Bringing Hands-On Learning to the Schools
In the summer of 2015, after 4 days of professional development and guiding teacher collaboration into the design of hands-on science lessons, it was time to take it to the schools…
On Wednesday and Thursday, teachers spent time in the classrooms of Mwakiwiwi, St. Mary’s, and Dalmas Moka. Local Kenyan teachers co-taught lessons alongside their Seattle colleagues and implemented the new and innovative lessons they had planned with their team.
At St. Mary’s, physics teachers utilized water floats, Slinky’s, millipede videos and a PhET (Physics Education Technology) simulation from the SVT (SeaVuriaForTeachers) database to engage students in understanding longitudinal and transverse waves.
Students gave feedback on this new form of teaching, expressing that now they would never forget these concepts because they saw and experienced them for themselves.
At Mwakiwiwi, students were given the
opportunity to deduce the acidity or basicity of common substances using a variety of indicators. This introduction into pH was successful
in getting students’ wheels spinning, and inspired questions about household remedies for indigestion
and insect stings. Thursday at Dalmas Moka was an in-depth
Thursday at Dalmas Moka was an in-depth Biology lesson about the inputs and outputs of cellular respiration. MaryMargaret powered through difficult concepts that students were able to grasp thanks to hands-on glucose model kits, detailed animations from the Carbon Time Project out of MSU, and an engaging elicitation question that had students stumped until the end! (They got it!)
As you can see, our time in Kenya is so powerful and important. Empowering teachers, encouraging collaboration and engaging student learning was time and money well-spent, and the feedback from both students and teachers has inspired us to press onward in our SeaVuria mission. We have renewed ambition to continue creating and adding to our Interdisciplinary Projects, building communication and relationships between our scholarship sponsors and recipients, and advancing the availability and usability of our tech-focused teaching resources for Kenya and here at home.
We appreciate your continued support to keep this ball rolling as we return to Kenya this summer, 2017!