Massachusetts Association 
of Science Teachers

Free Field Science Education Training for Teachers at the Arnold Arboretum

Wednesday, June 05, 2019 8:35 AM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

The Arnold Arboretum offers a free, 5-day summer institute in August aimed at educators of 6th â€“ 12th graders. We’d like to get the word out to teachers about this hands-on opportunity to gain professional training in field science education. 

Intended audience: Middle and High School teachers

August 12-16; 8:30am – 2:30pm

Investigating Ecosystems Through Fieldwork – Summer Institute

Participants will learn and practice fieldwork techniques in the study of two ecosystems:  an urban forest and a meadow. During the institute, teachers/participants will sample the biodiversity of each area, gather abiotic data, examine the interrelationship between organisms, and learn more about decomposition, soil and nutrient cycling. Guest speakers will share their expertise in data gathering, fieldwork, botany, and ecosystems. Participants will spend about half their time outdoors working in teams, with indoor time spent in analysis, reflection and sharing of best practices.

Goals of the Institute

1.  To give teachers needed knowledge about plants and their environments that will enable them to create lessons/units of study aligned with the new Massachusetts Science, Technology, and Engineering Standards.

2.  To expose teachers to using the outdoors in general, and the Arnold Arboretum in particular, as a means for teaching life science standards.

3.  To share resources, teaching ideas, materials, and expertise with teachers so they can feel confident in and comfortable with leading purposeful life science lessons, both indoors and outdoors.

4.  To develop relationships with teacher teams within BPS schools for continued professional development during the school year, including school visits by Arboretum Educators and facilitated field trips to the Arboretum.

Teacher Benefits

  • Free, high quality professional development taught by professors and Arboretum staff.
  • 30 PDPs for 5 day attendance.
  • For BPS teachers:  Bus transportation for a self-guided field trip to the Arboretum during the following school year.
  • Teachers from demographics similar to Boston Public School students will be considered for the bus benefit.
  • Access to resources and education staff throughout the year.
  • Breakfast, drinks and snacks provided daily.
  • A collegial atmosphere set in a beautiful landscape for timely and relevant learning.

 Complete details can be found at the website.

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