely selected because they were using the SWH approach during the two years of the study. The results of this study suggest that all three teachers moved from using teacher-generated questions to student-generated questions as they became more familiar with the SWH approach. In addition, all three promoted the use of the components of arguments in their dialogs and discussions and encouraged students to elaborate, challenge, and rebut each other's ideas in a non-threatening environment. This research suggests that even young students, when actively participating in class discussions, are capable of connecting their claims and evidence and generating questions of a higher-order cognitive level. These findings demand the implementation of more professional development programs and the improvement in teacher education to help

  10. Teaching controversial issues in the secondary school science classroom (United States)

    van Rooy, Wilhelmina


    A sample of fourteen secondary school biology teachers chosen from twelve schools were interviewed. The purpose was to determine their views on how controversial issues in science might be handled in the secondary school science classroom and whether the issues of surrogacy and human embryo experimentation were suitable controversial issues for discussion in schools. In general, teachers indicated that controversial issues deserve a more prominent place in the science curriculum because they have the potential to foster thinking, learning, and interest in science. The issues of surrogacy and human embryo experimentation were seen as appropriate contexts for learning, provided that teachers were well informed and sensitive to both the students and to the school environment.

  11. Contextualizing Technology in the Classroom via Remote Access: Using Space Exploration Themes and Scanning Electron Microscopy as Tools to Promote Engagement in Geology/Chemistry Experiments (United States)

    Rodriguez, Brandon; Jaramillo, Veronica; Wolf, Vanessa; Bautista, Esteban; Portillo, Jennifer; Brouke, Alexandra; Min, Ashley; Melendez, Andrea; Amann, Joseph; Pena-Francesch, Abdon; Ashcroft, Jared


    A multidisciplinary science experiment was performed in K-12 classrooms focusing on the interconnection between technology with geology and chemistry. The engagement and passion for science of over eight hundred students across twenty-one classrooms, utilizing a combination of hands-on activities using relationships between Earth and space rock…

  12. Single-sex middle school science classrooms: Separate and equal? (United States)

    Glasser, Howard M.

    The U.S. Department of Education's amended regulations to Title IX have attempted to expand the circumstances in which single-sex classes are permissible in public schools. This ethnographic study uses grounded theory to investigate aspects of one single-sex offering at a public, coeducational middle school. Applying elements of postmodern, queer, and sociocultural lenses, it examines the perspectives for this offering, shedding insight into the cultures of two single-sex classrooms and what it meant to be a boy or girl in this setting. Additionally, it focuses attention on the all-boy and all-girl science classes that were taught by the same teacher and examines what it meant to learn science as boys and girls in this program. Although participants supplied financial, socio-emotional, and academic reasons for these classes, the initial motivation for these classes stemmed from the teachers' desire to curb the amount of sex talk and related behaviors that were exhibited in their classrooms. Through these conversations and classroom events, the girls were constructed as idealized students, academically and behaviorally, who needed to be protected from boys' behaviors---both boys' dominating classroom behaviors and aggressive (hetero)sexual behaviors. Conversely, boys were constructed as needing help both academically and behaviorally, but in the specific discipline of science boys were identified as the sex that was more interested in the content and gained greater exposure to skills that could assist them in future science courses and careers. Overall, boys and girls, and the culture of their two classrooms, were regularly defined relative to each other and efforts were made to maintain these constructed differences. As a result, the classes and students were hierarchically ranked in ways that often pitted one sex of students, or the entire class, as better or worse than the other. The theory emerging from this study is that single-sex policies arise and survive

  13. Dialogical argumentation in elementary science classrooms (United States)

    Kim, Mijung; Roth, Wolff-Michael


    To understand students' argumentation abilities, there have been practices that focus on counting and analyzing argumentation schemes such as claim, evidence, warrant, backing, and rebuttal. This analytic approach does not address the dynamics of epistemic criteria of children's reasoning and decision-making in dialogical situations. The common approach also does not address the practice of argumentation in lower elementary grades (K-3) because these children do not master the structure of argumentation and, therefore, are considered not ready for processing argumentative discourse. There is thus little research focusing on lower elementary school students' argumentation in school science. This study, drawing on the societal-historical approach by L. S. Vygotsky, explored children's argumentation as social relations by investigating the genesis of evidence-related practices (especially burden of proof) in second- and third-grade children. The findings show (a) students' capacity for connecting claim and evidence/responding to the burden of proof and critical move varies and (b) that teachers play a significant role to emphasize the importance of evidence but experience difficulties removing children's favored ideas during the turn taking of argumentative dialogue. The findings on the nature of dialogical reasoning and teacher's role provide further insights about discussions on pedagogical approaches to children's reasoning and argumentation.

  14. Professional Vision of Classroom Management and Learning Support in Science Classrooms--Does Professional Vision Differ across General and Content-Specific Classroom Interactions? (United States)

    Steffensky, Mirjam; Gold, Bernadette; Holdynski, Manfred; Möller, Kornelia


    The present study investigates the internal structure of professional vision of in-service teachers and student teachers with respect to classroom management and learning support in primary science lessons. Classroom management (including monitoring, managing momentum, and rules and routines) and learning support (including cognitive activation…

  15. The value of storytelling in the science classroom (United States)

    Isabelle, Aaron David

    The "traditional science classroom" asks students, "What do we know in science?," and ignores the question, "How do we know what we know?" The purpose of this research is to combine the powerful structure of narrative with the history of science in junior high school science classrooms. This study investigates whether history-of-science-based stories have advantages over traditional, lecture-style presentations. The storytelling approach aims to present science concepts in a meaningful and memorable context and in a coherent and connected manner. The research program employed parallel curricula: science concepts were taught through novel stories and through lectures, at different times, to eight different groups of seventh and eighth grade students at Holy Name Junior High School in Worcester, Massachusetts. Students were assessed with pre- and post-tests and through individual interviews: Before, immediately after, and two weeks after the lessons, students were given short-answer questionnaires. Two weeks after each lesson, individual interviews were also conducted with a sampling of the students. The questionnaires were coded according to a clear set of written standards and the interviews were transformed into concept maps. Student learning and retention levels, gender differences, and alternate conceptions were quantitatively analyzed. The results reveal that the students who were taught through stories learned the science concepts, on the average, 21% better and retained close to 48% more than the students who were taught through traditional lessons. Fewer alternate conceptions were expressed after story lessons than after lectures. Investigation of gender differences in learning science through the two methods revealed that boys profited more than girls did from the story lessons. The union of narrative with the history of science in the form of story lessons seems natural since the spatiotemporal structure of a narrative mirrors the unfolding of actions in

  16. Exploring the classroom: Teaching science in early childhood

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)



    Full Text Available This study tested and integrated the effects of an inquiry-based didactic method for preschool science in a real practical classroom setting. Four preschool classrooms participated in the experiment (N= 57 and the children were 4–6 years old. In order to assess children’s attention for causal events and their understanding at the level of scientific reasoning skills, we designed a simple task in which a need for information gain was created. Compared to controls, children in the post-test showed significant learning gains in the development of the so-called control of variables strategy. Indeed, they executed more informative and less uninformative explorations during their spontaneous play. Furthermore, the importance of such programmes was discussed in the field of STEM education.

  17. Opportunities for Inquiry Science in Montessori Classrooms: Learning from a Culture of Interest, Communication, and Explanation (United States)

    Rinke, Carol R.; Gimbel, Steven J.; Haskell, Sophie


    Although classroom inquiry is the primary pedagogy of science education, it has often been difficult to implement within conventional classroom cultures. This study turned to the alternatively structured Montessori learning environment to better understand the ways in which it fosters the essential elements of classroom inquiry, as defined by prominent policy documents. Specifically, we examined the opportunities present in Montessori classrooms for students to develop an interest in the natural world, generate explanations in science, and communicate about science. Using ethnographic research methods in four Montessori classrooms at the primary and elementary levels, this research captured a range of scientific learning opportunities. The study found that the Montessori learning environment provided opportunities for students to develop enduring interests in scientific topics and communicate about science in various ways. The data also indicated that explanation was largely teacher-driven in the Montessori classroom culture. This study offers lessons for both conventional and Montessori classrooms and suggests further research that bridges educational contexts.

  18. NASA Education Activity Training (NEAT): Professional Development for Montana K-12 Teachers (United States)

    Williamson, Kathryn; McKenzie, D.; Des Jardins, A.; Key, J.; Kanode, C.; Willoughby, S.


    Piloted during the 2011-2012 academic year, the NASA Education Activity Training (NEAT) teacher workshop program has introduced five solar astronomy and space weather activities to over forty Montana K-12 teachers. Because many Montana schools are geographically isolated (40% of Montana students live more than 50 miles from a city) and/or serve traditionally underrepresented groups (primarily Native Americans), professional development for teachers can be costly and time consuming. However, with funding shared by the Atmospheric Imaging Assembly EPO team and the Montana Space Grant Consortium, graduate student specialists are able to host the two-hour NEAT workshops on-site at the schools free of charge, and participating teachers earn two continuing education credits. Leveraging the existing catalogue of research-based NASA activities, the featured NEAT activities were chosen for their ease-of-use and applicability to Montana science standards. These include three advanced activities for older students, such as a paper plate activity for the June 5th, 2012 Transit of Venus, Kinesthetic Astronomy, and the Herschel Infrared experiment, along with two simpler activities for the younger students, such as Solar Cookies and the Electromagnetic War card game. Feedback surveys show that NEAT workshop participants were interested and engaged in the activities and planned on using the activities in their classrooms. With such positive responses, the NEAT program has been a huge success and can serve as a model for other institutions looking to increase their space public outreach and education.

  19. STEM professional volunteers in K-12 competition programs: Educator practices and impact on pedagogy (United States)

    Zintgraff, Alfred Clifton

    This mixed methods dissertation study explored how secondary school educators in specific K-12 competition programs recruited and deployed STEM professional volunteers. The study explored which practices were viewed as most important, and how practices related to constructivist pedagogy, all from the viewpoint of educators. The non-positivist approach sought new knowledge without pursuing generalized results. Review of the literature uncovered extensive anecdotal information about current practices, and suggested that large investments are made in engaging volunteers. One National Science Foundation-sponsored study was identified, and its recommendations for a sustained research agenda were advanced. Three study phases were performed, one to explore practices and operationalize definitions, a second to rate practice's importance and their relation to pedagogy, and a third to seek explanations. Educators preferred recruiting local, meaning recruiting parents and former students, versus from industry or other employers. Most educators preferred volunteers with mentoring skills, and placing them in direct contact with students, versus deploying volunteers to help with behind-the-scenes tasks supporting the educator. Relationships were identified between the highest-rated practices and constructivism in programs. In STEM professional volunteers, educators see affordances, in the same way a classroom tool opens affordances. A model is proposed which shows educators considering practicality, pedagogy, knowledge and skills, and rapport when accessing the affordances opened by STEM professional volunteers. Benefits are maximized when programs align with strong industry clusters in the community.

  20. Teaching Ocean Sciences in the 21st Century Classroom: Lab to Classroom Videoconferencing (United States)

    Peach, C. L.; Gerwick, W.; Gerwick, L.; Senise, M.; Jones, C. S.; Malloy, K.; Jones, A.; Trentacoste, E.; Nunnery, J.; Mendibles, T.; Tayco, D.; Justice, L.; Deutscher, R.


    Teaching Ocean Science in the 21st Century Classroom (TOST) is a Center for Ocean Sciences Education Excellence (COSEE CA) initiative aimed at developing and disseminating technology-based instructional strategies, tools and ocean science resources for both formal and informal science education. San Diego Unified School District (SDUSD), Scripps Institution of Oceanography (SIO) and the Lawrence Hall of Science (LHS) have established a proving ground for TOST activities and for development of effective, sustainable solutions for researchers seeking to fulfill NSF and other funding agency broader impact requirements. Lab to Classroom Videoconferencing: Advances in Information and Communications Technology (ICT) are making it easier to connect students and researchers using simple online tools that allow them to interact in novel ways. COSEE CA is experimenting with these tools and approaches to identify effective practices for providing students with insight into the research process and close connections to researchers and their laboratory activities. At the same time researchers, including graduate students, are learning effective communication skills and how to align their presentations to specific classroom needs - all from the comfort of their own lab. The lab to classroom videoconferencing described here is an ongoing partnership between the Gerwick marine biomedical research lab and a group of three life science teachers (7th grade) at Pershing Middle School (SDUSD) that started in 2007. Over the last 5 years, the Pershing science teachers have created an intensive, semester-long unit focused on drug discovery. Capitalizing on the teacher team’s well-developed unit of study and the overlap with leading-edge research at SIO, COSEE CA created the videoconferencing program as a broader impact solution for the lab. The team has refined the program over 3 iterations, experimenting with structuring the activities to most effectively reach the students. In the

  1. Student Engagement in a Computer Rich Science Classroom (United States)

    Hunter, Jeffrey C.

    The purpose of this study was to examine the student lived experience when using computers in a rural science classroom. The overarching question the project sought to examine was: How do rural students relate to computers as a learning tool in comparison to a traditional science classroom? Participant data were collected using a pre-study survey, Experience Sampling during class and post-study interviews. Students want to use computers in their classrooms. Students shared that they overwhelmingly (75%) preferred a computer rich classroom to a traditional classroom (25%). Students reported a higher level of engagement in classes that use technology/computers (83%) versus those that do not use computers (17%). A computer rich classroom increased student control and motivation as reflected by a participant who shared; "by using computers I was more motivated to get the work done" (Maggie, April 25, 2014, survey). The researcher explored a rural school environment. Rural populations represent a large number of students and appear to be underrepresented in current research. The participants, tenth grade Biology students, were sampled in a traditional teacher led class without computers for one week followed by a week using computers daily. Data supported that there is a new gap that separates students, a device divide. This divide separates those who have access to devices that are robust enough to do high level class work from those who do not. Although cellular phones have reduced the number of students who cannot access the Internet, they may have created a false feeling that access to a computer is no longer necessary at home. As this study shows, although most students have Internet access, fewer have access to a device that enables them to complete rigorous class work at home. Participants received little or no training at school in proper, safe use of a computer and the Internet. It is clear that the majorities of students are self-taught or receive guidance

  2. Science classroom inquiry (SCI simulations: a novel method to scaffold science learning.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Melanie E Peffer

    Full Text Available Science education is progressively more focused on employing inquiry-based learning methods in the classroom and increasing scientific literacy among students. However, due to time and resource constraints, many classroom science activities and laboratory experiments focus on simple inquiry, with a step-by-step approach to reach predetermined outcomes. The science classroom inquiry (SCI simulations were designed to give students real life, authentic science experiences within the confines of a typical classroom. The SCI simulations allow students to engage with a science problem in a meaningful, inquiry-based manner. Three discrete SCI simulations were created as website applications for use with middle school and high school students. For each simulation, students were tasked with solving a scientific problem through investigation and hypothesis testing. After completion of the simulation, 67% of students reported a change in how they perceived authentic science practices, specifically related to the complex and dynamic nature of scientific research and how scientists approach problems. Moreover, 80% of the students who did not report a change in how they viewed the practice of science indicated that the simulation confirmed or strengthened their prior understanding. Additionally, we found a statistically significant positive correlation between students' self-reported changes in understanding of authentic science practices and the degree to which each simulation benefitted learning. Since SCI simulations were effective in promoting both student learning and student understanding of authentic science practices with both middle and high school students, we propose that SCI simulations are a valuable and versatile technology that can be used to educate and inspire a wide range of science students on the real-world complexities inherent in scientific study.

  3. Science classroom inquiry (SCI) simulations: a novel method to scaffold science learning. (United States)

    Peffer, Melanie E; Beckler, Matthew L; Schunn, Christian; Renken, Maggie; Revak, Amanda


    Science education is progressively more focused on employing inquiry-based learning methods in the classroom and increasing scientific literacy among students. However, due to time and resource constraints, many classroom science activities and laboratory experiments focus on simple inquiry, with a step-by-step approach to reach predetermined outcomes. The science classroom inquiry (SCI) simulations were designed to give students real life, authentic science experiences within the confines of a typical classroom. The SCI simulations allow students to engage with a science problem in a meaningful, inquiry-based manner. Three discrete SCI simulations were created as website applications for use with middle school and high school students. For each simulation, students were tasked with solving a scientific problem through investigation and hypothesis testing. After completion of the simulation, 67% of students reported a change in how they perceived authentic science practices, specifically related to the complex and dynamic nature of scientific research and how scientists approach problems. Moreover, 80% of the students who did not report a change in how they viewed the practice of science indicated that the simulation confirmed or strengthened their prior understanding. Additionally, we found a statistically significant positive correlation between students' self-reported changes in understanding of authentic science practices and the degree to which each simulation benefitted learning. Since SCI simulations were effective in promoting both student learning and student understanding of authentic science practices with both middle and high school students, we propose that SCI simulations are a valuable and versatile technology that can be used to educate and inspire a wide range of science students on the real-world complexities inherent in scientific study.

  4. Development of an Attitude Scale to Assess K-12 Teachers' Attitudes toward Nanotechnology (United States)

    Lan, Yu-Ling


    To maximize the contributions of nanotechnology to this society, at least 60 countries have put efforts into this field. In Taiwan, a government-funded K-12 Nanotechnology Programme was established to train K-12 teachers with adequate nanotechnology literacy to foster the next generation of Taiwanese people with sufficient knowledge in nanotechnology. In the present study, the Nanotechnology Attitude Scale for K-12 teachers (NAS-T) was developed to assess K-12 teachers' attitudes toward nanotechnology. The NAS-T included 23 Likert-scale items that can be grouped into three components: importance of nanotechnology, affective tendencies in science teaching, and behavioural tendencies to teach nanotechnology. A sample of 233 K-12 teachers who have participated in the K-12 Nanotechnology Programme was included in the present study to investigate the psychometric properties of the NAS-T. The exploratory factor analysis of this teacher sample suggested that the NAS-T was a three-factor model that explained 64.11% of the total variances. This model was also confirmed by the confirmatory factor analysis to validate the factor structure of the NAS-T. The Cronbach's alpha values of three NAS-T subscales ranged from 0.89 to 0.95. Moderate to strong correlations among teachers' NAS-T domain scores, self-perception of own nanoscience knowledge, and their science-teaching efficacy demonstrated good convergent validity of the NAS-T. As a whole, psychometric properties of the NAS-T indicated that this instrument is an effective instrument for assessing K-12 teachers' attitudes toward nanotechnology. The NAS-T will serve as a valuable tool to evaluate teachers' attitude changes after participating in the K-12 Nanotechnology Programme.

  5. Relationships Between the Way Students Are Assessed in Science Classrooms and Science Achievement Across Canada (United States)

    Chu, Man-Wai; Fung, Karen


    Canadian students experience many different assessments throughout their schooling (O'Connor 2011). There are many benefits to using a variety of assessment types, item formats, and science-based performance tasks in the classroom to measure the many dimensions of science education. Although using a variety of assessments is beneficial, it is unclear exactly what types, format, and tasks are used in Canadian science classrooms. Additionally, since assessments are often administered to help improve student learning, this study identified assessments that may improve student learning as measured using achievement scores on a standardized test. Secondary analyses of the students' and teachers' responses to the questionnaire items asked in the Pan-Canadian Assessment Program were performed. The results of the hierarchical linear modeling analyses indicated that both students and teachers identified teacher-developed classroom tests or quizzes as the most common types of assessments used. Although this ranking was similar across the country, statistically significant differences in terms of the assessments that are used in science classrooms among the provinces were also identified. The investigation of which assessment best predicted student achievement scores indicated that minds-on science performance-based tasks significantly explained 4.21% of the variance in student scores. However, mixed results were observed between the student and teacher responses towards tasks that required students to choose their own investigation and design their own experience or investigation. Additionally, teachers that indicated that they conducted more demonstrations of an experiment or investigation resulted in students with lower scores.

  6. Engineering design skills coverage in K-12 engineering program curriculum materials in the USA (United States)

    Chabalengula, Vivien M.; Mumba, Frackson


    The current K-12 Science Education framework and Next Generation Science Standards (NGSS) in the United States emphasise the integration of engineering design in science instruction to promote scientific literacy and engineering design skills among students. As such, many engineering education programmes have developed curriculum materials that are being used in K-12 settings. However, little is known about the nature and extent to which engineering design skills outlined in NGSS are addressed in these K-12 engineering education programme curriculum materials. We analysed nine K-12 engineering education programmes for the nature and extent of engineering design skills coverage. Results show that developing possible solutions and actual designing of prototypes were the highly covered engineering design skills; specification of clear goals, criteria, and constraints received medium coverage; defining and identifying an engineering problem; optimising the design solution; and demonstrating how a prototype works, and making iterations to improve designs were lowly covered. These trends were similar across grade levels and across discipline-specific curriculum materials. These results have implications on engineering design-integrated science teaching and learning in K-12 settings.

  7. Utilizing the National Research Council's (NRC) Conceptual Framework for the Next Generation Science Standards (NGSS): A Self-Study in My Science, Engineering, and Mathematics Classroom (United States)

    Corvo, Arthur Francis

    Given the reality that active and competitive participation in the 21 st century requires American students to deepen their scientific and mathematical knowledge base, the National Research Council (NRC) proposed a new conceptual framework for K--12 science education. The framework consists of an integration of what the NRC report refers to as the three dimensions: scientific and engineering practices, crosscutting concepts, and core ideas in four disciplinary areas (physical, life and earth/spaces sciences, and engineering/technology). The Next Generation Science Standards (NGSS ), which are derived from this new framework, were released in April 2013 and have implications on teacher learning and development in Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics (STEM). Given the NGSS's recent introduction, there is little research on how teachers can prepare for its release. To meet this research need, I implemented a self-study aimed at examining my teaching practices and classroom outcomes through the lens of the NRC's conceptual framework and the NGSS. The self-study employed design-based research (DBR) methods to investigate what happened in my secondary classroom when I designed, enacted, and reflected on units of study for my science, engineering, and mathematics classes. I utilized various best practices including Learning for Use (LfU) and Understanding by Design (UbD) models for instructional design, talk moves as a tool for promoting discourse, and modeling instruction for these designed units of study. The DBR strategy was chosen to promote reflective cycles, which are consistent with and in support of the self-study framework. A multiple case, mixed-methods approach was used for data collection and analysis. The findings in the study are reported by study phase in terms of unit planning, unit enactment, and unit reflection. The findings have implications for science teaching, teacher professional development, and teacher education.

  8. Graduate students teaching elementary earth science through interactive classroom lessons (United States)

    Caswell, T. E.; Goudge, T. A.; Jawin, E. R.; Robinson, F.


    Since 2005, graduate students in the Brown University Department of Earth, Environmental, and Planetary Studies have volunteered to teach science to second-grade students at Vartan Gregorian Elementary School in Providence, RI. Initially developed to bring science into classrooms where it was not explicitly included in the curriculum, the graduate student-run program today incorporates the Providence Public Schools Grade 2 science curriculum into weekly, interactive sessions that engage the students in hypothesis-driven science. We will describe the program structure, its integration into the Providence Public Schools curriculum, and 3 example lessons relevant to geology. Lessons are structured to develop the students' ability to share and incorporate others' ideas through written and oral communication. The volunteers explain the basics of the topic and engage the students with introductory questions. The students use this knowledge to develop a hypothesis about the upcoming experiment, recording it in their "Science Notebooks." The students record their observations during the demonstration and discuss the results as a group. The process culminates in the students using their own words to summarize what they learned. Activities of particular interest to educators in geoscience are called "Volcanoes!", "The "Liquid Race," and "Phases of the Moon." The "Volcanoes!" lesson explores explosive vs. effusive volcanism using two simulated volcanoes: one explosive, using Mentos and Diet Coke, and one effusive, using vinegar and baking soda (in model volcanoes that the students construct in teams). In "Liquid Race," which explores viscosity and can be integrated into the "Volcanoes!" lesson, the students connect viscosity to flow speed by racing liquids down a ramp. "Phases of the Moon" teaches the students why the Moon has phases, using ball and stick models, and the terminology of the lunar phases using cream-filled cookies (e.g., Oreos). These lessons, among many others

  9. Barriers in the Physics Pipeline from K-12 to Tenure (United States)

    Kilburn, Micha


    The lack of diversity in physics is a known problem, and yet efforts to change our demographics have only had minor effects during the last decade. I will explain some of the hidden barriers that dissuade underrepresented minorities in becoming physicists using a framework borrowed from sociology, Maslow's hierarchy of needs. I will draw from current research at the undergraduate to faculty levels over a variety of STEM fields that are also addressing a lack of diversity. I will also provide analysis from the Joint Institute for Nuclear Astrophysics Center for the Evolution of Elements (JINA-CEE) outreach programs to understand the likelihood of current K-12 students in becoming physicists. Specifically, I will present results from the pre-surveys from our Art 2 Science Camps (ages 8-14) about their attitudes towards science as well as results from analysis of teacher recommendations for our high school summer program. I will conclude with a positive outlook describing the pipeline created by JINA-CEE to retain students from middle school through college. This work was supported in part by the National Science Foundation under Grant No. PHY-1430152 (JINA Center for the Evolution of the Elements).

  10. Opportunities for Inquiry Science in Montessori Classrooms: Learning from a Culture of Interest, Communication, and Explanation (United States)

    Rinke, Carol R.; Gimbel, Steven J.; Haskell, Sophie


    Although classroom inquiry is the primary pedagogy of science education, it has often been difficult to implement within conventional classroom cultures. This study turned to the alternatively structured Montessori learning environment to better understand the ways in which it fosters the essential elements of classroom inquiry, as defined by…

  11. Inventing Creativity: An Exploration of the Pedagogy of Ingenuity in Science Classrooms (United States)

    Meyer, Allison Antink; Lederman, Norman G.


    Concerns with the ability of U.S. classrooms to develop learners who will become the next generation of innovators, particularly given the present climate of standardized testing, warrants a closer look at creativity in science classrooms. The present study explored these concerns associated with teachers' classroom practice by addressing the…

  12. K-12 Professional Development at the Harvard Forest LTER (United States)

    Bennett, K.


    As part of the Long Term Ecological Research (LTER) program, the Harvard Forest in Petersham, Massachusetts seeks to train the next generation of researchers, by involving K-12 grade students and their teachers in hands-on, field-based, ecological research in their own schoolyard and community. Students learn to collect data on important long-term ecological issues and processes. Student data are then shared on the Harvard Forest website. To prepare teachers for project protocols, teachers are given direct access to Harvard ecologists with professional development workshops and on-line resources. With the Harvard Forest Schoolyard LTER program, students can participate in three different research projects focusing on phenology, invasive insects, and vernal pools. Teachers attend the Summer Institute for Teachers to learn project content and methods. They return in fall to participate in one of three levels of data workshops to learn how to input, manage, and analyze project data. In the spring, teachers again meet with the Harvard ecologists about project protocols, and to share, through a series of teacher presentations, the ways these project themes are being integrated into class curricula. These professional development opportunities result in long term collaborative partnerships with local schools and the Harvard Forest LTER. In addition to the LTER Schoolyard Ecology Program, the Harvard Forest has supported a successful Research Experience for Teachers (RET) program for the last six years. Throughout the summer, teachers work on research projects alongside Harvard Forest and affiliated scientists, post-docs, graduate students, and REU's (Research Experience for Undergraduates). The RET program provides teachers with the opportunity to build scientific knowledge, develop an understanding of research methods, and translate their new knowledge and experiences into cutting edge classroom lessons. The past two summers I have worked with Dr. Andrew Richardson

  13. Critical Path to Nuclear Science and Technology Knowledge Transfer and Skill Development in K-12 Schools: Why America Needs Action and Support from Federal and State Education Departments Now

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Vincenti, J.R.; Anderson, G.E.


    With the signing of President Bush's energy bill in August of 2005, the successful application of the new energy legislation may have more to do with educational standards required in our schools than applications of research and technology in the long-term. Looking inside the new legislation, the future of that legislation's success may not just hinge on investment in technology, but ensuring that our citizens, especially our youth, are prepared and better informed to be able to understand, react, and apply the economically and national security driven intent of the law. How can our citizens make sense of change if they lack the skills to be able to understand, not only the technology, but also the science that drives the change? President Bush's passage of the 1,724-page bill emphasizes conservation, clean energy research, and new and improved technology. The legislation also provides for economic incentives toward building more nuclear power plants. This paper will use four questions as a focal point to emphasize the need for both state and federal education departments to review their current standards and respond to deficiencies regarding learning about radioactivity, radiation, and nuclear science and technology. The questions are: 1. Will America accept new nuclear power development? 2. Will waste issues be resolved concerning high- and low-level radioactive waste management and disposal? 3. Will nuclear 'anything' be politically correct when it comes to your backyard? 4. Is our youth adequately educated and informed about radioactivity, radiation, and nuclear science and technology? This paper will use Pennsylvania as a case study to better understand the implications and importance of the educational standards in our school systems. This paper will also show how the deficiency found in Pennsylvania's academic standards, and in other states, has a significant impact on the ability to fulfill the legislation's intent of realizing energy independence and

  14. Learning Science through Talking Science in Elementary Classroom (United States)

    Tank, Kristina Maruyama; Coffino, Kara


    Elementary students in grade two make sense of science ideas and knowledge through their contextual experiences. Mattis Lundin and Britt Jakobson find in their research that early grade students have sophisticated understandings of human anatomy and physiology. In order to understand what students' know about human body and various systems,…

  15. The Multicultural Science Framework: Research on Innovative Two-Way Immersion Science Classrooms. (United States)

    Hadi-Tabassum, Samina


    Reviews the different approaches to multicultural science teaching that have emerged in the past decade, focusing on the Spanish-English two-way immersion classroom, which meets the needs of Spanish speakers learning English and introduces students to the idea of collaboration across languages and cultures. Two urban two-way immersion classrooms…

  16. The Social Science Teacher. 1972. Collected Conference Papers: Social Science Concepts Classroom Methods. (United States)

    Noble, Pat, Ed.; And Others

    Papers in this publication are collected from a conference on social science concepts and classroom methods which focused on the theories of Jerome Bruner. The first article, entitled "Jerome Bruner," outlines four of Bruner's themes--structure, readiness, intuition, and interest--which relate to cognitive learning. Three…

  17. The Influence of Informal Science Education Experiences on the Development of Two Beginning Teachers' Science Classroom Teaching Identity (United States)

    Katz, Phyllis; McGinnis, J. Randy; Riedinger, Kelly; Marbach-Ad, Gili; Dai, Amy


    In case studies of two first-year elementary classroom teachers, we explored the influence of informal science education (ISE) they experienced in their teacher education program. Our theoretical lens was identity development, delimited to classroom science teaching. We used complementary data collection methods and analysis, including interviews,…

  18. Turkish preservice science teachers' socioscientific issues-based teaching practices in middle school science classrooms (United States)

    Genel, Abdulkadir; Sami Topçu, Mustafa


    Background: Despite a growing body of research and curriculum reforms including socioscientific issues (SSI) across the world, how preservice science teachers (PST) or in-service science teachers can teach SSI in science classrooms needs further inquiry. Purpose: The purpose of this study is to describe the abilities of PSTs to teach SSI in middle school science classrooms, and the research question that guided the present study is: How can we characterize Turkish PSTs' SSI-based teaching practices in middle school science classrooms (ages 11-14)? Sample: In order to address the research question of this study, we explored 10 Turkish PSTs' SSI-based teaching practices in middle school science classrooms. A purposeful sampling strategy was used, thus, PSTs were specifically chosen because they were ideal candidates to teach SSI and to integrate SSI into the science curricula since they were seniors in the science education program who had to take the field experience courses. Design and method: The participants' SSI teaching practices were characterized in light of qualitative research approach. SSI-based teaching practices were analyzed, and the transcripts of all videotape recordings were coded by two researchers. Results: The current data analysis describes Turkish PSTs' SSI-based teaching practices under five main categories: media, argumentation, SSI selection and presentation, risk analysis, and moral perspective. Most of PSTs did not use media resources in their lesson and none of them considered moral perspective in their teaching. While the risk analyses were very simple and superficial, the arguments developed in the classrooms generally remained at a simple level. PSTs did not think SSI as a central topic and discussed these issues in a very limited time and at the end of the class period. Conclusions: The findings of this study manifest the need of the reforms in science education programs. The present study provides evidence that moral, media

  19. Signs of taste for science: a methodology for studying the constitution of interest in the science classroom (United States)

    Anderhag, P.; Wickman, P.-O.; Hamza, K. M.


    In this paper we present a methodological approach for analyzing the transformation of interest in science through classroom talk and action. To this end, we use the construct of taste for science as a social and communicative operationalization, or proxy, to the more psychologically oriented construct of interest. To gain a taste for science as part of school science activities means developing habits of performing and valuing certain distinctions about ways to talk, act and be that are jointly construed as belonging in the school science classroom. In this view, to learn science is not only about learning the curriculum content, but also about learning a normative and aesthetic content in terms of habits of distinguishing and valuing. The approach thus complements previous studies on students' interest in science, by making it possible to analyze how taste for science is constituted, moment-by-moment, through talk and action in the science classroom. In developing the method, we supplement theoretical constructs coming from pragmatism and Pierre Bourdieu with empirical data from a lower secondary science classroom. The application of the method to this classroom demonstrates the potential that the approach has for analyzing how conceptual, normative, and aesthetic distinctions within the science classroom interact in the constitution of taste for, and thereby potentially also in the development of interest in science among students.

  20. Digital Learning in California's K-12 Schools. Just the Facts (United States)

    Gao, Niu


    This fact page briefly discusses the following facts on digital learning in California's K-12: (1) As California implements new tests in its K-12 schools, technology infrastructure is a key concern; (2) Many districts are confident that they had enough bandwidth for online field tests; (3) Digital learning will require significantly greater…

  1. Keeping Pace with K-12 Online Learning, 2016 (United States)

    Gemin, Butch; Pape, Larry


    "Keeping Pace with K-12 Online Learning 2016" marks the thirteenth consecutive year Evergreen has published its annual research of the K-12 education online learning market. The thirteen years of researching, writing and publishing this report represents a time of remarkable change. There has been a constant presence that has become the…

  2. K-12 Technology Accessibility: The Message from State Governments (United States)

    Shaheen, Natalie L.; Lazar, Jonathan


    This study examined state education technology plans and technology accessibility statutes to attempt to answer the question--is K-12 instructional technology accessibility discussed in state-level technology accessibility statutes and education technology plans across the 50 United States? When a K-12 school district is planning the construction…

  3. Pre-Service Secondary Science and Mathematics Teachers' Classroom Management Styles in Turkey (United States)

    Yilmaz, Kursad


    The aim of this study is to determine Pre-service secondary science and mathematics teachers' classroom management styles in Turkey. In addition, differences in pre-service secondary science and mathematics teachers' classroom management styles by gender, and field of study were examined. In the study, the survey model was employed. The research…

  4. The Relationship between Teachers' Knowledge and Beliefs about Science and Inquiry and Their Classroom Practices (United States)

    Saad, Rayana; BouJaoude, Saouma


    The purpose of this study was to investigate relationships between teachers' attitudes toward science, knowledge and beliefs about inquiry, and science classroom teaching practices. Specifically, the study addressed three questions: What are teachers' beliefs and knowledge about inquiry? What are teachers' teaching related classroom practices? Do…

  5. VISL: A Virtual Ice Sheet Laboratory For Outreach and K-12 Education (United States)

    Cheng, D. L. C.; Halkides, D. J.; Larour, E. Y.; Moore, J.; Dunn, S.; Perez, G.


    We present an update on our developing Virtual Ice Sheet Laboratory (VISL). Geared to K-12 classrooms and the general public, VISL's main goal is to improve climate literacy, especially in regards to the crucial role of the polar ice sheets in Earth's climate and sea level. VISL will allow users to perform guided experiments using the Ice Sheet System Model (ISSM), a state-of-the-art ice flow model developed at NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory and UC Irvine that simulates the near-term evolution of the ice sheets on Greenland and Antarctica. VISL users will access ISSM via a graphical interface that can be launched from a web browser on a computer, tablet or smart phone. Users select climate conditions and run time by moving graphic sliders then watch how a given region evolves in time under those conditions. Lesson plans will include conceptual background, instructions for table top experiments related to the concepts addressed in a given lesson, and a guide for performing model experiments and interpreting their results. Activities with different degrees of complexity will aim for consistency with NGSS Physical Science criteria for different grade bands (K-2, 3-5, 6-8, and 9-12), although they will not be labeled as such to encourage a broad user base. Activities will emphasize the development of physical intuition and critical thinking skills, understanding conceptual and computational models, as well as observation recording, concept articulation, hypothesis formulation and testing, and mathematical analysis. At our present phase of development, we seek input from the greater science education and outreach communities regarding VISL's planned content, as well as additional features and topic areas that educators and students would find useful.

  6. Integrating Internet Resources into the Science Classroom: Teachers' Perspectives. (United States)

    Wiesenmayer, Randall L.; Koul, Ravinder


    Presents teacher perspectives on the impact of Internet usage on their teaching practices. Semi-structured interviews and two online surveys provide data from teacher participants in the West Virginia K-12 RuralNet Project. (DDR)

  7. Makiguchian pedagogy in the middle school science classroom (United States)

    Pagan, Iris Teresa

    In an atmosphere of multi-culturism and the increasing need for innovative methods for science teaching, investigating educators from different parts of the world is well regarded. Tsunesaburo Makiguchi (1871--1944) was a prescient thinker who foreshadowed many of the modern social constructivist ideals of teaching before they became formalized in Western thought. He believed in the harmonious balance between an individual and society as the only viable goal of education. With this in mind, he introduced the concepts of "evaluation," "cognition" and "value creation" that embody this balance. "Cognition" is associated with "truth" and "evaluation" is involved with the subject-object relationship. Moreover, Makiguchian pedagogy's concept of "value creation" offers a sociological and philosophical basis for "classroom inclusion." Additionally, Makiguchian pedagogy is compared to John Dewey's philosophy as well as the educational philosophy expressed in The National Science Standards. In this teacher participant study, classroom observational data showed that several dimensions of Makiguchian pedagogical practice occurred conjointly with relatively high frequencies. These included frequent occurrences of interactional conversation between students and teacher merged within a context of expressions of personal and collective values, social contextual references, valuing and personal evaluative statements, and episodic information that the students contributed from personal experiences relevant to the science topics. Additionally, Likert-type questionnaire data collected from the students who experienced the Makiguchian lessons, and observational data from professional colleagues who viewed video taped records of the lessons, provided additional corroborative evidence supporting the researcher's findings. A content analysis of lesson plans containing Makiguchian principles of teaching and learning in relation to the ensuing classroom performance of the teacher showed a

  8. Multicultural science education in Lesotho high school biology classrooms (United States)

    Nthathakane, Malefu Christina


    This study investigated how Basotho high school biology students responded to a multicultural science education (MCSE) approach. Students' home language---Sesotho---and cultural experiences were integrated into the teaching of a unit on alcohol, tobacco and other drugs (ATOD) abuse. The focus was on students whose cultural background is African and who are English second language users. The study was conducted in three high school biology classrooms in Lesotho where the ATOD unit was taught using MCSE. A fourth biology classroom was observed for comparison purposes. In this classroom the regular biology teacher taught ATOD using typical instructional strategies. The study was framed by the general question: How does a multicultural science education approach affect Basotho high school biology students? More specifically: How does the use of Sesotho (or code-switching between Sesotho and English) and integration of Basotho students' cultural knowledge and experiences with respect to ATOD affect students' learning? In particular how does the approach affect students' participation and academic performance? A qualitative research method was used in this study. Data were drawn from a number of different sources and analyzed inductively. The data sources included field-notes, transcripts of ATOD lessons, research assistant lesson observation notes and interviews, regular biology teachers' interviews and notes from observing a few of their lessons, students' interviews and pre and posttest scripts, and other school documents that recorded students' performance throughout the year. Using the students' home language---Sesotho---was beneficial in that it enabled them to share ideas, communicate better and understand each other, the teacher and the material that was taught. Integrating students' cultural and everyday experiences was beneficial because it enabled students to anchor the new ATOD ideas in what was familiar and helped them find the relevance of the unit by

  9. Assessing Bilingual Knowledge Organization in Secondary Science Classrooms = (United States)

    Wu, Jason S.

    Improving outcomes for English language learners (ELLs) in secondary science remains an area of high need. The purpose of this study is to investigate bilingual knowledge organization in secondary science classrooms. This study involved thirty-nine bilingual students in three biology classes at a public high school in The Bronx, New York City. Methods included an in-class survey on language use, a science content and English proficiency exam, and bilingual free-recalls. Fourteen students participated in bilingual free-recalls which involved a semi-structured process of oral recall of information learned in science class. Free-recall was conducted in both English and Spanish and analyzed using flow-map methods. Novel methods were developed to quantify and visualize the elaboration and mobilization of ideas shared across languages. It was found that bilingual narratives displayed similar levels of organizational complexity across languages, though English recalls tended to be longer. English proficiency was correlated with narrative complexity in English. There was a high degree of elaboration on concepts shared across languages. Finally, higher Spanish proficiency correlated well with greater overlapping elaboration across languages. These findings are discussed in light of current cognitive theory before presenting the study's limitations and future directions of research.

  10. Undergraduate-driven interventions to increase representation in science classrooms (United States)

    Freilich, M.; Aluthge, D.; Bryant, R. M.; Knox, B.; McAdams, J.; Plummer, A.; Schlottman, N.; Stanley, Z.; Suglia, E.; Watson-Daniels, J.


    Recognizing that racial, ethnic, and gender underrepresentation in science classrooms persists despite intervention programs and institutional commitments to diversity, a group of undergraduates from a variety of backgrounds and academic disciplines came together for a group independent study to (a) study the theoretical foundations of the current practice of science and of programs meant to increase diversity, (b) utilize the experiences of course participants and our peers to better understand the drivers of underrepresentation, and (c) design and implement interventions at Brown University. We will present on individual and small group projects designed by course members in collaboration with faculty. The projects emerged from an exploration of literature in history, philosophy, and sociology of science, as well as an examination of anthropological and psychological studies. We also evaluated the effectiveness of top-down and bottom-up approaches that have already been attempted in developing our projects. They focus on the specific problems faced by underrepresented minorities, women, LGBTQ+ people, and well-represented minorities. We will share experiences of faculty-student collaboration and engaged scholarship focused on representation in science and discuss student-designed interventions.

  11. Effects of Mobile Devices on K-12 Students' Achievement: A Meta-Analysis (United States)

    Tingir, S.; Cavlazoglu, B.; Caliskan, O.; Koklu, O.; Intepe-Tingir, S.


    In this meta-analytic study, we investigated the effects of mobile devices on student achievement in science, mathematics and reading in grades K-12. Based on our inclusion criteria, we searched the ERIC and PsycINFO databases and identified 14 peer-reviewed research articles published between 2010 and 2014. We identified the device type, subject…

  12. Using Scientific Visualizations to Enhance Scientific Thinking In K-12 Geoscience Education (United States)

    Robeck, E.


    The same scientific visualizations, animations, and images that are powerful tools for geoscientists can serve an important role in K-12 geoscience education by encouraging students to communicate in ways that help them develop habits of thought that are similar to those used by scientists. Resources such as those created by NASA's Scientific Visualization Studio (SVS), which are intended to inform researchers and the public about NASA missions, can be used in classrooms to promote thoughtful, engaged learning. Instructional materials that make use of those visualizations have been developed and are being used in K-12 classrooms in ways that demonstrate the vitality of the geosciences. For example, the Center for Geoscience and Society at the American Geosciences Institute (AGI) helped to develop a publication that outlines an inquiry-based approach to introducing students to the interpretation of scientific visualizations, even when they have had little to no prior experience with such media. To facilitate these uses, the SVS team worked with Center staff and others to adapt the visualizations, primarily by removing most of the labels and annotations. Engaging with these visually compelling resources serves as an invitation for students to ask questions, interpret data, draw conclusions, and make use of other processes that are key components of scientific thought. This presentation will share specific resources for K-12 teaching (all of which are available online, from NASA, and/or from AGI), as well as the instructional principles that they incorporate.

  13. Student perception of writing in the science classroom (United States)

    Deakin, Kathleen J.

    This study examines factors that shape four student's perceptions of writing tasks in their science classroom. This qualitative retrospective interview study focuses on four students concurrently enrolled in honors English and honors biology. This research employs a phenomenological perspective on writing, examining whether the writing strategies students acquire in the Language Arts classroom manifest in the content areas. I also adopt Bandura's theoretical perspective on self-efficacy as well as Hillock's notion of writing as inquiry and meaning making. This study concludes that students need ample opportunity to generate content and language that will help reveal a purpose and genre for writing tasks in the content areas. Although all four students approached the writing tasks differently in this study, the tasks set before them were opportunities for replication rather than inquiry Through the case studies of four students as well as current research on content writing, this project works to inform all content area teachers about student perceptions of writing in the content areas.

  14. The Future of K-12 Computer Science Instruction (United States)

    Bottoms, Gene; Sundell, Kirsten


    Children born since the early 1990s have never known a world in which computer and information technologies are not essential to every aspect of their lives. However, far too many young people, especially low-income and minority youth, lack opportunities to learn about the impact of computer and information technologies on their lives and become…

  15. OER Quality and Adaptation in K-12: Comparing Teacher Evaluations of Copyright-Restricted, Open, and Open/Adapted Textbooks (United States)

    Kimmons, Royce


    Conducted in conjunction with an institute on open textbook adaptation, this study compares textbook evaluations from practicing K-12 classroom teachers (n = 30) on three different types of textbooks utilized in their contexts: copyright-restricted, open, and open/adapted. Copyright-restricted textbooks consisted of those textbooks already in use…

  16. The Delicate Balance between Research, Teaching and Outreach: A Case Study of Physicists in K-12 Education (United States)

    Leslie-Pelecky, Diandra


    Recent calls from a variety of sectors including some funding agencies and professional societies encourage physicists to take a more active interest in the education of K-12 students and their teachers. Although there are a broad range of possible activities, finding time to participate is always a challenge for the researcher. How does the busy physicist ensure that the time devoted to education or outreach activities produces meaningful results without adversely affecting his or her research program? Project Fulcrum, a NSF-funded program that teams science and math graduate students at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln with 4th -8th grade teachers in the Lincoln Public Schools, presents a case study of how research scientists can be meaningfully involved with K-12 education. Project Fulcrum's preliminary results indicate that the impact scientists have in the classroom goes far beyond providing expertise in physics, and turns out to be very different than originally anticipated. There are a wide variety of models for involvement in education and outreach that cover a broad span of time and energy commitments. Careful project choice, establishing administrative infrastructure, collaborating with other departments and colleges, and involving colleagues can optimize the impact-made-to-time-spent ratio. Challenges such as project evaluation, overcoming the negative attitudes of some physicists towards anything not related to research, and ensuring that participants get appropriate credit for their efforts will also be discussed. The conclusion will address the personal and professional rewards of involvement in education and outreach. This work is funded by the National Science Foundation (NSF-DGE0086358). The author wishes to acknowledge the contributions of co-PIs G. Buck, S. Kirby, R. Kirby and P. Dussault, and all of the Project Fulcrum Fellows and Teachers.

  17. K-12 Students' Perceptions of Scientists: Finding a valid measurement and exploring whether exposure to scientists makes an impact (United States)

    Hillman, Susan J.; Bloodsworth, Kylie H.; Tilburg, Charles E.; Zeeman, Stephan I.; List, Henrietta E.


    This study was launched from a National Science Foundation GK-12 grant in which graduate fellows in Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics (STEM) are placed in classrooms to engage K-12 students in STEM activities. The investigation explored whether the STEM Fellows' presence impacted the K-12 students' stereotypical image of a scientist. Since finding a valid instrument is critical, the study involved (1) determining the validity of the commonly administered Draw-A-Scientist Test (DAST) against a newly designed six-question survey and (2) using a combination of both instruments to determine what stereotypes are currently held by children. A pretest-posttest design was used on 485 students, grades 3-11, attending 6 different schools in suburban and rural Maine communities. A significant but low positive correlation was found between the DAST and the survey; therefore, it is imperative that the DAST not be used alone, but corroboration with interviews or survey questions should occur. Pretest results revealed that the children held common stereotypes of scientists, but these stereotypes were neither as extensive nor did they increase with the grade level as past research has indicated, suggesting that a shift has occurred with children having a broader concept of who a scientist can be. Finally, the presence of an STEM Fellow corresponded with decreased stereotypes in middle school and high school, but no change in elementary age children. More research is needed to determine whether this reflects resiliency in elementary children's perceptions or limitations in either drawing or in writing out their responses.

  18. California's K-12 Public Schools. How Are They Doing?

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Carroll, Stephen J; Krop, Cathy; Arkes, Jeremy; Morrison, Peter A; Flanagan, Ann


    ... are no longer performing as well as they did previously or as well as schools in other states. The primary objective of our study was to look closely at California's public system of kindergarten through twelfth grade (K-12...

  19. The effect of classroom instruction, attitudes towards science and motivation on students' views of uncertainty in science (United States)

    Schroeder, Meadow

    This study examined developmental and gender differences in Grade 5 and 9 students' views of uncertainty in science and the effect of classroom instruction on attitudes towards science, and motivation. Study 1 examined views of uncertainty in science when students were taught science using constructivist pedagogy. A total of 33 Grade 5 (n = 17, 12 boys, 5 girls) and Grade 9 (n = 16, 8 boys, 8 girls) students were interviewed about the ideas they had about uncertainty in their own experiments (i.e., practical science) and in professional science activities (i.e., formal science). Analysis found an interaction between grade and gender in the number of categories of uncertainty identified for both practical and formal science. Additionally, in formal science, there was a developmental shift from dualism (i.e., science is a collection of basic facts that are the result of straightforward procedures) to multiplism (i.e., there is more than one answer or perspective on scientific knowledge) from Grade 5 to Grade 9. Finally, there was a positive correlation between the understanding uncertainty in practical and formal science. Study 2 compared the attitudes and motivation towards science and motivation of students in constructivist and traditional classrooms. Scores on the measures were also compared to students' views of uncertainty for constructivist-taught students. A total of 28 students in Grade 5 (n = 13, 11 boys, 2 girls) and Grade 9 (n = 15, 6 boys, 9 girls), from traditional science classrooms and the 33 constructivist students from Study 1 participated. Regardless of classroom instruction, fifth graders reported more positive attitudes towards science than ninth graders. Students from the constructivist classrooms reported more intrinsic motivation than students from the traditional classrooms. Constructivist students' views of uncertainty in formal and practical science did not correlate with their attitudes towards science and motivation.

  20. The Science of Serious Gaming: Exploring the Benefits of Science-Based Games in the Classroom (United States)

    Kurtz, N.


    Finding ways to connect scientists with the classroom is an important part of sharing enthusiasm for science with the public. Utilizing the visual arts and serious gaming techniques has benefits for all participants including the engagement of multiple learning sectors and the involvement of whole-brain teaching methods. The activities in this presentation draw from real-world events that require higher level thinking strategies to discover and differential naturally occurring patterns.

  1. A Vision in Aeronautics: The K-12 Wind Tunnel Project (United States)


    A Vision in Aeronautics, a project within the NASA Lewis Research Center's Information Infrastructure Technologies and Applications (IITA) K-12 Program, employs small-scale, subsonic wind tunnels to inspire students to explore the world of aeronautics and computers. Recently, two educational K-12 wind tunnels were built in the Cleveland area. During the 1995-1996 school year, preliminary testing occurred in both tunnels.

  2. Teacher Directed Design: Content Knowledge, Pedagogy and Assessment under the Nevada K-12 Real-Time Seismic Network (United States)

    Cantrell, P.; Ewing-Taylor, J.; Crippen, K. J.; Smith, K. D.; Snelson, C. M.


    Education professionals and seismologists under the emerging SUN (Shaking Up Nevada) program are leveraging the existing infrastructure of the real-time Nevada K-12 Seismic Network to provide a unique inquiry based science experience for teachers. The concept and effort are driven by teacher needs and emphasize rigorous content knowledge acquisition coupled with the translation of that knowledge into an integrated seismology based earth sciences curriculum development process. We are developing a pedagogical framework, graduate level coursework, and materials to initiate the SUN model for teacher professional development in an effort to integrate the research benefits of real-time seismic data with science education needs in Nevada. A component of SUN is to evaluate teacher acquisition of qualified seismological and earth science information and pedagogy both in workshops and in the classroom and to assess the impact on student achievement. SUN's mission is to positively impact earth science education practices. With the upcoming EarthScope initiative, the program is timely and will incorporate EarthScope real-time seismic data (USArray) and educational materials in graduate course materials and teacher development programs. A number of schools in Nevada are contributing real-time data from both inexpensive and high-quality seismographs that are integrated with Nevada regional seismic network operations as well as the IRIS DMC. A powerful and unique component of the Nevada technology model is that schools can receive "stable" continuous live data feeds from 100's seismograph stations in Nevada, California and world (including live data from Earthworm systems and the IRIS DMC BUD - Buffer of Uniform Data). Students and teachers see their own networked seismograph station within a global context, as participants in regional and global monitoring. The robust real-time Internet communications protocols invoked in the Nevada network provide for local data acquisition

  3. Science Teacher Beliefs and Classroom Practice Related to Constructivism in Different School Settings (United States)

    Savasci, Funda; Berlin, Donna F.


    Science teacher beliefs and classroom practice related to constructivism and factors that may influence classroom practice were examined in this cross-case study. Data from four science teachers in two schools included interviews, demographic questionnaire, Classroom Learning Environment Survey (preferred/perceived), and classroom observations and documents. Using an inductive analytic approach, results suggested that the teachers embraced constructivism, but classroom observations did not confirm implementation of these beliefs for three of the four teachers. The most preferred constructivist components were personal relevance and student negotiation; the most perceived component was critical voice. Shared control was the least preferred, least perceived, and least observed constructivist component. School type, grade, student behavior/ability, curriculum/standardized testing, and parental involvement may influence classroom practice.

  4. Where Is Earth Science? Mining for Opportunities in Chemistry, Physics, and Biology (United States)

    Thomas, Julie; Ivey, Toni; Puckette, Jim


    The Earth sciences are newly marginalized in K-12 classrooms. With few high schools offering Earth science courses, students' exposure to the Earth sciences relies on the teacher's ability to incorporate Earth science material into a biology, chemistry, or physics course. ''G.E.T. (Geoscience Experiences for Teachers) in the Field'' is an…

  5. Science is for me: Meeting the needs of English language learners in an urban, middle school science classroom through an instructional intervention (United States)

    Johnson, Joseph A.


    This study involved an intervention in which I explored how the multimodal, inquiry-based teaching strategies from a professional development model could be used to meet the educational needs of a group of middle school students, who were refugees, newly arrived in the United States, now residing in a large urban school district in the northeastern United States, and learning English as a second language. This group remains unmentioned throughout the research literature despite the fact that English Language Learners (ELLs) represent the fastest growing group of K-12 students in the United States. The specific needs of this particular group were explored as I attempted daily to confront a variety of obstacles to their science achievement and help to facilitate the development of a scientific discourse. This research was done in an effort to better address the needs of ELLs in general and to inform best practices for teachers to apply across a variety of different cultural and linguistic subgroups. This study is an autoethnographic case study analysis of the practices of the researcher, working in a science classroom, teaching the described group of students.

  6. Engagerande samtal i det naturvetenskapliga klassrummetInquiry based dialouge in science classroom

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ragnhild Löfgren


    Full Text Available This study focuses on classroom communication within an inquiry-based science education (IBSE program, called NTA (Naturvetenskap och Teknik för Alla. The overall aim of the study is to highlight the ways in which productive and engaging conversations are conducted in the classroom. We have analysed the work within the unit ”The Chemistry of food” and the theme testing of fat in food in grade five and six in a Swedish and a Danish science classroom. We have used video cameras and mp3-players to follow the classroom interaction. Our findings indicate that the classroom communication was focused on everyday science content and that the introduction and the summary of the theme were very important for the pupils’ possibilities to productive disciplinary engagement.

  7. Revising laboratory work: sociological perspectives on the science classroom (United States)

    Jobér, Anna


    This study uses sociological perspectives to analyse one of the core practices in science education: schoolchildren's and students' laboratory work. Applying an ethnographic approach to the laboratory work done by pupils at a Swedish compulsory school, data were generated through observations, field notes, interviews, and a questionnaire. The pupils, ages 14 and 15, were observed as they took a 5-week physics unit (specifically, mechanics). The analysis shows that the episodes of laboratory work could be filled with curiosity and exciting challenges; however, another picture emerged when sociological concepts and notions were applied to what is a very common way of working in the classroom. Laboratory work is characterised as a social activity that is expected to be organised as a group activity. This entails groups becoming, to some extent, `safe havens' for the pupils. On the other hand, this way of working in groups required pupils to subject to the groups and the peer effect, sometimes undermining their chances to learn and perform better. In addition, the practice of working in groups when doing laboratory work left some pupils and the teacher blaming themselves, even though the outcome of the learning situation was a result of a complex interplay of social processes. This article suggests a stronger emphasis on the contradictions and consequences of the science subjects, which are strongly influenced by their socio-historical legacy.

  8. How does a Next Generation Science Standard Aligned, Inquiry Based, Science Unit Impact Student Achievement of Science Practices and Student Science Efficacy in an Elementary Classroom? (United States)

    Whittington, Kayla Lee

    This study examined the impact of an inquiry based Next Generation Science Standard aligned science unit on elementary students' understanding and application of the eight Science and Engineering Practices and their relation in building student problem solving skills. The study involved 44 second grade students and three participating classroom teachers. The treatment consisted of a school district developed Second Grade Earth Science unit: What is happening to our playground? that was taught at the beginning of the school year. Quantitative results from a Likert type scale pre and post survey and from student content knowledge assessments showed growth in student belief of their own abilities in the science classroom. Qualitative data gathered from student observations and interviews performed at the conclusion of the Earth Science unit further show gains in student understanding and attitudes. This study adds to the existing literature on the importance of standard aligned, inquiry based science curriculum that provides time for students to engage in science practices.

  9. Elementary Teachers' Beliefs about Teaching Science and Classroom Practice: An Examination of Pre/Post NCLB Testing in Science (United States)

    Milner, Andrea R.; Sondergeld, Toni A.; Demir, Abdulkadir; Johnson, Carla C.; Czerniak, Charlene M.


    The impact of No Child Left Behind (NCLB) mandated state science assessment on elementary teachers' beliefs about teaching science and their classroom practice is relatively unknown. For many years, the teaching of science has been minimized in elementary schools in favor of more emphasis on reading and mathematics. This study examines the…

  10. Beyond the Flipped Classroom: A Highly Interactive Cloud-Classroom (HIC) Embedded into Basic Materials Science Courses (United States)

    Liou, Wei-Kai; Bhagat, Kaushal Kumar; Chang, Chun-Yen


    The present study compares the highly interactive cloud-classroom (HIC) system with traditional methods of teaching materials science that utilize crystal structure picture or real crystal structure model, in order to examine its learning effectiveness across three dimensions: knowledge, comprehension and application. The aim of this study was to…

  11. K-12 Phenology Lessons for the Phenocam Project (United States)

    Bennett, K. F.


    Phenology is defined as periodic [or annual] life cycles of plants and animals driven by seasonal environmental changes. Climate change impinges a strong effect on phenology, potentially altering the structure and functioning of ecosystems. In the fall of 2011, the Ashburnham-Westminster Regional School District became the first of five schools to join Harvard University's Phenocam Network with the installation of a webcam to monitor phenology (or 'phenocam') at Overlook Middle School in Ashburnham, Massachusetts. Our school district is now part of a network of near-surface remote sensing phenocams that capture and send images of forest, shrub, and grassland vegetation cover at more than 130 diverse sites in North America. Our phenocam provides a digital image every half hour of the mixed forest canopy north from the school, enabling the detection of changes in canopy development, quantified as canopy 'greenness'. As a part of the Phenocam project, students at the K-12 level have expanded the scope of phenological monitoring protocol that is part of the Harvard Forest Schoolyard Ecology Program, Buds, Leaves, and Global Warming. In this protocol, students work with ecologists at Harvard Forest to monitor buds and leaves on schoolyard trees to determine the length of the growing season, giving them the opportunity to be a part of real and important research concerning the critical environmental issue of climate change. Students involved in the Buds, Leaves, and Global Warming study have the opportunity to compare their ground data on budburst, color change, and leaf drop to the phenocam images, as well as to similar forested sites in locations throughout the United States. Lessons have been developed for comparing student data to phenocam images, canopy greenness time series graphs extracted from the images, and satellite data. Lessons addressing map scale and the Urban Heat Island effect will also be available for teachers. This project will greatly enhance the

  12. Japanese Family and Consumer Sciences Teachers' Lived Experiences: Self-Disclosure in the Classroom (United States)

    Katadae, Ayako


    The purpose of this phenomenological study was to understand the lived experiences of Japanese family and consumer sciences teachers' self-disclosure in the classroom. Twelve secondary school teachers were interviewed, beginning with this primary question, "Think about a specific time and space when you self-disclosed in the classroom. Would you…

  13. It's in the Bag!: Going beyond the Science Classroom with Take-Home Literacy Bags (United States)

    Martin, Susan Ferguson; Daughenbaugh, Lynda; Shaw, Edward L., Jr.; Burch, Katrina


    Although literacy plays a large role in elementary science classrooms, one thing that offers a challenge for educators is meeting the linguistic needs of English language learners (ELLs) while also meeting their content needs. An additional challenge is ensuring that academic literacy extends beyond the classroom. This article presents ways of…

  14. Girls in Primary School Science Classrooms: Theorising beyond Dominant Discourses of Gender (United States)

    Cervoni, Cleti; Ivinson, Gabrielle


    The paper explores the ways girls appropriate gender through actions, gesture and talk to achieve things in primary school science classrooms. It draws on socio-cultural approaches to show that when everyday classroom practices are viewed from multiple planes of analysis, historical, institutional and in the micro dynamics of classroom…

  15. Teaching and Learning in the Mixed-Reality Science Classroom

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Tolentino, L.; Birchfield, D.A.; Megowan-Romanowicz, C.; Johnson-Glenberg, M.C.; Kelliher, A.; Martinez, C.


    As emerging technologies become increasingly inexpensive and robust, there is an exciting opportunity to move beyond general purpose computing platforms to realize a new generation of K-12 technology-based learning environments. Mixed-reality technologies integrate real world components with

  16. Teaching and Learning in the Mixed-Reality Science Classroom (United States)

    Tolentino, Lisa; Birchfield, David; Megowan-Romanowicz, Colleen; Johnson-Glenberg, Mina C.; Kelliher, Aisling; Martinez, Christopher


    As emerging technologies become increasingly inexpensive and robust, there is an exciting opportunity to move beyond general purpose computing platforms to realize a new generation of K-12 technology-based learning environments. Mixed-reality technologies integrate real world components with interactive digital media to offer new potential to…

  17. The impact of single-gender classrooms on science achievement of middle school gifted girls (United States)

    Ulkins, David S.

    Studies indicate a gap in science achievement and positive attitudes towards science between gifted male and female students with females performing less than the males. This study investigated the impact of a single-gender classroom environment as opposed to a mixed-gender classroom, on motivation, locus of control, self-concept, and science achievement of middle school gifted girls. The Motivated Strategies for Learning Questionnaire (MSLQ), Review of Personal Effectiveness with Locus of Control (ROPELOC), Test of Science Related Attitudes (TOSRA), and Stanford Achievement Test 10th Edition, were used to measure the dependent variables respectively. The independent-measure t test was used to compare the differences between girls in a single-gender classroom with the ones in a mixed-gender classroom. A significant difference in the external locus of control resulted for girls in the single gender classroom. However, there were no significant differences found in science achievement, motivation, and the attitudes toward science between the two groups. The implication is that a single-gender learning environment and the use of differentiated teaching strategies can help lessen the negative effects of societal stereotypes in today's classrooms. These, along with being cognizant of the differences in learning styles of girls and their male counterparts, will result in a greater level of success for gifted females in the area of science education.

  18. Classroom Environment in the Implementation of an Innovative Curriculum Project in Science Education. (United States)

    Suarez, Mercedes; Pias, Rosa; Membiela, Pedro; Dapia, Dolores


    Analyzes the perceptions of students, teachers, and external observers in order to study the influence of classroom environment on the implementation of an innovative project in science education. Contains 33 references. (DDR)

  19. The Most Common Patterns of Classroom Dialogue Used by Science Teachers in Omani Cycle Two Schools (United States)

    Alshaqsi, Hanan; Ambusaidi, Abdullah


    This study aimed to identify the patterns of classroom dialogue used by science teachers in science classes at Omani schools with respect to their gender. The study sample consisted of science teachers: three males and three females. To achieve the aims of the study, mixed methods with three instruments were used. These are an observation card or…

  20. Multimodal Teacher Input and Science Learning in a Middle School Sheltered Classroom (United States)

    Zhang, Ying


    This article reports the results of an ethnographic research about the multimodal science discourse in a sixth-grade sheltered classroom involving English Language Learners (ELLs) only. Drawing from the perspective of multimodality, this study examines how science learning is constructed in science lectures through multiple semiotic resources,…

  1. Classroom

    Indian Academy of Sciences (India)

    Classroom. In this section of Resonance, we in'Vite readers to pose questions likely to be raised in a classroom situation. We may suggest strategies for dealing with them, or in'Vite responses, or ... "Classroom" is equally a forum for raising broader issues and .... Now we can approach the question from a different viewpoint.

  2. Classrooms. (United States)

    Butin, Dan

    This paper addresses classroom design trends and the key issues schools should consider for better classroom space flexibility and adaptability. Classroom space design issues when schools embrace technology are discussed, as are design considerations when rooms must accommodate different grade levels, the importance of lighting, furniture…

  3. The current practice of using multiple representations in year 4 science classrooms (United States)

    Chuenmanee, Chanoknat; Thathong, Kongsak


    Multiple representations have been widely used as a reasoning tool for understanding complex scientific concepts. Thus this study attempted to investigate the current practice of using multiple representations on Year 4 science classrooms in terms of modes and levels which appear in curriculum documents, teaching plans, tasks and assessments, teaching practices, and students' behaviors. Indeed, documentary analysis, classroom observation, and interview were used as the data collection methods. First of all, Year 4 science documents were analyzed. Then classroom observation was used as a collecting method to seek what actually happen in the classroom. Finally, in-depth interviews were used to gather more information and obtain meaningful data. The finding reveals that many modes of verbal, visual, and tactile representations within three levels of representations are posed in Year 4 documents. Moreover, according to classroom observations and interviews, there are three main points of applying multiple representations into classrooms. First of all, various modes of representations were used, however, a huge number of them did not come together with the levels. The levels of representations, secondly, macroscopic and cellular levels were introduced into all classrooms while symbolic level was provided only in some classrooms. Finally, the connection of modes and levels pointed out that modes of representations were used without the considerations on the levels of them. So, it seems to be that teaching practice did not meet the aims of curriculum. Therefore, these issues were being considered in order to organize and design the further science lessons.

  4. The Influence of Informal Science Education Experiences on the Development of Two Beginning Teachers' Science Classroom Teaching Identity (United States)

    Katz, Phyllis; Randy McGinnis, J.; Riedinger, Kelly; Marbach-Ad, Gili; Dai, Amy


    In case studies of two first-year elementary classroom teachers, we explored the influence of informal science education (ISE) they experienced in their teacher education program. Our theoretical lens was identity development, delimited to classroom science teaching. We used complementary data collection methods and analysis, including interviews, electronic communications, and drawing prompts. We found that our two participants referenced as important the ISE experiences in their development of classroom science identities that included resilience, excitement and engagement in science teaching and learning-qualities that are emphasized in ISE contexts. The data support our conclusion that the ISE experiences proved especially memorable to teacher education interns during the implementation of the No Child Left Behind policy which concentrated on school-tested subjects other than science.

  5. Teaching Climate Science in Non-traditional Classrooms (United States)

    Strybos, J.


    San Antonio College is the oldest, largest and centrally-located campus of Alamo Colleges, a network of five community colleges based around San Antonio, Texas with a headcount enrollment of approximately 20,000 students. The student population is diverse in ethnicity, age and income; and the Colleges understand that they play a salient role in educating its students on the foreseen impacts of climate change. This presentation will discuss the key investment Alamo Colleges has adopted to incorporate sustainability and climate science into non-traditional classrooms. The established courses that cover climate-related course material have historically had low enrollments. One of the most significant challenges is informing the student population of the value of this class both in their academic career and in their personal lives. By hosting these lessons in hands-on simulations and demonstrations that are accessible and understandable to students of any age, and pursuing any major, we have found an exciting way to teach all students about climate change and identify solutions. San Antonio College (SAC) hosts the Bill R. Sinkin Eco Centro Community Center, completed in early 2014, that serves as an environmental hub for Alamo Colleges' staff and students as well as the San Antonio community. The center actively engages staff and faculty during training days in sustainability by presenting information on Eco Centro, personal sustainability habits, and inviting faculty to bring their classes for a tour and sustainability primer for students. The Centro has hosted professors from diverse disciplines that include Architecture, Psychology, Engineering, Science, English, Fine Arts, and International Studies to bring their classes to center to learn about energy, water conservation, landscaping, and green building. Additionally, Eco Centro encourages and assists students with research projects, including a solar-hydroponic project currently under development with the support

  6. The perception of science teachers on the role of student relationships in the classroom (United States)

    Mattison, Cheryl Ann

    With the increased accountability of educators comes the responsibility of the entire educational community to find ways in which we can help our students succeed in the classroom. In addition, it is important to discover what it takes to keep those students in school Many science teachers enter the profession unprepared to handle the regular classroom routine. Classroom management, grading, lesson planning, setting up labs, and the myriad of other obligations, can leave teachers overwhelmed and sometimes can get in the way of actually helping students be successful. This study investigated how science teachers viewed the importance of developing strong teacher/student relationships to the increase of student success in a science classroom. I attempted to answer 4 major questions: · How do science teachers in a select high school community view the role of interactive relationships in their classrooms and how that might impact their students? · How do science teachers in a select high school community believe they establish successful interactive relationships with their students? · What do science teachers in a select high school community believe are some of the outcomes of those relationships? · What do science teachers suggest to increase the teacher's ability to form good relationships with their students? A qualitative research method was used including observations, interviews and group discussions of 5 high school science teachers in a small urban school.

  7. Education for a Green and Resilient Economy: An Educator Framework for Teaching Climate and Energy Literacy for K-12 Teachers Across the Curriculum (United States)

    Niepold, F., III; Ledley, T. S.; Lockwood, J.; Youngman, E.; Manning, C. L. B.; Sullivan, S. M.


    The U.S. is embarking on a major transition to a green and resilient economy, a monumental change requiring all sectors and segments of the population to pull together. Transforming our nation's economic, energy, and environmental systems to in this way will require a sustained level of expertise, innovation, and cooperative effort unseen since the 1940s to meet the challenges involved. Education can - and must - help people understand the true connections, the linkages and interdependencies, between the environment, our energy sources and the economy which underpin and form the very foundation of the concept of a green and resilient economy. To produce such a literate future workforce and citizenry, the United States will need to make major new investments in our educational systems. Teachers across the nation are helping to increase science-based understanding and awareness of current and future climate change, enhancing climate and energy literacy in K-12 classrooms, on college and university campuses. There has been tremendous progress to date, but there is still more work to be done. The new academic standards in mathematics and science (the Common Core State Standards in Mathematics and the Next Generation Science Standards (NGSS)) represent a sea change from the nation's previous sets of standards. Addressing these standards in the currently over 40 percent of the nation's classrooms that have adopted or adapted the NGSS will demand that we prepare new and current teachers, who can effectively address the interdisciplinary nature of climate change and societal responses. To address this opportunity and need a collaboration between NOAA, TERC and CIRES has been established to develop an Educator Framework for Teaching Climate and Energy Literacy for K-12 teachers across the curriculum based on the NRC Framework for K-12 Science Education: Practices, Crosscutting Concepts, and Core Ideas. This collaboration is developing an effective way to frame the use of

  8. Transforming K-12 Rural Education through Blended Learning: Teacher Perspectives (United States)

    Kellerer, Paula; Kellerer, Eric; Werth, Eric; Werth, Lori; Montgomery, Danielle; Clyde, Rozella; Cozart, Joe; Creach, Laura; Hibbard, Laura; LaFrance, Jason; Rupp, Nadine; Walker, Niki; Carter, Theresa; Kennedy, Kathryn


    A qualitative study exploring rural teacher perspectives on the impact of blended learning on students and teachers was conducted in Idaho during the Fall of 2013. Researchers from Northwest Nazarene University's DOCEO Center in partnership with Idaho Digital Learning Academy (IDLA) and the International Association for K-12 Online Learning…

  9. Designer Librarian: Embedded in K12 Online Learning (United States)

    Boyer, Brenda


    Over the past two decades, shifts in technology have altered the roles of school librarians in a multitude of ways. New rigorous standards, proliferation of devices, and steady growth of online and blended learning for the K12 market now demand librarians engage with learners in online environments. Taking an instructional design approach is the…

  10. Draft Genome Sequence of Escherichia coli K-12 (ATCC 10798)


    Dimitrova, Daniela; Engelbrecht, Kathleen C.; Putonti, Catherine; Koenig, David W.; Wolfe, Alan J.


    ABSTRACT Here, we present the draft genome sequence of Escherichia coli ATCC 10798. E.?coli ATCC 10798 is a K-12 strain, one of the most well-studied model microorganisms. The size of the genome was 4,685,496?bp, with a G+C content of 50.70%. This assembly consists of 62 contigs and the F plasmid.

  11. Evaluating the Performance of Online K-12 Schools (United States)

    Carpenter, Dick; Kafer, Krista; Reeser, Kelly; Shafer, Sheryl


    This article examines K-12 online student and school performance across an entire state (Colorado) in the United States through two comparisons. First, state assessment scores of students in online schools are compared to those in traditional brick and mortar schools. Second, the accountability scores of online schools are compared to those of…

  12. Leadership Analysis in K-12 Case Study: "Divided Loyalties" (United States)

    Alsubaie, Merfat Ayesh


    This report mainly aims to provide a critical and in-depth analysis of the K-12 Case, "Divided Loyalty" by Holy and Tartar (2004). The case recounts how the manifestation of inadequate leadership skills in a school setting could affect negatively the performance of students.

  13. K-12 Marketplace Sees Major Flow of Venture Capital (United States)

    Ash, Katie


    The flow of venture capital into the K-12 education market has exploded over the past year, reaching its highest transaction values in a decade in 2011, industry observers say. They attribute that rise to such factors as a heightened interest in educational technology; the decreasing cost of electronic devices such as tablet computers, laptops,…

  14. Online System Adoption and K-12 Academic Outcomes (United States)

    Kimmons, R.


    This study seeks to understand the relationship between K-12 online system adoption (e.g., Blackboard, Edmodo, WordPress) and school-level academic achievement ratings. Utilizing a novel approach to data collection via website data extraction and indexing of all school websites in a target state in the United States (n?=?732) and merging these…

  15. Gender Sorting across K-12 Schools in the United States (United States)

    Long, Mark C.; Conger, Dylan


    This article documents evidence of nonrandom gender sorting across K-12 schools in the United States. The sorting exists among coed schools and at all grade levels, and it is highest in the secondary school grades. We observe some gender sorting across school sectors and types: for instance, males are slightly underrepresented in private schools…

  16. Florida's Opinion on K-12 Public Education Spending (United States)

    Forster, Greg


    This scientifically representative poll of 1,200 Floridians finds that public opinion about K-12 public education spending is seriously misinformed. Floridians think public schools need more money, but the main reason is that they are badly mistaken about how much money the public schools actually get. Key findings of the study include: (1) Half…

  17. Information Security Management Practices of K-12 School Districts (United States)

    Nyachwaya, Samson


    The research problem addressed in this quantitative correlational study was the inadequacy of sound information security management (ISM) practices in K-12 school districts, despite their increasing ownership of information assets. Researchers have linked organizational and sociotechnical factors to the implementation of information security…

  18. Science initial teacher education and superdiversity: educating science teachers for a multi-religious and globalised science classroom (United States)

    De Carvalho, Roussel


    Steven Vertovec (2006, 2007) has recently offered a re-interpretation of population diversity in large urban centres due to a considerable increase in immigration patterns in the UK. This complex scenario called superdiversity has been conceptualised to help illuminate significant interactions of variables such as religion, language, gender, age, nationality, labour market and population distribution on a larger scale. The interrelationships of these themes have fundamental implications in a variety of community environments, but especially within our schools. Today, London schools have over 300 languages being spoken by students, all of whom have diverse backgrounds, bringing with them a wealth of experience and, most critically, their own set of religious beliefs. At the same time, Science is a compulsory subject in England's national curriculum, where it requires teachers to deal with important scientific frameworks about the world; teaching about the origins of the universe, life on Earth, human evolution and other topics, which are often in conflict with students' religious views. In order to cope with this dynamic and thought-provoking environment, science initial teacher education (SITE)—especially those catering large urban centres—must evolve to equip science teachers with a meaningful understanding of how to handle a superdiverse science classroom, taking the discourse of inclusion beyond its formal boundaries. Thus, this original position paper addresses how the role of SITE may be re-conceptualised and re-framed in light of the immense challenges of superdiversity as well as how science teachers, as enactors of the science curriculum, must adapt to cater to these changes. This is also the first in a series of papers emerging from an empirical research project trying to capture science teacher educators' own views on religio-scientific issues and their positions on the place of these issues within science teacher education and the science classroom.

  19. Question Asking in the Science Classroom: Teacher Attitudes and Practices (United States)

    Eshach, Haim; Dor-Ziderman, Yair; Yefroimsky, Yana


    Despite the wide agreement among educators that classroom learning and teaching processes can gain much from student and teacher questions, their potential is not fully utilized. Adopting the view that reporting both teachers' (of varying age groups) views and actual classroom practices is necessary for obtaining a more complete view of the…

  20. A case study on the formation and sharing process of science classroom norms (United States)

    Chang, Jina; Song, Jinwoong


    The teaching and learning of science in school are influenced by various factors, including both individual factors, such as member beliefs, and social factors, such as the power structure of the class. To understand this complex context affected by various factors in schools, we investigated the formation and sharing process of science classroom norms in connection with these factors. By examining the developmental process of science classroom norms, we identified how the norms were realized, shared, and internalized among the members. We collected data through classroom observations and interviews focusing on two elementary science classrooms in Korea. From these data, factors influencing norm formation were extracted and developed as stories about norm establishment. The results indicate that every science classroom norm was established, shared, and internalized differently according to the values ingrained in the norms, the agent of norm formation, and the members' understanding about the norm itself. The desirable norms originating from values in science education, such as having an inquiring mind, were not established spontaneously by students, but were instead established through well-organized norm networks to encourage concrete practice. Educational implications were discussed in terms of the practice of school science inquiry, cultural studies, and value-oriented education.

  1. Signs of Taste for Science: A Methodology for Studying the Constitution of Interest in the Science Classroom (United States)

    Anderhag, P.; Wickman, P.-O.; Hamza, K. M.


    In this paper we present a methodological approach for analyzing the transformation of interest in science through classroom talk and action. To this end, we use the construct of "taste for science" as a social and communicative operationalization, or proxy, to the more psychologically oriented construct of interest. To gain a taste for…

  2. Teaching Environmental Health Science for Informed Citizenship in the Science Classroom and Afterschool Clubs (United States)

    Keselman, Alla; Levin, Daniel M.; Hundal, Savreen; Kramer, Judy F.; Matzkin, Karen; Dutcher, Gale


    In the era of growing concerns about human-induced climate change and sustainable development, it is important for the schools to prepare students for meaningful engagement with environmental policies that will determine the future of our society. To do this, educators need to face a number of challenges. These include deciding on the science knowledge and skills needed for informed citizenship, identifying teaching practices for fostering such knowledge and skills, and finding ways to implement new practices into the tightly packed existing curriculum. This paper describes two collaborative efforts between the U.S. National Library of Medicine (NLM) and University of Maryland College of Education that attempt to meet these challenges. The focus of both projects is on helping students develop information seeking and evaluation and argumentation skills, and applying them to complex socio-scientific issues that have bearing on students’ daily lives. The first effort involves co-designing an afterschool environmental health club curriculum with an interdisciplinary team of middle school teachers. The second effort is the development and implementation of a week-long school drinking water quality debate activity in a high school environmental science classroom. Both projects center on Tox Town, an NLM web resource that introduces students to environmental health issues in everyday environments. The paper describes successes and challenges of environmental health curriculum development, including teachers’ and researchers’ perception of contextual constraints in the club and classroom setting, tensions inherent in co-design, and students’ experience with socio-scientific argumentation. PMID:24382985

  3. Microteaching Lesson Study: An Approach to Prepare Teacher Candidates to Teach Science through Inquiry (United States)

    Zhou, George; Xu, Judy


    Inquiry-based teaching has become the most recommended approach in science education for a few decades; however, it is not a common practice yet in k-12 school classrooms. In order to prepare future teachers to teach science through inquiry, a Microteaching Lesson Study (MLS) approach was employed in our science methods courses. Instead of asking…

  4. Integrating Felting in Elementary Science Classrooms to Facilitate Understanding of the Polar Auroras

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Brandy Terrill


    Full Text Available The Next Generation Science Standards (NGSS emphasize conceptual science instruction that draws on students’ ability to make observations, explain natural phenomena, and examine concept relationships. This paper explores integrating the arts, in the form of felting, in elementary science classrooms as a way for students to model and demonstrate understanding of the complex scientific processes that cause the polar auroras. The steps for creating felting, and using the felting artwork students create for assessing science learning, are described.

  5. Learning the Rules of the Game: The Nature of Game and Classroom Supports When Using a Concept-Integrated Digital Physics Game in the Middle School Science Classroom (United States)

    Stewart, Phillip Michael, Jr.

    Games in science education is emerging as a popular topic of scholarly inquiry. The National Research Council recently published a report detailing a research agenda for games and science education entitled Learning Science Through Computer Games and Simulations (2011). The report recommends moving beyond typical proof-of-concept studies into more exploratory and theoretically-based work to determine how best to integrate games into K-12 classrooms for learning , as well as how scaffolds from within the game and from outside the game (from peers and teachers) support the learning of applicable science. This study uses a mixed-methods, quasi-experimental design with an 8th grade class at an independent school in southern Connecticut to answer the following questions: 1. What is the nature of the supports for science content learning provided by the game, the peer, and the teacher, when the game is used in a classroom setting? 2. How do the learning gains in the peer support condition compare to the solo play condition, both qualitatively and quantitatively? The concept-integrated physics game SURGE (Scaffolding Understanding through Redesigning Games for Education) was selected for this study, as it was developed with an ear towards specific learning theories and prior work on student understandings of impulse, force, and vectors. Stimulated recall interviews and video observations served as the primary sources and major patterns emerged through the triangulation of data sources and qualitative analysis in the software QSR NVivo 9. The first pattern which emerged indicated that scaffolding from within the game and outside the game requires a pause in game action to be effective, unless that scaffolding is directly useful to the player in the moment of action. The second major pattern indicated that both amount and type of prior gaming experience has somewhat complex effects on both the uses of supports and learning outcomes. In general, a high correlation was found

  6. Sense and Sensibility: The Case for the Nationwide Inclusion of Engineering in the K-12 Curriculum (United States)

    Lindberg, Robert E.; Pinelli, Thomas E.; Batterson, James G.


    The competitive status of the United States is inextricably linked to innovation just as innovation is inseparable from science, technology, engineering, and mathematics. To stay competitive in innovation requires that the United States produce a 21st century workforce complete with requisite education, training, skills, and motivation. If we accept a priori that science, technology, engineering, and mathematics education are crucial to competitiveness and innovation and that, in terms of innovation, mathematics, science, and engineering are interdependent, why are mathematics and science uniformly ubiquitous in the K-12 curriculum while engineering is conspicuously absent? We are passionate in our belief that the uniform addition of engineering to the K-12 curriculum will help ensure that the nation has "the right" 21st Century workforce. Furthermore, we believe that a nationwide effort, led by a coalition of engineering academics, practitioners, and societies is required to turn this goal into reality. However, accomplishing this goal necessitates, as we are reminded by the title of Jane Austen's timeless novel, "Sense and Sensibility", a workable solution that seeks the "middle ground" between passion and reason. We begin our paper by making two essential points: Engineers are not scientists. Engineering exists separate from science, has its own specialized knowledge community apart from science, and it is largely responsible for many of the most significant advancements and improvements in the quality of our life. Our workable solution requires that K-12 education, nationwide, accommodate the inclusion of engineering as a stand alone curriculum and we offer three reasons to support our position: (1) workforce development, (2) stimulating interest in STEM (science, technology, engineering, and mathematics) courses and careers, and (3) creating a technologically literate society. We conclude with some thoughts on how this important goal can be accomplished.

  7. Senior science teachers' experience of teaching in a changing multicultural classroom: A case study (United States)

    Ryan, Mark

    Demographic changes within the US are bringing significant changes in the cultural make-up of the classrooms in our schools. Results from national and state assessments indicate a growing achievement gap between the science scores of white students and students from minority communities. This gap indicates a disconnect somewhere in the science classrooms. This study examines the teacher's perspective of the changing learning environment. The study focuses on senior teachers with traditional Midwestern backgrounds and little multicultural experience assuming these teachers had little or no education in multicultural education. Senior teachers are also more likely to have completed their science education within a traditional Universalist perspective of science and likewise have little or no education in multicultural science. The research method was comparative case studies of a purposeful sample of nine science teachers within a community experiencing significant demographic change, seven core senior teachers and two frame of reference teachers. The interviews examined the teachers' awareness of their own cultural beliefs and the impact of those beliefs on classroom practices, the teachers' understanding of cultural influences on the students' academic performance, and the relationships between the teachers' understanding of the cultural aspects of the nature of science and their classroom practices. Analysis of the interview data revealed that the teachers maintain a strong, traditional Midwestern worldview for classroom expectations and they are generally unaware of the impact of those standards on the classroom environment. The teachers were supportive of minority students within their classroom, changing several practices to accommodate student needs, but they were unaware of the broader cultural influences on student learning. The teachers had a poor understanding of the nature of science and none of them recognized a cultural element of NOS. They maintained a

  8. Literacy learning in secondary school science classrooms: A cross-case analysis of three qualitative studies (United States)

    Dillon, Deborah R.; O'Brien, David G.; Moje, Elizabeth B.; Stewart, Roger A.

    The purpose of this cross-case analysis is to illustrate how and why literacy was incorporated into science teaching and learning in three secondary classrooms. Research questions guiding the analysis include: (a) How were literacy events shaped by the teachers' philosophies about teaching science content and teaching students? and (b) How was literacy (reading, writing, and oral language) structured by the teachers and manifested in science lessons? The methodology of ethnography and the theoretical framework of symbolic interactionism were employed in the three studies on which the cross-case analysis was based. The researchers assumed the role of participant observers, collecting data over the period of 1 year in each of the three classrooms. Data, in the form of fieldnotes, interviews, and artifacts, were collected. In each study, data were analyzed using the constant comparative method (Glaser & Strauss, 1967) to determine patterns in the teachers' beliefs about learning and how these influenced their choice of literacy activities. The cross-case analysis was conducted to determine patterns across the three teachers and their classrooms. The findings from this analysis are used to compare how the teachers' philosophies of teaching science and their beliefs about how students learn influenced their use of literacy practices during lessons. Specifically, each teacher's use of literacy activities varied based on his or her beliefs about teaching science concepts. Furthermore, reading, writing, and oral language were important vehicles to learning science concepts within daily classroom activities in the three classrooms.Received: 1 April 1993; Revised: 30 August 1993;

  9. Talking about science: An interpretation of the effects of teacher talk in a high school science classroom (United States)

    Moje, Elizabeth B.

    This paper builds on research in science education, secondary education, and sociolinguistics by arguing that high school classrooms can be considered speech communities in which language may be selectively used and imposed on students as a means of fostering academic speech community identification. To demonstrate the ways in which a high school teacher's language use may encourage subject area identification, the results of an interactionist analysis of data from a 2-year ethnographic study of one high school chemistry classroom are presented. Findings indicate that this teacher's uses of language fell into three related categories. These uses of language served to foster identification with the academic speech community of science. As a result of the teacher's talk about science according to these three patterns, students developed or reinforced particular views of science. In addition, talking about science in ways that fostered identity with the discipline promoted the teacher as expert and built classroom solidarity or community. These results are discussed in light of sociolinguistic research on classroom competence and of the assertions of science educators regarding social and ideologic implications of language use in science instruction.Received: 23 September 1993; Revised: 15 September 1994;

  10. Answers to Teachers' Questions about the Next Generation Science Standards (United States)

    Workosky, Cindy; Willard, Ted


    K-12 teachers of science have been digging into the "Next Generation Science Standards" ("NGSS") (NGSS Lead States 2013) to begin creating plans and processes for translating them for classroom instruction. As teachers learn about the NGSS, they have asked about the general structure of the standards document and how to read…

  11. How WebQuests Can Enhance Science Learning Principles in the Classroom (United States)

    Subramaniam, Karthigeyan


    This article examines the merits of WebQuests in facilitating students' in-depth understanding of science concepts using the four principles of learning gathered from the National Research Council reports "How People Learn: Brain, Mind, Experience, and School" (1999) and the "How Students Learn: Science in the Classroom" (2005) as an analytic…

  12. The Development of Qualitative Classroom Action Research Workshop for In-Service Science Teachers (United States)

    Buaraphan, Khajornsak


    In-service science teachers in Thailand are mandated to conduct classroom research, which can be quantitative and qualitative research, to improve teaching and learning. Comparing to quantitative research, qualitative research is a research approach that most of the Thai science teachers are not familiar with. This situation impedes science…

  13. Addressing Next Generation Science Standards: A Method for Supporting Classroom Teachers (United States)

    Pellien, Tamara; Rothenburger, Lisa


    The Next Generation Science Standards (NGSS) will define science education for the foreseeable future, yet many educators struggle to see the bridge between current practice and future practices. The inquiry-based methods used by Extension professionals (Kress, 2006) can serve as a guide for classroom educators. Described herein is a method of…

  14. Ways to Prepare Future Teachers to Teach Science in Multicultural Classrooms (United States)

    Billingsley, Berry


    Roussel De Carvalho uses the notion of superdiversity to draw attention to some of the pedagogical implications of teaching science in multicultural schools in cosmopolitan cities such as London. De Carvalho makes the case that if superdiverse classrooms exist then Science Initial Teacher Education has a role to play in helping future science…

  15. Ambitious Teachers' Design and Use of Classrooms as a Place of Science (United States)

    Stroupe, David


    This multicase study examines how three teachers enacting ambitious instruction purposefully designed and used their classroom as a "place of science" in which students participated in disciplinary practices. A place of science is a location that shapes the norms, values, and history of disciplinary practices. Each participant's…

  16. Multilevel Effects of Student and Classroom Factors on Elementary Science Achievement in Five Countries (United States)

    Kaya, Sibel; Rice, Diana C.


    This study examined the effects of individual student factors and classroom factors on elementary science achievement within and across five countries. The student-level factors included gender, self-confidence in science and home resources. The classroom-level factors included teacher characteristics, instructional variables and classroom composition. Results for the USA and four other countries, Singapore, Japan, Australia and Scotland, were reported. Multilevel effects were examined through Hierarchical Linear Modelling, using the Trends in International Mathematics and Science Study 2003 fourth grade dataset. Overall, the results showed that selected student background characteristics were consistently related to elementary science achievement in countries investigated. At the student level, higher levels of home resources and self-confidence and at the classroom level, higher levels of class mean home resources yielded higher science scores on the TIMSS 2003. In general, teacher and instructional variables were minimally related to science achievement. There was evidence of positive effects of teacher support in the USA and Singapore. The emphasis on science inquiry was positively related to science achievement in Singapore and negatively related in the USA and Australia. Recommendations for practice and policy were discussed.

  17. Elementary Students Using a Tablet-Based Note-Taking Application in the Science Classroom (United States)

    Paek, Seungoh; Fulton, Lori A.


    This exploratory study investigates the potential of a tablet-based note-taking application (TbNA) to serve as a digital notebook in support of students' classroom science practices. An elementary teacher (Grades 4-5) from a public charter school integrated a TbNA into her science class for one semester while participating in professional…

  18. Students' Perceptions of the Learning Environment in Tertiary Science Classrooms in Myanmar (United States)

    Khine, Myint Swe; Fraser, Barry J.; Afari, Ernest; Oo, Zeya; Kyaw, Thein Thein


    We investigated students' perceptions of their science classroom environments with the use of the What Is Happening In this Class? (WIHIC) questionnaire at the university level in Myanmar. The translated questionnaire was administered to 251 students in first-year science classes at a university. Both exploratory factor analysis and confirmatory…

  19. Facilitating Conceptual Change through Modeling in the Middle School Science Classroom (United States)

    Carrejo, David J.; Reinhartz, Judy


    Engaging students in both hands-on and minds-on experiences is needed for education that is relevant and complete. Many middle school students enter science classrooms with pre-conceived ideas about their world. Some of these ideas are misconceptions that hinder students from developing accepted concepts in science, such as those related to…

  20. Exploring the meaning of practicing classroom inquiry from the perspectives of National Board Certified Science Teachers (United States)

    Karaman, Ayhan

    Inquiry has been one of the most prominent terms of the contemporary science education reform movement (Buck, Latta, & Leslie-Pelecky, 2007; Colburn, 2006; Settlage, 2007). Practicing classroom inquiry has maintained its central position in science education for several decades because science education reform documents promote classroom inquiry as the potential savior of science education from its current problems. Likewise, having the capabilities of teaching science through inquiry has been considered by National Board for Professional Teaching Standards [NBPTS] as one of the essential elements of being an accomplished science teacher. Successful completion of National Board Certification [NBC] assessment process involves presenting a clear evidence of enacting inquiry with students. Despite the high-profile of the word inquiry in the reform documents, the same is not true in schools (Crawford, 2007). Most of the science teachers do not embrace this type of approach in their everyday teaching practices of science (Johnson, 2006; Luera, Moyer, & Everett, 2005; Smolleck, Zembal-Saul, & Yoder, 2006; Trumbull, Scarano, & Bonney, 2006). And the specific meanings attributed to inquiry by science teachers do not necessarily match with the original intentions of science education reform documents (Matson & Parsons, 2006; Wheeler, 2000; Windschitl, 2003). Unveiling the various meanings held by science teachers is important in developing better strategies for the future success of science education reform efforts (Jones & Eick, 2007; Keys & Bryan, 2001). Due to the potential influences of National Board Certified Science Teachers [NBCSTs] on inexperienced science teachers as their mentors, examining inquiry conceptions of NBCSTs is called for. How do these accomplished practitioners understand and enact inquiry? The purpose of this dissertation research study was twofold. First, it investigated the role of NBC performance assessment process on the professional development

  1. Technical Feasibility Study for Zero Energy K-12 Schools

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Bonnema, Eric [National Renewable Energy Lab. (NREL), Golden, CO (United States); Goldwasser, David [National Renewable Energy Lab. (NREL), Golden, CO (United States); Torcellini, Paul [National Renewable Energy Lab. (NREL), Golden, CO (United States); Pless, Shanti [National Renewable Energy Lab. (NREL), Golden, CO (United States); Studer, Daniel [National Renewable Energy Lab. (NREL), Golden, CO (United States)


    This technical feasibility study provides documentation and research results supporting a possible set of strategies to achieve source zero energy K-12 school buildings as defined by the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) zero energy building (ZEB) definition (DOE 2015a). Under this definition, a ZEB is an energy-efficient building in which, on a source energy basis, the actual annual delivered energy is less than or equal to the on-site renewable exported energy.

  2. Draft Genome Sequence of Escherichia coli K-12 (ATCC 10798). (United States)

    Dimitrova, Daniela; Engelbrecht, Kathleen C; Putonti, Catherine; Koenig, David W; Wolfe, Alan J


    Here, we present the draft genome sequence of Escherichia coli ATCC 10798. E. coli ATCC 10798 is a K-12 strain, one of the most well-studied model microorganisms. The size of the genome was 4,685,496 bp, with a G+C content of 50.70%. This assembly consists of 62 contigs and the F plasmid. Copyright © 2017 Dimitrova et al.

  3. Worms in the College Classroom: More than Just a Composting Demonstration (United States)

    Kelley, Rebecca L.


    Although worm bins have been used by K-12 and nonformal educators for decades, there is little evidence of their use in postsecondary education. The ease of use, maintenance, affordability, portability, and diversity of scientific concepts that can be demonstrated with a worm bin make it a valuable tool in college science classrooms. The purpose…

  4. Understanding Science Teaching Effectiveness: Examining How Science-Specific and Generic Instructional Practices Relate to Student Achievement in Secondary Science Classrooms (United States)

    Mikeska, Jamie N.; Shattuck, Tamara; Holtzman, Steven; McCaffrey, Daniel F.; Duchesneau, Nancy; Qi, Yi; Stickler, Leslie


    In order to create conditions for students' meaningful and rigorous intellectual engagement in science classrooms, it is critically important to help science teachers learn which strategies and approaches can be used best to develop students' scientific literacy. Better understanding how science teachers' instructional practices relate to student…

  5. Understanding Children's Science Identity through Classroom Interactions (United States)

    Kim, Mijung


    Research shows that various stereotypes about science and science learning, such as science being filled with hard and dry content, laboratory experiments, and male-dominated work environments, have resulted in feelings of distance from science in students' minds. This study explores children's experiences of science learning and science identity.…

  6. Lon gene and photoprotection in Escherichia coli K-12

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Waksman, G.; Thomas, G.; Favre, A. (Institut de Recherche en Biologie Moleculaire, Group de Photobiologie Moleculaire, Paris (France))


    Photoprotection, i.e. the increased resistance of the cells preilluminated with near ultraviolet light (300-380 nm) to the lethal action of 254nm radiations requires either an integrated prophage or a recA mutation in Escherichia coli K12 strains. Significant photoprotection occurs in an Escherichia coli K12 recA/sup +/ cell containing the lon allele responsible for filamentous growth after 254nm irradiation. The Fil phenotype can be suppressed by the sfiA or sfiB suppressor genes. Since the E. coli K12 recA/sup +/ lon sfiB strain exhibits no more photoprotection, it is concluded that in lon strains photoprotection is due to the abolition of the 254nm induced filamentation by the near ultraviolet treatment. In addition, near ultraviolet illumination of the cells leads to a severe restriction of the bulk protein synthesis. This effect is observed only in nuv/sup +/ cells that contain 4-thiouridine the chromophore responsible for photoprotection. It is proposed that in lon (lysogenic strains) photoprotection is due to prevention of the SOS response. During the growth lag, the low residual level of protein synthesis does not allow the induction of the SOS response and accordingly prevents filamentation (the lytic cycle).

  7. The lon gene and photoprotection in Escherichia coli K-12

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Waksman, G.; Thomas, G.; Favre, A.


    Photoprotection, i.e. the increased resistance of the cells preilluminated with near ultraviolet light (300-380 nm) to the lethal action of 254nm radiations requires either an integrated prophage or a recA mutation in Escherichia coli K12 strains. Significant photoprotection occurs in an Escherichia coli K12 recA + cell containing the lon allele responsible for filamentous growth after 254nm irradiation. The Fil phenotype can be suppressed by the sfiA or sfiB suppressor genes. Since the E. coli K12 recA + lon sfiB strain exhibits no more photoprotection, it is concluded that in lon strains photoprotection is due to the abolition of the 254nm induced filamentation by the near ultraviolet treatment. In addition, near ultraviolet illumination of the cells leads to a severe restriction of the bulk protein synthesis. This effect is observed only in nuv + cells that contain 4-thiouridine the chromophore responsible for photoprotection. It is proposed that in lon (lysogenic strains) photoprotection is due to prevention of the SOS response. During the growth lag, the low residual level of protein synthesis does not allow the induction of the SOS response and accordingly prevents filamentation (the lytic cycle). (author)

  8. Instructional strategies in science classrooms of specialized secondary schools for the gifted (United States)

    Poland, Donna Lorraine

    This study examined the extent to which science teachers in Academic Year Governor's Schools were adhering to the national standards for suggested science instruction and providing an appropriate learning environment for gifted learners. The study asked 13 directors, 54 instructors of advanced science courses, and 1190 students of advanced science courses in 13 Academic Year Governor's Schools in Virginia to respond to researcher-developed surveys and to participate in classroom observations. The surveys and classroom observations collected demographic data as well as instructors' and students' perceptions of the use of various instructional strategies related to national science reform and gifted education recommendations. Chi-square analyses were used to ascertain significant differences between instructors' and students' perceptions. Findings indicated that instructors of advanced science classes in secondary schools for the gifted are implementing nationally recognized gifted education and science education instructional strategies with less frequency than desired. Both students and instructors concur that these strategies are being implemented in the classroom setting, and both concur as to the frequency with which the implementation occurs. There was no significant difference between instructors' and students' perceptions of the frequency of implementation of instructional strategies. Unfortunately, there was not a single strategy that students and teachers felt was being implemented on a weekly or daily basis across 90% of the sampled classrooms. Staff development in gifted education was found to be minimal as an ongoing practice. While this study offers some insights into the frequency of strategy usage, the study needs more classroom observations to support findings; an area of needed future research. While this study was conducted at the secondary level, research into instructional practices at the middle school and elementary school gifted science

  9. Learning to write in science: A study of English language learners' writing experience in sixth-grade science classrooms (United States)

    Qi, Yang

    Writing is a predictor of academic achievement and is essential for student success in content area learning. Despite its importance, many students, including English language learners (ELLs), struggle with writing. There is thus a need to study students' writing experience in content area classrooms. Informed by systemic functional linguistics, this study examined 11 ELL students' writing experience in two sixth grade science classrooms in a southeastern state of the United States, including what they wrote, how they wrote, and why they wrote in the way they did. The written products produced by these students over one semester were collected. Also collected were teacher interviews, field notes from classroom observations, and classroom artifacts. Student writing samples were first categorized into extended and nonextended writing categories, and each extended essay was then analyzed with respect to its schematic structure and grammatical features. Teacher interviews and classroom observation notes were analyzed thematically to identify teacher expectations, beliefs, and practices regarding writing instruction for ELLs. It was found that the sixth-grade ELLs engaged in mostly non-extended writing in the science classroom, with extended writing (defined as writing a paragraph or longer) constituting roughly 11% of all writing assignments. Linguistic analysis of extended writing shows that the students (a) conveyed information through nouns, verbs, adjectives, adverbial groups and prepositional phrases; (b) constructed interpersonal context through choices of mood, modality, and verb tense; and (c) structured text through thematic choices and conjunctions. The appropriateness of these lexicogrammatical choices for particular writing tasks was related to the students' English language proficiency levels. The linguistic analysis also uncovered several grammatical problems in the students' writing, including a limited range of word choices, inappropriate use of mood

  10. Using constructivist teaching strategies in high school science classrooms to cultivate positive attitudes toward science (United States)

    Heron, Lory Elen

    This study investigated the premise that the use of constructivist teaching strategies (independent variable) in high school science classrooms can cultivate positive attitudes toward science (dependent variable) in high school students. Data regarding the relationship between the use of constructivist strategies and change in student attitude toward science were collected using the Science Attitude Assessment Tool (SAAT) (Heron & Beauchamp, 1996). The format of this study used the pre-test, post-test, control group-experimental group design. The subjects in the study were high school students enrolled in biology, chemistry, or environmental science courses in two high schools in the western United States. Ten teachers and twenty-eight classes, involving a total of 249 students participated in the study. Six experimental group teachers and four control group teachers were each observed an average of six times using the Science Observation Guide (Chapman, 1995) to measure the frequency of observed constructivist behaviors. The mean for the control group teachers was 12.89 and the mean for experimental group teachers was 20.67; F(1, 8) = 16.2, p =.004, revealing teaching behaviors differed significantly between the two groups. After a four month experimental period, the pre-test and post-test SAAT scores were analyzed. Students received a score for their difference in positive attitude toward science. The null hypothesis stating there would be no change in attitude toward science as a subject, between students exposed to constructivist strategies, and students not exposed to constructivist strategies was rejected F(1, 247) = 8.04, p =.005. The control group had a generally higher reported grade in their last science class than the experimental group, yet the control group attitude toward science became more negative (-1.18) while attitude toward science in the experimental group became more positive (+1.34) after the four-month period. An analysis of positive

  11. Workshop Results: Teaching Geoscience to K-12 Teachers (United States)

    Nahm, A.; Villalobos, J. I.; White, J.; Smith-Konter, B. R.


    A workshop for high school and middle school Earth and Space Science (ESS) teachers was held this summer (2012) as part of an ongoing collaboration between the University of Texas at El Paso (UTEP) and El Paso Community College (EPCC) Departments of Geological Sciences. This collaborative effort aims to build local Earth science literacy and educational support for the geosciences. Sixteen teachers from three school districts from El Paso and southern New Mexico area participated in the workshop, consisting of middle school, high school, early college high school, and dual credit faculty. The majority of the teachers had little to no experience teaching geoscience, thus this workshop provided an introduction to basic geologic concepts to teachers with broad backgrounds, which will result in the introduction of geoscience to many new students each year. The workshop's goal was to provide hands-on activities illustrating basic geologic and scientific concepts currently used in introductory geology labs/lectures at both EPCC and UTEP to help engage pre-college students. Activities chosen for the workshop were an introduction to Google Earth for use in the classroom, relative age dating and stratigraphy using volcanoes, plate tectonics utilizing the jigsaw pedagogy, and the scientific method as a think-pair-share activity. All activities where designed to be low cost and materials were provided for instructors to take back to their institutions. A list of online resources for teaching materials was also distributed. Before each activity, a short pre-test was given to the participants to gauge their level of knowledge on the subjects. At the end of the workshop, participants were given a post-test, which tested the knowledge gain made by participating in the workshop. In all cases, more correct answers were chosen in the post-test than the individual activity pre-tests, indicating that knowledge of the subjects was gained. The participants enjoyed participating in these

  12. Making NASA Earth Observing System Satellite Data Accessible to the K-12 and Citizen Scientist Communities (United States)

    Moore, Susan W.; Phelps, Carrie S.; Chambers, Lin H.


    The Atmospheric Sciences Data Center (ASDC) at NASA s Langley Research Center houses over 700 data sets related to Earth s radiation budget, clouds, aerosols and tropospheric chemistry. These data sets are produced to increase academic understanding of the natural and anthropogenic perturbations that influence global climate change. The Mentoring and inquirY using NASA Data on Atmospheric and earth science for Teachers and Amateurs (MY NASA DATA) project has been established to systematically support educational activities at all levels of formal and informal education by reducing these large data holdings to microsets that will be easily explored and understood by the K-12 and the amateur scientist communities

  13. Exploring the contexts of urban science classrooms: Cogenerative dialogues, coteaching, and cosmopolitanism (United States)

    Emdin, Christopher

    The body of work presented in this dissertation is a response to the reported association between poor outcomes in science achievement and students of color in urban schools. By presenting counterexamples to the cultural motif that urban students of color perform poorly in science, I argue that poor achievement cannot be traced to a group of people but can be linked to institutions promoting subject delivery methods that instill distaste for science and compel students to display an illusion of disinterest in school. There are two major goals of this study. First, I plan to demonstrate how plans of action generated by coteachers and cogenerative dialogue groups can coalesce under the ethos of making science and schooling accessible to populations that are traditionally marginalized from science achievement. My second aim is to develop mechanisms for transforming science learning contexts into cosmopolitan learning communities that develop student success in science. Through a three-year ethnographic study of physics and chemistry classrooms in a high school in New York City, I present explorations of the culture and context of the urban classroom as a chief means to meet my goals. In my research, I find that obstacles to identity development around science can be tied to corporate understandings of teaching and learning that are amenable to local efforts toward change. This change is facilitated through the use of transformative tools like cogenerative dialogues, coteaching, and cosmopolitanism. Through the application of these research tools, I uncover and investigate how various misalignments that present themselves in physics and chemistry classrooms serve as signifiers of macro issues that permeate science classrooms from larger fields. By utilizing cogenerative dialogues as a tool for investigating both micro enactments within classrooms and the macro structures that generate these enactments, I show how students and teachers can work together as co

  14. Performance-based classrooms: A case study of two elementary teachers of mathematics and science (United States)

    Jones, Kenneth W.

    This case study depicts how two elementary teachers develop classrooms devoted to performance-based instruction in mathematics and science. The purpose is to develop empirical evidence of classroom practices that leads to a conceptual framework about the nature of performance-based instruction. Performance-based assessment and instruction are defined from the literature to entail involving students in tasks that are complex and engaging, requiring them to apply knowledge and skills in authentic contexts. In elementary mathematics and science, such an approach emphasizes problem solving, exploration, inquiry, and reasoning. The body of the work examines teacher beliefs, curricular orientations, instructional strategies, assessment approaches, management and organizational skills, and interpersonal relationships. The focus throughout is on those aspects that foster student performance in elementary mathematics and science. The resulting framework describes five characteristics that contribute to performance-based classrooms: a caring classroom community, a connectionist learning theory, a thinking and doing curriculum, diverse opportunities for learning, and ongoing assessment, feedback, and adjustment. The conclusion analyzes factors external to the classroom that support or constrain the development of performance-based classrooms and discusses the implications for educational policy and further research.

  15. Use of the Outdoor Classroom and Nature-Study to Support Science and Literacy Learning: A Narrative Case Study of a Third-Grade Classroom (United States)

    Eick, Charles J.


    A case study of an exemplary third grade teacher's use of the outdoor classroom for meeting both state science and language arts standards is described. Data from the researcher's field journal, teacher lesson plans, and teacher interviews document how this teacher used nature-study to bridge outdoor classroom experiences with the state science…

  16. Aristotle, alive and well in Papua New Guinea science classrooms (United States)

    Boeha, Beno B.


    National High School students from Papua New Guinea were interviewed about two situations; the results of their Aristotle-like views regarding `forced' and `natural' motion are presented and discussed. Twenty-one National High School Students were interviewed about two situations similarly used elsewhere (Osborne and Gibert 1979, 1980, Osborne 1980a) and the results of these Aristotle-like views possessed by students have been presented and discussed above. With each of the six summary statements some extracts have been provided from interviews conducted by the author with students who had come from various parts of Pupua New Guinea. Students' views have been compiled to give a composite picture of the Aristotle-like ideas. Some impression of the commonality of the ideas/beliefs has been provided by reference to the work of others who have reported similar tendencies in testing and interviewing physics students. Throughout the study, students' Aristotlean-like views have been given a respected status that reflects their widespread use, their internal coherence and their tenacity in the face of classroom teaching in a Pupua New Guinea National High School. In analysing individual interview transcripits, attempts were made to construct ideas/beliefs that can account for statements by each student in a manner that statements are consistent with each other. The assumption that all of a student's statements are logically compatible to a listener or reader is difficult to maintain. However, it is one that has to be made as a hypothesis to work with, otherwise it is too easy to discount sections of a student's discourse that seem inconsistent with understandable parts. The aims of this part of the study have been to provide science educationalists with a repertoire of common Aristolean-like beliefs which have persisted in students. These views differ in some ways from the orthodox physics views. By better understanding of the students' beliefs and commitments about

  17. Differences in the classroom: learning about practices of two science teachers

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Elaine Soares França


    Full Text Available In this research, a case study, we adopted ethnography as logic of inquiry to learn about teaching for diverse groups in middle school science classrooms. Multiple data sources were used: participant observation, video and audio records, field notes and semi-structured interviews. We analyzed interviews with two teachers, as well as classroom episodes to construct, through contrast, a characterization of two types of practice involving diversity in the classroom. The first teacher show concerns with introducing students in school culture. She tried to “translate” terms that students do not understand, explaining their meanings. In this process, teaching subject matter knowledge (SMK is a secondary goal. The other teacher emphasized SMK, trying to establish connections between science content and students’ everyday life experiences. Both teachers do not acknowledge significant influences in science learning related to gender, social class, and ethnicity.

  18. Student control ideology and the science classroom environment in urban secondary schools of sudan (United States)

    Harty, Harold; Hassan, Hassan A.

    An examination was made concerning the relationships between Sudanese secondary science teachers' pupil control ideology and their students' perceptions/observations of the psychosocial environment of their science classrooms. One hundred secondary science teachers were classified as possessing humanistic (N = 20) or custodial (N = 20) control ideologies. A class (N = 40) of students was randomly selected for every teacher in both groups. The findings revealed that no significant relationships existed between the control ideologies of the teachers and their students' perceptions/observations of the classroom environment. Custodialism in control ideology was significantly related to the classroom environment psychosocial aspect of low support. Discussion and implications of the findings have been approached from both Sudanese and American perspectives.

  19. Post secondary project-based learning in science, technology, engineering and mathematics


    Ralph, Rachel A.


    Project-based learning (PjBL - to distinguish from problem-based learning - PBL) has become a recurrent practice in K-12 classroom environments. As PjBL has become prominent in K-12 classrooms, it has also surfaced in post-secondary institutions.  The purpose of this paper is to examine the research that has studied a variety of science, technology, engineering and mathematic subjects using PjBL in post-secondary classrooms. Eleven articles (including qualitative, quantitative and mixed metho...

  20. Teacher perceptions of usefulness of mobile learning devices in rural secondary science classrooms (United States)

    Tighe, Lisa

    The internet and easy accessibility to a wide range of digital content has created the necessity for teachers to embrace and integrate digitial media in their curriculums. Although there is a call for digital media integration in curriculum by current learning standards, rural schools continue to have access to fewer resources due to limited budgets, potentially preventing teachers from having access to the most current technology and science instructional materials. This dissertation identifies the perceptions rural secondary science teachers have on the usefulness of mobile learning devices in the science classroom. The successes and challenges in using mobile learning devices in the secondary classroom were also explored. Throughout this research, teachers generally supported the integration of mobile devices in the classroom, while harboring some concerns relating to student distractability and the time required for integrating mobile devices in exisiting curriculum. Quantitative and qualitative data collected through surveys, interviews, and classroom observations revealed that teachers perceive that mobile devices bring benefits such as ease of communication and easy access to digitial information. However, there are perceived challenges with the ability to effectively communicate complex scientific information via mobile devices, distractibility of students, and the time required to develop effective curriculum to integrate digital media into the secondary science classroom.

  1. Classroom

    Indian Academy of Sciences (India)

    In this section of Resonance, we invite readers to pose questions likely to be raised in a classroom ... sharing personal experiences and viewpoints on matters related to teaching and learning ... Is there any well charaderised example of.

  2. Classroom

    Indian Academy of Sciences (India)

    responses, or both. "Classroom" is equally a forum for raising broader issues and .... Research Institute, Bangalore ... From Bohr's theory we can calculate v = (En - En -1) / h the ... important reason for the failure of the qualitative arguments. An.

  3. Is there a correlation between students' perceptions of their middle school science classroom learning environment and their classroom grades? (United States)

    Snyder, Wayne

    The purpose of this study was to determine if the marking period grades of middle school science students are correlated with their perception of the classroom learning environment, and if so could such an indicator be used in feedback loops for ongoing classroom learning environment evaluation and evolution. The study examined 24 classrooms in three districts representing several different types of districts and a diverse student population. The independent variable was the students' perceptions of their classroom learning environment (CLE). This variable was represented by their responses on the WIHIC (What Is Happening In This Class) questionnaire. The dependent variable was the students' marking period grades. Background data about the students was included, and for further elaboration and clarification, qualitative data was collected through student and teacher interviews. Middle school science students in this study perceived as most positive those domains over which they have more locus of control. Perceptions showed some variance by gender, ethnicity, teacher/district, and socio-economic status when viewing the absolute values of the domain variables. The patterns of the results show consistency between groups. Direct correlation between questionnaire responses and student grades was not found to be significant except for a small significance with "Task Orientation". This unexpected lack of correlation may be explained by inconsistencies between grading schemes, inadequacies of the indicator instrument, and/or by the one-time administration of the variables. Analysis of the qualitative and quantitative data led to the conclusion that this instrument is picking up information, but that revisions in both the variables and in the process are needed. Grading schemes need to be decomposed, the instrument needs to be revised, and the process needs to be implemented as a series of regular feed-back loops.

  4. 4-thiouridine and photoprotection in Escherichia coli K12

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Thomas, Gilles; Favre, Alain


    A high level of protection is observed in the Escherichia coli K 12 strain AB 1157 rec A 1 nuv + whose transfer RNA contains 4-thiouridine. In contrast, the photoprotection level is low and observed at higher doses in a strain which differs from the former by a single mutation nuv - , (lack of 4-thiouridine). This nucleoside is therefore an important chromophore leading to photoprotection. This conclusion is corroborated by the similarity of the action spectra for 8-13 link formation in tRNA and for photoprotection [fr

  5. The use of Global Positioning System units and ArcGIS Online to engage K-12 Students in Research Being Done in their Local Communities (United States)

    Butcher, C. E.; Sparrow, E. B.; Clucas, T.


    Incorporating K-12 students in scientific research processes and opportunities in their communities is a great way to bridge the gap between research and education and to start building science research capacity at an early age. One goal of the Experimental Program to Stimulate Competitive Research (EPSCoR) Alaska Adapting to Changing Environments project is to engage the local community in the research as well as to share results with the people. By giving K-12 students Global Positioning System (GPS) units, and allowing them to collect and map their own data, they are being exposed to some of the research methods being used by scientists in the Alaska ACE project. This hands-on, minds-on method has been successfully used in formal education settings such as a Junior High School classroom in Nuiqsut, Alaska as well as in informal education settings such as summer camps in Barrow, Alaska and Kenai, Alaska. The students progress from mapping by hand to collecting location data with their GPS units and cameras, and imputing this information into ArcGIS Online to create map products. The data collected were from sites ranging from important places in the community to sites visited during summer camps, with students reflecting on data and site significance. Collecting data, using technology, and creating map products contribute to science skills and practices students need to conduct research of their own and to understand research being done around them. The goal of this education outreach implementation is to bring students closer to the research, understand the process of science, and have the students continue to collect data and contribute to research in their communities. Support provided for this work from the Alaska EPSCoR NSF Award #OIA-1208927 and the state of Alaska is gratefully acknowledged.

  6. Renegotiating the pedagogic contract: Teaching in digitally enhanced secondary science classrooms (United States)

    Ajayi, Ajibola Oluneye

    This qualitative case study explores the effects of emerging digital technology as a teaching and learning tool in secondary school science classrooms. The study examines three teachers' perspectives on how the use of technology affects the teacher-student pedagogic relationship. The "pedagogic contract" is used as a construct to analyze the changes that took place in these teachers' classrooms amid the use of this new technology. The overarching question for this research is: How was the pedagogic contract renegotiated in three secondary science teachers' classrooms through the use of digitally enhanced science instruction. To answer this question, data was collected via semi-structured teacher interviews, classroom observations, and analysis of classroom documents such as student assignments, tests and Study Guides. This study reveals that the everyday use of digital technologies in these classrooms resulted in a re-negotiated pedagogic contract across three major dimensions: content of learning, method and management of learning activities, and assessment of learning. The extent to which the pedagogic contract was renegotiated varied with each of the teachers studied. Yet in each case, the content of learning was extended to include new topics, and greater depth of learning within the mandated curriculum. The management of learning was reshaped around metacognitive strategies, personal goal-setting, individual pacing, and small-group learning activities. With the assessment of learning, there was increased emphasis on self-directed interactive testing as a formative assessment tool. This study highlights the aspects of science classrooms that are most directly affected by the introduction of digital technologies and demonstrates how those changes are best understood as a renegotiation of the teacher-student pedagogic contract.

  7. AMS Professional Development Courses: Arming K-12 Teachers with the Tools Needed to Increase Students' Scientific Literacy (United States)

    Brey, J. A.; Geer, I. W.; Weinbeck, R. S.; Moran, J. M.; Nugnes, K. A.


    To better prepare tomorrow's leaders, it is of utmost importance that today's teachers are science literate. To meet that need, the American Meteorological Society (AMS) Education Program offers content-rich, professional development courses and training workshops for precollege teachers in the geosciences. During the fall and spring semesters, the AMS in partnership with NOAA, NASA, and SUNY Brockport, offers a suite of pre-college teacher development courses, DataStreme Atmosphere, DataStreme Ocean and DataStreme Earth's Climate System (ECS). These courses are delivered to small groups of K-12 teachers through Local Implementation Teams (LITs) positioned throughout the U.S. The courses use current, real-world environmental data to investigate the atmosphere, ocean, and climate system and consist of weekly online study materials, weekly mentoring, and several face-to-face meetings, all supplemented by a provided textbook and investigations manual. DataStreme ECS takes an innovative approach to studying climate science, by exploring the fundamental science of Earth's climate system and addressing the societal impacts relevant to today's students and teachers. The course investigates natural and human forcings and feedbacks to examine mitigation and adaptation strategies for the future. Information and data from respected organizations, such as the IPCC, the US Global Change Research Program, NASA, and NOAA are used throughout the course, including in the online and printed investigations. In addition, participants differentiate between climate, climate variability, and climate change through the AMS Conceptual Energy Model, a basic climate model that follows the flow of energy from space to Earth and back. Participants also have access to NASA's EdGCM, a research-grade Global Climate Model where they can explore various future climate scenarios in the same way that actual research scientists do. Throughout all of the courses, teachers have the opportunity to expand

  8. Science in the Elementary School Classroom: Portraits of Action Research. (United States)

    McDonald, Jane B., Ed.; Gilmer, Penny J., Ed.

    Teacher knowledge and skills are critical elements in the student learning process. Action research serves as an increasingly popular technique to engage teachers in educational change in classrooms. This document focuses on action research reports of elementary school teachers. Chapters include: (1) "First Graders' Beliefs and Perceptions of…

  9. Lab-on-a-Chip: Frontier Science in the Classroom (United States)

    Wietsma, Jan Jaap; van der Veen, Jan T.; Buesink, Wilfred; van den Berg, Albert; Odijk, Mathieu


    Lab-on-a-chip technology is brought into the classroom through development of a lesson series with hands-on practicals. Students can discover the principles of microfluidics with different practicals covering laminar flow, micromixing, and droplet generation, as well as trapping and counting beads. A quite affordable novel production technique…

  10. Generating Testable Questions in the Science Classroom: The BDC Model (United States)

    Tseng, ChingMei; Chen, Shu-Bi Shu-Bi; Chang, Wen-Hua


    Guiding students to generate testable scientific questions is essential in the inquiry classroom, but it is not easy. The purpose of the BDC ("Big Idea, Divergent Thinking, and Convergent Thinking") instructional model is to to scaffold students' inquiry learning. We illustrate the use of this model with an example lesson, designed…

  11. Technology-Supported Learning Environments in Science Classrooms in India (United States)

    Gupta, Adit; Fisher, Darrell


    The adoption of technology has created a major impact in the field of education at all levels. Technology-supported classroom learning environments, involving modern information and communication technologies, are also entering the Indian educational system in general and the schools in Jammu region (Jammu & Kashmir State, India) in…

  12. Flipped Instruction in a High School Science Classroom (United States)

    Leo, Jonathan; Puzio, Kelly


    This paper reports on a quasi-experimental study examining the effectiveness of flipped instruction in a 9th grade biology classroom. This study included four sections of freshmen-level biology taught by the first author at a private secondary school in the Pacific Northwest. Using a block randomized design, two sections were flipped and two…

  13. A Science Classroom That's More than a Game (United States)

    Barlow, Tim; Fleming, Barry


    "Blended" and "flipped" pedagogies are becoming more common features of classrooms as the technological revolution continues. While the appropriate use of technology in the learning environment can serve to motivate some students, significant problems surrounding student motivation and engagement remain. As such, the…

  14. Brains--Computers--Machines: Neural Engineering in Science Classrooms (United States)

    Chudler, Eric H.; Bergsman, Kristen Clapper


    Neural engineering is an emerging field of high relevance to students, teachers, and the general public. This feature presents online resources that educators and scientists can use to introduce students to neural engineering and to integrate core ideas from the life sciences, physical sciences, social sciences, computer science, and engineering…

  15. A New Look at Genre and Authenticity: Making Sense of Reading and Writing Science News in High School Classrooms (United States)

    Kohnen, Angela M.


    This qualitative study examined the importance of the genre and authenticity as teachers sought to bring science journalism to the high school science classroom. Undertaken as part of the National Science Foundation-funded grant "Science Literacy through Science Journalism (SciJourn)," this work was conducted as a series of smaller…

  16. Code to Learn: Where Does It Belong in the K-12 Curriculum?

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jesús Moreno León


    Full Text Available The introduction of computer programming in K-12 has become mainstream in the last years, as countries around the world are making coding part of their curriculum. Nevertheless, there is a lack of empirical studies that investigate how learning to program at an early age affects other school subjects. In this regard, this paper compares three quasi-experimental research designs conducted in three different schools (n=129 students from 2nd and 6th grade, in order to assess the impact of introducing programming with Scratch at different stages and in several subjects. While both 6th grade experimental groups working with coding activities showed a statistically significant improvement in terms of academic performance, this was not the case in the 2nd grade classroom. Notable disparity was also found regarding the subject in which the programming activities were included, as in social studies the effect size was double that in mathematics.

  17. The History of Winter Thermochron Mission: Utilizing An Innovative Technology to Promote Science Research in the Classroom. (United States)

    Bender, K. J.


    The goal of the Thermochron Mission, an embedded strand of the NASA Goddard Space Flight Center History of Winter (HOW) Program, is to engage participants actively in research methods while focusing on the observation and analysis of changes in ambient temperature. Through experiential learning opportunities, peer coaching, and expert instruction sessions, participants including in-service teachers, pre-service teachers, and ultimately their K-12 students, enhance their understanding of the processes and methods of science research. The initial engagement and exploration training has been provided to participants in the History of Winter (HOW) workshop since 2004. Supportive web-based multimedia resources utilized through modeling within the training program are available to participants online for continued later use within a classroom setting. The Thermochron Mission echoes the learning cycle embedded within the History of Winter Program. Emphasized are critical aspects of inquiry investigation including active and immersive experiences, opportunities for comparison and analysis of data, application of findings to new situations, and the communication of information in an appropriate forum. As a result, past HOW participants have utilized the Thermochron in settings as different as environmental studies through an outdoor education center and the study of acid mine drainage and its effect on local stream. In 2007, we collaborated with the FINNMARK 2007 and the GO NORTH expeditions, providing snow collection information and Thermochrons to gather a continual temperature record during these remote expeditions to the Arctic region. Both FINNMARK2007 and the POLAR Husky GoNorth 2007 dog sled expeditions took a complement of Thermochrons with multimedia instructions and the tools and protocols of the Global Snowflake Network (GSN), an International Polar Year project of the History of Winter Program, to measure temperature and the shape and characteristics of snow

  18. Research on same-gender grouping in eighth-grade science classrooms (United States)

    Friend, Jennifer Ingrid

    This study examined two hypotheses related to same-gender grouping of eighth-grade science classes in a public middle-school setting in suburban Kansas City. The first hypothesis, male and female students enrolled in same-gender eighth-grade science classes demonstrate more positive science academic achievement than their male and female peers enrolled in mixed-gender science classes. The second hypothesis, same-gender grouping of students in eighth-grade science has a positive effect on classroom climate. The participants in this study were randomly assigned to class sections of eighth-grade science. The first experimental group was an eighth-grade science class of all-male students (n = 20) taught by a male science teacher. The control group used for comparison to the male same-gender class consisted of the male students (n = 42) in the coeducational eighth-grade science classes taught by the same male teacher. The second experimental group was an eighth-grade science class of all-female students (n = 23) taught by a female science teacher. The control group for the female same-gender class consisted of female students (n = 61) in the coeducational eighth-grade science classes taught by the same female teacher. The male teacher and the female teacher did not vary instruction for the same-gender and mixed-gender classes. Science academic achievement was measured for both groups through a quantitative analysis using grades on science classroom assessment and overall science course grades. Classroom climate was measured through qualitative observations and through qualitative and quantitative analysis of a twenty-question student survey administered at the end of each trimester grading period. The results of this study did not indicate support for either hypothesis. Data led to the conclusions that same-gender grouping did not produce significant differences in student science academic achievement, and that same-gender classes did not create a more positive

  19. Facilitating cultural border crossing in urban secondary science classrooms: A study of inservice teachers (United States)

    Monteiro, Anna Karina

    Research acknowledges that if students are to be successful science, they must learn to navigate and cross cultural borders that exist between their own cultures and the subculture of science. This dissertation utilized a mixed methods approach to explore how inservice science teachers working in urban schools construct their ideas of and apply the concepts about the culture of science and cultural border crossing as relevant to the teaching and learning of science. The study used the lenses of cultural capital, social constructivism, and cultural congruency in the design and analysis of each of the three phases of data collection. Phase I identified the perspectives of six inservice science teachers on science culture, cultural border crossing, and which border crossing methods, if any, they used during science teaching. Phase II took a dialectical approach as the teachers read about science culture and cultural border crossing during three informal professional learning community meetings. This phase explored how teachers constructed their understanding of cultural border crossing and how the concept applied to the teaching and learning of science. Phase III evaluated how teachers' perspectives changed from Phase I. In addition, classroom observations were used to determine whether teachers' practices in their science classrooms changed from Phase I to Phase III. All three phases collected data through qualitative (i.e., interviews, classroom observations, and surveys) and quantitative (Likert items) means. The findings indicated that teachers found great value in learning about the culture of science and cultural border crossing as it pertained to their teaching methods. This was not only evidenced by their interviews and surveys, but also in the methods they used in their classrooms. Final conclusions included how the use of student capital resources (prior experiences, understandings and knowledge, ideas an interests, and personal beliefs), if supported by

  20. Beyond the Flipped Classroom: A Highly Interactive Cloud-Classroom (HIC) Embedded into Basic Materials Science Courses (United States)

    Liou, Wei-Kai; Bhagat, Kaushal Kumar; Chang, Chun-Yen


    The present study compares the highly interactive cloud-classroom (HIC) system with traditional methods of teaching materials science that utilize crystal structure picture or real crystal structure model, in order to examine its learning effectiveness across three dimensions: knowledge, comprehension and application. The aim of this study was to evaluate the (HIC) system, which incorporates augmented reality, virtual reality and cloud-classroom to teach basic materials science courses. The study followed a pretest-posttest quasi-experimental research design. A total of 92 students (aged 19-20 years), in a second-year undergraduate program, participated in this 18-week-long experiment. The students were divided into an experimental group and a control group. The experimental group (36 males and 10 females) was instructed utilizing the HIC system, while the control group (34 males and 12 females) was led through traditional teaching methods. Pretest, posttest, and delayed posttest scores were evaluated by multivariate analysis of covariance. The results indicated that participants in the experimental group who used the HIC system outperformed the control group, in the both posttest and delayed posttest, across three learning dimensions. Based on these results, the HIC system is recommended to be incorporated in formal materials science learning settings.

  1. The influence of a Classroom Model of Scientific Scholarship on Four Girls' Trajectories of Identification with Science (United States)

    Cook, Melissa Sunshine

    This study examines the teacher's role in shaping the identity construction resources available in a classroom and the ways in which individual students take up, modify, and appropriate those resources to construct themselves as scientists through interaction with their teacher and peers. Drawing on frameworks of identity construction and social positioning, I propose that the locally-negotiated classroom-level cultural model of what it means to be a "good" science student forms the arena in which students construct a sense of their own competence at, affiliation with, and interest in science. The setting for this study was a 6th grade science class at a progressive urban elementary school whose population roughly represents the ethnic and socioeconomic diversity of the state of California. The teacher was an experienced science and math teacher interested in social justice and inquiry teaching. Drawing from naturalistic observations, video and artifact analysis, survey data, and repeated interviews with students and the teacher, I demonstrated what it meant to be a "good" science student in this particular cultural community by analyzing what was required, reinforced, and rewarded in this classroom. Next, I traced the influence of this particular classroom's conception of what it meant to be good at science on the trajectories of identification with science of four 6th grade girls selected to represent a variety of stances towards science, levels of classroom participation, and personal backgrounds. Scientific scholarship in this class had two parts: values related to science as a discipline, and a more generic set of school-related values one might see in any classroom. Different meanings of and values for science were indexed in the everyday activities of the classroom: science as a language for describing the natural world, science as a set of rhetorical values, science as an adult social community, and science as a place for mess and explosions. Among school

  2. Citizen Science in the Classroom: Perils and Promise of the New Web (United States)

    Loughran, T.; Dirksen, R.


    Classroom citizen science projects invite students to generate, curate, post, query, and analyze data, publishing and discussing results in potentially large collaborative contexts. The new web offers a rich palette of such projects for any STEM educator to select from or create. This easy access to citizen science in the classroom is full of both promise and peril for science education. By offering examples of classroom citizen science projects in particle physics, earth and environmental sciences, each supported by a common mashup of technologies available to ordinary users, we will illustrate something of the promise of these projects for science education, and point to some of the challenges and failure modes--the peril--raised by easy access and particularly easy publication of data. How one sensibly responds to this promise and peril depends on how one views the goals of science (or more broadly, STEM) education: either as the equipping of individual students with STEM knowledge and skills so as to empower them for future options, or as the issuing of effective invitations into STEM communities. Building on the claim that these are complementary perspectives, both of value, we will provide an example of a classroom citizen science project analyzed from both perspectives. The BOSCO classroom-to-classroom water source mapping project provides students both in Northern Uganda and in South Dakota a collaborative platform for analyzing and responding to local water quality concerns. Students gather water quality data, use Google Forms embedded in a project wiki to enter data in a spreadsheet, which then automatically (through Mapalist, a free web service) gets posted to a Google Map, itself embedded in the project wiki. Using these technologies, data is thus collected and posted for analysis in a collaborative environment: the stage is set for classroom citizen science. In the context of this project we will address the question of how teachers can take advantage

  3. Teacher and Student Perceptions on High School Science Flipped Classrooms: Educational Breakthrough or Media Hype? (United States)

    Hunley, Rebecca C.

    For years educators have struggled to ensure students meet the rigors of state mandated tests. Challenges that often impede student success are student absences, school closings due to weather, and remediation for students who need additional help while advanced students can move ahead. Many educators, especially secondary math and science teachers, have responded to these issues by implementing a teaching strategy called the flipped classroom where students view lectures, power points, or podcasts outside of school and class time shifts to allow opportunities for collaborative learning. The purpose of this research was to evaluate teacher and student perceptions of high school flipped science classrooms. A qualitative phenomenological study was conducted to observe 3 high school science teachers from Georgia, North Carolina, and Tennessee selected through purposeful sampling who have used the flipped classroom method for a minimum of 2 years. Analysis of data from an online survey, direct observation, teacher interviews, and student focus groups helped to identify challenges and benefits of this teaching and learning strategy. Findings indicated that teachers find the flipped classroom beneficial to build student relationships but requires a significant amount of time to develop. Mixed student reactions revealed benefits of a flipped classroom as a successful learning tool for current and future endeavors for college or career preparation.

  4. OceanGLOBE: an Outdoor Research and Environmental Education Program for K-12 Students (United States)

    Perry, R. B.; Hamner, W. M.


    OceanGLOBE is an outdoor environmental research and education program for upper elementary, middle and high school students, supplemented by online instructional materials that are available without charge to any educator. OceanGLOBE was piloted in 1995 with support from a National Science Foundation Teacher Enhancement project, "Leadership in Marine Science" (award no.ESI-9454413 to UCLA). Continuing support by a second NSF Teacher Enhancement project (award no. ESI-9819424 to UCLA) and by COSEE-West (NSF awards OCE-215506 to UCLA and OCE-0215497 to USC) has enabled OceanGLOBE to expand to a growing number of schools and to provide an increasingly robust collection of marine science instructional materials on its website, OceanGLOBE provides a mechanism for students to conduct inquiry-based, hands-on marine science research, providing experiences that anchor the national and state science content standards learned in the classroom. Students regularly collect environmental and biological data from a beach site over an extended period of time. In the classroom they organize, graph and analyze their data, which can lead to a variety of student-created science products. Beach research is supported by instructional marine science materials on the OceanGLOBE website. These online materials also can be used in the classroom independent of the field component. Annotated PowerPoint slide shows explain research protocols and provide marine science content. Field guides and photographs of marine organisms (with emphasis on the Southern California Bight) and a growing collection of classroom investigations (applicable to any ocean location) support the science content presented in the beach research program and slide shows. In summary, OceanGLOBE is a comprehensive learning package grounded in hands-on, outdoor marine science research project in which students are the principal investigators. By doing scientific work repetitively over an

  5. The Ripple Effect: Exploring How a Joint Science Specialist/TOSA Can Change Classroom Teachers' Instructional Practices through Project-Based Learning (United States)

    Gradias, Jean


    In 2013, California became one of the first states to adopt the rigorous Next Generation Science Standards (NGSS). However, the current state of science instruction does not support the conceptual shifts of the NGSS, which call for consistent science instruction K-12, increased inquiry, subject integration, as well as science instruction that…

  6. Understanding science teaching effectiveness: examining how science-specific and generic instructional practices relate to student achievement in secondary science classrooms (United States)

    Mikeska, Jamie N.; Shattuck, Tamara; Holtzman, Steven; McCaffrey, Daniel F.; Duchesneau, Nancy; Qi, Yi; Stickler, Leslie


    In order to create conditions for students' meaningful and rigorous intellectual engagement in science classrooms, it is critically important to help science teachers learn which strategies and approaches can be used best to develop students' scientific literacy. Better understanding how science teachers' instructional practices relate to student achievement can provide teachers with beneficial information about how to best engage their students in meaningful science learning. To address this need, this study examined the instructional practices that 99 secondary biology teachers used in their classrooms and employed regression to determine which instructional practices are predictive of students' science achievement. Results revealed that the secondary science teachers who had well-managed classroom environments and who provided opportunities for their students to engage in student-directed investigation-related experiences were more likely to have increased student outcomes, as determined by teachers' value-added measures. These findings suggest that attending to both generic and subject-specific aspects of science teachers' instructional practice is important for understanding the underlying mechanisms that result in more effective science instruction in secondary classrooms. Implications about the use of these observational measures within teacher evaluation systems are discussed.

  7. Ethnographic case study of a high school science classroom: Strategies in stem education (United States)

    Sohn, Lucinda N.

    Historically, science education research has promoted that learning science occurs through direct physical experiences. In recent years, the need for best practices and student motivation have been highlighted in STEM research findings. In response to the instructional challenges in STEM education, the National Research Council has provided guidelines for improving STEM literacy through best practices in science and mathematics instruction. A baseline qualitative ethnographic case study of the effect of instructional practices on a science classroom was an opportunity to understand how a teacher and students work together to learn in an International Baccalaureate life science course. This study was approached through an interpretivist lens with the assumption that learning science is socially constructed. The following were the research questions: 1.) How does the teacher implement science instruction strategies in the classroom? 2.) In what ways are students engaged in the classroom? 3.) How are science concepts communicated in the classroom? The total 35 participants included a high school science teacher and two classes of 11th grade students in the International Baccalaureate program. Using exploratory qualitative methods of research, data was collected from field notes and transcripts from a series of classroom observations, a single one-on-one interview with the teacher and two focus groups with students from each of the two classes. Three themes emerged from text coded using initial and process coding with the computer assisted qualitative data analysis software, MAXQDA. The themes were: 1.) Physical Forms of Communication Play Key Role in Instructional Strategy, 2.) Science Learning Occurs in Casual Environment Full of Distractions, and 3.) Teacher Persona Plays Vital Role in Classroom Culture. The findings provided insight into the teacher's role on students' motivation to learn science. The recommendation for STEM programs and new curriculum is a

  8. Supporting Academic Language Development in Elementary Science: A Classroom Teaching Experiment (United States)

    Jung, Karl Gerhard

    Academic language is the language that students must engage in while participating in the teaching and learning that takes place in school (Schleppegrell, 2012) and science as a content area presents specific challenges and opportunities for students to engage with language (Buxton & Lee, 2014; Gee, 2005). In order for students to engage authentically and fully in the science learning that will take place in their classrooms, it is important that they develop their abilities to use science academic language (National Research Council, 2012). For this to occur, teachers must provide support to their students in developing the science academic language they will encounter in their classrooms. Unfortunately, this type of support remains a challenge for many teachers (Baecher, Farnsworth, & Ediger, 2014; Bigelow, 2010; Fisher & Frey, 2010) and teachers must receive professional development that supports their abilities to provide instruction that supports and scaffolds students' science academic language use and development. This study investigates an elementary science teacher's engagement in an instructional coaching partnership to explore how that teacher planned and implemented scaffolds for science academic language. Using a theoretical framework that combines the literature on scaffolding (Bunch, Walqui, & Kibler, 2015; Gibbons, 2015; Sharpe, 2001/2006) and instructional coaching (Knight, 2007/2009), this study sought to understand how an elementary science teacher plans and implements scaffolds for science academic language, and the resources that assisted the teacher in planning those scaffolds. The overarching goal of this work is to understand how elementary science teachers can scaffold language in their classroom, and how they can be supported in that work. Using a classroom teaching experiment methodology (Cobb, 2000) and constructivist grounded theory methods (Charmaz, 2014) for analysis, this study examined coaching conversations and classroom

  9. Building an Understanding of How Model-Based Inquiry Is Implemented in the High School Chemistry Classroom (United States)

    Dass, Katarina; Head, Michelle L.; Rushton, Gregory T.


    Modeling as a scientific practice in K-12 classrooms has received a wealth of attention in the U.S. and abroad due to the advent of revised national science education standards. The study described herein investigated how a group of high school chemistry teachers developed their understanding of the nature and function of models in the precollege…

  10. Flipping around the classroom: Accelerated Bachelor of Science in Nursing students' satisfaction and achievement. (United States)

    El-Banna, Majeda M; Whitlow, Malinda; McNelis, Angela M


    The flipped classroom approach is based on shared responsibility for learning by students and teachers, and empowers students to take an active role in the learning process. While utilization of this approach has resulted in higher exam scores compared to traditional approaches in prior studies, the flipped classroom has not included learners in Accelerated Bachelor of Science in Nursing (ABSN) programs. To examine differences on exam scores and satisfaction of teaching between a 3-week flipped and traditional classroom approach. Mixed methods, crossover repeated measures design. Private school of nursing located in the eastern United States. 76 ABSN students. Two separate sections of a Pharmacology course received either 3-weeks of flipped or traditional classroom during Period 1, then switched approaches during Period 2. Two exam scores measuring knowledge and a questionnaire assessing satisfaction of teaching were collected. Focus groups were conducted to learn about students' experience in the flipped classroom. Descriptive statistics, Wilcoxon rank sum test, and stepwise linear mixed model were used to analyze quantitative data. Focus group data were transcribed, coded, and categorized in themes. Students in the flipped classroom achieved significantly higher scores on the first Pharmacology exam than students in the traditional classroom, but there was no significant difference on the second exam. Three themes emerged from focus groups on student perception of integrating the flipped approach: don't fix what isn't broken; treat me as an adult; and remember the work is overwhelming. Both traditional and flipped classroom approaches successfully prepared students for the Pharmacology exams. While results support the use of the flipped approach, judicious use of this instructional pedagogy with dense or difficult content, particularly in accelerated programs, is recommended. Instructors should also provide students with enough information and rationale for using

  11. "But at school … I became a bit shy": Korean immigrant adolescents' discursive participation in science classrooms (United States)

    Ryu, Minjung


    In reform-based science curricula, students' discursive participation is highly encouraged as a means of science learning as well as a goal of science education. However, Asian immigrant students are perceived to be quiet and passive in classroom discursive situations, and this reticence implies that they may face challenges in discourse-rich science classroom learning environments. Given this potentially conflicting situation, the present study aims to understand how and why Asian immigrant students participate in science classroom discourse. Findings from interviews with seven Korean immigrant adolescents illustrate that they are indeed hesitant to speak up in classrooms. Drawing upon cultural historical perspectives on identity and agency, this study shows how immigrant experiences shaped the participants' othered identity and influenced their science classroom participation, as well as how they negotiated their identities and situations to participate in science classroom and peer communities. I will discuss implications of this study for science education research and science teacher education to support classroom participation of immigrant students.

  12. Student cognition and motivation during the Classroom BirdWatch citizen science project (United States)

    Tomasek, Terry Morton

    The purpose of this study was to examine and describe the ways various stakeholders (CBW project developer/coordinator, elementary and middle school teachers, and 5th through 8th grade students) envisioned, implemented and engaged in the citizen science project, eBird/Classroom BirdWatch. A multiple case study mixed-methods research design was used to examine student engagement in the cognitive processes associated with scientific inquiry as part of citizen science participation. Student engagement was described based on a sense of autonomy, competence, relatedness and intrinsic motivation. A goal of this study was to expand the taxonomy of differences between authentic scientific inquiry and simple inquiry to include those inquiry tasks associated with participation in citizen science by describing how students engaged in this type of science. This research study built upon the existing framework of cognitive processes associated with scientific inquiry described by Chinn and Malhotra (2002). This research provides a systematic analysis of the scientific processes and related reasoning tasks associated with the citizen science project eBird and the corresponding curriculum Classroom BirdWatch . Data consisted of responses to surveys, focus group interviews, document analysis and individual interviews. I suggest that citizen science could be an additional form of classroom-based science inquiry that can promote more authentic features of scientific inquiry and engage students in meaningful ways.

  13. Proposed Model for a Streamlined, Cohesive, and Optimized K-12 STEM Curriculum with a Focus on Engineering (United States)

    Locke, Edward


    This article presents a proposed model for a clear description of K-12 age-possible engineering knowledge content, in terms of the selection of analytic principles and predictive skills for various grades, based on the mastery of mathematics and science pre-requisites, as mandated by national or state performance standards; and a streamlined,…

  14. The Role of Science Teachers' Beliefs in International Classrooms

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    for educators. Within each of these areas there are specific explorations that examine important areas such as, the roles of beliefs in teaching and learning, the impact of beliefs on student achievement, and ways in which beliefs are connected to teacher actions in the classroom. Throughout all...... of these discussions, there is a focus on international perspectives. Those reading this book can use the research presented to consider how to confront, challenge, and cultivate beliefs during the teacher professional development process....

  15. Sustaining K-12 professional development in geology: Recurrent participation in Rockcamp (United States)

    Repine, T.E.; Hemler, D.A.; Behling, R.E.


    A reconnaissance study of the geology professional development program known as RockCamp was initiated to examine the sustained, or recurrent, participation of K-12 science teachers. Open-ended interviews, concept mapping, and creative writing assignments were used to explore the perceptions of six teachers possessing an exceptional record of participation. Efficacy, fun, right time of life, and support emerged as unanimous reasons for recurrent participation. Content, friendship, and methodology were very important. College credit was not critical. These teachers' perceptions suggest their sustained involvement in the RockCamp Program is stimulated by situated learning experiences stressing a compare, contrast, connect, and construct pedagogy within a supportive learning community.

  16. Taming the Alien Genre: Bringing Science Fiction into the Classroom. (United States)

    Bucher, Kathrine T.; Manning, M. Lee


    Notes the popularity of the science fiction/fantasy genre, and offers a definition of these genres. Discusses teachers' reluctance to read or teach science fiction, but emphasizes its appeal and its usefulness. Discusses how teachers can select and use good science fiction books. Offers a checklist for evaluating such books, and suggests 18…

  17. Digital Science Notebooks: Perspectives from an Elementary Classroom Teacher (United States)

    Paek, Seungoh; Fulton, Lori A.


    This study investigates how tablet-based note-taking applications can be integrated into elementary science classes as digital science notebooks. A teacher with 20 students in Grades 4-5 from a public charter school in Hawaii participated in the study. The participating science teacher introduced a tablet-based note taking application (TNA) to her…

  18. Making Learning Interesting and Its Application to the Science Classroom (United States)

    Jack, Brady Michael; Lin, Huann-shyang


    Generations of students are graduating from secondary school disinterested in post-secondary study of science or pursuing careers in science-related fields beyond formal education. We propose that destabilising such disinterest among future students requires science educators to begin listening to secondary school students regarding their views of…

  19. The Achievement Gap between Science Classrooms and Historic Inequalities (United States)

    Howie, Sarah; Scherman, Vanessa


    In the past politics deprived many African children (in particular) in South Africa the opportunity of achieving quality education. This was most especially true in subjects such as mathematics and science. In this research the science teacher-level data from Third International Mathematics and Science Study 1999 (TIMSS'99) were analysed with a…

  20. Driven by Beliefs: Understanding Challenges Physical Science Teachers Face When Integrating Engineering and Physics (United States)

    Dare, Emily A.; Ellis, Joshua A.; Roehrig, Gillian H.


    It is difficult to ignore the increased use of technological innovations in today's world, which has led to various calls for the integration of engineering into K-12 science standards. The need to understand how engineering is currently being brought to science classrooms is apparent and necessary in order to address these calls for integration.…

  1. Teachers' perceptions of effective science, technology, and mathematics professional development and changes in classroom practices (United States)

    Boriack, Anna Christine

    The purpose of this study is to examine teachers' perceptions of professional development and changes in classroom practice. A proposed conceptual framework for effective professional development that results in changes in classroom practices was developed. Data from two programs that provided professional development to teachers in the areas of technology, mathematics, and science was used to inform the conceptual framework. These two programs were Target Technology in Texas (T3) and Mathematics, Science, and Technology Teacher Preparation Academies (MSTTPA). This dissertation used a multiple article format to explore each program separately, yet the proposed conceptual framework allowed for comparisons to be made between the two programs. The first study investigated teachers' perceptions of technology-related professional development after their districts had received a T3 grant. An online survey was administrated to all teachers to determine their perceptions of technology-related professional development along with technology self-efficacy. Classroom observations were conducted to determine if teachers were implementing technology. The results indicated that teachers did not perceive professional development as being effective and were not implementing technology in their classrooms. Teachers did have high technology self-efficacy and perceived adequate school support, which implies that effective professional development may be a large factor in whether or not teachers implement technology in their classrooms. The second study evaluated participants' perceptions of the effectiveness of mathematics and science professional development offered through a MSTTP academy. Current and former participants completed an online survey which measured their perceptions of academy activities and school environment. Participants also self-reported classroom implementation of technology. Interviews and open-ended survey questions were used to provide further insight into

  2. Teacher and student perspectives on motivation within the high school science classroom (United States)

    Pickens, Melanie Turnure

    The purpose of this study was to investigate teacher and student perspectives on the motivation of high school science students and to explore specific motivational strategies used by teachers as they attempt to enhance student motivation. Four science teachers took part in an initial audio-taped interview, classroom observations with debriefing conversations, and a final audio-taped interview to discuss findings and allow member checking for data triangulation and interpretation. Participating teachers also took part in a final focus group interview. Student participants from each teacher's class were given a Likert style anonymous survey on their views about motivation and learning, motivation in science class, and specific motivational strategies that emerged in their current science class. This study focused on effective teaching strategies for motivation commonly used by the four teachers and on specific teaching strategies used by two of these four teachers in different tracks of science classes. The intent was to determine not only what strategies worked well for all types of science classes, but also what specific motivational approaches were being used in high and low tracked science classes and the similarities and differences between them. This approach provided insight into the differences in motivating tracked students, with the hope that other educators in specific tracks might use such pedagogies to improve motivation in their own science classrooms. Results from this study showed that science teachers effectively motivate their students in the following ways: Questioning students to engage them in the lesson, exhibiting enthusiasm in lesson presentations, promoting a non-threatening environment, incorporating hands-on activities to help learn the lesson concepts, using a variety of activities, believing that students can achieve, and building caring relationships in the classroom. Specific to the higher tracked classroom, effective motivational

  3. Approaching multidimensional forms of knowledge through Personal Meaning Mapping in science integrating teaching outside the classroom

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Hartmeyer, Rikke; Bolling, Mads; Bentsen, Peter


    knowledge dimensions is important, especially in science teaching outside the classroom, where “hands-on” approaches and experiments are often part of teaching and require procedural knowledge, among other things. Therefore, this study investigates PMM as a method for exploring specific knowledge dimensions......Current research points to Personal Meaning Mapping (PMM) as a method useful in investigating students’ prior and current science knowledge. However, studies investigating PMM as a method for exploring specific knowledge dimensions are lacking. Ensuring that students are able to access specific...... in formal science education integrating teaching outside the classroom. We applied a case study design involving two schools and four sixth-grade classes. Data were collected from six students in each class who constructed personal meaning maps and were interviewed immediately after natural science...

  4. Teacher perspectives on science literacy in multilingual classrooms –multidisciplinary explorations

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Hajer, Maaike; Nielsen, Birgitte Lund; Tytler, Russell

    using Clarke & Hollingworth (2002) (referred to as C&H) model for analyzing teacher development as connections between teachers personal domain of knowledge and beliefs, practice domain of experimenting in the classroom, domain of consequence including salient student outcomes and the external domain...... that requires multidisciplinary cooperation. The Swedish Science and Literacy Teaching (SALT)project focuses on the questions How do science teachers address literacy skills in classes with secondary students in a multilingual classroom? and How can an explicit focus on literacy development become an integrated...... part of science teachers’ practice and thinking? The multidisciplinary team includes expertise in applied linguistics (text analysis, second language teaching), science pedagogy and teacher professional development. Having gathered the SALT data, the challenge in this phase is in the analysis. How can...

  5. Leaving the Classroom: A Didactic Framework for Education in Environmental Sciences (United States)

    Dopico, Eduardo; Garcia-Vazquez, Eva


    In Continuous Education curricula in Spain, the programs on sciences of the environment are aimed toward understandings of sustainability. Teaching practice rarely leaves the classroom for outdoor field studies. At the same time, teaching practice is generally focused on examples of how human activities are harmful for ecosystems. From a pedagogic…

  6. Fostering Scholarly Discussion and Critical Thinking in the Political Science Classroom (United States)

    Marks, Michael P.


    This article suggests strategies for promoting scholarly discussion and critical thinking in political science classes. When scholars study politics they are engaged in an investigation into the dynamics of governance, not a debate over personal political beliefs. The problem with a politicized classroom is that it gives students a false…

  7. Effectiveness of Various Innovative Learning Methods in Health Science Classrooms: A Meta-Analysis (United States)

    Kalaian, Sema A.; Kasim, Rafa M.


    This study reports the results of a meta-analysis of the available literature on the effectiveness of various forms of innovative small-group learning methods on student achievement in undergraduate college health science classrooms. The results of the analysis revealed that most of the primary studies supported the effectiveness of the…

  8. The Contribution of Perceived Classroom Learning Environment and Motivation to Student Engagement in Science (United States)

    Tas, Yasemin


    This study investigated middle school students' engagement in science in relation to students' perceptions of the classroom learning environment (teacher support, student cohesiveness, and equity) and motivation (self-efficacy beliefs and achievement goals). The participants were 315 Turkish sixth and seventh grade students. Four hierarchical…

  9. A Pedagogy of Civic Engagement for the Undergraduate Political Science Classroom (United States)

    DeLaet, Debra L.


    This article provides an overview of a classroom project, titled the Priorities Project, which is designed to promote responsible and informed civic engagement on the part of students in upper level political science courses at Drake University. It provides an overview of the Priorities Project, a brief summary highlighting the process and results…

  10. Constructing and Using Multimodal Narratives to Research in Science Education: Contributions Based on Practical Classroom (United States)

    Lopes, J. B.; Silva, A. A.; Cravino, J. P.; Santos, C. A.; Cunha, A.; Pinto, A.; Silva, A.; Viegas, C.; Saraiva, E.; Branco, M. J.


    This study deals with the problem of how to collect genuine and useful data about science classroom practices, and preserving the complex and holistic nature of teaching and learning. Additionally, we were looking for an instrument that would allow comparability and verifiability for teaching and research purposes. Given the multimodality of…

  11. Winners and Losers in Single-Sex Science and Mathematics Classrooms. (United States)

    Baker, Dale; Jacobs, Kathy

    This paper discusses the success of single sex science and mathematics education classrooms. Most studies on single sex learning environments come from countries such as Australia, Jamaica, Nigeria, Great Britain, New Zealand, and Thailand, and there is little research on American public schools. This study investigates single sex mathematics and…

  12. Inclusivity in the Classroom and International Achievement in Mathematics and Science: An Exploratory Study (United States)

    Barnard-Brak, Lucy; Wei, Tianlan; Schmidt, Marcelo; Sheffield, Rebecca


    Purpose: Few studies have examined the role of inclusivity in international assessments of student achievement, such as the TIMSS (Trends in International Mathematics and Science Study). The current study examined how the inclusivity of students with disabilities at the classroom level across countries may be associated with achievement scores,…

  13. Assessing Students' Attitudes and Achievements in a Multicultural and Multilingual Science Classroom. (United States)

    Hadi-Tabassum, Samina


    Takes a qualitative and quantitative look at the curriculum and teaching of a two-way immersion eighth-grade solar energy science classroom and examines its implications for education policy and reform. Results for a class of 25 students indicate that the approach increases the retention rate of Hispanic students. (SLD)

  14. Understanding Teaching or Teaching for Understanding: Alternative Frameworks for Science Classrooms. (United States)

    Wildy, Helen; Wallace, John


    Describes the findings of a study that involved exploring the classroom practices of an experienced physics teacher to enable researchers to reexamine assumptions about good teaching. Asserts that a broader view of good science teaching is needed than that proposed by the constructivist literature. (ZWH)

  15. Integrating ICTs into the Environmental Science Primary School Classroom in Chegutu District, Zimbabwe: Problems and Solutions (United States)

    Shadreck, Mandina


    This study investigated primary school teachers' perceptions of the barriers and challenges preventing them from integrating ICTs in the environmental science classroom. The study adopted a qualitative research approach that is in line with the phenomenological perspective as it sought to acquire knowledge through understanding the direct…

  16. Learning Environments as Basis for Cognitive Achievements of Students in Basic Science Classrooms in Nigeria (United States)

    Atomatofa, Rachel; Okoye, Nnamdi; Igwebuike, Thomas


    The nature of classroom learning environments created by teachers had been considered very important for learning to take place effectively. This study investigated the effect of creating constructivist and transmissive learning environments on achievements of science students of different ability levels. 243 students formed the entire study…

  17. Turkish Mathematics and Science Teachers' Technology Use in Their Classroom Instruction: Findings from TIMSS 2011 (United States)

    Tas, Yasemin; Balgalmis, Esra


    The goal of this study was to describe Turkish mathematics and science teachers' use of computer in their classroom instruction by utilizing TIMSS 2011 data. Analyses results revealed that teachers most frequently used computers for preparation purpose and least frequently used computers for administration. There was no difference in teachers'…

  18. Local and Long Distance Computer Networking for Science Classrooms. Technical Report No. 43. (United States)

    Newman, Denis

    This report describes Earth Lab, a project which is demonstrating new ways of using computers for upper-elementary and middle-school science instruction, and finding ways to integrate local-area and telecommunications networks. The discussion covers software, classroom activities, formative research on communications networks, and integration of…

  19. Energy matters: An investigation of drama pedagogy in the science classroom (United States)

    Alrutz, Megan

    The purpose of this study is to explore and document how informal and improvisational drama techniques affect student learning in the science classroom. While implementing a drama-based science unit, I examined multiple notions of learning, including, but not limited to, traditional notions of achievement, student understanding, student participation in the science classroom, and student engagement with, and knowledge of, science content. Employing an interpretivist research methodology, as outlined by Fredrick Erickson for qualitative analysis in the classroom, I collected data through personal observations; student and teacher interviews; written, artistic and performed class work; video-recorded class work; written tests; and questionnaires. In analyzing the data, I found strong support for student engagement during drama-based science instruction. The drama-based lessons provided structures that drew students into lessons, created enthusiasm for the science curriculum, and encouraged meaningful engagement with, and connections to, the science content, including the application and synthesis of science concepts and skills. By making student contributions essential to each of the lessons, and by challenging students to justify, explain, and clarify their understandings within a dramatic scenario, the classroom facilitators created a conducive learning environment that included both support for student ideas and intellectual rigor. The integration of drama-based pedagogy most affected student access to science learning and content. Students' participation levels, as well as their interest in both science and drama, increased during this drama-based science unit. In addition, the drama-based lessons accommodated multiple learning styles and interests, improving students' access to science content and perceptions of their learning experience and abilities. Finally, while the drama-based science lessons provided multiple opportunities for solidifying understanding of

  20. Assessing the Impact of a K-12 Engagement Program on Graduate Learning Outcomes for Communicating with Diverse Audiences, Pedagogy, and Community Engagement (United States)

    Weeks, Faith; Harbor, Jon


    A large midwestern university has developed a program that places graduate students in middle school classrooms to enhance the graduate students' communication skills with diverse audiences, develop pedagogical knowledge, and provide a foundation for effective future K-12 engagement. After observing and co-teaching, participants develop and…

  1. Polaris Undergraduates Connecting With K-12 Students Though Story Telling-Learning About Climate Change Using Web-Mapping Based Investigations (United States)

    Wood, J. H.; Natali, S.; Schade, J. D.; Fiske, G. J.; Linder, C.; Ramos, E.; Weber, L. R.; Kuhn, M. A.


    The Polaris Project is a unique undergraduate education, research, and outreach initiative that examines global climate change in the Siberian Arctic. The program focuses on permafrost and carbon processes in the boreal and tundra ecosystems of the Kolyma Watershed, the largest watershed underlain by continuous permafrost. Each summer, a diverse group of undergraduate students and faculty mentors spends one month living on the Kolyma River, developing independent projects that engage the students directly in the biogeosciences through authentic scientific research experiences in remote field sites. In all cases the student projects contribute to the overall goal of the Polaris Project to investigate the transport and transformations of carbon and nutrients as they move among terrestrial and aquatic ecosystems and the atmosphere. Through the use of online interactive ArcGIS maps the students share their experiences and learning, while posing questions in a format that can be used to engage K-12 learners in the classroom. By embedding information; including databases, photographs and video, informational text, and geospatial data; into user-friendly maps the Polaris Project students will "tell the story" of studying climate change in the Siberian tundra in a way that allows the users to explore climate science through inquiry and web-map based investigation. Through performance expectation topics including Weather and Climate, Interactions, Earth's Systems, and Human impacts, this investigation uses consideration of the vast amounts of ancient organic matter locked up in permafrost in the region, and concerns about the fate of this ancient organic carbon as temperatures warm and permafrost thaws, to make K-12 climate change connections with the Next Generation Science Standards (NGSS).

  2. A Cultural Study of a Science Classroom and Graphing Calculator-based Technology


    Casey, Dennis Alan


    Social, political, and technological events of the past two decades have had considerable bearing on science education. While sociological studies of scientists at work have seriously questioned traditional histories of science, national and state educational systemic reform initiatives have been enacted, stressing standards and accountability. Recently, powerful instructional technologies have become part of the landscape of the classroom. One example, graphing calculator-based technology...

  3. Classroom

    Indian Academy of Sciences (India)

    CLASSROOM. Figure 1. An antibubble photographed with a white backdrop. contrast to the case of soap bubbles,. Soap bubbles float in air and descend due to gravity on account of higher density of the soap solution, while antibubbles rise due to buoyancy of the air film and float just below the surface of the soap solution.

  4. Teaching History with Museums: Strategies for K-12 Social Studies (United States)

    Marcus, Alan; Stoddard, Jeremy; Woodward, Walter W.


    "Teaching History with Museums" provides an introduction and overview of the rich pedagogical power of museums. In this comprehensive textbook, the authors show how museums offer a sophisticated understanding of the past and develop habits of mind in ways that are not easily duplicated in the classroom. Using engaging cases to illustrate…

  5. Visual, Critical, and Scientific Thinking Dispositions in a 3rd Grade Science Classroom (United States)

    Foss, Stacy

    Many American students leave school without the required 21st century critical thinking skills. This qualitative case study, based on the theoretical concepts of Facione, Arheim, and Vygotsky, explored the development of thinking dispositions through the arts in science on the development of scientific thinking skills when used as a conceptual thinking routine in a rural 3rd grade classroom. Research questions examined the disposition to think critically through the arts in science and focused on the perceptions and experiences of 25 students with the Visual Thinking Strategy (VTS) process. Data were collected from classroom observations (n = 10), student interviews (n = 25), teacher interviews ( n = 1), a focus group discussion (n = 3), and artifacts of student work (n = 25); these data included perceptions of VTS, school culture, and classroom characteristics. An inductive analysis of qualitative data resulted in several emergent themes regarding disposition development and students generating questions while increasing affective motivation. The most prevalent dispositions were open-mindedness, the truth-seeking disposition, the analytical disposition, and the systematicity disposition. The findings about the teachers indicated that VTS questions in science supported "gradual release of responsibility", the internalization of process skills and vocabulary, and argumentation. This case study offers descriptive research that links visual arts inquiry and the development of critical thinking dispositions in science at the elementary level. A science curriculum could be developed, that emphasizes the development of thinking dispositions through the arts in science, which in turn, could impact the professional development of teachers and learning outcomes for students.

  6. The effects of professional development related to classroom assessment on student achievement in science (United States)

    Mazzie, Dawn Danielle

    This study investigated the relationship between students' standardized test scores in science and (a) increases in teacher assessment literacy and (b) teacher participation in a Teacher Quality Research (TQR) project on classroom assessment. The samples for these studies were teachers from underperforming schools who volunteered to take part in a professional development program in classroom assessment. School groups were randomly assigned to the treatment group. For Study 1, teachers in the treatment received professional development in classroom assessment from a trained assessment coach. Teachers in the control received no professional development. For Study 2, teachers in Treatment 1 received professional development in classroom assessment from a trained assessment coach and teachers in Treatment 2 received professional development in classroom assessment from a facilitator with one day of training. Teachers in both groups completed a measure of assessment literacy, the Teacher Quality Research Test of Assessment Literacy Skills (TQR_TALS), prior to the beginning and then again at the conclusion of the four month professional development program. A hierarchical linear model (HLM) analysis was conducted to determine the relationship between students' standardized test scores in science and (a) increases in teacher assessment literacy and (b) teacher TQR status. Based upon these analyses, the professional development program increased teachers' assessment literacy skills; however, the professional development had no significant impact on students' achievement.

  7. Relevance in the science classroom: A multidimensional analysis (United States)

    Hartwell, Matthew F.

    While perceived relevance is considered a fundamental component of adaptive learning, the experience of relevance and its conceptual definition have not been well described. The mixed-methods research presented in this dissertation aimed to clarify the conceptual meaning of relevance by focusing on its phenomenological experience from the students' perspective. Following a critical literature review, I propose an identity-based model of perceived relevance that includes three components: a contextual target, an identity target, and a connection type, or lens. An empirical investigation of this model that consisted of two general phases was implemented in four 9th grade-biology classrooms. Participants in Phase 1 (N = 118) completed a series of four open-ended writing activities focused on eliciting perceived personal connections to academic content. Exploratory qualitative content analysis of a 25% random sample of the student responses was used to identify the main meaning-units of the proposed model as well as different dimensions of student relevance perceptions. These meaning-units and dimensions provided the basis for the construction of a conceptual mapping sentence capturing students' perceived relevance, which was then applied in a confirmatory analysis to all other student responses. Participants in Phase 2 (N = 139) completed a closed survey designed based on the mapping sentence to assess their perceived relevance of a biology unit. The survey also included scales assessing other domain-level motivational processes. Exploratory factor analysis and non-metric multidimensional scaling indicated a coherent conceptual structure, which included a primary interpretive relevance dimension. Comparison of the conceptual structure across various groups (randomly-split sample, gender, academic level, domain-general motivational profiles) provided support for its ubiquity and insight into variation in the experience of perceived relevance among students of different

  8. Eliciting and activating funds of knowledge in an environmental science community college classroom: An action research study (United States)

    van Niel, John J.

    Many non-traditional students are currently underperforming in college and yet may have untapped knowledge and skills that could support their academic success if appropriately utilized. Previous practices that students experience as a part of their lives are what Gonzales and other researchers call "funds of knowledge" (FOK). There is ample evidence to show that utilization of students' FOK in K-12 instructional contexts can be beneficial. In contrast, little formal FOK research has been done with higher education students. To address this gap, this study explores how environmental college courses could be designed so as to better elicit and capitalize on students' FOK, with the ultimate goal of increasing student engagement and learning. More specifically, using an action research paradigm, I designed, implemented and studied an intervention in two sections of the required environmental science course I taught in Fall 2009 at the community college where I am employed. The intervention consisted of two phases: (1) eliciting FOK from the students enrolled in one section of the course through a draft survey, and (2) refining that survey tool in order to better elicit FOK, development of other methods of elicitation of FOK and activating (or incorporating) the FOK thus identified as relevant to enhance the learning experience of the students in both sections of the course. The designs of the intervention as well as data collection and analysis were informed by the following research questions: Q1. What are effective strategies for eliciting FOK that may be generalized to the practices of other college instructors? Q2. What relevant FOK do students bring to this class? Q3. What were instances where FOK were activated in the course? Q4. What are effective strategies for activating FOK that may be generalized to the practices of other college instructors? Q5. What evidence was there that students took up new practices due to the intervention? Data were collected from a

  9. The Responsive Classroom approach and fifth grade students' math and science anxiety and self-efficacy. (United States)

    Griggs, Marissa Swaim; Rimm-Kaufman, Sara E; Merritt, Eileen G; Patton, Christine L


    Self-efficacy forecasts student persistence and achievement in challenging subjects. Thus, it is important to understand factors that contribute to students' self-efficacy, a key factor in their success in math and science. The current cross-sectional study examined the contribution of students' gender and math and science anxiety as well as schools' use of Social and Emotional Learning (SEL) practices to students' math and science self-efficacy. Fifth graders (n = 1,561) completed questionnaires regarding their feelings about math and science. Approximately half of the students attended schools implementing the Responsive Classroom® (RC) approach, an SEL intervention, as part of a randomized controlled trial. Results suggested no difference in math and science self-efficacy between boys and girls. Students who self-reported higher math and science anxiety also reported less self-efficacy toward these subjects. However, the negative association between students' anxiety and self-efficacy was attenuated in schools using more RC practices compared with those using fewer RC practices. RC practices were associated with higher science self-efficacy. Results highlight anxiety as contributing to poor self-efficacy in math and science and suggest that RC practices create classroom conditions in which students' anxiety is less strongly associated with negative beliefs about their ability to be successful in math and science. PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2013 APA, all rights reserved.

  10. Integrating Statistical Visualization Research into the Political Science Classroom (United States)

    Draper, Geoffrey M.; Liu, Baodong; Riesenfeld, Richard F.


    The use of computer software to facilitate learning in political science courses is well established. However, the statistical software packages used in many political science courses can be difficult to use and counter-intuitive. We describe the results of a preliminary user study suggesting that visually-oriented analysis software can help…

  11. Socioscience and Ethics in Science Classrooms: Teacher Perspectives and Strategies (United States)

    Sadler, Troy D.; Amirshokoohi, Aidin; Kazempour, Mahsa; Allspaw, Kathleen M.


    This study explored teacher perspectives on the use of socioscientific issues (SSI) and on dealing with ethics in the context of science instruction. Twenty-two middle and high school science teachers from three US states participated in semi-structured interviews, and researchers employed inductive analyses to explore emergent patterns relative…

  12. A Sense of Place in the Science Classroom (United States)

    Membiela, Pedro; DePalma, Renee; Pazos, Mercedes Suarez


    Place-based science education engages with the laboratories of complex reality where natural processes combine with social practice, going beyond the physical world, to encompass the meanings and sense of attachment local residents feel for places. This brief report describes how a university science methods class in a primary teacher training…

  13. Science Fiction in Education: Case Studies from Classroom Implementations (United States)

    Vrasidas, Charalambos; Avraamidou, Lucy; Theodoridou, Katerina; Themistokleous, Sotiris; Panaou, Petros


    This manuscript reports on findings from the implementation of the EU project "Science Fiction in Education" (Sci-Fi-Ed). The project provides teachers with tools, training, and guidance that will assist them in enhancing their teaching, making science more attractive to students, connecting it with real-life issues such as the…

  14. Epistemology & the Nature of Science: A Classroom Strategy (United States)

    Viney, Mike


    Efforts to enact balanced treatment laws represent an attempt to wedge the supernatural into scientific explanations. Current attempts to displace methodological naturalism from science indicate a need to make the nature of science a central theme in our instruction. This article utilizes constructivist listening to introduce students to five…

  15. Bringing Science out of the Lab into the Classroom (United States)


    Science is moving more rapidly than ever; one groundbreaking discovery chases the next at an incredible speed. School teachers have trouble keeping up with the pace, and many pupils call science classes "boring". Today, Europe's major research organisations launch Science in School, the first international, multidisciplinary journal for innovative science teaching, to provide a platform for communication between science teachers, practising scientists and other stakeholders in science education. ESO PR Photo 12/06 ESO PR Photo 12/06 First Issue! "Science is becoming increasingly international and interdisciplinary," says Eleanor Hayes, editor of the journal. "The most exciting development of the day may happen anywhere in any field: students may suddenly want to talk about a discovery on Mars, a medical breakthrough or a natural disaster. On such days it would be a shame not to put the textbooks aside and to capitalise on that curiosity." Published by EIROforum, a partnership between Europe's seven largest intergovernmental research organisations, Science in School will bridge the gap between the worlds of research and schools. One extremely powerful tool to achieve this is the journal's web-based discussion forum that will establish a direct dialogue between science teachers and researchers across national and subject boundaries. Science in School will appear quarterly online and in print and will feature news about the latest scientific discoveries, teaching materials, interviews with inspiring teachers and scientists, reviews of books, films and websites, suggestions for class trips, training opportunities and many other useful resources for science teachers. Contributors to the first issue include the world-renowned neurologist and author Oliver Sachs, and scientists and teachers from nine countries. "We urgently need to engage young people in science. This is why the research community and the European Commission are committed to outreach and education

  16. Meaningful Engagement in Scientific Practices: How Classroom Communities Develop Authentic Epistemologies for Science (United States)

    Krist, Christina Rae

    Recent reforms in science education, based on decades of learning research, emphasize engaging students in science and engineering practices as the means to develop and refine disciplinary ideas. These reforms advocate an epistemic shift in how school science is done: from students learning about science ideas to students figuring out core science ideas. This shift is challenging to implement: how do we bring the goals and practices of a discipline into classroom communities in meaningful ways that go beyond simply following rote scientific procedures? In this dissertation, I investigate how classroom communities learn to engage meaningfully in scientific practices, characterizing their engagement as a process of epistemic learning. I take a situated perspective that defines learning as shifts in how members engage in communities of practice. I examine students' epistemic learning as a function of their participation in a classroom community of scientific practice along two dimensions: what they do, or the practical epistemic heuristics they use to guide how they build knowledge; and who they are, or how ownership and authorship of ideas is negotiated and affectively marked through interaction. I focus on a cohort of students as they move from 6th to 8 th grade. I analyze three science units, one from each grade level, to look at the epistemic heuristics implicit in student and teacher talk and how the use of those heuristics shifts over time. In addition, I examine one anomalous 8th grade class to look at how students and the teacher position themselves and each other with respect to the ideas in their classroom and how that positioning supports epistemic learning. Taken together, these analyses demonstrate how students' engagement in scientific practices evolves in terms of what they do and who they are in relation to the knowledge and ideas in their classroom over time. I propose a model for epistemic learning that articulates how classroom communities develop

  17. Classroom

    Indian Academy of Sciences (India)

    daily life, learning science concepts often involves confronting natural discrepant ... practice applying new ideas; and, if necessary, provide them wi th remedial ... have been suggested in science education research literature, as avenues ...

  18. The effects of professional development on science teaching practices and classroom culture (United States)

    Supovitz, Jonathan A.; Turner, Herbert M.


    The current science education reform movement emphasizes the importance of professional development as a means of improving student science achievement. Reformers have developed a vision for professional development based upon intensive and sustained training around concrete tasks that is focused on subject-matter knowledge, connected to specific standards for student performance, and embedded in a systemic context. Using data from a National Science Foundation Teacher Enhancement program called the Local Systemic Change initiative, this study employs hierarchical linear modeling to examine the relationship between professional development and the reformers' vision of teaching practice. The findings indicate that the quantity of professional development in which teachers participate is strongly linked with both inquiry-based teaching practice and investigative classroom culture. At the individual level, teachers' content preparation also has a powerful influence on teaching practice and classroom culture. At the school level, school socioeconomic status was found to influence practice more substantially than either principal supportiveness or available resources.

  19. Secondary science teachers' view toward and classroom translation of sustained professional development (United States)

    Lewis, Elizabeth Blake

    This study concerns the phenomenon of secondary science teacher learning and enacting instructional strategies learned at the Communication in Science Inquiry Project (CISIP) teacher professional development events, as well as teacher perception of, and relationship to, this year-long professional development program. The CISIP program teaches science teachers how to build scientific classroom discourse communities with their students. Some of the science teachers were previous participants in the professional development, and acted as mentor teachers. The research design employed an integrated conceptual framework of situated learning theory with an analytical lens of teachers' professional, institutional and affinity, identities. A multi-method approach was used to generate data. Throughout the 2007-2008 academic year, the teachers' fidelity to the professional development model was measured using a classroom observation instrument aligned with the professional development model. From these observation data a longitudinal model, using hierarchical linear modeling, was constructed. In addition, surveys and interview data were used to construct both whole group and case studies of two high school science teachers who taught biology at the same school. The results indicated that there was a significant difference between previous and new participants; specifically, the longer teachers had participated in the professional development, and adopted a mentorship role, the greater their fidelity of classroom instruction to the CISIP model. Additionally, the case study teacher who developed a CISIP model-aligned affinity identity implemented more of the instructional strategies than the teacher who maintained his school-based institutional identity.

  20. The role of assessment infrastructures in crafting project-based science classrooms (United States)

    D'Amico, Laura Marie

    In project-based science teaching, teachers engage students in the practice of conducting meaningful investigations and explanations of natural phenomena, often in collaboration with fellow students or adults. Reformers suggest that this approach can provide students with more profitable learning experiences; but for many teachers, a shift to such instruction can be difficult to manage. As some reform-minded teachers have discovered, classroom assessment can serve as a vital tool for meeting the challenges associated with project science activity. In this research, classroom assessment was viewed as an infrastructure that both students and teachers rely upon as a mediational tool for classroom activity and communications. The study explored the classroom assessment infrastructures created by three teachers involved in the Learning through Collaborative Visualization (CoVis) Project from 1993--94 to 1995--96. Each of the three teachers under study either created a new course or radically reformulated an old one in an effort to incorporate project-based science pedagogy and supporting technologies. Data in the form of interviews, classroom observations, surveys, student work, and teacher records was collected. From these data, an interpretive case study was developed for each course and its accompanying assessment infrastructure. A set of cross-case analyses was also constructed, based upon common themes that emerged from all three cases. These themes included: the assessment challenges based on the nature of project activity, the role of technology in the teachers' assessment infrastructure designs, and the influence of the wider assessment infrastructure on their course and assessment designs. In combination, the case studies and cross-case analyses describe the synergistic relationship between the design of pedagogical reforms and classroom assessment infrastructures, as well as the effectiveness of all three assessment designs. This work contributes to research

  1. Science Supports Education: The Behavioral Research Base for Psychology's Top 20 Principles for Enhancing Teaching and Learning (United States)

    Lucariello, Joan M.; Nastasi, Bonnie K.; Anderman, Eric M.; Dwyer, Carol; Ormiston, Heather; Skiba, Russell


    Psychological science has much to contribute to preK-12 education because substantial psychological research exists on the processes of learning, teaching, motivation, classroom management, social interaction, communication, and assessment. This article details the psychological science that led to the identification, by the American Psychological…

  2. A cultural study of a science classroom and graphing calculator-based technology (United States)

    Casey, Dennis Alan

    Social, political, and technological events of the past two decades have had considerable bearing on science education. While sociological studies of scientists at work have seriously questioned traditional histories of science, national and state educational systemic reform initiatives have been enacted, stressing standards and accountability. Recently, powerful instructional technologies have become part of the landscape of the classroom. One example, graphing calculator-based technology, has found its way from commercial and domestic applications into the pedagogy of science and math education. The purpose of this study was to investigate the culture of an "alternative" science classroom and how it functions with graphing calculator-based technology. Using ethnographic methods, a case study of one secondary, team-taught, Environmental/Physical Science (EPS) classroom was conducted. Nearly half of the 23 students were identified as students with special education needs. Over a four-month period, field data was gathered from written observations, videotaped interactions, audio taped interviews, and document analyses to determine how technology was used and what meaning it had for the participants. Analysis indicated that the technology helped to keep students from getting frustrated with handling data and graphs. In a relatively short period of time, students were able to gather data, produce graphs, and to use inscriptions in meaningful classroom discussions. In addition, teachers used the technology as a means to involve and motivate students to want to learn science. By employing pedagogical skills and by utilizing a technology that might not otherwise be readily available to these students, an environment of appreciation, trust, and respect was fostered. Further, the use of technology by these teachers served to expand students' social capital---the benefits that come from an individual's social contacts, social skills, and social resources.

  3. Flipped Instruction in a High School Science Classroom (United States)

    Leo, Jonathan; Puzio, Kelly


    This paper reports on a quasi-experimental study examining the effectiveness of flipped instruction in a 9th grade biology classroom. This study included four sections of freshmen-level biology taught by the first author at a private secondary school in the Pacific Northwest. Using a block randomized design, two sections were flipped and two remained traditional. The quiz and posttest data were adjusted for pretest differences using ANCOVA. The results suggest that flipped instruction had a positive effect student achievement, with effect sizes ranging from +0.16 to +0.44. In addition, some students reported that they preferred watching video lectures outside of class and appreciated more active approaches to learning.

  4. Improving Student Writing: Methods You Can Use in Science and Engineering Classrooms (United States)

    Hitt, S. J.; Bright, K.


    Many educators in the fields of science and engineering assure their students that writing is an important and necessary part of their work. According to David Lindsay, in Scientific Writing=Thinking in Words, 99% of scientists agree that writing is an integral part of their jobs. However, only 5% of those same scientists have ever had formal instruction in scientific writing, and those who are also educators may then feel unconfident in teaching this skill to their students (2). Additionally, making time for writing instruction in courses that are already full of technical content can cause it to be hastily and/or peremptorily included. These situations may be some of the contributing factors to the prevailing attitude of frustration that pervades the conversation about writing in science and engineering classrooms. This presentation provides a summary of past, present, and ongoing Writing Center research on effective writing tutoring in order to give science and engineering educators integrated approaches for working with student writers in their disciplines. From creating assignments, providing instruction, guiding revisions, facilitating peer review, and using assessments, we offer a comprehensive approach to getting your students motivated to improve their writing. Our new research study focuses on developing student writing resources and support in science and engineering institutions, with the goal of utilizing cross-disciplinary knowledge that can be used by the various constituencies responsible for improving the effectiveness of writing among student engineers and scientists. We will will draw upon recent findings in the study of the rhetoric and compositional pedagogy and apply them to the specific needs of the science and engineering classroom. The fields of communication, journalism, social sciences, rhetoric, technical writing, and philosophy of science have begun to integrate these findings into classroom practice, and we will show how these can also

  5. Mapping classroom experiences through the eyes of enlace students: The development of science literate identities (United States)

    Oemig, Paulo Andreas

    The culture of a science classroom favors a particular speech community, thus membership requires students becoming bilingual and bicultural at the same time. The complexity of learning science rests in that it not only possesses a unique lexicon and discourse, but it ultimately entails a way of knowing. My dissertation examined the academic engagement and perceptions of a group (N=30) of high school students regarding their science literate practices. These students were participating in an Engaging Latino Communities for Education (ENLACE) program whose purpose is to increase Latino high school graduation rates and assist them with college entrance requirements. At the time of the study, 19 students were enrolled in different science classes to fulfill the science requirements for graduation. The primary research question: What kind of science classroom learning environment supports science literate identities for Latino/a students? was addressed through a convergent parallel mixed research design (Creswell & Plano Clark, 2011). Over the course of an academic semester I interviewed all 30 students arranged in focus groups and observed in their science classes. ENLACE students expressed interest in science when it was taught through hands-on activities or experiments. Students also stressed the importance of having teachers who made an effort to get to know them as persons and not just as students. Students felt more engaged in science when they perceived their teachers respected them for their experiences and knowledge. Findings strongly suggest students will be more interested in science when they have opportunities to learn through contextualized practices. Science literate identities can be promoted when inquiry serves as a vehicle for students to engage in the language of the discipline in all its modalities. Inquiry-based activities, when carefully planned and implemented, can provide meaningful spaces for students to construct knowledge, evaluate claims

  6. Crowd-Sourcing with K-12 citizen scientists: The Continuing Evolution of the GLOBE Program (United States)

    Murphy, T.; Wegner, K.; Andersen, T. J.


    Twenty years ago, the Internet was still in its infancy, citizen science was a relatively unknown term, and the idea of a global citizen science database was unheard of. Then the Global Learning and Observations to Benefit the Environment (GLOBE) Program was proposed and this all changed. GLOBE was one of the first K-12 citizen science programs on a global scale. An initial large scale ramp-up of the program was followed by the establishment of a network of partners in countries and within the U.S. Now in the 21st century, the program has over 50 protocols in atmosphere, biosphere, hydrosphere and pedosphere, almost 140 million measurements in the database, a visualization system, collaborations with NASA satellite mission scientists (GPM, SMAP) and other scientists, as well as research projects by GLOBE students. As technology changed over the past two decades, it was integrated into the program's outreach efforts to existing and new members with the result that the program now has a strong social media presence. In 2016, a new app was launched which opened up GLOBE and data entry to citizen scientists of all ages. The app is aimed at fresh audiences, beyond the traditional GLOBE K-12 community. Groups targeted included: scouting organizations, museums, 4H, science learning centers, retirement communities, etc. to broaden participation in the program and increase the number of data available to students and scientists. Through the 20 years of GLOBE, lessons have been learned about changing the management of this type of large-scale program, the use of technology to enhance and improve the experience for members, and increasing community involvement in the program.

  7. Marshalling Corporate Resources for Public and K-12 Technical Education Outreach and Engagement (United States)

    Wynne, James


    In 1988, the Education Task Force of the Business Roundtable recommended that American corporations invest in pre-college education. Prior to that date, corporate investment was targeted at higher education. IBM and other corporations responded by encouraging their employees and their corporate philanthropic organizations to develop programs aimed at enhancing pre-college education. The IBM TJ Watson Research Center initiated a Local Education Outreach program, active for these past 23 years, that marshals the resources of our science-rich institution to enhance STEM education in our local schools. We have broad and deep partnerships between the Research Center and local school districts, including New York City. We have just completed our 19th consecutive year of Family Science Saturdays, which brings 4th and 5th grade children, along with their parents, to our Research Center for hands-on workshops in topics like States of Matter, Polymer Science, Kitchen Chemistry, and Sound and Light. The workshops are staffed by IBM volunteers, assisted by local high school student ``Peer Teachers.'' Since 1990, the IBM Corporation has joined with a coalition of other companies, professional engineering societies, and government agencies to sponsor the annual Engineers Week (EWeek) campaign of technical education outreach, serving as Corporate Chair in 1992, 2001, and 2008. In recent years, we have annually recruited around 5000 IBM volunteers to reach out to more than 200,000 K-12 students in order to increase their awareness and appreciation of technical careers and encourage them to continue their studies of STEM (science, technology, engineering, and mathematics). The speaker, who helped found the APS Forum on Education (FED) and served as FED Councillor for 8 years, will review these and other programs for Public and K-12 Technical Education Outreach and Engagement.

  8. NITARP: Bridging the Gap Between the Traditional Science Classroom and Authentic Research (United States)

    Stalnaker, Olivia K.; Evans, Sam; Rutherford, Thomas; Taylor, John; Rebull, Luisa


    In this poster, the differences between what occurs in the traditional secondary science classroom and what happens in the actual research world is examined. Secondary classroom teachers generally have limited, if any, research experience beyond what is presented through their undergraduate college lab coursework. A disparity exists between classroom laboratory work and professional research. Opportunities like NITARP provide research elements that bridge this gap. NITARP teams are in a unique situation, joining a small team working alongside Caltech researchers on cutting edge investigations in astrophysics. In this poster it is shown how the NITARP program provides key components and experiences to expand the skill sets that teachers bring to their classrooms, bridging the gap between the typical secondary classroom and the world of the professional researcher. The NASA/IPAC program immerses participating teachers into a year-long training experience via online and face-to-face learning that translates into enhanced instruction at the secondary level. This work was made possible through the NASA/IPAC Teacher Archive Research Program (NITARP) and was funded by NASA Astrophysics Data Program.

  9. Students' Perceptions and Emotions Toward Learning in a Flipped General Science Classroom (United States)

    Jeong, Jin Su; González-Gómez, David; Cañada-Cañada, Florentina


    Recently, the inverted instruction methodologies are gaining attentions in higher educations by claiming that flipping the classroom engages more effectively students with the learning process. Besides, students' perceptions and emotions involved in their learning process must be assessed in order to gauge the usability of this relatively new instruction methodology, since it is vital in the educational formation. For this reason, this study intends to evaluate the students' perceptions and emotions when a flipped classroom setting is used as instruction methodology. This research was conducted in a general science course, sophomore of the Primary Education bachelor degree in the Training Teaching School of the University of Extremadura (Spain). The results show that the students have the overall positive perceptions to a flipped classroom setting. Particularly, over 80 % of them considered that the course was a valuable learning experience. They also found this course more interactive and were willing to have more courses following a flipped model. According to the students' emotions toward a flipped classroom course, the highest scores were given to the positive emotions, being fun and enthusiasm along with keyword frequency test. Then, the lowest scores were corresponded to negative emotions, being boredom and fear. Therefore, the students attending to a flipped course demonstrated to have more positive and less negative emotions. The results obtained in this study allow drawing a promising tendency about the students' perceptions and emotions toward the flipped classroom methodology and will contribute to fully frame this relatively new instruction methodology.

  10. Translanguaging in a middle school science classroom: Constructing scientific arguments in English and Spanish (United States)

    Licona, Peter R.

    This dissertation investigates translanguaging in an English/Spanish dual language middle school science classroom as the teacher and students worked through a curriculum unit focusing on socioscientific issues and implementing a scientific argumentation framework. Translanguaging is the process in which bilingual speakers fluidly and dynamically draw from their full linguistic repertoire to perform a communicative act. Using ethnographically informed data collection in conjunction with discourse analysis, teacher translanguaging was examined for its related functions in the science classroom and how teacher translanguaging afforded opportunities for framing and supporting scientific argumentation. Results suggest that the functions of teacher translanguaging fell into three main themes: maintaining classroom culture, facilitating the academic task, and framing epistemic practices. Of the three categories of translanguaging, framing epistemic practices proved to be of paramount importance in the teacher presenting and supporting the practice of scientific argumentation. Implications from this study are relevant for pre-service science teacher preparation and in-service science teacher professional development for teachers working with emergent bilingual students.

  11. Historical short stories as nature of science instruction in secondary science classrooms: Science teachers' implementation and students' reactions (United States)

    Reid-Smith, Jennifer Ann

    a science-related career. If NOS instructional materials are to be used effectively, designers must take into account the needs of classroom teachers by limiting the length of the materials and providing additional teacher support resources. Many teachers will likely require professional development opportunities to build their NOS understanding, develop a compelling rationale for teaching NOS and using the stories, observe modeling of effective implementation, and collaborate with other teachers regarding how to mitigate constraints.

  12. Middle school girls: Experiences in a place-based education science classroom (United States)

    Shea, Charlene K.

    The middle school years are a crucial time when girls' science interest and participation decrease (Barton, Tan, O'Neill, Bautista-Guerra, & Brecklin, 2013). The purpose of this study was to examine the experiences of middle school girls and their teacher in an eighth grade place-based education (PBE) science classroom. PBE strives to increase student recognition of the importance of educational concepts by reducing the disconnection between education and community (Gruenewald, 2008; Smith, 2007; Sobel, 2004). The current study provides two unique voices---the teacher and her students. I describe how this teacher and her students perceived PBE science instruction impacting the girls' participation in science and their willingness to pursue advanced science classes and science careers. The data were collected during the last three months of the girls' last year of middle school by utilizing observations, interviews and artifacts of the teacher and her female students in their eighth grade PBE science class. The findings reveal how PBE strategies, including the co-creation of science curriculum, can encourage girls' willingness to participate in advanced science education and pursue science careers. The implications of these findings support the use of PBE curricular strategies to encourage middle school girls to participate in advance science courses and science careers.

  13. Advancing climate literacy in Idaho K-12 schools using STEM education approaches, open source electronics, and Maker culture as vehicles for teacher training (United States)

    Flores, A. N.; Gelb, L.; Watson, K. A.; Steimke, A.; Chang, C.; Busche, C.; Breidenbach, J.


    A climate literate citizenry is essential to the long-term success of climate change adaptation and to enhancing resilience of communities to climate change impacts. In support of a National Science Foundation CAREER award, we developed a teacher training workshop on a project that engages students in creating functioning, low-cost weather stations using open source electronics. The workshop aims to improve climate literacy among K-12 students while providing an authentic opportunity to acquire and hone STEM skills. Each station measures temperature, humidity, barometric pressure, light level, soil moisture, and precipitation occurrence. Our day-long workshop focuses on three elements: (1) providing context on the scientific importance of climate observation, (2) equipping teachers with technical skills needed to assemble and use a station from provided components, and (3) highlighting relevant educational standards met by the weather station activities. The workshop was attended by twelve 4th-9th grade teachers from southwest Idaho, all of whom teach at rural and/or Title I schools. Attendees reported having minimal or no previous experience with open source electronics, but all were able to effectively use their weather station with less than two hours of hands-on training. In written and oral post-workshop reflections teachers expressed a strong desire to integrate these activities into classrooms, but also revealed barriers associated with rigid curricular constraints and risk-averse administrators. Continued evolution of the workshop will focus on: (1) extending the duration and exploratory depth of the workshop, (2) refining pre- and post-assessments and performing longitudinal monitoring of teacher participants to measure short- and long-term efficacy of the workshop, and (3) partnering with colleagues to engage school district administrators in dialog on how to integrate authentic activities like this one into K-12 curriculum.

  14. Cultural politics: Linguistic identity and its role as gatekeeper in the science classroom (United States)

    Hilton-Brown, Bryan Anthony

    This dissertation investigated how participation in the cultural practices of science classrooms creates intrapersonal conflict for ethnic minority students. Grounded in research perspectives of cultural anthropology, sociocultural studies of science education, and critical pedagogy, this study examined the cultural tensions encountered by minority students as they assimilate into the culture of the science classroom. Classroom interaction was viewed from the perspective of instructional congruence---the active incorporation of students' culture into science pedagogy. Ogbu's notion of "oppositional identity", Fordham's "fictive kinship", Bahktin's "antidialogics", and Freire's "critical consciousness" were brought together to examine how members of marginalized cultures develop non-normative behaviors as a means of cultural resistance. Choice of genre for public discourse was seen as a political act, representing students' own cultural affiliations. Conducted in a diverse Southern Californian high school with an annual population of over 3,900 students, this study merged ethnographic research, action research, and sociolinguistic discourse analysis. Post hoc analysis of videotaped classroom activities, focus group interviews, and samples of student work revealed students' discursive behavior to shift as a product of the context of their discursive exchanges. In whole class discussions students explained their understanding of complex phenomena to classmates, while in small group discussions they favored brief exchanges of group data. Four domains of discursive identities were identified: Opposition Status, Maintenance Status, Incorporation Status, and Proficiency Status. Students demonstrating Opposition Status avoided use of science discourse. Those students who demonstrated Maintenance Status were committed to maintaining their own discursive behavior. Incorporation Status students were characterized by an active attempt to incorporate science discourse into

  15. Investigating the Potential of MOOCs in K-12 Teaching and Learning Environments (United States)

    Nigh, Jennifer; Pytash, Kristine E.; Ferdig, Richard E.; Merchant, William


    The massive open online course (MOOC) is a relatively new concept in K-12 teaching and learning environments. Although significant work has been done with MOOCs since 2008, it has only been recently that MOOCs have been studied with K-12 populations. The purpose of this study was to further examine the motivation of K-12 students enrolled in a…

  16. Interview with Joe Freidhoff: A Bird's-Eye View of K-12 Online Learning (United States)

    Pourreau, Leslie


    The intent of this article is to introduce long-time "Online Learning" readership to the field of K-12 online learning while also providing direction for the K-12 online learning scholars about where the field is going or should be going in terms of meeting the needs of K-12 stakeholders. Recently an interview was conducted with Dr. Joe…

  17. Harnessing Technology to Improve K-12 Education. Discussion Paper 2012-05 (United States)

    Chatterji, Aaron; Jones, Benjamin


    Technological progress has consistently driven remarkable advances in the U.S. economy, yet K-12 education sees little technological change compared to other sectors, even as U.S. K-12 students increasingly lag behind students in other nations. This proposal considers how we can take a signature American strength--innovation--and apply it to K-12

  18. K-12 Education Nonprofit Employees' Perceptions of Strategies for Recruiting and Retaining Employees (United States)

    Byrne, Tara Marie


    This qualitative study explored the key reasons individuals who work in K-12 education nonprofit organizations enter the field of K-12 nonprofit education and their motivations for doing so. The purpose of this study was to find new strategies for recruiting and retaining K-12 education nonprofit employees by examining the obstacles that exist to…

  19. Using WebQuests in the Social Sciences Classroom (United States)

    Kachina, Olga A.


    This article investigates if WebQuests have been an effective instructional tool for teaching Social Sciences subjects. In order to obtain an answer to this question, a review of scholarly literature from 1995 to the present has been undertaken and action research in 8th grade U.S. history course was conducted. The literature investigation has…

  20. Supporting and Thwarting Autonomy in the High School Science Classroom (United States)

    Patall, Erika A.; Vasquez, Ariana C.; Steingut, Rebecca R.; Trimble, Scott S.; Pituch, Keenan A.


    This investigation examined relations between adolescent students' daily and cumulative perceptions of teachers' practice and their experience of autonomy. Two-hundred and eighteen high school science students in 43 classes participated in a 6-week diary study. Multilevel modeling results suggested that perceptions of 8 out of 9 practices…