Second annual Sci-Ed Innovators Fellowship Program kicks off at NYU with exciting summer workshop
A workshop was held at NYU Steinhardt for twenty-five New York area science teachers selected as 2011 Sci-Ed Fellows, sponsored by the Jhumki Basu Foundation. The 2011 Sci-Ed Fellows are a diverse group of educators ranging in classroom experience and familiarity with progressive teaching methods. All participants, however, share a goal of making the STEM fields more accessible to all students and are committed to achieving social justice through science literacy.
The focus of the weeklong professional development program was an introduction to late Professor Basu’s Democratic Science Teaching Framework (DSF), which emphasizes student voice, transformational authority and science literacy in order to empower disadvantaged students in the sciences. The 2011 fellows will continue to receive support and education throughout the year as they put the DSF into practice in their classrooms and share their experiences through an online platform, designed and maintained by 2010 fellows David Rothauser and Marc Sole.
The fellows were also introduced to service learning through Jane Goodall’s Roots and Shoots program director, Shawn Sweeney, and 2010 Sci-Ed Fellow Kayla
Rubin. Responses to the workshop were overwhelmingly positive. One participant wrote, “[the workshop] was packed with useful presentations that focused on how we presently teach and how we can change our teaching habits/methods to reach students who would otherwise fall through the cracks.” Another fellow said, “I have had fun, have been challenged, have been excited, and have had an opportunity to really grapple with real science education issues. I feel like many of my goals as a teacher have been validated and reinforced, and I feel completely refreshed, reinvigorated, and excited to start next year!”The educators participated in a number of activities designed to illustrate how hands-on science, inquiry, and the DSF can be implemented in their classrooms. “There was so much sharing and positive energy involved with this activity that I will definitely find a way to bring this into my classroom,” reflected one fellow.