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Icon for: Faiza Peetz

FAIZA PEETZ

College of Staten Island CUNY

FRESHKILLS PARK X TEACHER PD

NSF Awards: 1657755

2022 (see original presentation & discussion)

Grades K-6

Dedicated to using our local resources as much as possible, we visited Fresh Kills Park. The former Fresh Kills Landfill, the largest landfill in the world and now New York City’s largest public park built in more than a century, promotes environmental research and ecological restoration and sponsors a broad range of recreational, cultural, and educational programs for the public. We used our experience to prepare and present PDs to elementary school teachers to show that STEM/STEAM can be cross-curricular using whatever they are teaching.

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Discussion from the 2022 STEM For All Video Showcase (18 posts)
  • Icon for: Kathy Renfrew

    Kathy Renfrew

    Facilitator
    Education SPecialist
    May 10, 2022 | 10:01 a.m.

    Thank you for sharing your project ! I really want to know more. I understand it is about providing teachers with place-based professional learning experience so they can then implement it in their classrooms but i still don't have a deep enough understanding of what those professional learning experiences looked and sounded like. Please tell me more . I am also interested in what exactly did you do or are you doing to support the integration of the place based learning from FreshKills Park into continuing classroom literacy, science and or math instruction. I would love to hear  more about your  project think about I might connect or try something similar in my local area. Are all teachers buying in to the vision? How did you convince naysayers that this was professional learning worth doing? I have so many questions!

     

  • Icon for: Faiza Peetz

    Faiza Peetz

    Lead Presenter
    PI, Noyce Master Teaching Fellows Academy
    May 11, 2022 | 11:39 a.m.

    Dear Kathy,

    Thank you for your interest in our project and video and my apologies for the delayed response.

    Place-base education is not new. It was the modus operandi for centuries. Until the industrial revolution when education was one-size-fits-all, education has always been place-based either our of necessity due to lack of resources or due to the need to hand down culture and know-how. But we now know that place-base education can engage students and teacher due to its relevance, it can offer opportunities to students and teachers as each locality has many gems, and it can empower students and teachers to thrive as they are engaged and motivated. 

    To your "what those professional learning experiences looked and sounded like" Freshkills Park is now a living classroom for students to explore ecology, sustainability, New York City history, and art and design. A visit to Freshkills Park makes nature come alive for students and teachers alike. They work with schools, camps, scout groups, and clubs to offer in-person field trips, virtual field trips, and service opportunities, along with multimedia resources to teach about Freshkills Park and grassland ecosystems in school. So, we went with our MTFs on a field trip to Freshkills park and introduced them to the opportunities and resources the park provides. Then the MTFs had the opportunity to discuss their experience there and prepared 5 PDs that they presented to their colleagues at their respective schools. 

    To your " Are all teachers buying in to the vision? " I must be honest, we did not have a hard time with our MTFs, they are all into it.

    To your "How did you convince naysayers that this was professional learning worth doing?" I must say it was not difficult. After the field trip the MTFs themselves were able to see what can be done with the resources provided and were happy to share with their colleagues.

    I hope I was able to answer your question.

  • Icon for: Margo Murphy

    Margo Murphy

    Facilitator
    Science Instructor
    May 11, 2022 | 06:13 a.m.

    I love your opening statement cited "allow children to love the earth before we ask them to save it."  Can you say more about how teachers were supported to more fully use the Fresh Kills park both in terms of their PD but also costs such as transportation, equipment, etc.  I am interested in knowing if teachers self-selected or were they required by their schools to participate.  I will follow up with more questions.  Thanks!

  • Icon for: Faiza Peetz

    Faiza Peetz

    Lead Presenter
    PI, Noyce Master Teaching Fellows Academy
    May 11, 2022 | 11:49 a.m.

    Good afternoon Margo,

    Thank you for your interest in our project and video.

    Our MTFs are supported with a yearly stipend from our grant. The grant also provides funds for the transportation and other related expenses. Also, our MTFs self-selected to join the program back in 2017. This year is our fifth and final project year. Every year, except during the height of COVID, we went on field trips. For example, we went to Makers Space (https://multiplex.videohall.com/presentations/1... ), we went to the Greenbelt Park (https://multiplex.videohall.com/presentations/1... ) we went to different museums, and now to Freshkills Park.

    I hope I answered your question.

  • Icon for: Kathy Renfrew

    Kathy Renfrew

    Facilitator
    Education SPecialist
    May 11, 2022 | 01:41 p.m.

    I am sad to hear your project isending. Will you seek additional funding? Do you think you have created enough of a critical mass of MTFs to keep the vision of the program moving forward?

     

     

     
    1
    Discussion is closed. Upvoting is no longer available

    Margo Murphy
  • Icon for: Faiza Peetz

    Faiza Peetz

    Lead Presenter
    PI, Noyce Master Teaching Fellows Academy
    May 13, 2022 | 04:47 p.m.

    Yes, we too, but the cost-share part of the project is a limiting factor. I hear of a Noyce track for that is being introduced. Hopefully it is a viable option.

  • Icon for: Latrenda Knighten

    Latrenda Knighten

    Facilitator
    Mathematics Content Trainer
    May 12, 2022 | 12:45 a.m.

    Thanks for sharing your project.  I LOVE the focus on local resources and environmental science for students - these are areas that are often overlooked.  My school district is currently planning to open a new school with a focus on environmental science and STEM.  It looks as if we could learn a lot from your work with teachers and students in this project. How did you structure the professional development activities for teachers? Did you focus on specific science topics or did you integrate the STEM/STEAM concepts with the existing curricular resources? 

  • Icon for: Faiza Peetz

    Faiza Peetz

    Lead Presenter
    PI, Noyce Master Teaching Fellows Academy
    May 13, 2022 | 04:52 p.m.

    Hello Latrenda, thank you for your interest and for watching the video.

    It is exciting that your district is planning to open a school that focuses on the environment. It is really important. I do not know if you heard of the UN SG of 2015 (United Nations Sustainability Goals) it has a lot to do with all aspects of sustainability and its consequences such as poverty and clean water.

    The professional development for teachers were structured to integrate the STEM/STEAM concepts with existing curricular resources.

     
    1
    Discussion is closed. Upvoting is no longer available

    Latrenda Knighten
  • Icon for: Latrenda Knighten

    Latrenda Knighten

    Facilitator
    Mathematics Content Trainer
    May 13, 2022 | 08:53 p.m.

    Thanks for your response and resource suggestion.  I wasn't familiar with the UN Sustainability Goals.  This will be very useful information for the planning team for the new school.  Thanks for being willing to share.

    Latrenda

  • Icon for: Kimberly Scamardella

    Kimberly Scamardella

    K-5 Science/Technology Educator
    May 15, 2022 | 11:51 a.m.

    Hi Latrenda,

    The professional development was structured into a series of sessions. The sessions were developed as a progression where teachers were introduced to the benefits and background of STEM/STEAM. Then, they were able to experience it with a student hat on and finally guided on how they can integrate it into their curriculum. The next steps would be to have the teachers implement their plan in the classroom then debrief and receive feedback. 

    We took the state standards/concepts for the different grade levels and helped teachers see where these STEM concepts can be brought into their pre-exisiting curriculum(into all subject areas-ELA, Math, Social Studies, etc). Our goal in providing these professional developments is to help teachers see that STEM can be integrated into what they are already doing through a project-based learning approach. 

    Incorporating the Freshkills Landfill brings it 'home' for the teachers. It makes it more interesting and relatable since it is something that is in their own backyard. I've found that when teachers or students are provided with the opportunity to address a problem within their own community, it not only generates passion or excitement within the learner but also provides a solution that can benefit all!

       
     
    1
    Discussion is closed. Upvoting is no longer available

    Latrenda Knighten
  • Icon for: Latrenda Knighten

    Latrenda Knighten

    Facilitator
    Mathematics Content Trainer
    May 15, 2022 | 06:03 p.m.

    Kim,

    Thanks so much for providing me with an in depth picture of your professional development plan for teachers.  It's very comprehensive! I agree with you about allowing the community to explore/address problems in their own backyard - it's a great way to ensure buy in for all stakeholders.  I especially like that you showed teachers how to integrate STEM concepts into their existing curriculum for all content areas. I'm sure this helped teachers see that this project didn't require them to add one more thing to an already full plate - they're just able to enhance the learning experience for their students.

    Thanks again,

    Latrenda

  • Icon for: Faiza Peetz

    Faiza Peetz

    Lead Presenter
    PI, Noyce Master Teaching Fellows Academy
    May 16, 2022 | 08:47 a.m.

    Thank you Kim for your feedback!

  • Icon for: Margo Murphy

    Margo Murphy

    Facilitator
    Science Instructor
    May 12, 2022 | 05:55 a.m.

    As this phase of funding comes to an end with the MTF's do they have any expectation to continue the work or to train others?  Or are there other plans for sustaining this work when funding has ended?

  • Icon for: Faiza Peetz

    Faiza Peetz

    Lead Presenter
    PI, Noyce Master Teaching Fellows Academy
    May 13, 2022 | 04:55 p.m.

    Hello again Margo,

    As this phase of funding comes to an end with the MTF's, we are hoping they'll continue the work or train other teachers in their schools and in the district. The aim of the project was to develop leaders that do exactly that. There are no other plans for sustaining this work when funding has ended and we hope it will self-sustain. 

  • Icon for: Kathy Renfrew

    Kathy Renfrew

    Facilitator
    Education SPecialist
    May 13, 2022 | 03:03 p.m.

    How will you determine the impact of the program?

  • Icon for: Faiza Peetz

    Faiza Peetz

    Lead Presenter
    PI, Noyce Master Teaching Fellows Academy
    May 13, 2022 | 05:02 p.m.

    Hello Kathy,

    This project can play a significant role in changing the trajectory of science instruction and learning within the geographically isolated District 31 that encompasses Staten Island. Participating science teachers in high-need elementary schools will engage in the project as a cohort, meaning their impact will be individual and collective. As leaders within their own schools, they can facilitate science-focused professional development among their colleagues; by virtue of belonging to the project’s professional learning community, they will be linked to a larger association of educators committed to enhancing science education - a group that might extend outward, to encompass more elementary participants, or upward, to connect with science educators in middle and high schools. The network suggests an opportunity for broad scale reform of science teaching and learning across District 31 as well as sustainability: Well-qualified teachers will positively affect the lives and aspirations of their students, their schools, the community, the local economy, and the workplace. 

  • Icon for: Sharon Cameron

    Sharon Cameron

    4th Grade Mathematics/Science Teacher
    May 13, 2022 | 03:10 p.m.

    Hello Kathy, we completed an on site workshop at the Freshkills Park in Staten Island New York.  We learned about ways that we can incorporate the FreshKills Park experience into our lessons and as spring board either by visiting Freshkills Park with our class, or complete a neighborhood walk around our school building and explore looking for organisms in the environment around the school. 

     
    2
    Discussion is closed. Upvoting is no longer available

    Margo Murphy
    Kathy Renfrew
  • Icon for: Faiza Peetz

    Faiza Peetz

    Lead Presenter
    PI, Noyce Master Teaching Fellows Academy
    May 13, 2022 | 04:45 p.m.

    Thank you Sharon for sharing, it is important that the feed back comes from the people who are impacted.

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