4.2 A Flipped-Class Model for Integrating Meteorology into Middle School Science Curriculum

Tuesday, 12 January 2016: 8:45 AM
Room 353 ( New Orleans Ernest N. Morial Convention Center)
Eric R. Snodgrass, Univ. of Illinois, Urbana, IL; and N. Riemer

Atmospheric science is rarely taught in grades 6-8 in the US. When it is included in science curriculum, subjects are often limited to teaching antiquated techniques in measuring temperature, precipitation and wind, and cloud identification. Science curriculum coordinators are often inclined to add meteorology to their curriculum, but for many science educators, their background lies in chemistry, biology or physics, and therefore lacks specific instruction in atmospheric science. Teaching atmospheric science to middle school students is an excellent avenue to develop the skills and techniques set forth in the Next Generation Science Standards (NGSS) and Common Core Standards. It also exposes students at an early age to the variety of career paths in geoscience. This presentation will showcase a flipped-class model for teaching an 8-9 week course on atmospheric science. Our unique approach uses video lecture material recorded for an introductory, college-level course on severe and hazardous weather at the University of Illinois, to serve as the primary method of instruction for each learning module. This removes the barrier many science educators have in not having a formal education in atmospheric science. Our strategy is to flip the 6th- 8th grade meteorology curriculum such that students are watching short (5-10 minute) instructional weather videos at home with their parents/guardians and then working through in-class exercises that include role playing, disaster planning and problem solving during the school day under the guidance of the science educator. This presentation will fully demonstrate our flipped-class model along with feedback from early adopters.
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