EarthEd is a two-part program designed to help teachers to teach great science.
The Departments of Geology and Environment & Sustainability at the University at Buffalo have formed a collaboration to enhance K-12 classrooms through a new local outreach program in the Buffalo – Niagara Region. This new program, EarthEd Institute, is being piloted during the summer break of 2021. EarthEd is an exciting and ambitious program. In addition to a free, week-long, NYSDOE-approved, professional development workshop, UB’s Departments of Geology and Environment and Sustainability will pair our research faculty and graduate students with selected educators for a year-long collaboration and classroom enhancement assistance. Our primary goal is to help local underprivileged public schools in the Buffalo-Niagara Region to bolster the student achievement of learning goals and outcomes, provide assistance and opportunity for educators working on shoe-string budgets, and encourage young people from more diverse communities to consider a future at UB in the STEM fields The workshop provides the most current content information and innovations, in-class support, lesson-plan development for research investigations, interdisciplinary integration ideas from academics in the humanities and sciences and informal outreach opportunities to meet NYS and Regents curriculum and standards.
Part I, the EarthEd Institute, is a week-long intensive workshop specifically for grade 6–12 teachers of Living Environment, Earth Science, and other science courses. There are two sections (Earth Science and Environmental Science) being offered this year with 24 spots in each. Each day’s theme revolves around major topics in these disciplines. For example, the earth sciences course has daily themes such as rocks and minerals, remote sensing, sediments and ice cores, volcanoes, and climate science. The environmental curriculum also has daily themes such as ecology, pollution, restoration, hydrology, and evolution. Each day consists of presentations from research scientists in these fields, followed by hands-on activities and lab work. Each afternoon, we take these topics and help science teachers to develop lab activities, lessons, and relevant information that helps you fit into New York State common core and Next Gen science standards.
Part II, EarthEd Outreach, brings UB graduate students to your classroom to help you to launch your new lessons and labs with your own students. EarthEd Outreach teams upper level graduate students and professors with teachers over an entire school year to implement the new lessons and lab activities created over the summer into your classroom. There are four slots each for teacher collaborators in both the Earth Science and Environmental programs. This relationship is a dual benefit, since our graduate students are content specialists, and they can learn great pedagogy from their hosting teachers and classrooms. Participation in EarthEd Outreach will be based on success of the summer institute.