TEA Banner
TEA Activities Workshop
11 to 18 July 1999
American Museum of Natural History

Peter Amati, Holliston High School, Holliston, Massachusetts
Fred Atwood, Flint Hill School, Oakton, Virginia
Elke Bergholz, United Nations International School, New York, New York
Kristen Bjork, EDC, Newton, Massachusetts
Sue Bowman, Lebanon High School, Lebanon, Pennsylvania
Arlene Cain, Sam Houston High School, Lake Charles, Louisiana
Timothy Conner, Chenango Forks Central School, Binghamton, New York
Tom Cuddy, AMNH, New York, New York
Besse Dawson, Pearland High School, Pearland, Texas
Nancy Hechinger, AMNH, New York, New York
Willow Johnson, AMNH, New York, New York
Rebecca Katz, AMNH, New York, New York
Sandra Kolb, Poulsbo, Washington
Maritza MacDonald, AMNH, New York, New York
Debra Meese, CRREL, Hanover, New Hampshire
Pat McGlashan, Stony Creek, Connecticut
Caroline Nobel, AMNH, New York, New York
Ellen Przybyla, AMNH, New York, New York
Larry Rose, , Pleasanton Middle School, Pleasanton, California
Stephanie Shipp, AMNH, New York, New York
Barbara Schulz, Lakeside School, Seattle, Washington
Steve Stevenoski, Lincoln High School, Wisconsin Rapids, Wisconsin
Wayne Sukow, NSF, Arlington, Virginia
Rolf Tremblay, Goodman Middle School, Gig Harbor, Washington
Hillary Tulley, Niles North High School, Skokie, Illinois
Linda Wygoda, Sam Houston High School, Lake Charles, Louisiana

Objectives of the TEA Activities Workshop:
Create on-line activities that translate the personal and research experience into the classroom such that students undertake classroom investigations that reflect the process of the field investigation.

TEA is a research and professional development experience. Parcticipants travel to remote polar places and experience the excitement and monotony of science first hand, in depth. The classroom activities created by TEAs help to share these personal and research experiences with other teachers and students.

What Paths Do We Take to Meet the Objectives:
  • Determine areas of need for TEA activity development
  • Share ideas (drafts) for new activities to get group input
  • Develop activities for inclusion on the TEA Web site (two per parcticipant)
  • Review / revise activities under development and on the Web site

  • Welcome
    The first day began with a welcome by Nancy Hechinger, Director of the National Center for Science Literacy, Education, and Technology at the American Museum. Nancy emphasized the strong connections between the Museum and educators; both are working to share the love and excitement of science with the public. A collaboration, through research experiences like TEA, in which the Museum serves as a "homebase" and living resource, appears to be a desirable and natural relationship.

    Attributes of TEA Activities
    A brief discussion revisited "what makes a TEA activity a TEA activity and not something else?" What are the attributes of a TEA activity?

    From the 1998 TEA Workshop: "…..TEA activities are hands-on and inquiry-based. They infuse the personal and research experience into the classroom. They reflect accurate and current science, and effectively integrate other disciplines where possible. They help teachers become comfortable with facilitating research in the classroom. These are activities to remember; they mirror the wonder, awe, and joy of exploration….."

    There is strong similarity between the list of activity attributes discussed by the 1998 and those detailed by the 1999 workshop parcticipants (which is comforting!). As described by the 1999 parcticipants, TEA activities:
  • are hands-on
  • involve inquiry and student driven investigation (student questions)
  • are interdisciplinary (not just science)
  • reflect the National Science Education Standards
  • help any teacher use them - passive professional development
    through good teaching strategies and strong content
    (background is important)

  • allow flexibility in teaching settings and content
  • provide students assessments - for teachers and students
  • are interactive and visually exciting
  • use technology meaningfully

  • showcase how real science is done
  • focus on scientific process as a student tool
  • bring relevance of science to the foreground
  • use the polar environment as a vehicle to teach core curriculum
  • examine connections between systems
  • underscore the drama and history of exploration

  • get real researchers into the classroom (virtually)
  • strengthen communication between education and scientific communities
  • reflect on-going researcher-educator collaboration

  • TEA Author Prompts Template
    An even briefer discussion touched on the author prompts for the TEA template. In general, there was consensus for leaving the template in its original form, provided there was some flexibility in its interpretation and use. The template headers serve as reminders to needed components and the use of the template provides consistency in presentation and a comfort level through familiarity for audience use. The template usefulness and components were revisited at the close of the workshop (see evaluation section).

    Activity Presentations
    The remainder of the day, and the first half of the second day focused on presentations and discussion of proposed activities by the workshop parcticipants. Key questions focused on:
  • how can we leverage desirable TEA activity attributes?
  • can a non-TEA teacher actually comfortably implement the activity in the classroom?
  • Activities are described in more detail below.

    Reflection on Inquiry
    Maritza MacDonald led a discussion that focused on the process of investigation. How do you get students to ask meaningful questions?

    What questions did TEA parcticipants have when they went into the field? What questions emerged through time as you conducted your research? What are their re-framed questions now?

    This is the process we hope students experience: questioning, seeking evidence, refining questions. How will we create/support this learning environment?

    When creating activities, we should think of four arenas:
  • Why are we doing the research?
  • Who is our audience?
  • What do we want the audience to know (content)?
  • How will we provide the information (content and implementation strategies)?

  • Think in terms of four components - and these four components are common to the research experience:
  • Grab the attention of the students with topics, to help them identify their questions (=Why).
  • Practice asking questions - help students to refine questions as they define ways of answering them. What makes a project practical? What makes it successful? Perhaps help the student contact a specialist.
  • How are the students going to get an answer? measurement, instrumentation, observation, data analysis.
  • Assessment comes out of methodology.

  • Comments by Curriculum Specialists

    Pat McGlashan:
  • TEAs are amazing, excited, enthusiastic, teachers with unique experiences and a depth of knowledge to share these. In reference to cooperative learning groups, this IS a cooperative learning group.
  • Suggestions are specific, and focus on ideas and comments generated over the day of presentations.
  • Please consider:
  • the template may be too ponderous.
  • perhaps combine background and rationales.
  • make the objectives a short list of bullets.
  • science standards are important, but not crucial to the implementation of the activity; place last in the template.
  • move the background to the front - provide the teacher with the content tools.
  • have a descriptive title so that others know what to expect (or a subtitle).
  • It is best to be as specific as possible about the grade level (e.g., 7/8, adaptable to 6 through 9, general biology). Middle school and high school students are different people. A well written, focused activity can be adapted by a teacher.
  • Please be as specific as possible when listing materials. These can be a big stumbling block. List the price, location, and alternatives if available.
  • Try to keep the number of assumptions at a minimum. A rule of thumb, assume no experience with these topics for elementary school students; assume minimal for the middle/high school students.
  • A few aspects that need to be brought into each activity:
  • more hands-on work is needed.
  • place the student in the role of problem-solver.
  • what needs to be measured?
  • what instruments are needed?
  • have the students manipulate data.
  • connections to local environment - why should the students care about what is happening in the polar regions?
  • connections to other classrooms, if possible.
  • Consider organizing the activities by categories. Perhaps a searchable database of topic, skills, standards, time required, grade level. This may lead to a more coherent curriculum approach in the future.
  • Establish your credibility as a writer; you experienced this project and are able to share it better than anyone else.
  • Share your stories through background and the activity. Use your experience to inspire others to use the materials.
  • The activities vary tremendously in terms of style - from friendly to more formal. Consider making use of an editor to provide a more consistent voice. Perhaps keep the personal passion, but place the "cookbook" components in the same tone (e.g., procedure, objectives, science standards, etc.).
  • Kristen Bjork
    Kristen's and Pat's ideas were fairly parallel.

    Additional points:
  • Always, always provide context for other teachers and students. WHY should a student do this? Why should they be interested? This is crucial because it gives kids "buy-in" - THEY make it part of their own learning rather than being told to do it.
  • Be sure to bring out the stories; this is what makes TEA activities engaging, fun, exciting.
  • Teachers may need more background than usual to carry through with these activities; provide solid information.
  • Include possible student input, teacher tips, and answers to questions you pose.
  • Infuse what you have learned about research AND about teaching - this gets back to the passive professional development. These should be model activities (e.g., how have you initiated good student questions in your class?).

  • Activities
    Peter Amati
    Freezing Saltwater
    In this activity students will investigate the migration of road salt (from road's edge into a distance of six meters) following its application during a snow storm and the subsequent plowing of the roads.

    Where Have All the Road Salts Gone, Long Time Migrating
    In this activity students will investigate what happens to salt water when it freezes. Observations of densities and salt concentration (by measuring conductivity) will be made. These results will be compared with the densities and conductivity conditions found in sea ice cores (columns of frozen sea water taken from the ocean around Antarctica).

    Fred Atwood
    The Effect of Cold on Characteristics Important to Fishes
    In this activity students work in groups to design experiments to test the effects of cold on rate of diffusion, enzyme activity, nerve activity, dissolved oxygen, blood flow characteristics and lipid characteristics. After each group's plan is approved by the teacher, the group performs their experiment and reports their results to the rest of the class for class discussion.

    Fish Anatomy: A Comparison between Temperate and Antarctic Fishes
    In this activity students will dissect a fish purchased from a fish market to study its external and internal anatomy. They will observe its gills, kidney?, and blood in the microscope and will take a variety of measurements about many of the internal organs. They will practice their observation skills by making accurate illustrations. Then these data and drawings will be compared with some Antarctic fishes from the family Notothenidae in order to direct a discussion on morphological adaptations for survival in polar seas.

    Adaptations of Fishes for Survival in Polar Environments
    In this set of activities students compare the anatomy of temperate and polar fishes and discuss reasons for the differences. They learn about the adverse effects of cold on metabolism and physiology and discuss how polar fishes are adapted to circumvent these effects. They learn about the effects of salt and antifreeze on the freezing point of water and they apply this knowledge to polar fish adaptations enabling them to survive at -1.9 C. They compare the DNA sequences of unrelated Arctic and Antarctic fish, look at their phylogenetic tree, and discuss convergent evolution. They learn about the specialized chloride cells in the gills of fish that enable them to control the salt concentrations of their body fluids so they don't freeze and they brainstorm ways to study the effect of temperature on these chloride cells. Then they discuss actual data from experiments performed in Antarctica and try to draw conclusions from the data and propose additional questions for investigation.

    Elke Bergholz
    South Pole, Antarctica, Ozone and Temperature Data Analysis
    Students will analyze and plot ozone and temperature data collected at the Amundsen-Scott South Pole Station during January and February, 1999 , October 1998, October 1967, make annual and seasonal comparison of ozone data, become familiar with the distribution and correlation of ozone and temperature in the atmosphere from 0 to 35 kilometers, and study the chemistry of the ozone layer and its depletion, and became familiar with the nature of the ozone hole over Antarctica.

    Sue Bowman
    Amanda Links
    Temperature change with depth in an ice sheet. Ice sheet movement. (In Progress)

    Arlene Cain
    Determining the Wavelength of Light - A light sensor will allow the student to collect light intensity measurements as the distance of the light source varies. The students will investigate the relationship between light intensity and distance and make conclusions about this relationship.

    Investigating Spectrophotometric Relationships
    This activity will introduce students to the concepts of intensity, absorbance, and transmittance of electromagnetic radiation in the visible region. A study of the visible region directly relates to other sections of the electromagnetic spectrum. The students will use a light sensor, pen light, sunglass lenses or colored filters, graphing calculator and CBL.

    Determining the Wavelength of Light
    This activity will introduce students to the electromagnetic spectrum through examination of the visible regions of the spectrum which directly relates to other sections of the electromagnetic spectrum. The students will use a diffraction grating, a straight filament light source, and meter sticks to calculate the wavelength of different colors of the visible spectrum.

    Timothy Conner
    Who Lived Here? (place-holder title)
    In this on-line activity students examine data collected at a dig in the Arctic to decipher the history of cultural occupation. Taking into account artifacts, archaeological structures, and geological information, students reconstruct the lives and environments of those who occupied the site.

    Besse Dawson
    What's in a Name?
    These two activities introduce students to scientific taxonomy and using, as well as creating, dichotomous keys. The first activity models the dichotomous key by having the students determine the identity of polar species of the Order Pinnipedia. The second activity brings a bit of the background in how scientific naming is done and leads the students into creating penguin Families based on physical characteristics. The students create the Family names using provided Latin and Greek root words as "building blocks" toward names that describe the family members.

    Grant Proposal
    This activity is designed to help students experience the creativity, anticipation, and peer review of obtaining a grant for scientific research at the poles by guiding them through the process in a step-by-step manner.

    Sandra Kolb
    Nutrition Expedition
    Students investigate nutritional requirements for intense physical exercise under extremely cold conditions. They plan a nutritionally correct menu for their body weight and nutritional requirements as if planning for their own expedition.

    Skinny Regions
    In this activity students will use the Internet to investigate and compare/contrast body weights at the S. Pole to different regions around the world (N. Pole, Equator, Seattle, etc.).

    Today's Forecast: Graphing Temperature Data (Revision)
    In this activity students use Internet skills to find local and Antarctic weather data. They record the data, assemble it in a logical order, graph it, and interpret the graphed information.

    Larry Rose
    Why Amundsen Killed His Dogs; A lesson from the Heroic Age
    Students use Internet, video and text resources to gather information about the Amundsen/Scott "race" for the South Pole in 1911-12, dog sledding, and the ethical treatment of animals for science. Using this information the students set up a debate (:: Resolved: It was right and expedient for Roald Amundsen to use and kill sled dogs to reach his goal.) to determine the efficacy, rightness, wrongness, morality if you will, of the decisions made by Amundsen- to kill his dogs progressively in a pre-determined fashion to provide food and an anti-scorbutic agent for his men and the remaining dogs- and the decisions made by R.F. Scott- to use motorized sledges, Siberian ponies and finally man-hauling for his tragic journey to the Pole.

    The Sheer Beauty of the Place
    Using the TEA diaries from the Glacier Web site, photos and other resources from the web, video and textual sources, students will prepare a poster, a web page, a Powerpoint presentation, or other visual presentation called the "Sheer Beauty of the Place". This is an exercise in esthetics of the pristine wildness and beauty of the polar regions supported by quotations from the TEA daily journals and other resources. It is also supported by student writing especially poetry. Subjects include expression through art and language arts of the role of the scientist, the Glacier Web site fully explored with all Antarctica facts and ideas at the student's disposal.

    Barbara Schulz
    Dissolved Oxygen and Aquatic Net Primary Productivity
    Students will determine the net primary productivity of their stream, pond, or lake using a protocol similar to the required lab activity required in the Advanced Placement Biology curriculum. Students can calculate the amount of carbon captured by photosynthesis by looking at the oxygen production. Students can measure the oxygen consumed by metabolism in a 24-hour period. Students will be able to compare their data to data from the McMurdo Dry Valley LTER data and the data offered in the schoolyard LTER partnership with Lakeside School in Seattle WA and the Tuscaloosa Academy in Tuscaloosa Al. Students can ask questions of their data compared with that from the most pristine ecosystem on the planet that is also in the most extreme environment. on the planet

    Steve Stevenoski
    Seeing the Seafloor Using Sound: Multibeam Sidescan Sonar
    Students will use a motion detector to learn about the how sound waves can be used to "image" objects. They will use the motion probe connected to a computer-type interface to collect reflected sound data in real time to produce a graphical representation of their experimental seafloor. This method serves as a model for how "waves" can be used for non-intrusive imaging of objects. Examples - ultrasound, seismic mapping of the earth, radar imaging, NMR.

    Connecting to the Poles through TEA E-Mail
    In this activity, students examine on-line journals to become familiar with polar research. Based on their readings, students pose questions, research possible answers, and communicate via e-mail with Teachers Experiencing Antarctica and the Arctic parcticipants at the research locations.

    Rolf Tremblay
    The Shape of the Ice: Using Maps to Learn About Antarctic Topography
    Students explore maps to become familiar with features of Antarctica. They are introduced to a topographic map which is used to construct a three-dimensional model of the continent. Students employ these models to investigate the nature of Antarctic ice.

    Hillary Tulley
    The Dating Game: Radioactive Half-Life and Dating Techniques
    In this fun (and edible!) lab using M&M's, students will explore the concepts of radioactive decay and dating. Students generate a radioactive decay table (designed to simplify the math), use their data to plot a decay graph, develop the concept of half-life, and then use the graph to find the age of a mummified seal in Wright Valley Antarctica. In a follow-up exercise, students will solve a mysterious Arctic murder.

    Linda Wygoda
    Measuring Albedo: Using a light probe to determine the percent of the Earth's total incoming solar energy
    Albedo is the fraction of incoming sunlight that is reflected, rather than absorbed by the Earth's atmosphere. Sunlight might be reflected by the surface of the Earth or by clouds. To determine albedo in this activity students will use a light probe that is interfaced to a TI-8* calculator and CBL system. The light probe will be used to measure the incoming radiation from the sun and the reflected radiation from the Earth's surface. Albedo is calculated by dividing the reflected radiation by the incoming radiation and then converting this value to a percent. Students will then consider factors that might affect albedo and design and implement experiments that study these factors. Students will also consider what impact the polar ice sheets have on the radiation budget and research information from the ERBE (Earth Radiation Budget Experiment) from the internet.

    Shoe Box House Design For Different Climates: Using The CBL Probeware System
    In this investigation, students will design, build and test a shoebox house for a parcticular climate system. Students will design their houses based on the physical properties of their materials, the characteristics of their climate system, and with the engineering principle of passive design. Students will test their building materials using the light probe and temperature probes to determine their reflectance and insulating qualities. Students will use the library and the internet to research the climate characteristics for their houses. Finally, students will develop methods of testing their houses, with the goal of developing a house that through a passive design maintains a stable indoor temperature that also meets the needs of the occupants. Students will model the energy budget (energy gains and losses) of their structure using mathematics and diagrams.

    Calculating The Solar Constant Using A TI-8* Calculator/Probeware System
    The major determiner of climate is solar radiation. The amount of solar energy that strikes the Earth is a measurable value that is important in the study of food chains and the radiation budget of climates. The solar input is the amount of power a given cross-sectional area receives from the sun when the sun is directly over that area. To determine the solar input or constant, the amount of heat absorbed by a known mass of water exposed to a known cross-sectional area of sunlight is calculated in this experiment using a graphing calculator/CBL system and temperature probe.

    Investigating Colorimetry
    The amount of light that is absorbed by a colored transparent solution can be used to determine it's concentration. A colorimeter is a device that can measure the amount of absorbance by a solution. Beer's law states that there is a direct relationship between the absorbance and concentration of a solution. We will use the colorimeter to measure the absorbance of known concentrations of a green colored solution and obtain a graph. We will then determine the unknown concentration of the same solution. This activity will introduce students to the use of a colorimeter to establish the relationship between the concentration of a solution and the absorbance of light energy at a parcticular wavelength.

    Wind Chill!!! (Revision)
    In this activity students use a variety of windchill charts to determine how cold the temperature "feels" versus how cold it really is. Students experiment with cooling due to evaporation versus cooling due to evaporation enhanced by wind. Students tie their knowledge of wind chill to understanding the impact of cold and wind in the polar environment and prevention of dangerous conditions

    Overhead Spectroscopy (Revision)
    In this demonstration activity, an overhead projector, diffraction grating and a series of filters are used to introduce the basic concepts of the visible electromagnetic spectrum and the relationship between wavelength and absorption of light. The overhead projector is used to project the spectrum from the diffraction grating on the board or wall. A series of colored filters are used to filter the light passing through the diffraction grating. The affects of the filter on the displayed spectra bands can be observed.


    General Comments
  • Think about what you want this to look like in 6 years? Who will use and how many will use?
  • This has been a wonderful experience for me and I would like to start by thanking you for the opportunity to parcticipate.

  • What did you want to get out of the workshop?
  • Good, solid, sound activities that: 1) fit existing curriculum for required courses - usually chemistry and physics; 2) inquiry based - should allow students to either ask a question or access research data.
  • It looks like more time is needed : ) Two weeks next year?
  • Share ideas and put on paper.
  • Get input from others.
  • Report back on old activities - did they work? Why? Why not?
  • Show new technologies.
  • I really liked how this week was planned and believe there was sufficient time to write two activities. I felt very productive.
  • Thinking, talking, crying, laughing, doing. Spending time connection and reconnecting. Brainstorming for the future. Sharing successes and failures.
  • Seeing the relationships between the TEAs research and their developing, nascent, lessons was great. Like being in the delivery room and huff-breathing. And beaming. Most fun and enlightening are the presentations (slap! waaaaaaahhh!).
  • Activities that are chiefly inquiry-based are completed.
  • Support and advise taken and given from/by peers and others.
  • Opportunity to see new technologies possibly that are integrated into the activities
  • Sharing ideas, access to resources, access to teaching ideas, with other teachers.

  • Start:
  • Find a use for the old guard.
  • Take a broader look as science curriculum.
  • Make a grid (brief handout) and review of what has already been written for TEA such that new folks writing can see where their activity fits into the big picture.
  • Require Web references for teachers.
  • Encourage those just returning from the ice to attend.
  • Plan for dissemination through additional professional meetings.
  • I was hoping for a more organized system of feedback on projects being worked on. It helps to ask questions from other people as we work along but I still feel that after these questions, a group of teachers should get together and constructively criticize each other's activities (groups of 4 or 5?).
  • Time and facilities to test the activities are needed. A CBL should be set up. A wet lab. Glassware, chemicals, dissection tools, etc. Perhaps each teacher should be told to supply a list of what they need to test things or to bring what they need (though this would be difficult if flights are involved.
  • Better communication is needed (i.e., the computer availability).
  • I needed more time to look up Web sites, books, etc. for my activities.
  • A sharing time at the end for people to show their end results.
  • Group the activities by age, grade, discipline, etc.
  • Have both PC and Mac computers available.
  • Have critique of new activities; how do they fit into the template?
  • A room that would be disturbed less by hallway noise and crowds would be helpful.
  • Have Kristen here all week or the last three days.
  • Take notes about the feedback on the activities for the TEA.
  • The first day and a half were frustrating in that I was anxious to dive in and start working. I would suggest beginning with just a brief (5-10 minute) overview of people's activities/ideas. We could start each morning by going around the table and giving a brief update on progress. At this time, people could ask for feedback or suggestions.
  • Evaluate activities in small groups at the start of the workshop - before we give our group presentation. This will give people a chance to more intimately talk about the activities.
  • Require nearly finished or finished works was a great idea. Writing-coaching should start before the workshop so that all that's left to do is major sharing, amplifying, and final polish.
  • Get more PI's involved.
  • Have training on inquiry that matches our template; how do the parts fit our template?
  • Have technology training opportunity.
  • Bigger, continuous blocks of work time.
  • Provide quiet places in case one is as easily distracted as I am.

  • Stop:
  • Making parcticipants work so hard (just kidding) (ha, ha - the management :-) ).
  • Though Maritza and Pat were good, I think we all already were thinking this way. The time may have been better spent working on activities, possibly their expertise could have been more helpful doing what Kristen did.
  • Being where technology is such a problem - need access to technology on need.
  • Quiet area to work.
  • Less food at the meeting.
  • Not much. Things went well. Maybe limit presentations to 20 minutes.
  • I was frustrated with the stop/start of the days. This was a fabulous week and I enjoyed / learned a lot but I was eager to write and I felt thwarted. I think people were computer frustrated.

  • Continue:
  • Bring outline or idea for activity to workshop.
  • Start with parcticipants presenting.
  • Consider what happens as more TEAs go to the same research site (i.e., McMurdo/Dry Valleys) as they try to write new activities.
  • Smiling.
  • Feeding parcticipants.
  • Holding the workshop at interesting locations.
  • Excellent having a technology person to help us novices. Yea Steve!
  • Excellent people with lots of great ideas. Everyone was so willing to share ideas with each other.
  • The break and Shackleton tour were much needed.
  • The group suppers were excellent bonding experiences for people like me who tend to be loners otherwise.
  • Deb, Steph, and Kristen were excellent with wonderful experience to draw on.
  • I also liked the low-key approach. We are all well-driven already and more pressure was not needed. Well done!
  • Bring those who work together.
  • Bring Kristen and Deb to the meeting.
  • Keep Kristen here longer.
  • Keep informal.
  • Keep it demanding but fun.
  • I like the idea of people coming with 2 activity drafts in hand. It's a good and efficient use of time.
  • It was also helpful to receive feedback from the group.
  • I really appreciated the review and feedback of my activity. This feedback was extremely helpful.
  • The water, coffee, tea, and snacks available all day was a real plus when we needed to re-energize and have a brief break - thank you!
  • The library was a great benefit to support our writing.
  • Everything.
  • The location was great. I've really enjoyed New York and the Museum. The facilities were much more deluxe than expected. I hope we didn't break the bank. The leadership and company were superb.
  • Allowing people to work and play during the day and they feel the need.
  • Group events - lunch, dinner.
  • Sharing.
  • Meetings like this.
  • Activities workshops.
  • This is an exciting format in which to exchange ideas - heat what others are doing - share activity procedures that will help illustrate the scientific process.
  • Access to research materials was great!
  • Having Fred's slide show.
  • Camaraderie!
  • Working hard.

  • Views on the Template:
  • I think some of the "E's" can be combined. I combine Explanation and Elaboration into one category. Otherwise I think it is good. Practical. Organized. Logical sequence. Contains everything needed.
  • I personally like the template! I like the way it is a guide through the steps of activity writing. It promotes consistency and provides a more professional component to them. By using a template, pieces will not be overlooked.
  • I think the template worked well with the activities I brought to work on. At times, the teaching sequence helped me organize the process. I can imagine there might be some types of activities that may not fit the template's sequence. But I think that it is flexible and could work in every case if one didn't need to include each step of the teaching sequence.
  • Combine explanation and elaboration in the teaching sequence. The exchange could easily be included in the engagement and exploration. Background might be eliminated and placed in the enhanced version of engagement and exploration.
  • Some portions could be combined. For example: explanation and elaboration could represent one item. Also the order. For example: exchange should come before explanation and elaboration. I am not sure that we need to write scripts for novice teachers. Some activities are for more experienced teachers. My own purpose is "show me a different approach or twist to teach the concepts.
  • Need site for key words (topics) for searching. Put standards at end and add local state standards.
  • Intro, overview, rationale, background - becomes sort of redundant, but I have no suggestions for change. Useful to have a short model to share. Keep the 5 E's.
  • Put background to the back except were it is used as a hook. I see the plain differences between overview and rationale and background; some users do not. Think to combine rationale and background where appropriate, but keep the major parts of the background at the end. Keep the front-end simple and direct and NOT DAUNTING so as to have each lesson be inviting and immediately approachable by ALL teachers. Keep the E's!
  • The template is working fine for me, generally. We could give more specific instruction of what should go in each place. I agree with the suggestion of standards at the end of the document. Background should be "Science Background." Rationale ties into how it relates to polar experience.
  • When I began looking at the activities prior o this workshop, my first response was "jeez - too many notes. Too many words!" As a teacher (busy!) when I look for activities, I want the activity first and the rest of it later. The meat should be first, icing last. Have you gotten feedback from "regular" teachers on this issue? I understand the intent of the template is having us slow down and reflect about teaching. So I guess I'm not complaining about it in general, just the order of the sections. Also - what's the rationale vs. background?

  • And a gigantic
    to all for parcticipating and for working and working and working and working!!!!!

    Back to: TEA Information Front Page