- Year 2016
- NSF Noyce Award # 1035490
- First Name Diane
- Last Name Barrett
- Discipline Mathematics
Roberto Pelayon, University of Hawaii at Hilo, firstname.lastname@example.org
Diane Barrett, University of Hawaii at Hilo, email@example.com
Hawaii has been facing a drastic teacher shortage, with the most drastic shortages in the fields of STEM and SPED. In desperation, Hawaii has been recruiting teachers from the mainland, however, this has resulted in an extremely high teacher turn over rate. Additionally, the majority of the schools in Hawaii are classified as high need schools as defined by poverty, teacher quality, and student performance. The percentage of students from economically disadvantaged families is as high as 78% in some of these complexes, with as few as 33% of the teachers in these complexes taught there more than 5 years, and only 70% teaching in the content area in which they were trained These schools share many of the same challenges as rural schools, including , but not limited to the need for a rural school to have additional social responsibilities in the community and student transience.
The goals of this project are to:
1. Attract a diverse, high quality pool of applicants by:
a. Working closely with partner community colleges to remove obstacles to transferring from community college to UHH.
b. Providing information about mathematics teaching as a career and financial assistance available to future mathematics teachers.
c. Targeting community college and UHH underclass students in mathematics who could potentially be interested in achieving licensure in secondary mathematics.
2. Prepare highly qualified mathematics teachers by:
a. Equipping candidates to provide high quality, culturally based and engaging mathematics instruction.
b. Providing them with technology to enhance teaching.
3. Support HINTS program graduates in their first years of teaching, thereby improving their chances of retention beyond the required service commitment, through:
a. Training in the effective use of educational technology in the classroom.
b. Socialization into the teaching profession.
c. Integration into the Ohana of UHH teacher graduates.
d. Work with Hawaii DOE to professional development.
The Hawaii Noyce Teacher Scholarship (HINTS) program is an innovative collaborative project involving University of Hawaii at Hilo (UHH and the Hawaii Department of Education in an effort to increase the number of highly qualified intermediate and high school mathematics teachers in Hawaii. The Hawaii Noyce Teacher Scholarship program provides substantial support to scholars pursuing licensure in mathematics in the State of Hawaii. The HINTS program will provide a range of financial, academic and professional support to help your career goals come true. HiNTS support includes:
** Full Tuition Scholarships
** Technology Support including laptops, iPads & calculators
** Mentoring in creating an engaging and culturally relevant lessons
** Travel to National Conferences
** Professional development in both mathematics content and pedagogy.
In an effort to prepare our scholars, the Hawaii Noyce Teacher Scholarship Program hosts an annual Math Day to promote interest in mathematics and to provide our scholars with practice writing and delivery engaging math lessons. Previous Math Days have included a CSI: A Math Day Murder Mystery, The Amazing Race: A Virtual Place-Based Learning and Games of Chance: A Math Day Carnival. The participants consisted of freshman level students who were not current math majors, in an effort to encourage them to pursue a STEM career. The most common reaction to these events was: “Wow, I didn’t know math could be so much fun!”
This grant has increased interest in teaching in the area of mathematics. During interviews with the scholars it was discovered that most thought of going to graduate school and teaching at the college level. Upon hearing about the grant they chose to apply, and after understanding all the requirements of this scholarship they are thankful for the opportunity it provides.
In response to the publicity of this grant, the teacher education program is receiving more potential math teacher applications than if previous years. In previous years there were a most two mathematics teacher candidates per year, with less than that most years. Since the onset of this grant, there have been 3- 5 applicants each year. While this may not seem like much, it is more than double than previously.
In an effort to prepare our scholars, the Hawaii Noyce Teacher Scholarship Program hosts an annual Math Day to promote interest in mathematics and to provide our scholars with practice writing and delivery engaging math lessons. This past Math Day focused on virtual place-based learning. Based upon data collected, most participants felt the day was fun and worthwhile in addition to being educational (mean score of 3.8/4.0 on each of these data points.
As the sole institution in the state of Hawaii with a Noyce scholarship program, HiNTS created a pipeline in Hawaii that will guide future mathematics teachers through licensure, initial placement and tenure phases of their careers. This network of programs, resources, and collective recruitment efforts strengthened ties between UHH, the community colleges, and the Hawaii DOE. This synergetic effort produced locally grown well-trained educators that are personally aware of the cultural and ethnic diversity of the Hawaiian Islands. This broader understanding of the interplay between culture and science in Hawaii allows HINTS scholars to more successfully promote participation and critical thinking in to all students, including underrepresented groups and students in rural areas.
Ultimately, since mathematics is the cornerstone of scientific advancement, the heightened quality of mathematics education will allow the state of Hawaii to develop further as a scientific center and will produce a well-trained, local workforce for Hawaii’s ever growing astronomical, geological, and oceanographic research ventures. Furthermore, HINTS scholars will be uniquely positioned to develop innovative pedagogical approaches in mathematics focused on teaching ethnically diverse classrooms. Although many of these newly created pedagogical models specifically target students of Hawaiian and mixed ancestry, they are being shared by the HINTS scholars nationally at conferences and through publications, therefore serving as potential templates for other school districts with similar ethnic heterogeneity and dual urban-rural demographics.