Emerging science and technology has the power to excite teachers and their students. Couple increased content knowledge with access to diverse STEM professionals and low-cost relevant hands-on learning activities, and educators have the opportunity to engage their students with cutting-edge research and technology while exposing them to the wonder of the Department of Energy’s (DOE) National Laboratories. Through our STEM Mentoring Cafés and Girls of Energy e-book and website, we act as a conduit to inclusive STEM exposure of our singular assets at DOE.
Science teachers represent an essential ally in the fight against extinction so we created our Teacher Workshops in Conservation Science to engage teachers in relevant laboratory and field-based experiences, as well as prepare them for the role of facilitator in the open inquiry process and how to effectively engage their students in the creation of original questions and methods for answering them. To date, more than 900 teachers from all 50 states and six countries have engaged with our workshop curriculum, gaining innovative skills and new contexts to bring science disciplines to life in their classrooms.
Research has shown that the cultivating of communities of practice is a successful strategy for creating, sharing, and applying knowledge in the business sector. This session will share how the COP strategy has been leveraged successfully in the education sector with 61 Arizona schools. It will describe the processes for establishing cross-stakeholder school teams and bringing them together for a series of meetings to network and both design and share solutions to challenges in STEM education related to funding, obtaining quality curriculum and resources, and engaging with STEM industry.
The NGSS science practice standards emphasize the importance of “doing” science, but the National Academy of Science report that it lacks strategies for achieving these outcomes. To address this, Battelle, the world’s largest nonprofit research and development organization, has partnered with the Literacy Design Collaborative to create LDC Science, a free tool to facilitate “doing” science in the classroom while fulfilling state assessment standards. This session will feature preliminary outcomes from the approach, as well as a demonstration of LDC Science’s instructional resources that help teachers of all backgrounds bring experiential learning opportunities to their students through design challenges and disciplinary literacy.