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Name: Mechanics Modeling Workshop in Akron
School/Institution: University of Akron
City: Akron
State: OH
Opportunity Type: Modeling Workshop
Teacher Status: Preservice
post-secondary  faculty
Teacher Level: Middle School
High School
Description: This mechanics Modeling Workshop is open to Ohio teachers of science in grades 7 to 12.

PEER TRAINEE: Michael Lerner

For questions, contact Nidaa Makki at          

Modeling Workshops are intensive 2- or 3-week courses with these goals:
1. educate teachers in use of a model-centered, guided inquiry method of teaching, and improve content understanding at the same time,
2. help participants integrate computers 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 this summer Modeling Workshop (mechanics) 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 a fairly complete set of written curriculum materials to support instruction organized into coherent modeling cycles (as described in Wells et al., 1995). The physical materials and experiments are simple and quite standard, already available in any reasonably equipped classroom.

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. Each unit in the course manual includes an extensive Teacher Notes section. 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 National Research Council Framework for K-12 Science Education (2011).

First we will introduce the Modeling approach to 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 mechanics modeling curriculum.

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 Modeling Workshop is highly recommended to deepen and broaden one's understanding.

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: 06/12/2017
End Date: 06/23/2017
Duration: 2 weeks in June (MTWThF) - 3 followup activities during academic year
Application Deadline: 03/15/2017, submissions after this date will be accepted if spaces remain
Opportunity Website:
Application Link:
Sponsor Link:

Benefits and Requirements

Cost: free
Benefits: Stipend
Professional Development/CEU
College Transcript Credit
Classroom materials
Benefit Explanation: Funding in 2017 is provided by the Improving Teacher Quality (ITQ) Program of the Ohio Board of Regents.

Included are $300 stipend, instructional materials, $500 worth of lab supplies, and 1-year trial membership in the American Modeling Teachers Association (AMTA).

Optional 3 graduate credits -- free  

For housing suggestions, contact the organizer.
Other Prerequisites: Prerequisite: 1 semester or more of college physics highly recommended.  In order to get the tuition credits paid for by the grant, the participant must be teaching in an Ohio K-12 school.

Professional Development Opportunity Contact Information

Contact: Nidaa Makki, PhD, Associate Professor Science Education
University of Akron
Akron, OH 44325