584 Training Middle School Teachers to Teach Climate and Atmospheric Sciences

Tuesday, 9 January 2018
Exhibit Hall 3 (ACC) (Austin, Texas)
Tyra L. Brown, Girls Incorporated, Lakewood Ranch, FL; and N. Riemer and E. R. Snodgrass

Atmospheric science is rarely taught in grades 6-8 in the US. When it is included in science curricula, subjects are often limited to teaching antiquated techniques in measuring temperature, precipitation and wind, and cloud identification. While science curriculum coordinators are often inclined to add meteorology to their curriculum, the background of many science educators lies in chemistry, biology or physics, and therefore lacks specific instruction in atmospheric science. Providing middle school teachers with resources and training is therefore crucial to bring atmospheric sciences into the class room and thereby develop the skills set forth in the Next Generation Science Standards.

This presentation will showcase our suite of atmospheric science learning modules, which incorporate innovative technology and scenario-based critical thinking activities to be used in middle school earth science curricula. The major focus of this work is to create sustainable, interactive lessons on atmospheric science and climate science that implement a unique flipped-class model. By creating 5-10 minute video lectures, intended for students to watch at home, the flipped-class format allows teachers to dedicate more time to in-class discussion and hands-on activities. Our goal is to inspire young students, especially from underrepresented groups, to strive for higher education and pursue studies in physical sciences as they learn to use analytical skills to understand complex, yet immediately significant issues in STEM research. This presentation will demonstrate our flipped-class model and the tools that can be immediately used by middle school teachers, along with feedback from early adopters.

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