Professional Development

 

Introduction

NESEN provides a variety of professional development activities for K-12 teachers. Below is a summary of those activities.

Current Workshops (Laboratory Earth)

Laboratory Earth is for teachers who wish to build a better background in science. These classes will strengthen your scientific knowledge and improve your ability to teach Earth science concepts.

Previous Summer Workshops (see additional information below)

Workshops are usually two days and conducted in and around Lincoln, NE. An on-line registration is available. A summary of workshops present from 1994-1999 is also listed.

Environmental Change Workshops (see additional information below)
Sponsored by GPRC-NIGEC
(Great Plains Regional Center of the National Institute of Global Environmental Change)

Workshops are conducted for Process-Oriented Environmental Change Education: A Model for Connecting Research to the Classroom. Pairs of educators from across the Great Plains region are invited to register for a four-day workshops. One teacher should be a science teacher and the other teacher of another discipline, such as social studies, history or English. Our specific strategies or objectives are:

  • Develop integrated, teacher-based curriculum through the use of hand-on/minds-on workshops that will make participating teachers more comfortable with environmental change concepts, data use and inquiry-based learning;
  • Connect students to their environment by doing hands-on science;
  • Develop a World Wide Web site that will include data inventories by project and project fact sheets;
  • Develop a steering committee of stakeholders; and
  • Employ relevant evaluation tools to continuously improve the program and refine objectives.

Integration of Earth System Science Research and Education (see additional information below)

Participate in a summer research project with scientists at the University of Nebraska.


Previous NESEN Summer Workshops

Workshops combine professional expertise, hands-on experience, and the teachers' ability to translate information into lesson plans. These workshops are offered during the summer months to allow teachers the time to implement ideas from the workshops into their classroom curriculum.

The workshops were held at the Conservation and Survey Division, University of Nebraska-Lincoln, Lincoln, Nebraska.

Presented from 1994-2002

  • Rural & Urban Applications of Soil Surveys
  • What's In a Rock?
  • Understanding the Earth in 4 Dimensions
  • Nebraska's Dynamic Water System: A Geoscientist's Approach( 1996)
  • Chili Today, Hot Tamale: Let's Look at Nebraska's Weather (1997-98)
  • Digging Deeper, But Still Only Scratching the Surface (soils) (1998)
  • "The ‘Dirt' on Soil" (1999)
  • "Virtual Nebraska—A New View" (1999)
  • "Why Did the Chicken Change the Climate...?" (1999)
  • The Dynamic Earth and Nebraska: Plate Tectonics, Earthquakes and Volcanoes(2000)
  • Hands-On With Nebraska's Geology: 300 Million Years of Change(2000)
  • Soil Structure: The Building Within the Profile(2000)

Environmental Change Curriculum Development Workshop

Presented by NESEN
Sponsored by GPRC-NIGEC

Workshops in the summer of 1997 and 1998 were conducted for Process-Oriented Environmental Change Education: A Model for Connecting Research to the Classroom. Pairs of educators from schools across Nebraska were invited for four-day workshops. One teacher was a science teacher and the other teacher was of another discipline, such as social studies or English. Our specific strategies or objectives are:

  1. Develop integrated, teacher-based curriculum through the use of hand-on/minds-on workshops that will make participating teachers more comfortable with environmental change concepts, data use and inquiry-based learning;
  2. Connect students to their environment by doing hands-on science;
  3. Develop a World Wide Web site that will include data inventories by project and project fact sheets;
  4. Develop a steering committee of stakeholders; and
  5. Employ relevant evaluation tools to continuously improve the program and refine objectives.

Integrating Earth System Science Research and Education

Involving Teachers in Scientific Research and Scientists in Inquiry-Based Learning

Program Overview

The vision for science literacy expressed in the National Science Education Standards focuses on the need to change the way science is taught from something that is done to students to something that students do. To help create this systematic change, better linkages need to be established between university science departments, teacher colleges and K-12 educators. Our goal is to develop better linkages by involving teachers and scientists in a common Earth systems research and education experience. This experience will improve the teachers understanding of the scientific process and the scientists understanding of the culture of K-12 education.

We are looking for pre-college science teachers and teachers college students who want to participate in a four week summer research experience. You will join a research team led by a professional scientist. Interaction between research teams will be facilitated by several workshops held in conjunction with the research program. In these workshops we will discuss research progress and methods that may be used to integrate scientific inquiry into the classroom.

Participant Roles

Scientists are to provide a meaningful research experience and to participate in education-related discussions. Scientists will be required to:

  1. Develop a research experience,
  2. Advise teachers and pre-service students and,
  3. Help the classroom teacher develop an educational unit that will integrate the research experience/project into the pre-college science curriculum.

Classroom teachers, while gaining research experience themselves, will provide invaluable insight about the realities of K-12 education and expertise in the process of integrating the scientific process into educational units. Teachers will be required to:

  1. Participate in scientific research and
  2. Develop an educational unit that will integrate the research experience/project into the pre-college science curriculum. Pre-service students will learn about the research process and various issues in science education.

Pre-service students will be required to:

  1. Participate in scientific research and,
  2. Help the classroom teacher develop an educational unit.