AAS 203rd Meeting, January 2004
Session 59 Get'em Hooked: Pre-college Astronomy
Poster, Tuesday, January 6, 2004, 9:20am-6:30pm, Hanover Hall

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[59.01] The Pre-Instructors in Math and Science (PIMAS) Program at the University of Arizona’s Flandrau Science Center

G. Brissenden, T. F. Slater, D. Colodner, S. Johnson (University of Arizona)

The Pre-Instructors in Math and Science (PIMAS) Program at the University of Arizona’s Flandrau Science Center offers high school students the opportunity to explore careers in science teaching through on-the-job training in informal science teaching, both at Flandrau and in the community. The goal of the PIMAS program is to encourage these students to consider pursuing science teaching careers as they transition from high school to college. Students become members of the Flandrau Science Center staff, learning how to present several astronomy demonstrations. These demonstrations include: A Journey to Pluto, Robots on Mars, and Constructing the Seasons. Students also learn how to host star parties. They then offer these presentations at Flandrau on Saturdays and public viewing nights. During the Fall semester, students have the opportunity to learn about best practices in informal science education. They participate, as peers, in the U of A’s Science Teachers Colloquium Series. They meet with astronomers, planetary scientists, engineers, and amateur astronomers to learn more about the science behind the demonstrations they are learning. In the Spring semester, students take what they’ve learned “on the road.” They plan and execute Space Nights for their communities—at their schools, their siblings’ schools, their churches, their scouting troupes, etc. We believe that by letting the students go into their own communities, they have a greater sense of ownership and pride in these events.

The PIMAS Program is now entering its third year. We present both our successes and our lessons learned, as well as what the PIMAS students have to say about the program. We greatly appreciate, and acknowledge, the support of the Arizona Teacher Education Coalition, which is funded by the US Department of Education.

If you would like more information about this abstract, please follow the link to http://samec.lpl.arizona.edu/programs/pimas.html. This link was provided by the author. When you follow it, you will leave the Web site for this meeting; to return, you should use the Back comand on your browser.

The author(s) of this abstract have provided an email address for comments about the abstract: gbrissenden@as.arizona.edu

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