Elementary Teacher Professional Development in Engineering

Report
Engineering is Elementary
Inservice PD Program
Christine M. Cunningham
Museum of Science, Boston
Overview
• Define integrated STEM education.
• Describe the content, history, and impact of the EiE PD
program.
• What challenges in design and implementation has the
EiE PD program faced? How have these challenges
been addressed?
• What opportunities have arisen?
• What are the most important unanswered questions
regarding the preparation of inservice K-12 teachers to
teach integrated STEM?
Reflections on Integrated STEM
• Engage pupils in activities that require more than one
S-TE-M discipline
• One (or two) disciplines have primacy
• Begin with problems or contexts that naturally require
multiple disciplines
• From disciplinary boundaries  problem solving (or
other larger habits of mind)
Engineering is Elementary (EiE)
Lessons that integrate engineering and technology
concepts into elementary science.
Goal 1. Increase children’s technological literacy.
Goal 2. Increase elementary educators’ ability to teach
engineering and technology.
Goal 3. Increase the number of schools in the U.S. that
include engineering at the elementary level.
Goal 4. Conduct research and assessment to further the
first three goals and contribute knowledge about
engineering teaching and learning at the elementary
level.
EiE Units
Science Topic
Eng Field
Technology
Country
Water
Insects/Plants
Wind & Weather
Simple Machines
Earth Materials
Balance & Forces
Sound
Organisms
Electricity
Solids & Liquids
Landforms
Plants
Magnetism
Energy
Solar System
Rocks & Minerals
Floating & Sinking
Ecosystems
Light
Human Body
Environmental
Agricultural
Mechanical
Industrial
Materials
Civil
Acoustical
Bioengineering
Electrical
Chemical
Geotechnical
Package
Transportation
Sustainable
Aerospace
Materials
Oceans
Environmental
Optical
Biomedical
Water Filters
Pollinators
Windmills
Chip Factory Design
Walls
Bridges
Sound Representation
Model Membranes
Alarm Circuits
Playdough Process
Bridge Siting
Plant Package
Maglev Vehicle
Solar Cooker
Parachute
Replicate an Artifact
Submersible
Oil Spill Remediation
Lighting System
Knee Brace
India
Dominican Rep
Denmark
USA (Af Am)
China
USA (Hisp)
Ghana
El Salvador
Australia
Canada
Nepal
Jordan
Japan
Botswana
Brazil
Russia
Greece
USA (Nat Am)
Egypt
Germany
Unit Structure
• Lesson 1: Engineering Story
• Lesson 2: A Broader View of an Engineering Field
• Lesson 3: Scientific Data Inform Engineering
Design
• Lesson 4: Engineering Design
Challenge
EiE Professional Development (PD)
Workshops:
• 4-8 hour, 2-5 days, 2 weeks, semester
• Follow-up sessions
EiE staff have run:
• 180 PD sessions
• for over 3000 educators
Partners:
• Teacher Educator Institute
• PD Resource Guides
EiE Agenda
8:30
8:45
9:30
10:30
10:40
10:50
11:00
11:30
12:30
1:30
2:15
2:45
3:15
3:30
Goals & Introductions
What is Technology?
What is Engineering?
Break
Introduction to the EiE Project
Water, Water Everywhere: Lesson 1
Water, Water Everywhere: Lesson 2
Lunch
Water, Water Everywhere: Lesson 3
Water, Water Everywhere: Lesson 4
Overview of EiE Teacher Guide & Educator Resources
Time to look through Teacher Guides & Materials Kits
Wrap-Up, Q&A, Workshop Evaluation
Adjourn
PD Organizing Principles & Structures
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Philosophical Underpinnings
Define Goals for Program
Begin with an Activity
Do Classroom Activities
Focus on Processes
Integrate
Real-World Context
Model & Discuss Pedagogy
Model Deliberation & Decisions
Create Social Endeavor
Evaluate & Collect Data
Impact
Teachers attending PD agree:
• Workshops are well planned and structured
• Materials are presented in a manner that helps them feel
comfortable using them in their classroom
• Workshops prepare them to do an engineering project in
their classroom.
Impact: Gains in Knowledge
Teachers indicate significant increases in
Their knowledge of:
• The range of engineering disciplines
• What engineers do
• The pervasiveness of engineering in our society.
Impact: Gains in Knowledge
Teachers indicate significant increases in knowledge of
How engineering is practiced:
• they understand that there is not necessarily one “right”
answer for engineering problems,
• they know about the engineering design process,
• they know more about the types of constraints that
influence the design and selection of engineering criteria
• they are more confident in their ability to analyze the
engineering solutions that their students might generate
Impact: Pedagogy
Teachers reported making greater use of engineering
concepts and examples, including the engineering design
process, across STEM subjects after participating in EiE.
Particularly large increases were found in the frequency
with which teachers:
- describe engineering careers to their students
- use engineering examples in science lessons
- use an engineering design process in their science
classes.
Impact: Pedagogy
Teachers report changes in their pedagogical strategies:
• They significantly increase their use of problem-solving
strategies not explicitly related to engineering in their
teaching.
• They evince improved attitudes toward problem-solving
strategies and use more inductive methods
Teacher significantly increase their use of four other
problem-solving strategies. They were more likely to have
students:
• ask what they know related to the topic being studied,
• use things from everyday life in solving problems,
• work on problems for which there is no immediately
obvious method of solution,
• explain how they solve complex problems.
Current Efforts
• Integration
– Math/Engineering
– Science/Engineering
• Creation of Additional Support & Resources
– Transcending f2f
– Video
– Content Connections
Challenges
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Advocacy for Elementary Engineering
Funding and Time
Engineering as Terrifying
Integration without a National Map
Visualizing Elementary Engineering
Lack of (Science) Knowledge
Two-Role Tension
Preservice
Opportunities
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Modeling Engineering (or iSTEM) Instruction
Bolstering Science Knowledge & Instruction
Open-Ended Inquiry
Transcendent Science & Engineering Themes
Additional PD Resources
Important Issues/Questions
• How to balance bolstering teachers’ understanding of:
– STEM content
– STEM processes
– Pedagogical strategies
• Need for good models and examples
Contact Information
• Christine Cunningham:
[email protected]
• Engineering is
Elementary:
www.mos.org/eie

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