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  1. Kwame Owusu-Daaku
  2. https://uwf.edu/hmcse/departments/earth-and-environmental-sciences/our-faculty/faculty-profiles/dr-kwame-owusu-daaku.html
  3. Assistant Professor
  4. Presenter’s NSFRESOURCECENTERS
  5. University of West Florida
  1. Melissa Demetrikopoulos
  2. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/sites/myncbi/1Piu8IFNGNSk5/bibliography/40979939/public/?sort=date&direction=descending
  3. Chair; External Evaluator for Noyce and ITEST projects
  4. Presenter’s NSFRESOURCECENTERS
  5. Institution for Biomedical Philosphy
  1. John Pecore
  2. https://uwf.edu/ceps/departments/teacher-education-and-educational-leadership/our-faculty/faculty-profiles/dr-john-pecore.html
  3. Professor
  4. Presenter’s NSFRESOURCECENTERS
  5. University of West Florida

Educating STEM Majors to Teach in High-Need Schools

NSF Awards: 1660615

2021 (see original presentation & discussion)

Undergraduate

The shortage of approximately 110,000 teachers during the 2017-2018 school year is expected to double by the year 2025 representing the need to increase the estimated teaching workforce of 3.3 million by six percent. Due to health concerns related to teaching during the COVID-19 pandemic, a greater number of teachers retired than projected, thus appreciably increasing the estimated teacher shortage. Compounding the issue, the teacher shortage is not evenly distributed among subject areas with the greatest need being in secondary STEM subjects. Our Noyce project sought to find out what components, if any, attracted STEM majors to teaching in high-needs schools. STEM majors interested in teaching reported that observing and teaching in partnering Title One schools increased their interest in teaching in these schools as did the Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages (TESOL) course. Additional program components leading to an interest in teaching underserved students includes a book club on trauma informed pedagogy and engaging students in authentic citizen science/mathematics projects.

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Discussion from the 2021 STEM For All Video Showcase (26 posts)
  • Icon for: Mary Nyaema

    Mary Nyaema

    Researcher
    May 11, 2021 | 10:18 a.m.

    Great to see the impact of citizen science in preparing students to handle real-life challenges.

     
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    Janelle Johnson
  • Icon for: Melissa Demetrikopoulos

    Melissa Demetrikopoulos

    Co-Presenter
    Chair; External Evaluator for Noyce and ITEST projects
    May 11, 2021 | 11:32 a.m.

    Thanks for your interest Mary. 

  • Icon for: Kwame Owusu-Daaku

    Kwame Owusu-Daaku

    Lead Presenter
    Assistant Professor
    May 11, 2021 | 02:24 p.m.

    Thanks Mary for watching the video. Long time no see ;) 

     
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    Mary Nyaema
  • Icon for: Kwame Owusu-Daaku

    Kwame Owusu-Daaku

    Lead Presenter
    Assistant Professor
    May 11, 2021 | 02:19 p.m.

    Hi All,

    Thank you for your interest in our video. A few questions we have for you are:

    • Do you have any experiences implementing or being a part of citizen science projects for teacher education and if so, what insights do you have to share?
    • What are your thoughts on citizen science and research in the classroom as a means of making educational experiences more equitable?
    • Do you have any strategies or tips for recruiting STEM students into teacher preparation programs, particularly underrepresented minority students?
     
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    Janelle Johnson
  • Icon for: Meghan Marrero

    Meghan Marrero

    Higher Ed Faculty
    May 11, 2021 | 09:47 p.m.

    I did involve some pre-service teachers in community science work a few years ago, and our study found that they continued to implement this work with their students, with excellent results. Community-based science is an excellent example of culturally relevant pedagogy, allowing students to engage in meaningful projects that are important to their local community.

  • Icon for: Kwame Owusu-Daaku

    Kwame Owusu-Daaku

    Lead Presenter
    Assistant Professor
    May 11, 2021 | 10:14 p.m.

    Thanks for sharing your experience and the insight Meghan! Culturally relevant pedagogy is most definitely one of our goals with the citizen science programming in our pre-service teacher development.

  • Icon for: Melissa Demetrikopoulos

    Melissa Demetrikopoulos

    Co-Presenter
    Chair; External Evaluator for Noyce and ITEST projects
    May 17, 2021 | 07:11 p.m.

    The first scholar has implemented this in their classroom now that they are an in-service teacher and we anticipate that the others will do the same so that we hope to have a similar outcome as you are reporting.   I think that you are correct that the projects need to be related to something that is important locally so that the choice of the project is an important component to the success and the long-term implementation by the teachers.  

  • Icon for: Pat Friedrichsen

    Pat Friedrichsen

    Researcher
    May 11, 2021 | 04:18 p.m.

    I enjoyed watching your video and seeing the impact of citizen science on Noyce scholars. Thanks for sharing!

  • Icon for: Kwame Owusu-Daaku

    Kwame Owusu-Daaku

    Lead Presenter
    Assistant Professor
    May 11, 2021 | 05:38 p.m.

    Thanks Pat! I also enjoyed watching your video on using the COVID-19 pandemic to teach scientific literacy. 

  • Icon for: Barry Fishman

    Barry Fishman

    Facilitator
    Professor
    May 11, 2021 | 04:40 p.m.

    I love the Noyce program, and love what you are doing with it. A citizen science approach seems really valuable for building engagement among learners (and teachers!). I like that the video focuses in on one particular teacher and her mentor... can you comment on how the approach scales? Is the example you feature a story you might be able to tell for many students in your program?

  • Icon for: Kwame Owusu-Daaku

    Kwame Owusu-Daaku

    Lead Presenter
    Assistant Professor
    May 11, 2021 | 05:46 p.m.

    Thanks Barry. Kara's story is most definitely a model for all the students in our program : minus winning grant funding to implement the project - although the opportunity to apply for such funding through our regional Noyce organization is available to all our graduates. We currently have 5 graduates from our program, and I know that at least three of them are implementing their citizen science projects in their classroom. To bring the program to scale more, this summer we are partnering these recent STEM Teaching graduates with our current scholars who are conducting their citizen science projects as sort of middle resource personnel between the University STEM faculty and the High School Teachers for our current scholars. Since our recent graduates have been in the shoes of these current scholars, our hope is that the recent graduates can help the current scholars navigate this dual mentoring experience better. 

  • Icon for: Barry Fishman

    Barry Fishman

    Facilitator
    Professor
    May 11, 2021 | 05:50 p.m.

    Wonderful - thank you for clarifying, Kwame!

  • Icon for: Kwame Owusu-Daaku

    Kwame Owusu-Daaku

    Lead Presenter
    Assistant Professor
    May 11, 2021 | 05:53 p.m.

    No thank you Barry! Your question was so insightful! Much appreciated. 

  • Icon for: Margie Vela

    Margie Vela

    Facilitator
    Senior Program Manager
    May 12, 2021 | 10:28 a.m.

    Citizen science is such an important and engaging way to bring science to the general public. It seems to me that this project helps create public awareness for coastal issues, and K-12 students are perfect for presenting real-world problems to local policy-makers and the public.  Do you have any plans for students to present findings of their work to key stakeholders? 

  • Icon for: John Pecore

    John Pecore

    Co-Presenter
    Professor
    May 12, 2021 | 10:41 a.m.

    We typically engage in two or three different citizen science projects each year.  For the Lionfish project, students presented their findings highlighting impacts from invasive Lionfish on popular commercial and sportfish, at school assemblies, regional science symposia, and public science festivals.

    You may be interested in the publications for the Lionfish project.

    https://biodiversitygenomics.net/site/wp-content/uploads/2015/12/iBOL-Barcode-Bulletin-Sept-2016.pdf

    https://online.ucpress.edu/abt/article/81/3/169/91889/Invasive-Aliens-A-Student-Citizen-Science-Activity

  • Icon for: Melissa Demetrikopoulos

    Melissa Demetrikopoulos

    Co-Presenter
    Chair; External Evaluator for Noyce and ITEST projects
    May 12, 2021 | 10:45 a.m.

    Hi Margie, 

    Thanks for your interest in our project.  It is always helpful to use real-world problems to engage learners and this has become even more important with the challenges of virtual engagement. 

     
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    Janelle Johnson
  • Icon for: Brian Foley

    Brian Foley

    Facilitator
    Professor
    May 12, 2021 | 04:41 p.m.

    The citizen science project is a great approach because you are finding the science phenomena that are directly relevant to students lives. With microplastics for example, the plastics are already impacting the local environment and it is something that students can start to address locally with recycling. Also as a Noyce director myself I love that you are engaging the preservice teachers in this together with scientists and inservice teachers. That is a great experience for them.

    Are you planning to publish any of the lessons that the students create? There would probably be a lot of interest in them.

     
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    Janelle Johnson
  • Icon for: Kwame Owusu-Daaku

    Kwame Owusu-Daaku

    Lead Presenter
    Assistant Professor
    May 13, 2021 | 03:38 a.m.

    Hi Brian! Thank you for your kind comments! Our team has floated the idea of publishing the lesson plans on and off but now that you mention there would be interest, we would certainly make that more of a priority! We have published previous lesson plans in the past such as on our Lionfish project which our PI John Pecore provided some links to in an earlier post.

  • Icon for: April Bartnick

    April Bartnick

    K-12 Teacher
    May 13, 2021 | 04:09 p.m.

    Engaging students in science in high-needs schools with citizen science is such a great project. Researching microplastics is so ambitious because it's such a huge problem. What kind of data are you collecting on the microplastics? Also, do you record microplastic data on an online platform?

  • Icon for: Kwame Owusu-Daaku

    Kwame Owusu-Daaku

    Lead Presenter
    Assistant Professor
    May 13, 2021 | 06:08 p.m.

    April, thanks so much for you feedback! For microplastics, the project focused on counting microfibers, microbeads, and microfragments found in either water samples or seafood tissue. I know that Kara's lesson plan focused specifically in microplastics in water samples. As far as I know, the data is not currently recorded on an online platform. Some teaching resources that the science faculty mentor (Alexis Janosik) had developed that informed Kara's lesson planning are as follows:
    https://polar-ice.org/polar-data-stories/educat...

    https://drive.google.com/file/d/1U-T8BmTGUUL_5_...

    https://polar-ice.org/wp-content/uploads/2018/0...

     
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    April Bartnick
  • Icon for: April Bartnick

    April Bartnick

    K-12 Teacher
    May 13, 2021 | 06:59 p.m.

    Thanks for the resources!

  • Icon for: Pendred Noyce

    Pendred Noyce

    Founder and Executive Director
    May 14, 2021 | 10:53 a.m.

    The idea of having Noyce Scholars develop citizen science based curriculum with their cooperating teachers seems brilliant. An opportunity for STEM undergraduates to get involved in sharing citizen science with summer programs might be a productive way to lure more underrepresented minority students into considering teaching.

    On the topic of microplastics, you might be interested in checking out this book, Microplastics and Me, written by a middle school student and science fair winner, Anna Du.  (Disclosure: Tumblehome Books, which I lead, is the publisher.)

    https://tumblehomebooks.org/book/microplastics-...

     

  • Icon for: Kwame Owusu-Daaku

    Kwame Owusu-Daaku

    Lead Presenter
    Assistant Professor
    May 14, 2021 | 02:54 p.m.

    Pendred, thanks so much for your feedback and honored to have you view our video. Also the book looks like a great resource for teaching about or inspiring students to address microplastics!

  • Icon for: Emmanuel Nti-Asante

    Emmanuel Nti-Asante

    May 17, 2021 | 10:36 a.m.

    This is an excellent Program. I am happy to be a part of the citizen mathematics aspect of this project. Kudos!

  • Small default profile

    Deborah Upton

    Higher Ed Faculty
    May 18, 2021 | 12:23 p.m.

    Curious as to what the "citizen mathematics aspects" of the project area?

  • Icon for: Melissa Demetrikopoulos

    Melissa Demetrikopoulos

    Co-Presenter
    Chair; External Evaluator for Noyce and ITEST projects
    May 18, 2021 | 05:26 p.m.

    Hi Deborah, 

    Kwame can better answer this questions, but I thought I would give it a go since we are just about out of time to comment.  In addition to Citizen Science projects, this program also has Citizen Mathematics projects.  It is my understanding that the mathematics projects focus more closely on the data analysis aspects and/or larger data sets rather than on the collection of Scientific Data.  Obviously data analysis and/or data illustrations are likely aspects of all Citizen Science projects as well.  I believe that last year they did a project on mapping the risk of power outages from hurricanes.

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Multiplex Discussion
  • Icon for: Kwame Owusu-Daaku

    Kwame Owusu-Daaku

    Lead Presenter
    May 24, 2021 | 12:33 p.m.

    Deborah,

    Melissa is correct. This video focuses on just one example of a citizen science project that a Biology Teaching major did that focused on microplastics. However, we have had citizen science projects that Mathematics Teaching majors have done that have focused more on data analysis and interpretation rather than data collection as Melissa has pointed out. Emmanuel's comment above was related more to some follow up research on Kara's microplastic engagement with one of our Mathematics scholars at the time (who has since graduated). A team of us including Emmanuel were set up to do some follow up work focusing a bit more on mathematics than only Biology, but also assessing what students had learned in the process. COVID unfortunately got in the way, and many of those students may have since graduated. However this summer, we do have at least one project that will be worked on together with an Environmental Science Teaching scholar and a Mathematics Teaching scholar with regard to beach and sand dunes. We are hoping that such interdisciplinary collaborations between scholars can be a hallmark of our program as it grows. 

     
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