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Name: Mechanics Modeling Workshop in Los Angeles
School/Institution: Whittier Unified High School District
Department/Unit: Staff Development
City: Whittier
State: CA
Opportunity Type: Modeling Workshop
Teacher Status: Preservice
post-secondary physics faculty
Teacher Level: High School
Description: This workshop is open to all high school physics teachers worldwide.

The Modeling Workshop in 1st semester physics is an intensive 3-week course 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 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,
5. strengthen local institutional support for participants as school leaders in disseminating standards-based reform in science education.

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 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 in the curriculum 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).

Peer leaders: Mark Hughes, assisted by Ben Balarie
Location: Pioneer High School, 10800 Benavon St., Whittier, CA 90606.
              Room F13
Days & time: 8am to 3pm, MTWThF            

For questions on content,  please e-mail Mark Hughes.

For more information and to commit to register, please contact Cindy Frith, Staff Development, WHITTIER UNION HIGH SCHOOL DISTRICT
(562) 698-8121  EXT. 1190

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: 06/09/2014
End Date: 06/27/2014
Duration: 3 weeks (MTWThF)
Application Deadline: 05/15/2014
tentative -- or until filled
Opportunity Website:
Application Link: contact Cindy Frith (see above)
Sponsor Link:

Benefits and Requirements

Cost: $1000 (purchase order from your school is okay: contact Cindy Frith)
Benefits: Meals
Professional Development/CEU
course materials
Benefit Explanation: For housing suggestions, please contact Cindy Frith.
Other Prerequisites: 2 semesters of college physics. The workshop is for
*  high school physics and physical science teachers and
*  those who intend to begin teaching high school physics next year.
Post-secondary physics faculty are welcome, too.

Professional Development Opportunity Contact Information

Contact: Carlye Olsen, Director of Accountability, Staff Development, & Ed Tech
9401 S. Painter Avenue
Whittier, CA 90605
Phone: (562) 698-8121 EXT. 1196