As part of a yearly project led by Assistant Professor Janice Rey in the Education Department, students majoring in Elementary Education and Special Education recently received the opportunity to learn how to teach science methods as well as receive knowledge about sustainability. Professor Rey has held this training each year because, as she says, “In addition to providing preservice teachers with two published science curricula, the training establishes the teacher’s role in being good environmental stewards.”
Promoted and led by Project Learning Tree, one training exercise was facilitated by the Maine state coordinator Patricia Maloney, along with district forester for Maine Forest Service, Shane Duigan. Project Learning Tree focuses on advancing environmental literacy and promotes stewardship through environmental education, professional development, and curriculum resources that use trees and forests as tools.
In cooperation with Project Learning Tree, Lynne Richard, Maine State coordinator with Project WET, facilitated an exercise that focused on developing the students’ knowledge on water education and brought awareness to the major issues that our world faces regarding water.
On November 10, 2015, at the STEM Expo at the Sullivan Gymnasium at the University of Southern Maine, the students will get a chance to exhibit the same exercises that they were recently a part of. STEM education is becoming increasingly prominent within curriculum design as teachers are noticing how necessary each of the components of STEM are in the real world. By being able to facilitate STEM exercises, the education students will have a chance to submerse themselves in a teaching environment to help prepare them for when they become teachers.
(News submitted by Janice Rey; story by Jacob Moberg ’16)