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Academic Success Strategies [clear filter]
Wednesday, November 14
 

9:45am

Closing the Access Gap to STEM for Underserved Student Populations
Consider joining this collaborative partnership program bringing, at no cost to partner high schools, AP® science to underserved school populations.

Economically disadvantaged students in many urban, rural, and small suburban communities don’t have access to rigorous physics courses. Lacking opportunity to access such courses, these demographic groups are hard pressed to compete in physical science related Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics fields and academic programs with their peers from more affluent communities. Project Accelerate, a National Science Foundation funded project, is a partnership program between Boston University, West Virginia University and high schools bringing a College Board accredited AP® Physics 1 course to schools not offering this opportunity.

Preliminary results indicate that students participating in Project Accelerate do as well as their peers enrolled in traditional classroom-based AP® Physics 1 classes. Project Accelerate creates a collaborative learning environment utilizing the supportive infrastructures from the students’ traditional school with a highly interactive private edX online instructional tool. This pairing provides opportunities for under-represented groups who otherwise would not have access to this often prerequisite course to success in physical science, information technology and medical-related academic and career pathways.

Project Accelerate contains the potential to support hundreds of schools and thousands of students throughout the country bringing opportunity for success in STEM to under-served and economically disadvantaged young men and woman.

Moderators
MD

Mark D. Greenman

Research Fellow, Boston University

Speakers
AF

Ali Ferhani

Student, Community Charter School of Cambridge
AF

Andrew Flye

Science Teacher, Boston International Newcomer Academy
JM

Jeff Molk

Department Chair, Community Charter School of Cambridge


Wednesday November 14, 2018 9:45am - 10:35am
Meeting Room E

9:45am

Full STEAM Ahead: A Kinetic Sculpture Project
In this session, educators from the Public Schools of Brookline will share a successful interdisciplinary learning experience for 8th graders. Based on Arthur Ganson’s mechanical artwork at the MIT Museum, students integrated learning from science, engineering, visual arts, and technology to create their own kinetic sculptures in a public display of project-based learning. This innovative project brought about high levels of student engagement and achievement.

In this session, we will share details of all stages of this project (including photos and video), from preparation to classroom lessons to the final showcase. The stages include movement drawings, visiting MIT, observational drawings, brainstorming, sketching, building (and persisting), and reflecting. We will share successes, challenges, and lessons learned in thinking about future iterations and implications for our own practice as educators. Time will be built in for questions from attendees. We believe this session would benefit all teachers in grades K-12, with a particular emphasis for middle school. We are hoping that participants would leave with an inspiring opportunity to integrate content in an engaging relevant manner. We also hope the audience would take away the relationship among student-directed learning, persistence, and engagement, and that these skills will remain with students forever.

Speakers
MD

Matt Durant

Educational Technology Specialist, Public Schools of Brookline
MG

Mark Goldner

Science Teacher, Schools of Brookline
TG

Tanya Gregoire

Enrichment & Challenge Support Specialist, Public Schools of Brookline
CY

Ceara Yahn

Visual Arts Teacher, Public Schools of Brookline


Wednesday November 14, 2018 9:45am - 10:35am
Junior Ballroom

9:45am

Pathways to STEM Student Success and Workforce Development
There is a growing demand for science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) professionals, but the number of STEM graduates is not keeping pace. UMass Boston College of Science and Mathematics (CSM) had been no exception to the problem of low graduation rates, an issue made particularly urgent considering the opportunity we have, as a minority-majority college, to contribute to the diversity of the STEM pipeline and workforce. This urgent issue led to careful analysis of student data to identify the “leaks” in the pipeline and the utilization of a multidimensional approach incorporating data-driven strategies and interventions that strengthened our pipeline and improved success rates for students. The strategies and interventions work synergistically to enable our students to succeed and persist in STEM fields. CSM has successfully leveraged the community concept, which begins with the Freshman Success Community (FSC) Program.  The FSC serves as a platform to address the needs of first-year STEM students, provide an enriched academic experience, and increase motivation to pursue STEM. CSM has developed collaborative relationships with external corporate and institutional partners to support student research and internships. As students make progress through their STEM education (the pipeline), they participate in these high-impact practices and vertical learning communities to generate awareness of STEM careers, increase their confidence in their STEM capabilities, build their network through mentorship with faculty, peers, and industry professionals, and acquire the knowledge and technical and soft skills to be successful in college and pursue rewarding and productive careers in STEM.

Moderators
AG

Andrew Grosovsky

Dean, College of Science and Mathematics, University of Massachusetts, Boston

Speakers
MM

Marshall Milner

Executive Director Science Training Programs, University of Massachusetts, Boston


Wednesday November 14, 2018 9:45am - 10:35am
Meeting Room C

9:45am

Project Based Learning Pathways: Reflections on a 6th Grade Public Middle School PBL Classroom Pilot
Project based learning (PBL) is a student-centered learning model that has a long history of implementation in schools, but is still considered to be an innovative teaching method to better prepare students for college, career and life. Research has shown that PBL can be particularly effective in helping students develop 21st century skills such as creativity, collaboration, communication and creativity, as well as improving retention of cognitive skills and knowledge.

In the 2017-18 school year, the Westford, MA public school system decided to launch a pilot 6th grade classroom that would offer a fully integrated (i.e., STEM and Humanities) PBL classroom as an alternative to traditional subject-specific classroom settings. Parents opted into the choice of this classroom for their children, and for some it was a way of trying to re-engage their sons and daughters who were losing interest in school. The session will summarize the results of the pilot in the words of the two teachers who led the class, two of their students from the pilot classroom, as well as an evaluator who conducted a mixed methods assessment during the school year. Topics covered in the session will include an explanation of how the integrated PBL model was implemented, what was needed to make the year a success, and what were the key learnings by looking at the outcomes from the year. Perspectives from students, parents, teachers and the administration will be included in the session.

Speakers
MB

Malvika Bhardwaj

Student, Stony Brook Middle School
TC

Tristan Caldwell

Student, Stony Brook Middle School
SF

Sandra Femino

6th Grade Humanities Teacher, Stony Brook Middle School – Westford Public Schools
JH

Jane Heaney

Program Evaluator, Westford Public Schools
SL

Sanhita Lothe

Student, Stony Brook Middle School
JM

Jennifer Masterson

6th Grade STEM Teacher, Stony Brook Middle School – Westford Public Schools


Wednesday November 14, 2018 9:45am - 10:35am
Meeting Room B

10:55am

A Data-Driven Approach to Aligning Higher Education Programs With Workforce Needs
Learn how accessible, on-line data on job trends in STEM industries can help guide curriculum, connect with industry and improve career awareness among students. As we work to build the STEM pipeline and create career pathways for students, educators need to have access to clear data and analysis that effectively conveys the skill needs of STEM industries. By examining an ongoing partnership between the biopharmaceutical industry and higher education, facilitated by the MassBioEd Foundation, attendees will learn how the daunting task of aligning education programs with the skill requirements of STEM employers can be greatly eased by the effective use of available data on hiring trends. This session includes panelists from higher education, industry and a data provider, who will share how access to such data and analysis has created a common ground for industry and higher education to come together to help direct alignment around skills development and provide new tools for educators at the secondary and post-secondary level to better create awareness among students about careers in the life sciences, for which 12,000 additional jobs will need to be filled by 2023.

Moderators
PA

Peter Abair

Executive Director, MassBioEd Foundation

Speakers
AC

Aron Clarke

Training Lead, Sanofi
KH

Kenneth Henderson

Dean of the College of Sciences, Northeastern University
DR

Dan Restuccia

Chief Product and Analytics Officer, Burning Glass Technologies


Wednesday November 14, 2018 10:55am - 11:45am
Junior Ballroom

10:55am

Energy House Design Challenge
Get comfortable with the engineering design process in your classroom while allowing students to take the rein with NEED’s “Energy House Challenge” activity. Come try your hand at building an energy house, from the purchasing aspect to installation and efficiency. You’ll be investigating the science behind keeping building occupants healthy and comfortable and our buildings energy efficient. Learn about efficiency, conservation and economic returns by using various materials to insulate a cardboard house and then test its efficiency. An excellent activity in applying engineering principals and problem-solving skills to energy efficiency, while incorporating math with a set budget and cost for materials. Students will be able to describe efficiency and conservation measures for the home and justify why these measures make sense economically. This challenge can be easily differentiated for grades 6-12.

Speakers
NG

Nancy Gifford

Science Educator/Science Education Consultant, Monomoy Middle School, WGBH/PBS Learning Media, WGBH Bringing the Universe to America's Classrooms


Wednesday November 14, 2018 10:55am - 11:45am
Grand Ballroom Center

1:45pm

Designing for Scale to Impact System-wide Student Success
To realize the significant change we seek in student success trajectories, solutions have to be implemented across a system at scale. However, scale can be difficult to achieve and maintain. Designing, launching, and supporting an initiative at scale brings its own unique challenges and benefits. Can an initiative launched at scale support a system-level model for promoting student engagement and success across an entire Commonwealth? This session highlights the efforts of the STEM Starter Academy Initiative, administrated through the Massachusetts Department of Higher Education, to support the STEM pipeline at all 15 of the public community colleges in Massachusetts. Through this work the campuses have built upon existing STEM programming to provide a cohesive set of student supports through the coordination of different offices on campuses and by learning from each other on what is working to impact student retention rates and program completion. This work has spawned several vibrant partnerships, and connected an active and diverse learning community that is deeply committed to inter- and intra-campus collaboration.

During this session we will review key steps in designing for scale, highlighting specific instances of success, challenge, and emergent best practice. Audience members will learn about implementing an initiative at the system level (at scale) through the lens of STEM Starter Academy programming. Key steps in the process of implementing and supporting work at scale will be highlighted during this session, as well as the practices and lessons learned that have helped shape this initiative into a true learning community that can be applied to other regional and state-wide partnerships.

Moderators
AL

Allison Little

Executive Director, STEM, Massachusetts Department of Higher Education

Speakers
MA

Meghan Abella-Bowen

Associate Dean for STEM Initiatives, Bristol Community College
JJ

Jeremiah Johnson

Senior Research Manager, UMass Donahue Institute
VK

Valerie Kapilow

STEM Starter Academy Project Director, Massachusetts Bay Community College


Wednesday November 14, 2018 1:45pm - 2:35pm
Meeting Room C

1:45pm

The Shrinking STEM Workforce: Capitalizing on the Expanding K-12 EL Population as a Solution
Could the need for workers in the STEM pipeline be mitigated by capitalizing on the growing numbers of English Learners (ELs) children and young adults entering the MA K-12 system?

Yes, if we are proactive with assessing incoming ELs’ numeracy skills when they enter the K-12 system and determine what they already know, we could meet them where they are academically in their math and science numeracy skills and provide them with proper supports so that they do not fall behind in these subjects as they learn and become proficient in the English language.

  • Learn about the MA Numeracy Assessment Protocol for Students with Limited and Interrupted Education (SLIFE) who are disproportionality ELs.
  • Learn how the interactive MA Mathematics Progression Chart helps: (1) identify the numeracy skills embedded in the rigorous MA Framework for Mathematics and (2) with proper placement in math and science classes.
  • See an exemplar numeracy skills assessment developed for the extreme case of lack of common language.
  • Have access to all of the above tools.

Speakers
SN

Sara Nino

SPED and EL Coordinator, MA Department of Elementary and Secondary Education
MR

Meto Raha

Math Content Specialist, MA Department of Elementary and Secondary Education


Wednesday November 14, 2018 1:45pm - 2:35pm
Meeting Room B

2:55pm

Creating Fun and Engaging STEM Learning with Toddler and Preschool Children
Get ready to have some fun! Filled with “A-HA” moments, this workshop is designed to promote simple science, technology, engineering and mathematics in toddler and preschool settings.  Through hands-on exploration with our fun and engaging experiments and activities, participants will take away great ideas and strategies that can easily be incorporated into their classrooms.

Speakers
KC

Krissy Cannizzo

Outreach Coordinator, Professional Development Trainer, Children’s Museum in Easton


Wednesday November 14, 2018 2:55pm - 3:45pm
Junior Ballroom

2:55pm

Nudging to STEM Success: Supporting Persistence and Completion in STEM Pathways
Evidence is growing that “nudges” grounded in behavioral science can help students persist through college. This session will discuss lessons and early outcomes from a national initiative using behavioral nudging and intelligent software to increase STEM success and completion. Early experimental results show that the nudging support resulted in a 10 percentage-point increase in spring-to-fall persistence.

Beginning in summer 2017, Persistence Plus and Jobs for the Future launched an initiative to support students at four community colleges with text message nudges for college completion. Serving more than 10,000 students, the Nudging to STEM Success project aims to increase persistence rates for entering students, with an emphasis on success in introductory STEM courses. Nudges are grounded in behavioral science and engage students via text message. These interventions are designed to help students develop a strong college-completion and STEM identity by connecting their STEM studies to their personal values and goals. Nudges also encourage students to set and follow through on academic goals and utilize campus supports like tutoring and advising, while revealing hidden barriers and misconceptions that hinder student success. Attendees will learn how schools in this initiative are leveraging behavioral science and mobile technology to help students navigate through college, and see examples of what interactive nudging via text message looks like from the student perspective.

Speakers
SF

Serena Fahnbulleh Crain

Program Operations Lead, Persistence Plus


Wednesday November 14, 2018 2:55pm - 3:45pm
Meeting Room A