HR: 1340h
AN: ED23A-1246    [Abstracts]
TI: Transferring Knowledge Gained From a Field Experience in Tierra del Fuego, the Uttermost Part of the Earth, to Central Texas Science Classrooms
AU: * Ormiston, C
EM: chris.ormiston@boerne-isd.net
AF: Boerne High Schol, Boerne ISD, 123 West Johns Road, Boerne, TX 78006 United States
AU: Dovzak, N
EM: nick.dovzak@boerne-isd.net
AF: Boerne High Schol, Boerne ISD, 123 West Johns Road, Boerne, TX 78006 United States
AU: Anderson, S
EM: sarah.anderson@boerne-isd.net
AF: Boerne High Schol, Boerne ISD, 123 West Johns Road, Boerne, TX 78006 United States
AU: Perry, E
EM: ethan.perry@mail.utexas.edu
AF: Dept. of Geological Sciences, Jackson School of Geosciences, UT Austin, P.O. Box B, University Station, Austin, TX 78713 United States
AU: Ellins, K
EM: kellins@ig.utexas.edu
AF: University of Texas Institute for Geophysics, Jackson School of Geosciences, 4412 Spicewood Springs Road, Austin, TX 78759 United States
AU: Tingle, D
ED23A-1246 AF: Boerne High Schol, Boerne ISD, 123 West Johns Road, Boerne, TX 78006 United States
AU: Knettel, P
ED23A-1246 AF: Boerne High Schol, Boerne ISD, 123 West Johns Road, Boerne, TX 78006 United States
AU: Redding, S
ED23A-1246 AF: Boerne High Schol, Boerne ISD, 123 West Johns Road, Boerne, TX 78006 United States
AU: Odle, K
ED23A-1246 AF: Boerne High Schol, Boerne ISD, 123 West Johns Road, Boerne, TX 78006 United States
AB: As part of the UTIG's Teachers in the Field program, we, three teachers from Boerne High School in south-central Texas, and four of our students, collaborated with an international team of geoscientists studying the tectonic and climatic evolution of the Lago Fagnano region in Tierra del Fuego, Argentina, in March 2005. This unique field experience allowed us to participate in all aspects of the scientific process: the consideration of research questions, development of a research plan, collection of field data and observations, and synthesis and presentation of results. In addition to field work and reconnaissance tied directly to the project objectives, we characterized the modern chemical/physical soil and water parameters (temperature, pH, dissolved oxygen, NH4 content, etc.) and isotopic (18O and D) composition of the Lago Fagnano watershed. These data are now integrated into an existing database of comparable chemical/physical information gathered for North American sites through our summer field courses. We will utilize this rich data set to make Texas-Tierra del Fuego ecosystem comparisons with our classes. The level of mentoring, preparation and follow-up provided by an NSF GK-12 Fellow was a key factor contributing to the success of our experience and an important element in helping us transfer components of this challenging experience to our students. Before, during, and following a two-week field season at Lago Fagnano, we and our students were actively engaged as learners and as scientists. We acquired concepts and skills that are readily applicable in a classroom setting: geologic mapping, GIS applications, isotopic data collection and analysis, tectonics concepts, and a general understanding of how science is truly conducted. Other factors that contributed to a positive experience included the team of dynamic scientists, who encouraged, helped and inspired us, the strong support that we received from our high school campus and district level administrators, and the direct connection to the classroom provided by the inclusion of some students in the field program. Immersing teachers in a dynamic scientific research environment should be an essential component of professional development if we are to inspire the scientists of tomorrow and promote science education reform. Such experiences expand teachers' knowledge base, boost confidence and provide insight into the collaborative, cross-disciplinary nature of science. Many of our colleagues, as well as friends and parents in the Boerne community, were surprised that high school teachers could do this, and they wanted to know how they could become involved in the future. It is sometimes said: Those that can do; those that can't, teach. By getting high school students and teachers involved with ongoing field studies, this perspective can be altered. The new paradigm: I Can, I Have, I Teach! Public school district leaders (i.e., superintendents and curriculum directors) should be cognizant of, and encouraged to support teacher participation in, similar experiential programs.
UR: http://www.ig.utexas.edu/outreach/ttif/lago_fagnano/
DE: 0800 EDUCATION
DE: 0805 Elementary and secondary education
DE: 0830 Teacher training
DE: 1637 Regional climate change
DE: 3040 Plate tectonics (8150, 8155, 8157, 8158)
SC: Education and Human Resources [ED]
MN: Fall Meeting 2005