AAS Meeting #193 - Austin, Texas, January 1999
Session 33. Astronomy Education and Outreach
Display, Thursday, January 7, 1999, 9:20am-6:30pm, Exhibit Hall 1

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[33.07] A Workshop for Integrating Astronomy into Current Junior High/Middle School Science and Mathematics Courses

S. J. Shawl (Univ. of Kansas)

With the help of a NASA/STScI IDEAS grant, we have offered two two-week workshops for teachers of junior high/middle school science and mathematics courses. The workshops’ primary purpose was the integration of some astronomy into current junior high/middle school science and mathematics courses. A secondary goal was the integration of astronomy within current nonscience courses. Based on the model of the NSF/AAAS Chautauqua-type short courses of the 1970s, during the first of two sessions teachers learned basic astronomical information while performing a variety of hands-on activities. Between sessions, participants worked on interim projects whose purpose was to help them integrate astronomical ideas into at least one of their courses. In this way, each participant left the workshop with something that would be immediately and directly applicable to his/her own teaching situation. Preservice teachers were teamed with experienced teachers for the interim projects; such teaming provided a synergism not otherwise available and provided a unique opportunity for a mentoring relationship to develop. During the final session, participants presented their projects, received constructive criticism, and further improved their work so that they had a completed activity/lesson plan for use the coming year. In addition, talks by research scientists provided participants with information on current research topics and the results of NASA space science missions. An important part of the workshop involved the World Wide Web, for which we supplied practical instruction and time to find and explore available on-line curricular materials. Finally, instruction was provided in basic web page construction so participants might be able to build a web page for their classes.

This paper will present more information on these successful workshops.

These workshops were funded by a NASA/Space Telescope Science Institute IDEAS grant.

If you would like more information about this abstract, please follow the link to http://kustar.phsx.ukans.edu:8000/~shawl/idea.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: shawl@ukans.edu

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