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Name: 1 Week Modeling Trainings in Physics, Physical Science, Biology, and Chemistry
School/Institution: James Madison University
Department/Unit: Content Teaching Academy
City: Harrisonburg
State: VA
Opportunity Type: Modeling Workshop
Teacher Status: Inservice
Teacher Level: Middle School
High School
Description: The CTA will run 4 Introductory 5-day summer Modeling Academies focused on physics (mechanics), physical science, chemistry, and biology for middle and high school teachers. Participants will receive professional development on content and pedagogical methods, and can elect to take the Academy for education graduate credit. Participants will receive a free one-year membership to the American Modeling Teachers Association. All 4 academies are open to teachers worldwide.

* Introductory Physics Modeling Academy: Participants will complete three of the nine mechanics units. To that end, teachers will be provided with a fairly complete set of written course materials (organized into coherent Modeling cycles) to assist them as they incorporate what they learn in the Academy into their classrooms.  For high school physics and physical science teachers worldwide.

* Introductory Physical Science Modeling Academy: Participants will be exposed to research-based evidence backing use of Modeling Instruction and interact with the Modeling method by engaging, as students, in two units from a physical science curriculum.  This Academy is open to middle school and high school teachers worldwide.

* Introductory Chemistry Modeling Academy: The focus is on using a series of particle models of increasing complexity to describe matter and the role of energy in physical and chemical change.  Instruction will also emphasize content knowledge within the specific structure and sequence of models that allow students to describe, explain, predict, design, and control observable phenomena to create a historical progression, or story line, of chemical concepts.  This Academy is open to high school chemistry teachers worldwide.

* Introductory Biology Modeling Academy: Units to be explored include evolution and reproduction. This Academy is open to high school biology teachers worldwide.

Modeling Instruction is a guided inquiry approach to teaching science where students create and apply conceptual models of natural phenomena as a central aspect of learning and doing science. It was developed at Arizona State University. The U.S. Department of Education recognizes it as an Exemplary K-12 Science Program.

Modeling Instruction holds as its core principles that scientific models and their representations (not problems and facts) are the artifacts of knowledge and that students must actively generate and use these models in the classroom in order to learn science.

The Introductory Modeling Instruction Program is dedicated to research-based reform of science instruction and sustained professional growth and support for science teachers. Participants reason from data and develop, modify, and deploy scientific models. They develop skills in fostering scientific discourse and in assessment of student learning.

Participants actively engage in roles of student and instructor as they practice questioning and inquiry-based instructional skills essential to Modeling Instruction. They conduct a variety of laboratory and white boarding activities within an interactive, cooperative learning environment. Participants are given detailed curriculum support materials.

Our main goal is to introduce teachers to aspects of the Modeling Method, and develop skills in implementing this method. We aim to provide enough information and experience for the participant to make an educated decision about whether they desire to pursue further training in Modeling Instruction and use it in their classroom.

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: 06/23/2014
End Date: 06/27/2014
Duration: 5-day summer training with 4 online follow-up sesssions
Application Deadline: 06/16/2014
Opportunity Website:
Application Link:
Sponsor Link:

Benefits and Requirements

Cost: Registration ($440), housing ($150), meal plan ($70), optional graduate credit 3-Hours ($330)
Benefits: Stipend
Benefit Explanation: For teachers who are in divisions that are partners in James Madison University's 2014 MSP grant, JMU will:
* pay CTA registration fees and housing (double occupancy form room).
* give teachers a stipend of $400 to attend the CTA

FLYING: The Shenandoah Valley Regional Airport is 15 miles from Harrisonburg. It has daily flights to/from Dulles International Airport near Washington, D.C. (Harrisonburg is 84 miles from Dulles Intl Airport.) United Express (Silver Airways) has 3 flights MTWThF, 1 on Saturdays, and 2 on Sundays.

The airport shuttle costs $30 one-way or $50 roundtrip to/from Harrisonburg. (Reserve at least 24 hours in advance at the airport website or at (540) 234-8304.)
Other Prerequisites: High school teacher of the respective subject. (The physical science Academy is open to middle school science teachers, too.)

Professional Development Opportunity Contact Information

Contact: Linda Stover
800 S Main St
Harrisonburg, VA 22807
Phone: (540)568-4130