East Bay: Student Teachers Foster Service Learning in High School Science
Science-credential candidates at CSU East Bay are cultivating ways to bring service learning into their high school science classrooms. Led by Dr. David Stronck, Professor of Teacher Education, these student teachers learned about service learning and how it can be used in the classroom after a tour of Math/Science Nucleus. Established in 1982 by scientists, educators and community members, Math/Science Nucleus is a non-profit organization that serves as an online science resource center, provides training to enhance the teaching and science skills of teachers, and manages the Children's Natural History Museum and the Tule Ponds at Tyson Lagoon Wetland Center. Finding the experience inspirational, the teacher candidates decided to create a service-learning project for themselves and their high school students.
During the tour, candidates observed how the presence of native and foreign elements affects the ecological standards at Tule Pond. They were inspired to help restore native plants in a local park so they incorporated ecology lessons into their biology and chemistry classrooms and educated their students of the hidden habitats within their city. As a result, they established a necessary link between the curriculum and their plant restoration project. The high schoolers not only learned how to analyze the effects changes in climate, human activity, and introduction of nonnative species have on an ecosystem, but made strides toward meeting California's service-learning requirement for high school students.
The plant restoration project took place at Stivers Lagoon in Fremont's Central Park and Math/Science Nucleus provided various trees for the project. This experience generated anticipation among the student teachers to engage in more projects that would allow them to revitalize their community through service.
Science-credential candidates at CSU East Bay are cultivating ways to bring service learning into their high school science classrooms. After learning about service learning and observing several Math/Science Nucleus projects, Dr. David Stronck's fall 2011 credential candidates were inspired to create a service-learning project for their biology and chemistry students.
Led by Dr. Bude Su, a team of alumni and students in the School of Information Technology and Communication Design (ITCD) at CSU Monterey Bay assisted Natividad Medical Center in cutting time and costs through real-world application of their studies. The Medical Center's training module, in need of restructure, would have taken several months and cost more than $1 million to train 700 nurses and physician assistants in a new electronic patient charting system.
CSU Sacramento biology students are discovering the art of teaching in Dr. Kelly McDonald's BIO195T service-learning course. The course, designed for students interested in pursuing a career in teaching science to K-12 students pairs students with experienced science teachers from diverse middle schools and high schools throughout Sacramento County.
Thanks to a Title V grant awarded in 2007, CSU San Bernardino's nationally recognized CoyoteCareers program is preparing diverse STEM students for California's workforce. CoyoteCareers is a unique cross-divisional collaboration that connects and provides students with tutoring in hard-to-pass gatekeeper courses, paid service-learning internship experiences, career development counseling, and alumni mentoring and networking.
Professor Cynthia Darché Park at San Diego State University is passionate about increasing students' interest and achievement in the sciences and mathematics. What started as one course more than 20 years ago has become multiple service-learning course offerings for students pursuing degrees in education.