Step 2: Find a Location for the Workshops
Select sites for your workshops that will be comfortable and provide good table or floor sur-
faces for building structures.
Round or rectangular tables will provide a good surface for the building activities in the
basic workshops. Easy availability of an overhead projector, screen, VCR, and monitor will
make your work easier.
Step 3: Prepare to Be an Instructor
Familiarity with both content and process of the workshops will give you confidence as a pre-
senter. Take the time to complete these tasks.
• Explore the building materials using the guidance in basic workshop 1 and in the “Getting
Ready” section of the teacher’s guide (p.13). In addition, do the hands-on activities that
are described in basic workshops 4 and 6.
• Think through the discussion questions, answering them for yourself. Try to anticipate
how teachers will react and then imagine your responses.
• Preview the video vignettes that you will be showing. As you watch, think about the pur-
pose of the vignettes, children’s engagement with science, the science teaching strategies
they illustrate, and what you want teachers to gain from the viewing and conversation.
• Collect the materials. You will need a variety of building materials to facilitate the explo-
rations. Look for varied shapes, textures, and weights. Review this list early (see the sec-
tion on advance preparation for each workshop) and make plans for how you will get all of
these things before the day of the workshop. Suggestions for finding many of these items
can be found in the “Resources” section in the teacher’s guide (p. 79).
• Prepare the handouts and overheads. For the most part, you will refer participants to re-
sources in the teacher’s guide, but there are a few handouts in the professional develop-
ment package that provide guidance for small group work or observation of videos. These
handouts appear at the end of the instructions for each workshop. Each participant will
need a copy of each handout. The final handout is an evaluation that all participants
should complete at the end of the basic or advanced workshops. The overheads, found at
the end of both workshop sections, give the participants a visual aid to the content. You
will need to copy them onto transparencies.
• Consider how you want to handle the “Read and Reflect” preassignments, which have
been included for each of the basic workshops. You will need to copy and distribute them
to teachers at least a week before each session. These assignments include readings in the
teacher’s guide and reflection questions. Completing the assignments will ensure that
teachers are familiar with the content of each session and ready to participate fully in the
discussions. You will probably want to collect teachers’ responses and review their reflec-
tions to gain insight into teachers’ understandings. This will help you tailor sessions to
meet the needs of individual teachers.
• Review key instructional strategies in the resources, which will help you effectively use the
various teaching strategies in these workshops.