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About the program:
Kellogg Biological Station (KBS) has a commitment to working with K-12 science teachers. Learn more about teacher professional development at KBS. The Teaching Science Outdoors program started in 2014 to provide an in-depth science experience for K-5 teachers.
Teaching Science Outdoors (TSO) brings elementary teachers to an outdoor environment, such as KBS or Tollgate Farm and Education Center, and allows them to practice science in a variety of outdoor habitats, with a focus on aquatic and terrestrial. Next Generation Science Standards and technology (iPads, website and google docs) are incorporated throughout the experience. Teachers develop skills to adapt existing science curriculum for the outdoor classroom, plan and carry out an investigation, analyze and interpret data and engage in argument from evidence and build a network of resources to refer back to once they return to the classroom. Teaching Science Outdoors was created and is presented in partnership with faculty and staff from CREATE for STEM Institute and Dr. Tali Tal from Technion University.
After the workshop participants will be invited to participate in webinars and other professional development opportunities at the Kellogg Biological Station. Districts are also able to apply for ‘schoolyard improvement mini-grants’ to support the purchase of materials to utilize the schoolyard as an outdoor classroom.
What to expect: Lunch and snacks are included each day. Dress to be outside for 4-6 hours each day. Teachers must bring an existing lesson plan or curriculum to adapt to using outdoors or an outdoor lesson they would like to expand or improve (ex. life science units of the Cereal City kits all have an outdoor activity). Please also plan to bring your smartphone, tablet or laptop (school or personal).
Cost: Free, there is no charge for this program as it is generously funded by a US Environmental Protection Agency Environmental Education grant and generous private donors.
Benefits: SCECHs (amount TBD), access to web-based resources, continued support during the school year via webinars and professional development opportunities at KBS, opportunity to apply for schoolyard improvement grant.
Who should apply? Elementary Teachers (K-5), teams of 3 educators per school will be given priority. Each teach should apply individually and list their teammates in the application.
Questions? Contact Kara Haas by email or phone (269-671-2360)
Supported by US Environmental Protection Agency: Environmental Education Grant and private donors.
National Science Teachers Association Conference, Los Angeles, CA 2017: NSTA-2017-slides_Teaching-Science-Outdoors.pdf
Michigan Science Teachers Association Conference 2016 – blog post with links to resources!
National Science Teachers Association Conference, Nashville, TN 2016 – blog post coming soon!
Links to program websites: