Teachers of mathematics and science, especially at the K-12
levels, critically influence the contributions students
eventually make to the economy, from both the workforce
and in the academic community.
According to education researchers, teachers need lifelong
learning experiences that go beyond the level of subject
knowledge they acquire in education degree programs. One
prevailing view is that teachers of math and science should
develop the habits of mathematical and scientific thinkers.
With continued professional development, teachers must translate
those processes into interactive, flexible methods of teaching
in the classroom.
The Teacher Professional Continuum program provides
support for teachers from preservice education through development
to assume leadership roles in their schools and districts.
LessonLab, located in Los Angeles, for example, is providing
online video courses for preservice K-8 teachers to help
deepen understanding of both science content and teaching.
Future teachers see lessons that challenge their understanding
of material and interview both teachers and students about
the intention and outcomes of lessons.
Adopting strategies from literacy research, the Education
Development Center, a nonprofit organization in Boston, is
developing resources that will enhance PreK-8 teachers' abilities
to develop student science understanding. Experts are assembling
modules linking science and literacy in classrooms and case
studies of best practices.
A main feature of NSF's Math and Science Partnership
(MSP) program is to create a climate for disciplinary faculty
at the nation's colleges and universities to work together
with K-12 math and science teachers to develop better classroom
practices. Such new relationships are reexamining approaches
to math and science education at all levels.
How do we measure
and evaluate learning? [Next]