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Name: Models of Light Modeling Workshop in NYC
School/Institution: Columbia University
Department/Unit: Teachers College
City: New York
State: NY
Opportunity Type: Modeling Workshop
Teacher Status: Preservice
Teacher Level: High School
Description: June 25: a few openings exist.

This workshop on Modeling Instruction is for high school physics and physical science teachers worldwide. Students preparing to teach science as well as college faculty are welcome. Modeling Instruction is useful for science teaching at any level.

Location: Teachers College, Columbia University, 525 W 120th St. NYC
Peer leaders:
     Mark Schober, (Head of Science, Trinity School, New York, NY)
     Kofi Donnelly (Head of Science, Heschel School, New York, NY)
Content: the particle/ray, wave and photon models of light.
Prerequisite:  one introductory-level Modeling Workshop (such as in Mechanics or Chemistry) of at least 2 weeks duration.

Mark Schober is Science Dept. Head and teaches Physics and Chemistry at Trinity School, New York, NY. Mark served as President of the American Modeling Teachers Association in 2011-12. Mark has also led many Modeling Instruction Workshops, including Mechanics at Teachers College in NYC.

Kofi Donnelly is Science Dept. Head and teaches Physics at Heschel School, New York, NY. Kofi has taken various modeling workshops, is an active practitioner of modeling, and has led many workshops organized by STEMteachersNYC.

ORGANIZER: Prof. Fernand Brunschwig, Teachers College, Columbia University (AMTA Board, member-at-large). FBrunsch AT

Offered by STEMteachersNYC, an affiliate of the American Modeling Teachers Association

A chemistry Modeling Workshop and a mechanics Modeling Workshop are being offered concurrently.

Modeling Instruction focuses on key selected physics models and uses a process-oriented inquiry approach that is extremely effective in helping students develop independence and problem-solving ability.

The Modeling Workshop is an intensive 3-week course with these goals:
1. Educate teachers in use of a model-centered, guided-inquiry method of teaching light concepts.
2. Help participants integrate computer courseware effectively into the curriculum.
3. Help teachers make better use of national resources for science education.
4. Establish electronic network support and a learning community among participants.
5. Strengthen local institutional support for participants as school leaders in disseminating standards-based reform in science education.

In this course teachers will work through coherent model-centered materials on light for high school courses to develop a deep understanding of content and how to teach it effectively.  The primary focus is on first-year physics courses that incorporate algebra and trigonometry.  In this advanced-level workshop there is less emphasis on why we believe that modeling is superior to conventional instruction, since we assume that teachers coming back to take a follow-up course have come to accept this as true.   To develop familiarity with the materials necessary to fully implement them in the classroom, we find that teachers must work through the activities, discussions and worksheets, alternating between student and teacher modes, much as they did in the prerequisite introductory-level  Modeling Workshop.

Three graduate credits are available at SUNY Empire State College, with additional cost.

Click here to learn more about the Modeling Instruction Program and the American Modeling Teachers Association (AMTA) or visit to find information on Modeling Workshops nationwide and strategies to seek funding (if needed) to participate.
Start Date: 07/21/2014
End Date: 08/08/2014
Duration: 3 weeks M-F
Application Deadline: 07/02/2014
Opportunity Website:
Application Link:
Sponsor Link:

Benefits and Requirements

Cost: $499 (includes one-year membership in AMTA)
Benefits: Professional Development/CEU
optional graduate credit available - extra cost
Benefit Explanation: Housing, meals, and travel expenses must be provided by the participant or his/her school district.

Housing possibilities at Columbia Teachers College (525 West 120th St., New York, NY 10027) and nearby. (This is an informal, unofficial list generated by STEMteachersNYC, for those interested in finding a place to stay so as to attend the 2014 Summer Modeling Instruction Workshops, July 21 – Aug 8, 2014)

Dormitory-type rooms may be available at Columbia Teachers College. See URL below for details:
    The rooms have a twin bed and bathroom but no kitchen, with access to shared kitchen facilities. The website above should have rates and other information.

There are two other organizations near Teachers College that also provide student housing:
Union Theological Center:

International House:

A Youth Hostel is at 104th and Amsterdam, 16 blocks (.8 mile) from Teachers College:

Also, Columbia University has graduate and undergraduate dormitories separate from those at Teachers College; and Barnard College (which, like TC, is affiliated with Columbia) also has dormitories nearby. It seems unlikely that they would offer rooms to individuals who are not current students at Columbia or Barnard. But, as an outside chance, it may be worthwhile to research their websites.

Three graduate credits are available at SUNY Empire State College, with additional cost.
Other Prerequisites: A mechanics Modeling Workshop (or other introductory Modeling Workshop such as in chemistry) of at least two weeks, and experience in implementing Modeling Instruction.

Professional Development Opportunity Contact Information

Contact: Fernand Brunschwig
New York, NY 10027