Friday, Oct. 21, 2016
In the 2014-2015 academic year, CTSC’s Alex Thomas facilitated project design workshops for 8th grade teachers and supported project implementation at a NYCDOE middle school in Brooklyn. This work was part of the third-year implementation of Center’s NSF-funded Systemic Transformation in Inquiry Learning Environments (STILE) program. One key goal of the STILE program is to prepare teachers as designers of authentic, standards-based learning experiences in and across the Science, Technology, Engineering & Mathematics (STEM) disciplines.
Alex’s teachers designed interdisciplinary projects for the 8th grade service learning unit, such that their students needed to learn and use the engineering design process to solve problems relevant to their community. The topics included mentoring young children, tree pit health monitoring and rejuvenation, and teen suicide, among others. In addition to engaging in volunteerism, these students identified the problem, researched how others approached the problem, brainstormed their own solutions, planned a solution, and enacted the solution. In the end, students created videos to show their experiences and problem solving processes.
Professional Development, STILE