The Process

This project takes a multi-pronged approach to directly address the knowledge, skills, and dispositions of students related to STEM career preparedness.  Scaling up STEM learning incorporates the use of The Geometer’s Sketchpad and Fathom (Key Curriculum Press, 2009) into high school algebra and geometry curricula.

To begin, 20 high school Geometry teachers (Cohort 1) participated in the 2010 Summer Professional Development workshop July 19-23 at the William & Ida Friday Institute for Educational Innovation at North Carolina State University where they learned how to use and integrate Geometer Sketchpad 5 into teaching practices, became adept at using the Virtual Computing Lab (VCL) to access the software remotely, and met and worked with the professional role models from industry and academic careers.

Professional Development

The workshop focused on developing teachers’ TPACK (Technological Pedogogical Content Knowledge) by engaging them in solving mathematics problems using The Geometer’s Sketchpad and Fathom, reflecting on those experiences from the perspective of a student, and considering the pedagogical implications for employing such problems in classrooms.

In addition to the Summer PD workshop, teachers receive ongoing PD during the school year through: online instruction, in-classroom support from team members, and role model support.

Teacher Professional Development Workshop Feedback

20 high school Geometry teachers participated in the 2010 Summer Professional Development workshop July 19-23, 2010 at the William & Ida Friday Institute for Educational Innovation at North Carolina State University where they learned how to use and integrate Geometer Sketchpad 5 into teaching practices, became adept at using the Virtual Computing Lab (VCL) to access the software remotely, and met and worked with the professional role models from industry and academic careers. The teachers offered their comments about the workshop.


Professional Role Models
effectively wield problem-solving tools in real-life workplace settings.
 
The role modelsl:

  • Provide students with a realistic view of a STEM and ICT workplace
  • Help students realize the application of math in real-world problems and concerns
  • Work with teachers to incorporate real world examples into lesson plans
  • Interact with students both in the classroom and within a safe and secure virtual community


1:1 Laptop Initiative and Cloud Computing

This study partners with North Carolina’s state funded 1:1 laptop initiative in K-12 schools and with NC State’s Virtual Computing Lap (VCL), a cloud computing architecture that remotely provides advanced software to the students.  

By combining available resources, we offer access to the software both at school and at home, which will further foster a technologically enriched learning environment.

Evaluation is central to understanding the scale-up process.  To do so, both the impact of the innovations on teachers and students, and the factors that facilitate or hinder the scaling up of the innovation must be studied.  

The evaluation process includes:

  • Classroom observations and analysis
  • Teacher surveys and interviews
  • Role model and administrative staff interviews
  • Student mathematics achievement and course selection