Professional Development Opportunity Detail Page

Previous Page  |  New Search  |  Browse All

Name: Chemistry Modeling Workshop: 1 or 2-week in Maine
School/Institution: Kennebunk Community Resource Center
City: Kennebunk
State: ME
Opportunity Type: Modeling Workshop
Teacher Status: Preservice
Teacher Level: Middle School
High School
Description: This 2-week workshop in chemistry is for teachers worldwide.

     The workshop addresses most aspects of middle & high school teaching, including integration of teaching methods with course content for chemistry classrooms.  Special emphasis will be placed on modeling conceptual development and integrating technology appropriate for high school.
     Participants will be introduced to Modeling Instruction, developed at Arizona State University, as a systematic approach to design of curriculum and instruction.  Participants will be instructed on computer hardware and software, techniques for laboratory data collection and analysis, and internet use to help them become more expert on best uses of technology in education.
     Participants will be given techniques to deliver in-service training and help in strengthening local teacher alliances.

For questions and information, please email Prof. James "Jamie" Vesenka:

The modeling cycle is described at

The first week is not a full-fledged Modeling Workshop, but rather an introduction to Modeling Instruction in chemistry. Modeling Instruction is a complex transformative pedagogy. Experience has shown that most teachers require at least three weeks of intensive workshop to begin to implement it. A second 2-or 3-week Modeling Workshop is highly recommended to deepen and broaden one's understanding.

Chemistry Workshop Goals
     The Modeling approach to chemistry is based on the particulate nature of matter.  The AMTA  webpage on chemistry asks three fundamental questions about matter:
   1. How do we view matter?
   2. How does it behave?
   3.What is the role of energy in the changes we observe?
First we will introduce the Modeling approach to high school science instruction.  This methodology makes student thinking visible through white board presentations, Socratic questioning and peer review.  The second goal is to practice and enhance the current chemistry modeling curriculum.  Emphasis will be placed on the first 8 units: the simple particle through relating how much to how many particles (i.e. stoichiometry).

Details of workshop content:
     The first-week concentrates on modeling pedagogy with an exposure to a particle approach (either atoms or molecules) to teaching chemistry:
* Physical Properties of Matter
* Energy and State of Matter
* Physical descriptions of substances.
The second week continues the use of modeling techniques and application of the particle model but focuses more on first year high school chemistry content, including:
*Counting particles to small to see
*Characterization of particles with internal structure
*Chemical Equations

An overview is at the AMTA   webpage on curriculum storylines.

Click here to learn more about Modeling Instruction 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: 07/22/2019
End Date: 08/02/2019
Duration: Two separate weeks - 8 hours/day.  Limited space available (18 max, each week)
Application Deadline: 07/10/2019
Early registration strongly recommended
Opportunity Website:
Application Link:
Sponsor Link:

Benefits and Requirements

Cost: In 2018, cost was $1400 for two weeks (recommended!), or $800 for 1 week
Benefits: Housing
College Transcript Credit
Benefit Explanation: Registration includes instructional materials, 1-year trial membership in the American Modeling Teachers Association (AMTA) for 1st-timers, continental breakfasts, homemade hot lunches.

Limited FREE housing in homes of local citizens: deadline is June 1. Contact Dan MacDonald  at

Many dinner options are available locally, independent from workshop.  Often can cook meals at host home as well.  

Optional graduate credit: 3 credits/week, contact James Vesenka for details:, 207-749-7913. Teachers who register for graduate credit must start course on Sunday.

Optional private accommodations at market rates are available locally in this popular resort area, though reservations should be made early. If you prefer to find your own housing, here are options.
Other Prerequisites: 2 semesters of college-level chemistry are highly recommended.
    Second week participants are expected to have taken a weeklong introduction to chemistry Modeling Instruction, either previously in Kennebunk or other Modeling Workshop location.

Professional Development Opportunity Contact Information

Contact: James Vesenka
c/o FPUU Kennebunk/Modeling Workshop
164 Summer Street
Kennebunk, ME 04043
Phone: 207-749-7913