LSC PROFESSIONAL DEVELOPMENT FOR THE SUMMER OF 1999
BUILDING BRIDGES TO THE FUTURE, MUNCIE, IN
Length of Workshops
We offer sessions of three weeks (for teachers new to inquiry-centered science instruction); two weeks (for teachers designated as leadership teachers and working on their second or third
intensive summer institute with the project); one week (for teachers new to inquiry-centered science instruction); and three days (for teachers wanting work on one specific module).
Number of teachers involved
400 teachers are participating.
Major goals of workshops
Goals for all participants:
Additional goals for participants designated as leadership teachers in each school:
- to learn content which is specific to the exemplary kits adopted as the official science instructional materials at their grade level.
- to experience an inquiryccentered approach to elementary science teaching and to learn how to teach their specific kits using an investigative approach.
Relation of professional development to curricula
- to design a specific personal plan for science education leadership in their school and district during the 1999-2000 academic year, which is based on the current status of the local science teaching system and informed by this summer's study of the National Science Education Standards.
- to develop a deeper understanding of performance-based assessment, which is demonstrated by the design of a total assessment plan for an exemplary science kit which they have previously taught and which they will teach again.
We are offering professional development on specific curricula which have been adopted by our school districts. Most of our professional development is related to STC modules, as they represent the majority of kits adopted by our schools. Some FOSS and INSIGHTS units are also included.
During the summer of 1999, Building Bridges to the Future has
professional development in three different formats:
- For leadership teachers. Members of our Cadre B, who are in their
second or third summer of intensive professional development, meet for
two weeks of institute. (Cadre B teachers, along with their
predecessor Cadre A teachers, are designated leaders in their schools,
who provide workshops and serve as mentors to non-Cadre teachers.)
The institute consists of four strands, each of which meets daily.
Strand 1 is a science content and pedagogy strand based on kits which
have been adopted by our schools. Teachers of grades 4 and 5 are
working with Motion and Design. Teachers of grade 3 are dealing with
Plant Growth and Development. Grade 2 teachers are experiencing the
content of the Changes kit, and Grade 1 teachers are studying weather
in conjunction with the STC Weather module. Strand 2 consists of
study and discussion of the National Science Education Standards.
Strand 3 is a leadership/coaching/mentorship strand in which teachers
meet by school district and each develops a personal plan for
leadership action during the 1999-00 school year. Strand 4 is an
assessment strand in which teachers are grouped by modules that they
have taught and therefore know well. Each module group is developing
a full assessment plan, including pre, post, and embedded assessments
for their module. In addition to employing their module performance
assessment plans in their classes during the academic year, these
teachers will present their plans during hands-on sessions at the
Hoosier Association of Science Teachers annual meeting next February.
- For non-Cadre teachers. One group of non-Cadre teachers who are
new to inquiry-centered science teaching and the use of kits are
meeting for a one-week institute. They are focusing heavily on
content and pedadogy. All participants are working in depth with the
Soils module, including interactions with a scientist-in-residence and
doing individual investigations based on their own authentic
questions. Each teacher is also working on a newly adopted kit at
her/his grade level under the formal daily instruction of a Cadre A or
- For non-Cadre teachers. We have divided our 14 districts into
four geographic regions. Administrators and Cadre A and B teachers
have taken responsibility for organizing 12-hour workshops, generally
over a three-day period, on each of the newly adopted kit modules.
Seventy-eight such workshops are being taught this summer. Teachers
in any of the four districts may take a module class in any of the
other districts, thus allowing for flexibility of scheduling.