Central Division Meeting of NEACT
Saturday, April 30, 2016
Wellesley College – Wellesley, MA
Creighton Room – Margaret Ferguson Greenhouses (Parking in Gray Lot)
Registration begins at 8:30 am / Program begins at 9:00 am
“Making STEM learning relevant, stimulating, and visible through customized curriculum“ – Dr. Didem Vardar-Ulu (Boston University)
Do you ever ponder, why is it that when we ask a kid returning from school at the end of the day, or a student just coming out of a class “What did you do in class today?” the answer is too often a “Nothing.” with big sigh and a shrug? These are young individuals, fresh brains and souls for whom we are working so hard to create worthwhile learning opportunities to embrace and cherish in our classrooms. Despite the many different pedagogical approaches tried all across the world, why is there still a huge gap between what students perceive as “classroom curriculum” and the knowledge and skillset pertinent to real societal concerns? In this workshop, Didem will share with you a variety of strategies she tried out with her students to make their classroom learning experiences more relevant, stimulating, and visible. In all her examples, you will see that the delivered curriculum has a “Life Sciences” content focus, but the implementation design is greatly shaped by the enrolled student body ranging all the way from non-science majors with practically no science background, to advanced science majors already pre-selected into Medical Schools. She hopes to take you through her journey of incorporating customized modular projects involving different forms of arts, as well as social media, and technology into standard science curricula that can easily be used with K-12 curriculum. Didem looks forward to an interactive discussion on the successes, challenges, and the roadblocks she has experienced along the way and brainstorm with all the attendees what might lie ahead.
“Using Green Chemistry Principles to Improve Production of Plexiglas: Exploration of Catalysts for Cyanohydrin Hydration” – Dr. Emma Downs (Fitchburg State University)
The talk will discuss Emma’s work on developing and testing catalysts for the production of methyl methacrylate, a precursor to the ubiquitous polymer methyl methacrylate (commonly known as Plexiglas). It will also discuss the current method of production of Plexiglas and how it could be improved using principles of green chemistry. Some basic principles of inorganic chemistry and catalytic mechanisms will also be covered.
If planning to attend, please RSVP to Leslie Bishop (firstname.lastname@example.org) by April 24, 2016
Link for campus map: http://web.wellesley.edu/map/Wellesley_Printable.pdf
Link for directions to Wellesley College: http://www.wellesley.edu/about/visit/directionsmaps
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