In This IssueFrom the Editor: Anne Mannarino
Abstract: This article highlights concerns around African American students in STEM education and examines a unique way to foster resiliency and self-efficacy. The disinterest of many African American towards STEM education is typically a result of key psychological factors (self-efficacy & resiliency) that are not addressed and need to be enhanced. It is important for culturally responsive teaching to be a centerpiece to enhancing an optimal learning experience for all learners, but in particular, students of color. This article examines how culturally responsive teaching can create that optimal STEM learning experience for African American students.
Abstract: Scientific Literacy is an important part of how students can learn science content. This article describes many ways students can be engaged in science and develop into scientific literate learners. Although not all students will pursue scientific fields and use these skills on a daily basis, understanding how to glean information from a text, determine bias, and appropriately use source information are valuable, critical thinking skills across content areas. The research and lessons reviewed in this article give specific guidance for incorporating science reading and writing in the classroom and synthesizes how educators can achieve this.
Abstract: This article describe the activities, events and collaborative efforts for a pilot science summer camp for elementary students. This camp was supported through a National Science Foundation (NSF) Targeted Infusion Grant and represents a joint effort between Virginia State University (VSU), Petersburg Parks and Leisure, and St. Stephen’s Episcopal Church. The purpose of the science camp was to give pre-service elementary education students the chance to implement science activities and to -engage rising 4th and 5th grade students with meaningful educational science experiences. This article will highlight the camp objectives and significance, the camp partnership, pre-service teacher professional development activities, camp activities, and the next steps in planning for the second year of the camp.
Abstract: This article explores the concept of Culturally Responsive Teaching (CRT) and how it relates to teaching STEM classes. It introduces a theoretical model called Ultimate Goal that infuses CRT into STEM across all grade levels. The purpose of this model is to bring about systemic, organizational change and the article explains how the model is used and its implications to embrace CRT into a successful instructional program for minority students.
Abstract: After proctoring many years of examinations, both in my own courses and others, colleagues and I often wondered if the time spent on an examination correlated with the examination grade. Using a final examination with a mid-sized (initially 97 registered students) freshmen level astronomy course, I examined the grades of the students correlated with their turn-in number. I noted no correlation between the turn-in number and the grade achieved on the examination.
Abstract: This article explores the process of using formative assessment data to drive instructional changes in the classroom. It describes the process of using the Fowler assessment and the subsequent curriculum changes made in a second, fourth, and fifth grade science classroom in order to model how assessment for learning can occur.
Abstract: This paper discusses a personal vexation that developed through experiences teaching online science education courses to undergraduate elementary preservice teachers at an urban, Historically Black University; it is often difficult for online instructors to facilitate an experience of connectedness with and between students when teaching an asynchronous online course. This vexation initiated a closer look at research-based recommendation for teaching online that later developed into a venture, a funded grant proposal from the National Science Foundation for using a blended (online and face to face) approach to develop a community of practice (Lave & Wenger, 1991) between urban teachers in high poverty schools, local engineers in the greater Washington D.C area, and, STEM teacher educators. This project explores ways in which the community uses online tools to develop engineering design learning opportunities for diverse middle school students within math and science classrooms.
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