LACTE Science Teacher Leadership Workshop

Participants:       

New teachers from all LACTE institutions and their colleagues from the schools at which they teach were eligible candidates for the Science Teacher Leadership Workshop.

Abstract:            

The Leadership Workshop is a science education project that demonstrates to teachers at every level how to use new tools to stimulate student interest in science.  This week-long summer workshop and its academic year follow-up weekends presented hands-on inquiry-based activities of the life science world to 20 new teachers of science.  College and K-12 faculty from the LACTE project jointly taught the workshop.

Description:

This workshop assisted teachers to learn how to utilize inquiry-based investigations to develop the critical thinking and process skills required of students in the 21st century.  Exciting and fascinating biological organisms were used as a vehicle to explore natural ecosystems, to make observations, to interact in groups, to ask critical questions, to learn how to solve problems, keep records, present results, and evaluate data.  Using a variety of exemplary published curricula and unpublished field-tested activities from a spectrum of innovative educators, teachers, and professional organizations, attendees learned fundamental information about the integration of life science, physical science, mathematics, and technology.  Activities addressed critical areas in ecology, natural environments, energy production and cell development, in a student-age specific manner, consistent with the National Science Education Standards of the National Academy of Sciences and the California Science Content Framework.

Workshop participants received a “New Teachers Tool Kit”, a set of books and materials they can use to enhance science learning in their own classrooms.  They also received a workbook of activities that they have designed during the workshop.

The workshop included a set of academic year follow-up meetings and field trips.  These ongoing activities served a number of purposes:

  1. They provided a forum for the participant teachers to discuss their teaching accomplishments and problems with other project participants and workshop staff.

  2. They helped expand the teachers’ knowledge of local area resources that can be used in their teaching.

  3. They allowed the project staff to address issues that are best understood in the context of one’s own classroom, not in a workshop setting.

Benefits to Participants:

§         Development of a strong network with other new teachers

§         Connections to talented in-service teachers who can serve as advisors and a lifeline

§         Training in inquiry-based teaching

§         Training for development and implementation of lessons

§         Training on classroom management for science teachers

§         Reinforcement of content knowledge

This workshop was developed and coordinated by Dr. Ken Anderson, California State University Los Angeles. 

 

 

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