- Year 2017
- NSF Noyce Award # 1557323
- First Name Jenna
- Last Name Porter
- Discipline Other: Math and Science
Sarah Ives, CSU Sacramento, firstname.lastname@example.org
Deidre Sessoms, CSU Sacramento, email@example.com
Judi Kusnick, CSU Sacramento, firstname.lastname@example.org
Jenna Porter, CSU Sacramento
Sarah Ives, CSU Sacramento
Deidre Sessoms, CSU Sacramento
The demand for a workforce that is well prepared in STEM is expected to increase (Langdon, McKittrick, Beede, Khan, & Doms, 2011), yet California is failing to meet the current need. The 2011 Science and Engineering Readiness Index ranked the state 34th in math and science education (White & Cottle, 2011), while the Trends in International Mathematics and Science Study (TIMSS) found that only 5% of California 8th graders were at an advanced level of math (NCES, 2012). In response to these challenges, California adopted nationally recognized K-12 education standards, the Common Core State Standards in Mathematics (CCSSM) and Next Generation Science Standards (NGSS), and embarked on a statewide high school reform effort called Linked Learning that is aligned with the needs of both higher education and STEM business and industry. In order to successfully achieve these reforms, we must strengthen the pipeline of STEM teachers to prepare students for the competitive global economy.
The SacMAST-L project seeks to develop 20 mathematics and science teachers’ leadership capacity for implementing strong STEM pedagogical content knowledge and mentoring other teachers as Master Teaching Fellows (MTFs). We are building a community of MTFs who can lead regional implementation of new K-12 STEM standards and model effective practices for inservice and preservice teachers. The major goals of the project are to (1) train MTFs to understand and effectively implement Common Core State Standards in Mathematics (CCSSM) and Next Generation Science Standards (NGSS) in Linked Learning Contexts and (2) develop leadership capacity for training other inservice teachers and preservice teachers to implement the new standards in Linked Learning settings.
During Year 1 of the program, we aimed to increase MTF understanding of CCSSM & NGSS through professional development and the first summer institute. We also established communities of practice through monthly meetings and action research. During Year 2, we plan to continue offering professional development so that MTFs deepen their understanding of the CCSSM and NGSS practices and their intersections. We will also focus on increasing MTFs’ cultural competence and understanding of culturally relevant pedagogy, particularly by trainings in teacher home visits (in partnership with the nationally known program, the Parent/Teacher Home Visit Project). The MTFs will also continue to engage in district and county professional development related to Linked Learning. In subsequent years, the MTFs? interdisciplinary focus will expand beyond math-science to include other disciplines, as is done in Linked Learning settings.
Summer Institute: We introduced MTFs to the CCSSM and NGSS and designed it so MTFs could experience as learners what we wish them to teach, in terms of both the pedagogy and science and mathematics content. Science and math MTFs worked together for a portion of the time to learn about overlapping themes in pedagogy and to support interdisciplinary collaboration. This collaborative practice embodies Linked Learning principles that MTFs engage in at their schools, and encourages them to continue interdisciplinary work but with increased knowledge of the new standards. Action Research: MTFs just completed a cycle of action research. Year 1 we introduced fellows to the process of action research and supported them through face-to-face monthly meetings, accompanied by monthly online activities. To establish a community of practice, we had MTFs share progress on their action research projects by participating in online discussions.Their studies focused on either a CCSSM or NGSS practice.
We’ve just completed Year 1 and have not disseminated results yet, but continue to collect data on MTFs development and intend to present preliminary findings in upcoming conferences. Likewise, MTFs are in the process of obtaining IRB approval for their Action Research projects, which they will present to their schools, districts, and communities beginning next year.
Our project is already having an impact on society because the MTFs are conducting action research in their classrooms. As they engage in this self-reflective process of inquiry, they are incorporating pedagogy that includes CCSSM/NGSS practices. Thus, the students are experiencing mathematics & science in classrooms in ways that are likely more effective than their previous experiences learning mathematics and science. This project will also have statewide impact because we’re producing teacher leaders who can disseminate this new model of NGSS/CSSSM-aligned Linked Learning through presentations at the California Science Teachers Association and the California Mathematics Council meetings. Two of our MTFs have already submitted proposals to present at these conferences. All MTFs will also be asked to serve as teacher leaders for the local sites of the California Science and Mathematics Projects, extending Sacramento State’s reach throughout these statewide PD networks.