208 STEM Education for Tomorrow's Workforce: Enabling Teachers to Engage Students in Standards-Based Investigations in the Context of Local Climate and Environmental Changes

Monday, 13 January 2020
Hall B (Boston Convention and Exhibition Center)
Tamara Shapiro Ledley, Earth and Climate Science, Needham, MA

The STEM Education for Tomorrow’s Workforce (SET Workforce) program is envisioned as a network of locally focused ongoing blended Climate Teacher Professional Learning Communities (Climate TPLCs). In these Climate TPLCs teachers would collaboratively work to develop, implement and refine investigations and units that they build from reviewed and trusted educational resources, scientific data, and up to date climate and energy information, that directly address the climate and environmental challenges in their local communities. To be most effective this would be done in collaboration with local experts, officials, and decision makers. In addition, the investigations and units will reflect the 3-dimensional learning called for in state science standards and the Framework for K-12 Science Education.

This presentation will focus on two aspects of the program. The first is the framework of a Climate TPLC, including the start-up requirements, initial content, activities, expectations and goals of a community, and the overarching support needed to facilitate and maintain the network of Climate TPLCs. The second aspect is the outcome of a survey that explores how teachers obtain funds to support their professional development. In order to maintain the SET Workforce program it is necessary to develop a financially sustainable business model that includes multiple line of revenue, teacher professional development funds being one of these.

This work comprises the initial steps to attain the vision and put in motion the mission of the SET Workforce program. Vision: Communities and citizens prepared to address the environmental and technological challenges of tomorrow. Mission: Engaging teachers as a key leverage to enable students to develop an understanding of and ability to address the impacts of climate change, and the critical thinking, data analysis, and civic and business engagement skills to prepare them for college and the workforce.

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