Photo courtesy of Linda Rummell.
liberty park teachers
From left are Vestavia Hills teachers and 2014 Science Works Conference presenters Becky Gibson, Desiree Spencer, Aimee Farrer, Jennifer Anderson, Jemmie Clements, Alicia Johnson, Brett Horne, Kathrene Westbrook and Jennifer Brown.
Liberty Park Middle School science teachers Brett Horne, Alicia Johnson and Desiree Spencer recently presented at the 2014 Science Works Conference held at the McWane Science Center. The purpose of this conference was to teach science teachers how to add rigor in their classrooms.
Some of the sessions that they either taught or co-taught were a hands-on physical science session, a life science session and an outdoors session. In the physical science session, teachers were shown how science, technology, engineering and math concepts really work in a classroom.
Through this workshop, teachers learned how a rocket launcher was made using PVC pipe, a grill igniter, tape and glue. Rockets were made from water bottles with isopropyl alcohol as fuel.
In another session, the topic was plant reproduction. The teachers presented a hands-on lesson that included a flower dissection. Participants dissected a lily, mounted it on a 5-inch-by-7-inch index card and labeled all of its parts.
Another session encouraged teachers to take science outdoors. In the “outdoor session” attendees were taught how to create mini ponds from leaf litter and distilled or spring water. Participants prepared slides from a pre-made mini pond, and used microscopes to examine the microorganisms that were collected during the mini field trip into nature.
The theme throughout each session was that teachers were encouraged to let students learn through exploration before reinforcing learning through reading and writing.
Other participating Vestavia Hills science teachers were Jennifer Anderson, Jennifer Brown, Jemmie Clements, Aimee Farrer, Becky Gibson and Kathrene Westbrook.
— Submitted Linda Rummell.