Professional Development Opportunity Detail Page

Previous Page  |  New Search  |  Browse All

Name: ASTRONOMY Modeling Workshop
School/Institution: University of Louisville
Department/Unit: College of Education
City: Louisville
State: KY
Opportunity Type: Modeling Workshop
Teacher Status: Preservice
post-secondary faculty
Teacher Level: High School
Description: This workshop is for high school and post-secondary physics, astronomy, and physical science teachers worldwide.

Peer leader: Stephen Colbert  

The Modeling Workshop in astronomy is a NEW intensive 3-week course with these goals:
1. educate teachers in use of a model-centered, guided inquiry, interactive engagement method of teaching, and improve content understanding at the same time,
2. help participants integrate computer courseware effectively into the science curriculum,
3. help teachers make better use of national resources for science education,
4. establish electronic network support and a learning community among participants.

The main objective of the 1st summer Modeling Workshop is to acquaint teachers with all aspects of the modeling method of instruction and develop some skill in implementing it. To that end, teachers are provided with curriculum materials to support instruction organized into coherent modeling cycles. (The modeling cycle is described at The physical materials and experiments in the curriculum are simple and quite standard, already available in any reasonably equipped classroom.

To develop familiarity with 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.  Throughout the course, teachers are asked to reflect on their practice and how they might apply the techniques they have learned in the course to their own classes.

Modeling Instruction is aligned with the eight science practices outlined in the NRC Framework for K-12 Science Education, the research basis of the Next Generation Science Standards (NGSS).

Models that teachers will develop:
. A geometric spacetime model (measurement)
. An object interaction model (gravitation and the motion it
. An information transfer model (light as a way of knowing about
objects and phenomena in space)
. A model of change over time for objects and phenomena in space.
      The workshop will use image analysis software as its primary laboratory medium--two web based programs SalsaJ and JS9 will be available for use during the workshop. Participating teachers should bring their own computer--presumably the same kind that students will have access to in their classroom--so they learn to use the software on the device they will teach students to use.

Click here to learn more about the American Modeling Teachers Association and other Modeling Workshops nationwide.
Start Date: 07/08/2019
End Date: 07/26/2019
Duration: 3 weeks (MTWThF)
Application Deadline: 06/28/2019
Opportunity Website:
Application Link:
Sponsor Link:

Benefits and Requirements

Cost: low cost!
Benefits: Professional Development/CEU
College Transcript Credit
Benefit Explanation: Colleen Megowan posted to the AMTA listserv: "dorm rooms will be available for out-of-town participants in order to keep housing costs low. We already have a couple teachers (from the European Hands-On Universe teacher community) whose education ministries have agreed to pay their way for this workshop, so it promises to be an eclectic group of teachers." Budget $50/day for dorm; however, the cost will be less.

Louisville has an international airport.

** Great News, as of Feb. 9, 2019: – The grant proposal written by AMTA and the University of Louisville was approved and will be funded by a NASA Kentucky Space Grant.  Participants will receive a much reduced rate on workshop registration and housing!  More information will be coming in the upcoming weeks.  Be sure to click the link above to register and start making your plans for a great workshop in Bourbon country!
Other Prerequisites: Prerequisite: 2 semesters of college physics. The workshop is for
*  high school and post-secondary physics, physical science, and astronomy teachers and
*  those who intend to begin teaching any of these subjects next year.

Professional Development Opportunity Contact Information

Contact: Colleen Megowan, AMTA Sr. Fellow
Sacramento, CA