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Annual Report Overviews



published: 11/30/2001
posted to site: 11/30/2001


Linda B Mooney; Harrison School District
Science Teacher Enhancement in the Pikes Peak Region (STEP-uP)

Participant Individuals:
CoPrincipal Investigator(s) : Paul J Kuerbis
Other -- specify(s) : Kasie Jones
Senior personnel(s) : Deb Chittenden; Carol Brueggeman; DeLene Hoffner; Cynthia Pechacek; Ingrid Milhauser; Kathy Nall
Other -- specify(s) : Jennifer Belliveau

Partner Organizations:
The Colorado College: Facilities; Personnel Exchanges

The Colorado College is the university partner for STEP-uP. Our lead instructors primarily come from CC faculty. Some of our Tier II courses are head at CC. Our teachers gain graduate credit from CC for $10 per semester hour (a paperwork fee).

Agilent Technologies: In-kind Support; Facilities

Agilent Technologies is the business partner for STEP-uP. Agilent provides our Project Coordinator and secretary with office space and equipment. Agilent provides meeting space and food for our courses. Agilent has provided laptop computers for our Science Resource Teachers.

Activities and findings:

Research and Education Activities:

STEP-uP began May 1, 2000. Activities to date include:

  1. Tier I

    Regional Kit Trainings for new teachers plus Introduction to Kit-based Science

    SRTs are actively mentoring 1st and 2nd year teachers. Several Critical Friends mentoring groups have formed.

    Instructional Strategies courses for new and experienced teacher have been developed in four strands: Integration of Literacy and Science, Integration of Math and Science, Experiences in Inquiry, and Equity/Self-Efficacy

  2. Tier II

    350 teachers have participated in one of four courses: Constancy and Change in Earth Science, Constancy and Change in Life Science, Constancy and Change in Physical Science, and Interdependence in Life Science.

    Each 45-hour course is field-based with 5 days(33 hours) devoted to inquiry-based science content and instructional strategies led by scientists/science educators, SRTs, and classroom teachers.Each course has follow-up study groups (12 hrs.) focused on integrating non-science curricular standards using science as the content core.

    Each teacher receives either 3 semester hours of credit at Colorado College or 3 colorado Department of Education credits.

    Six additional course are planned for the summer of 2001.

    Courses enhancing teacher content knowledge in chemistry and human body are being developed.

  3. Tier III

    Forty teachers were funded fully or partially in the MAT in Integrated Science program at Colorado College. The program consists of three summer institutes (each combining science with pedagogy), academic year seminars, and a master's research paper. The 2000 institute focused on an inquiry into the geology of the front range; 2001 focused on reef biology.

    Six SRTs were selected from the five participating districts. They have participated in team building, Exploratorium acitvities, EDC Investigations, Science Conferences, and Literacy trainings and inhouse PD to prepare them to serve as co-instructors. The SRT mentor teachers and support principals.

    One Science Liaison (SL) from each of the 77 participating schools has been identified. Some have participated as partner facilitators in the Tier II courses.

    A Science Leadership Development in Inquiry finished in September 2001. Each participant will, with mentoring, become an instructor in an instructional strategy course, study group, or kit training as part of the project capacity building. A Leadership Development in Assessment course will begin in January 2002 and is the first step in 'standardizing' embedded assessments.

    Principal support strategies used in other LSCs are being analyzed to find the most effective format and content for our principals.

    Our family component will begin this year with the focus being on training preschool providers in helping families develop science-friendly home environments.

    This vital aspect of sustainability is on target.

    We have made substantial progress in implementing the project. Approximately 70 teachers have already completed their 130 hours of STEP-uP PD. 630 teachers (51% of those eligible) have taken at least one STEP-uP offering.


We have served 630 teachers to date.

We have modified options for the 12-hour study group component in Tier II to include our Tier I Instructional Strategies. Our teacher feedback is extremely positive.

Training and Development:

Opportunities for training and development--Tier I, Tier II, and Tier III as described on previous pages.

STEP-uP strategies for:

  • Deepening teacher's content knowledge Identify lead scientists to design and teach courses that model inquiry

    Emphasis on content within a major theme rather than coverage of scientific facts

    Five of seven class days are devoted to science content and pedagogy.

  • Effective pedagogy and assessment Field-based courses model the IDEA2 and EDC Teaching/Learning Framework.

    Emphasis on questioning strategies, graphing data, graphic organizers, comparing/contrasting

    Emphasis on integrating curricular standards using science as the content core

    Emphasis on using science notebooks in courses and with students

  • Utilizing science kits after initial kit trainings

    12 hours of study group time utilizes analyzing science kis and revising lessons to reflect the science and pedagogical content of the STEP-uP courses

    Teachers identify kit and standard alignment

  • Supporting implementation int he classroom

    Assignments are geared toward implementing kits, questioning, unifying concepts, and standards in the classroom

    Mentoring of classroom teachers

  • SRT support

    Three Science Resource Teachers have participated in the Exploratorium's Institute for Inquiry. One SRT is participating in the Exploratorium's Increasing Inquiry in Kits Seminar.

    Four SRTs participated in the NSTA Convention.

    Six SRTs participated in the CSTA Convention.

    Six SRTs participated in Adult Learning Style training.

    All SRTs participated in a two-day EDC Windmill Investigation.

    All SRTs participated in a two-day Imperial Valley training on use of science notebooks.

    Four SRTs have been trained in Step Up To Writing.

    All SRTs went to the state reading convention.

Outreach Activities:

We have worked with the CEO of the Urban League to increase participaton among minorities.

We are partnering with an Arts Council to promote understanding and connections between the Arts and Sciences.

We have presented at NSTA, NARST, CSTA.

We have conducted a regional meeting for school districts outside of STEP-uP to promote kit-based science.

We have conducted a university/business meeting to promote an understanding of the importance of science at the elementary school.

Journal Publications:

Book(s) of other one-time publications(s):

Other Specific Products:

Categories for which nothing is reported:
Participants: Other Collaborators
Journal Publications
Products: Book or other one-time publication
Products: Other Specific Product
Products: Internet Dissemination
Contributions Within Discipline
Contributions to Other Disciplines
Contributions to Education and Human Resources
Contributions to Resources for Science and Technology
Contributions Beyond Science and Engineering