Date of this Version
Hanuscin, D., van Garderen, D., Menon, D., Davis, J., Lee, E. J., & Smith, S. R. (2011). Teacher? Learner? Both! Science and Children, 48(6), 55-59.
February 2011 55 It may be cold and snowy, but it’s not too early to begin seeking summer professional development (PD) opportunities. Summer is a great time for teachers to attend PD workshops and learn new techniques to bring back to their classrooms. However, teachers often wonder if by the time September rolls around, they’ll remember everything they learned. Will they have the necessary knowledge and skills to implement new ideas and content in their classrooms? Teachers often have questions about how the strategies they learned at the workshop will work with their students. Wouldn’t it be great if teachers had the opportunity to practice implementing new strategies during PD so that they could hone their skills before returning to their classrooms? That’s what 35 teachers got to experience as part of the QUEST (Quality Elementary Science Teaching) program. The unique design of the summer institute allows teachers to shift into the role of learner as they participate in the workshop, and then shift back into the role of teacher as they facilitate a summer outreach program for students. In this article, we describe QUEST as a model for meaningful PD.