1. Sara Lacy
  2. Senior Scientist
  3. Collaborative Research: Focus on Energy: Preparing Elementary Teachers to Meet the NGSS Challenge
  4. TERC
  1. Sally Crissman
  2. Senior Science Educator
  3. Collaborative Research: Focus on Energy: Preparing Elementary Teachers to Meet the NGSS Challenge
  4. TERC
  1. Roger Tobin
  2. http://rtobin.phy.tufts.edu/
  3. Professor of Physics
  4. Collaborative Research: Focus on Energy: Preparing Elementary Teachers to Meet the NGSS Challenge
  5. Tufts University
Presenters’
Choice
Public Discussion
  • Icon for: Jennifer Adams

    Jennifer Adams

    Facilitator
    May 16, 2016 | 01:01 p.m.

    I like the focus on “energy stories” and multiple entry ways of learning about energy. It would be interesting to hear more about how the different activities were developed.

  • Icon for: Sally Crissman

    Sally Crissman

    Co-Presenter
    May 16, 2016 | 03:15 p.m.

    In our exploratory research, we found almost all students in grades 3-5 associated energy with motion. We chose simple motion phenomena to introduce our framework – the energy tracking lens – and representations using energy bars and energy cubes. From there students (and their teachers) used the energy tracking lens to reason about energy flow in increasingly complex phenomena involving elastic, thermal and electrical energy. We want our activities to be engaging, usable and aligned with NGSS performance expectations.

  • Icon for: Jennifer Adams

    Jennifer Adams

    Facilitator
    May 19, 2016 | 02:53 p.m.

    Thanks, it seems like it is a very engaging activity and allows them to learn about energy in different ways.

  • Icon for: Susan Kowalski

    Susan Kowalski

    Senior Research Scientist
    May 16, 2016 | 02:34 p.m.

    It’s exciting to see young students grappling with difficult energy concepts. The activities in the video really help make the abstract concrete.

  • Icon for: Sara Lacy

    Sara Lacy

    Presenter
    May 16, 2016 | 03:33 p.m.

    We’re providing language and representations that students can use to reason about energy flow in a variety of phenomena and to discuss and communicate their ideas. It’s been very interesting to watch them use these tools, to listen to their ideas, and to begin to learn what’s possible and what’s challenging in elementary school.

  • Icon for: Deborah Hanuscin

    Deborah Hanuscin

    Associate Professor
    May 16, 2016 | 05:09 p.m.

    Energy is such an important concept, and one that cuts across so many different domains! It’s exciting to see this work being done in the elementary grades and with elementary teachers!

  • Icon for: Teresa Eastburn

    Teresa Eastburn

    Facilitator
    May 16, 2016 | 06:42 p.m.

    “Resources and support for teaching and learning.” Kudos for combining both to ensure greater success and effectiveness. Like Jennifer above, I’m interested in the activities and how they were selected. What research was drawn upon to inform both the PD and curriculum? How long is typically given to energy’s study with teachers/students you are working with? I’m familiar with Annenberg lessons/videos on energy as well as the NEED project. Were these programs informative to your design at all? Also, energy is so central to our lives. Is there any component that developmentally appropriately brings energy in society into the curriculum?

  • Icon for: Sara Lacy

    Sara Lacy

    Presenter
    May 17, 2016 | 09:20 p.m.

    The Framework and NGSS set ambitious goals for teaching and learning about energy in elementary school that existing curricula for grade 3-5 don’t address. As a result, there’s a very small research base about what’s possible in elementary school. As part of this project, we are developing and testing a sequence of activities where students engage in science practices to deepen their understanding of the core idea of energy and crosscutting concepts. We’re drawing on our own exploratory research with children, involving interviews and teaching experiments.
    Our goal is to provide students with a framework to reason about and represent forms and flows of energy in a variety of contexts. We start with the simple, easily observable context of 2 balls colliding on a horizontal track. As students progress through activities, contexts get more sophisticated and students apply foundational ideas to a broader range of phenomena. Contexts involving energy in society tend to be quite complex and they are a challenge! In the last of 11 activities we developed, students explore using a solar panel to spin a propeller attached to a motor. They raise questions such as, Does the solar panel transform heat or light? and Does the solar panel store energy? When they are tracking the flow of energy in this scenario, they are able to have a rich conversation, but they are left with unanswered questions, such as “What exactly is solar energy?”

  • Icon for: Sally Crissman

    Sally Crissman

    Co-Presenter
    May 18, 2016 | 03:37 p.m.

    Hi Teresa, Our PD curriculum was built on the “best practices” literature and, perhaps more important, Seattle Pacific University and TERC’s extensive experience designing fully online, face-to-face and hybrid teacher workshops and summer institutes.

  • Icon for: Lauren Allen

    Lauren Allen

    Facilitator
    May 17, 2016 | 03:01 p.m.

    How great to hear about a project that is shedding light on this fundamental abstraction in our lives! It is very exciting to think about all the connections between physics, chemistry, biology, mathematics, and social sciences that all are centered on energy. I would be interested in hearing more about how students and teachers talk about these connections, specifically with regard to the series of examples of energy at the beginning of the video.

  • Icon for: Roger Taylor

    Roger Taylor

    Facilitator
    May 17, 2016 | 07:46 p.m.

    My “inner cinematographer” was very impressed with the aesthetics of your video.

    While the concept of energy might initially seem straightforward one quickly realizes how difficult it is, especially energy transformations. Heck, there’s a reason why we didn’t develop a good understanding of energy until fairly recently in the history of science. Could you talk more about your energy tracking lens framework and how it helps student learning?

  • Icon for: Sara Lacy

    Sara Lacy

    Presenter
    May 18, 2016 | 03:23 p.m.

    Credit for the aesthetics goes to our talented videographer, Jim Galdos.

    Looking through the Energy Tracking Lens involves asking the same sequence of questions about virtually any phenomenon— from a bouncing ball to global warming:
    1. What’s happening? Describe what you observe.
    2. What’s the energy story: Where does the energy come from and where does the energy go? What are the components of the system? Where in the system are energy changes occurring? (Where are there Energy transformations? Where are there energy increases and decreases?) What is the evidence?
    The Energy Tracking Lens provides a framework and language that allows students to learn an interdependent network of ideas about energy at the same time that they learn to take a scientific stance about phenomena involving energy.

  • Icon for: Roger Taylor

    Roger Taylor

    Facilitator
    May 20, 2016 | 10:58 a.m.

    That’s Interesting Sara. It’s hard to measure, but I could see your project helping the students develop a more sophisticated understanding of the nature of science (NOS). It would also allow people to identify the “gaps” where students have difficulty, pointing towards future educational research projects.

  • Further posting is closed as the showcase has ended.