2009 Erie Exploration Workshop

July 18 - 24, 2009
Erie, PA, and Put-in-Bay, OH

The Center for Ocean Sciences Education Excellence (COSEE) Great Lakes, in partnership with the Great Lakes Sea Grant Network, invites 4th-10th grade teachers and non-formal educators from the Great Lakes region to participate in the Lake Erie Exploration Workshop, July 18-24, 2009. This workshop is designed to promote Great Lakes and ocean sciences in formal and informal education and forge lasting relationships between science researchers and educators. Participants will be involved in classroom and field programs, work with scientists, examine curricula and resources, and explore classroom activities relating to the Great Lakes and ocean resources. Fifteen educators will be selected from throughout the Great Lakes basin.

This seven-day summer workshop will offer educators an excursion into Great Lakes and marine science education. The workshop will immerse participants in inquiry, questioning, and experimentation, engage educators in concrete tasks, build on their experiences with students, deepen their content skills, and connect their work to specific standards for student performance. Participating scientists will learn from educators what is needed for their teaching and how scientists can become partners in science education about the Great Lakes.

Workshop Location

Lake Erie�s basin is divided geologically into three parts that are hydrologically so different they could be different lakes! Working out of our two workshop locations, which serve as the dividing points between basins, we will have access to the full range of lake characteristics and issues. The two-site plan is logistically complex but well worth the effort to travel along the shoreline between locations.

We begin our learning on Saturday afternoon in Erie, PA, at the Tom Ridge Environmental Center. Over the next 1� days we will explore the research in progress at the Research Consortium and begin our week of field, lab and computer work. On Monday we will travel by bus westward along the shore, stopping at points of interest and arriving in the afternoon at F.T. Stone Laboratory on Gibraltar Island, Put-in-Bay, OH. Stone Laboratory is the nation's oldest freshwater biological field station and the Island Campus of The Ohio State University. The remainder of the week will be spent in the Lab facilities, meeting and working with science researchers who will connect their work to ocean equivalents and involve participants in data collection and analysis. We complete our work by noon on Friday, with transportation back to Erie in time for evening flights home. Participants may also leave from Stone Lab directly. Workshop leaders will suggest travel options based on where our participants originate.

Workshop Objectives

Our plan is for educators to be able to:

  • Interact with scientists conducting research on pertinent Great Lakes and ocean topics;
  • Synthesize and provide examples of how water characteristics and processes interact with land, life, weather, and human activities;
  • Demonstrate how to implement Great Lakes and ocean information into their existing curriculum or informal education media using traditional and/or electronic means;
  • Compare Great Lakes systems with ocean counterparts, with regard to science principles as well as issues of human impacts and natural changes over time.

We also plan for scientists to be able to:

  • Interact with educators to facilitate their learning about science of lakes and oceans;
  • Assimilate information about educators� instructional settings, opportunities and constraints;
  • Demonstrate use of the vocabulary of education and understanding of instructional standards;
  • Develop a plan for assisting educators in the year following the workshop.

How we�ll do it: We will

  • Introduce educators to regional Great Lakes and ocean science research topics and high quality curricular and educational resources;
  • Provide an effective interface between educators, Great Lakes and ocean science researchers;
  • Provide fun, hands-on experiences for educators to enjoy and take back to their students;
  • Promote inquiry learning through existing curricular and educational resources, aligning with National and State Science Education Standards;
  • Facilitate the development, exchange and implementation of curricula and lessons for participants� classrooms or informal settings;
  • Provide for long-term support, evaluation and communication between COSEE Great Lakes and the workshop participants.

Educator Participants will be expected to:

  1. Develop a reflective journal based on class activities;
  2. Complete a curriculum integration plan for continuation of course ideas and scientist interaction;
  3. Be present and participate in all components of the workshop; and
  4. Participate in all aspects of program evaluation.

Participant Support

Workshop participants will receive:

  1. Upon successful completion of workshop expectations, teachers will receive a $500 stipend.
  2. Lodging (double occupancy in Erie, dormitory at Stone Lab), transportation between PA and OH sites, and meals at the workshop locations at no cost to the participant.
  3. Exemplary Great Lakes and marine curricula and resources.
  4. Opportunities to participate in additional COSEE Great Lakes-sponsored educational programs.
  5. Long-term support and communication between COSEE Great Lakes and the workshop participants.

University Credit

Participants can earn three (3) graduate credits from The Ohio State University for workshop participation plus a completed curriculum project. COSEE Great Lakes does not pay tuition, but stipends may be applied to that purpose. Information on enrolling for ENR 611 credit is available by contacting Dr. Rosanne Fortner,

Participant Selection Criteria

Applications are invited from:

  • Teachers of grades 4-10 from the Great Lakes basin who teach or are willing to teach Great Lakes and marine science in their classrooms.
  • Educators from non-formal educational institutions that have Great Lakes or marine science exhibits or plan to add such topics to their programs.

All applicants must include:

  1. An abridged resume
  2. A personal statement as described on the application, and
  3. A letter of reference from their principal or supervisor documenting the applicant�s professional qualifications for the workshop and indicating that the administrator will support efforts to integrate Great Lakes/ocean science topics into the curriculum as these topics apply to state science standards

Educators who are Native American or members of groups underrepresented in science and/or who teach significant numbers of students who are members of such groups are encouraged to apply. Selection criteria include: geographic distribution of educators, level of professional involvement; potential to use the workshop materials and concepts in the classroom; potential to share the workshop material with other educational professionals; and date of application receipt.

Application Procedures

All communications concerning the Lake Erie Exploration Workshop and applications should be addressed to:

Marti Martz
Pennsylvania Sea Grant
301 Peninsula Dr. Suite #3
Erie PA 16505
(Phone) (814) 217-9015
(Fax) (814) 217-9021

Completed applications with required principal or supervisor support letters must be received by April 10, 2009. Notification of participants and alternates will be made no later than May 8, 2009. In selecting individuals for participation and otherwise in the administration of this workshop, COSEE Great Lakes will not discriminate on the basis of race, gender, religion, national origin, age, disability, sexual orientation, or marital status.

Workshop Team

Marti Martz
Coastal Outreach Specialist, Pennsylvania Sea Grant
Rosanne Fortner, Ph.D.
Director, COSEE Great Lakes
Helen Domske
Coastal Education Specialist, New York Sea Grant
Lyndsey Manzo
High School Science Teacher, Westerville, OH
Education Liaison, Ohio Sea Grant
...plus research scientists throughout the workshop

For Scientists:

Let COSEE help in engaging educational outreach

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