This innovative year long professional development opportunity harnesses the power of project-based learning to increase studentachievement in 21st Century career and college readiness skills.
As a social studies teacher, you will learn new, effective strategies to help your students gain meaning from resources that go far beyond the textbook. With your guidance, your students will be able to develop compelling thesis statements and guiding questions to organize their own online research. Working in collaborative groups or individually, your students will create dramatic, historically accurate and relevant digital documentaries, wikis, websites, podcasts and blogs integrating primary and secondary resources, period photography, and music that could compete in the Regional National History Day Contest at MSU.
Science teachers, you will learn innovational instructional strategies to help your students get the most out of scientific text and data. Your students will select a real-world topic significant to the needs of your community. They will create their own questions and design their own investigation to find the answers, utilizing reputable online resources. Your students will collect and analyze quantitative and qualitative data and draw conclusions from the results. They will communicate their findings in writing to share with the scientific community though the creation of a website, e-book or wiki that you may decided to submit to the regional STLP competition at MSU.
In order to help you in your journey, you will participate in many relevant,exciting activities. First, you will join an online literature circle where you will share your ideas with other teachers. Science and social studies teachers will all receive a book to guide their studies. Then, you will attend a 5-day,intensive institute that will take you through the steps of project-based learning as a learner, modeling the activities you will implement with your own students. At the same time, you will be learning new techniques to help your students independently read content text for meaning, as well as the digital skills to help your students create their products. Content experts in reading, science, social studies and technology will visit teachers to give guidance and support. In the spring, you will attend a Share Fair where you will showcase your students’ work and discuss the challenges and victories you experienced over the durationof the project.
Should you participate in all the activities, you will receive a $700 stipend, travel, materials and travel compensation.