My hat is off to Manatee County for having teachers participate in a series of classes on ways to teach science!
The classes, sometimes held at a Bradenton coffee shop or at the South Florida Museum, are being offered to Manatee science teachers this summer through a partnership with Lockheed Martin, which gave the school district a $100,000 grant for this and other scholastic programs. This is the second year the program has been offered.
The idea is to teach the teachers new techniques to keep science alive in the classroom and in the minds of students.
Jeff Rodgers is director of education at the South Florida Museum, and is also director of the Bishop Planetarium. In addition to hosting the classes, he makes himself available to visit schools and answer e-mail questions from teachers.
Helping elementary and middle school teachers get up to speed on current science content is the program’s main goal, Rodgers said.
Even though students ultimately benefit, teachers are the main focus, Rodgers said.
“This is a way of approaching teachers as adult learners,” Rodgers said. “We want them to feel comfortable with cosmology to quantum physics to the earth sciences, biology and evolution. The response has been tremendous.”