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Area Teachers Attend Science Workshops at KSC

Leah Kish, a senior majoring in elementary education and general science, helps teachers with a physics problem at a “Teaching Teachers” workshop

Over the next two weeks, about 40 teachers from elementary and middle schools in the Monadnock region will attend free two-day workshops called “Teaching Science” at Keene State College.

Frederick Wolf, professor of physics, and Sally Jean, assistant professor of chemistry and science education, have organized the workshops, which run on consecutive Mondays (May 12 and 19), Tuesdays (May 13 and 20), and Wednesdays (May 14 and 21).

According to Wolf, the workshops are part of Project Inspire, a KSC science education program that is funded by the National Science Foundation. The workshops will offer teachers practical approaches to engaging children in learning about science. In the sessions, teachers will learn how to create hands-on, physical science activities and how to incorporate grade- appropriate, inquiry-based lessons into their curriculum. The teachers will be asked to try these lessons out in class and to discuss the results in their workshop. The workshops will also feature presentations by organizations that develop science materials for schools.

Participants will also receive a stipend, mileage, costs to cover a substitute teacher for one day, lunch and snacks, and science materials approximately equal to $100.

In 2001, Jean, Wolf, and J. Russell Harkay, professor of physics, were awarded about $148,000 from the NSF to design and implement a new science education program, Project Inspire, as part of the new general science degree at KSC. Project Inspire and the general science degree are designed to provide student-teachers with knowledge and curriculum materials for astronomy, biology, chemistry, ecology and evolution, geology, meteorology, and physics. As part of the funding, KSC science faculty members offered to teach hands-on workshops for local area teachers.

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Keene, New Hampshire 03435