HR: 12:05h
AN: ED22A-08    [Abstracts]
TI: SEAS (Student Experiments At Sea): Helping Teachers Foster Authentic Student Inquiry in the Science Classroom
AU: * Goehring, L
AF: Ridge 2000, Penn State University, 208 Mueller Lab, University Park, PA 16802 United States
AU: Kelsey, K
AF: Seattle Public Schools, MS 32-303, PO Box 34165, Seattle, WA 98124-1165 United States
AU: Carlson, J
AF: Laguna Hills High School, 25401 Paseo de Valencia, Laguna Hills, CA 92653 United States
AB: Teacher professional development designed to promote authentic research in the classroom is ultimately aimed at improving student scientific literacy. In addition to providing teachers with opportunities to improve their understanding of science through research experiences, we need to help facilitate similar learning in students. This is the focus of the SEAS (Student Experiments At Sea) program: to help students learn science by doing science. SEAS offers teachers tools and a framework to help foster authentic student inquiry in the classroom. SEAS uses the excitement of deep-sea research, as well as the research facilities and human resources that comprise the deep-sea scientific community, to engage student learners. Through SEAS, students have the opportunity to practice inquiry skills and participate in research projects along side scientists. SEAS is a pilot program funded by NSF and sponsored by the Ridge 2000 research community. The pilot includes inquiry-based curricular materials, facilitated interaction with scientists, opportunities to engage students in research projects, and teacher training. SEAS offers a framework of resources designed to help translate inquiry skills and approaches to the classroom environment, recognizing the need to move students along the continuum of scientific inquiry skills. This framework includes hands-on classroom lessons, Classroom to Sea labs where students compare their investigations with at-sea investigations, and a student experiment competition. The program also uses the Web to create a virtual ``scientific community'' including students. Lessons learned from this two year pilot emphasize the importance of helping teachers feel knowledgeable and experienced in the process of scientific inquiry as well as in the subject. Teachers with experience in scientific research were better able to utilize the program. Providing teachers with access to scientists as a resource was also important, particularly given the challenges of working in the deep-sea environment. Also, fostering authentic student investigations (i.e., working through preparatory materials, developing proposals, analyzing data and writing summary reports) is challenging to fit within the academic year. Nonetheless, teacher feedback highlights that the excitement generated by participation in real research is highly motivating. Further, students experience a ``paradigm shift'' in understanding evidence-based reasoning and the process of scientific discovery.
DE: 0450 Hydrothermal systems (1034, 3017, 3616, 4832, 8135, 8424)
DE: 0456 Life in extreme environments
DE: 0805 Elementary and secondary education
DE: 0820 Curriculum and laboratory design
DE: 0825 Teaching methods
SC: Education and Human Resources [ED]
MN: Fall Meeting 2005