Hammer emphasized that at the elementary level, educators should focus on how students are processing and explaining scientific information, rather than pushing them to generate the “right” answers. With this approach we can truly access the crux of effective science education. “Doing science is about learning how to learn,” he said. “Science is a pursuit. Science is inquiry”. Hammer admits that this approach is a complex one, but it is crucial if educators wish to inspire and support budding scientists.
Overall, educators found the seminar to be thought-provoking, rich with educational resources and an excellent opportunity to network with colleagues in the field. We look forward to seeing participants return in February, March and April!
Professional Development Seminars are designed for staff, volunteers and other professionals from science, environmental, natural history, technology, art, history and other cultural institutions and centers in New England. Seminars are designed as professional development opportunities to provide content and teaching resources as well as networking opportunities for professionals in informal education settings. Each seminar is a full day session. The mornings are spent exploring STEM content areas with scientists, researchers and policy makers. Afternoon sessions are skill-based, focusing on turning real-life science into exciting, inquiry-based, minds-on, hands-on lessons and activities for K-12 students and teachers. The PDS registration fee for participants is $40 per full-day session with discounted fees for attending 3 or more sessions. Interested educators may register online or print out a mail-in registration form at www.mits.org.
MITS is a not-for-profit corporation that collaborates with formal and informal education institutions to provide STEM professional development opportunities for K-12 teachers and non-profit organizations across Massachusetts. Program offerings include week-long graduate level Summer Professional Development Institutes, day-long Professional Development Seminars and Customized School Services. For more information, visit www.mits.org.