Category Archives: Center for STEM Education

Rebekah Currie

Mathematics Education Student Named Outstanding!

NCCTM_logoCongratulations to Rebekah Currie, named the Outstanding Mathematics Education Student from the Eastern Region of North Carolina Council of Teachers of Mathematics (NCCTM)!!!

Rebekah is a senior double major (BS Mathematics Education and BA Mathematics), Maynard Scholar, member of the Honors College, member of the Phi Eta Sigma National Honor Society, intern at South Central HS, student worker in the MSITE office, Vice-President of the Gamma Chapter, and is very active in the community. Rebekah was nominated by the faculty, provided professional information and experiences for the nomination form, and then her materials were considered by the NCCTM Awards Committee.

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I-TEACH2

MSITE Recruits at Teacher Cadet Day

The Fall 2014 Teacher Cadet Day featured the 2014-15 North Carolina Teacher of the Year and had the theme “What’s Your Superpower? I TEACH!” Faculty and students from the Department of Mathematics, Science, and Instructional Technology Education (MSITE) recruited during the Program Fair portion of the agenda. The 100 or so teacher cadets (mostly seniors, with a few juniors) visited tables and discussed programs, all the while getting answers to questions on an education scavenger hunt. At the MSITE table we had brochures, recruitment/advising handouts, rulers, scholarship opportunities, and candy. Part of the draw to the table was an activity – roll a 7 or 11 with a pair of dice and win a bag of M&Ms. There were 20 students who signed up, indicating that they have some interest in mathematics or science teaching.  A special thank you to the MSITE students and faculty who participated: Dr. Ron Preston, Dr. Rhea Miles, Dr. Charity Cayton, Amanda Penwell, Taunya Stevens-Johnson, Jenny Jones, and Rebecca Ray.

Abby Colley

Graduate from Elementary Science Concentration Wins NCSTA Outstanding Student Teacher Award

North Carolina Science Teachers AssociationOn October 13, 2014, Abby Colley received a letter from the Elementary Science Concentration Awards Committee chair notifying her that she was the recipient of the NCSTA Outstanding Student Teacher Award. She will receive her award on November 6, 2014 in Winston-Salem at the NCSTA conference award ceremony. Abby is a well-deserving graduate from the Elementary Science Concentration and is currently teaching 4th grade at Ayden Elementary in Pitt County. It is excellent students like Abby who, through the power of their example, are helping to grow the elementary science program at ECU. Visit our website page to learn more about the Elementary Science Concentration in the Department of Mathematics, Science and Technology Education.

Summer Ventures 2014

Summer Ventures 2014 Served 55 Top Students

Summer Ventures 2014 From June 22nd through July 19th, the Center for STEM Education hosted the 2014 class of Summer Ventures in Science & Mathematics. This year was the 30th year the program has been held. Summer Ventures in Science and Mathematics is a cost-free, state-funded program for academically talented North Carolina residents who have demonstrated interest in science and mathematics and aspire to a career in STEM (science, technology, engineering and mathematics). We housed fifty-five of the top rising high school juniors and seniors from across North Carolina. The students were housed in Jones Hall, where they participated in various Summer Ventures 2014student-life activities, such as attending the Student Recreation Center, games, arts & crafts, water sports at the North Rec Complex  and a talent show, just to name a few. Academically, the students participated in courses and conducted research in STEM fields, facilitated by our ECU faculty in the areas of DNA Fingerprinting, Engineering, Data Driven Decision Making, Physics, and Archeology. One cohort of students attended courses and conducted their research at the Brody School of Medicine for the duration of the program. The research component of Summer Ventures is critical to the success of the program, as well as to the success of the students upon returning to their high school. Working alone or with a partner, they carried out hands-on research on their topic for approximately two weeks. The students prepared a paper that was the culminating product of the research. They then gave an oral presentation of their research paper on the final day of Summer Ventures to their fellow students, staff and parents and friends. Presentations were judged by an outside panel of experts and the top presentations were the Catalyst Award winners. For more information on this exceptional program please visit the following web site: http://www.ecu.edu/cs-educ/smventures/Index.cfm

Congratulations

Congratulations to COE MSITE Faculty Dr. Katherine Schwartz and Dr. Rose Sinicrope on Math-Science Partnership Grant Awards

Dr. Katie Schwarz and Lenoir County Schools (LCS) have been awarded a 3-year, $483,000 Math/Science Partnership (MSP) Grant, Lenoir County STEM Learning Community. The project will provide teachers integrated content and pedagogical professional development in K-8 Mathematics and opportunities for teachers to work in Professional Learning Communities (PLC) to increase use of mathematical practices, implement cognitively demanding tasks, use data to make instructional decisions, and connect to real-world applications of mathematics, all with the goal of increasing student performance.

Other key ECU faculty who will be working with Dr. Schwartz, who is from the COE Department of Mathematics, Science, and Instructional Technology Education (MSITE) include Dr. Ron Preston and Dr. Kay Middleton from MSITE, Dr Heather Ries and Dr. Njina Randriampiry from the Department of Mathematics, Dr. Ricky Castle from Engineering. STEM Partnership East and various industries also contributed to the project’s development and play key roles in its implementation. Dr. Guili Zhang of the COE Department of Special Education, Foundations, and Research will serve as project evaluator.

Dr. Rose Sinicrope also of MSITE, will serve as Evaluator for Randolph County Schools’  newly awarded MSP grant, Deepening High School Mathematics Knowledge and Leadership.

Congratulations to Dr. Sinicrope and Dr. Schwartz and her team of collaborators!

For more details, see the story on the WNCT website: http://www.wnct.com/story/26028066/lcps-teachers-learning-how-to-use-stem-curriculum-in-the-real-world

Dr. Rhea Miles and Dr. Scott Rawls awarded National Institute of Health Grant

Dr. Rhea Miles

Dr. Rhea Miles, Associate Professor -Science Education, Department of Mathematics, Science and Instructional Technology Education and Dr. Scott Rawls, ECU Alumnus and Associate Professor of Pharmacology in the Center for Substance Abuse Research at Temple University have been awarded a four-year, $1,012,071.00 grant entitled Planarians and the Pharmacology of Addiction: An In Vivo Model for K-12 Education.

The project engages K-12 teachers and  students together with health care professionals, pharmacists, and scientists in the study of the pharmacological effects of addictive drugs and the behavior patterns that emerge during recreational and addictive drug use, using curricula and laboratory activities designed to meet the National Science Education Standards. Congratulations Dr. Miles and Dr. Rawls.

Advanced Placement Summer Institute Prepares Teachers to Give Their Best to the Brightest

Honors students in high school are anxious to take as many Advanced Placement courses as their schools offer so teachers go to school in the summer preparing to teach these courses.  ECU hosts  a College Board endorsed Advanced Placement Summer Institute. Each session is 4-days long and is taught by a certified College Board consultant. This summer, during the week of June 23-26, courses are being taught in

  • AP Biology
  • AP Calculus AB
  • AP Chemistry
  • AP Environmental Science
  • AP Physics 1 &2
  • AP Statistics

Classes have begun and teachers are involved in many hands-on activities around campus.

APchemistryAP Chemistry teachers are working hard at their lab stations to determine the equilibrium constants for a various chemical reactions here at South Central High School, this year’s hosting site for College Board’s Advanced Placement conference. Teachers will perform these same
labs later on with their AP chemistry students.

COE Faculty Member Receives $472,000 NC Quest Award

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Dr. Ann Bullock, chair of the Department of Elementary and Middle Grades Education, is partnering with NC Quest to expand the NC New Teacher Support Program.

Dr. Ann Bullock, Chair of the Department of Elementary and Middle Grades Education, received an NC-QUEST award of $472,394 titled Integrating Neuroscience into Mathematics Instruction (INMI). INMI continues the partnership with UNC-GA New Teacher Support Program (NTSP) and extends it to the Harriott College of Arts & Sciences, Department of Mathematics.

The INMI pilot project consists of an intensive scientifically-based professional development program designed to assist beginning teachers to become highly knowledgeable and pedagogically skilled in leading students to mastery of the Common Core State Standards in Mathematics. The INMI pilot project will target elementary schools in Edgecombe County and Hertford County that have been identified as among the lowest performing in the state.

The project will recruit thirty beginning teachers to participate in a year-long professional development program designed to increase their knowledge of the Common Core Standards for Mathematical practice, brain-compatible elements of mathematics instruction, brain-compatible instructional strategies, and whole-brain teaching techniques.

The INMI extends the professional development offerings currently provided by the NC NTSP, which include an institute/boot camp, six days of professional development, and ongoing instructional coaching. INMI teachers will attend an extended summer session at the beginning of the academic year, Saturday sessions and site-based sessions at their schools during the academic year, and a summer session at the conclusion of the academic year.

In addition, participating teachers will receive weekly on-site support from NC NTSP Instructional Coaches and monthly consultations from an ECU mathematics content expert. Through the integration of neuroscience in mathematics instruction, beginning teachers will be better equipped to engage diverse learners, offer effective feedback that leads to deeper understanding, create a rich learning environment that attends to students’ social and emotional needs, and ensure that students’ mathematical achievement is reflective of their true abilities.

Get Ready for Education Summer Camps!

ECU/PSC AIG Camp AIG camp

East Carolina University and Pitt County Schools’ AIG camp is an annual summer camp for Pitt County gifted students who are identified as academically/intellectually gifted that also provides a summer experience for ECU teachers pursuing AIG licensure through ECU coursework.

The theme for 2014 is INTERACTIONS, allowing students to learn about photojournalism, robotics, cryptography, and more, as they investigate numerous aspects of interaction sin the world. Students attending the camp will be able to select topics that match their interests and all topics will include hands-on activities and interactive use of technology. 2013 ECU/PCS AIG Camp video

AIG Camp Quick Facts

  • 105 participants attend camp: 60 elementary students and 45 middle school students from Pitt County Schools participate at Ridgewood Elementary School, our host site.AIG camp2
  • 92 East Carolina University AIG licensure students, under the guidance of ECU faculty, gain experience to prepare to teach and advise gifted students.
  • Camp master teachers are Pitt County AIG (Academically and Intellectually Gifted) teachers, who begin each camp day with a large group session and model teaching for the ECU students.
  • ECU teachers present academically rigorous units in small group learning stations. Four to ten children are in each station at a given time. All units incorporate this year’s theme “Interactions.” Small groups of campers move through two learning stations each day.
  • Campers filled out an online interest survey to choose two stations of interest prior to the first day of camp. Station topics and room locations are listed below.

For more information about the camp, visit www.ecugifted.com and for more information about the registration process, contact Carmen Webb, camp director, at webbc@pitt.k12.nc.us.

Summer Ventures in Science and Mathematics

East Carolina University (ECU) is one of four UNC system campuses hosting Summer Ventures in Science and Mathematics. Administered through the College of Education, the ECU Summer Ventures program invites academically talented high school students with demonstrated interest in science and mathematics to four weeks of research and intensive study in a living-learning environment on ECU’s campus. Camp participants are North Carolina residents with aspirations to have a career in STEM (science, technology, engineering and mathematics).

MooreShawn_mooresha

Contact the Summer Ventures Camp Director, Shawn Moore, at mooresha@ecu.edu for more information.

The camp curriculum will focus on experimental design, laboratory skills, mathematical modeling, exploratory data analysis, and more. Program topics include biological, physical, and earth sciences, archaeology and anthropology, computer science, engineering, mathematics, applied mathematics, and statistics. In addition to the rigorous academic experience, Summer Ventures students engage in co-curricular and extra-curricular activities, arranged by institute directors.

Summer Ventures is a state funded program that is cost-free for participants. ECU expects to host 60 students for Summer Ventures in June and July of 2014. For more information, contact Shawn Moore, director, at mooresha@ecu.edu or Cheryl Miller, program assistant, at millerche@ecu.edu. Also, visit www.ecu.edu/cs-educ/smventures/Index.cfm.

ECU Summer Science Camp

East Carolina University is partnering with Go-Science for the eighth year to offer a range of summer day camps that engage, entertain and educate children about the wonders of science. The camps offer small group experiences for children preparing to enter 2nd through 8th grades and feature experienced teachers from Pitt County.

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Contact Tammy Lee, ECU Summer Science Camp director, at leeta@ecu.edu for additional information about this camp.

Current ECU students serve as camp counselors and guide children through the discovery of science principles while having FUN! With creative sessions including “Lego Explorers” and “Getting Buggy” elementary and middle grades children have an opportunity to engage their minds while enjoying a summer day camp experience. For more information, visit www.ecu.edu/educ/msite/summersciencecamp/ or contact Tammy D. Lee, Summer Science Camp Director, at leeta@ecu.edu. Online registration for 2014 ECU Summer Science Camp is now active!

High School STEM Day Brings 300 Students to Campus

stemday2_1On February 21, 2014 the Department of Engineering and the Center for STEM Education hosted approximately 300 high school students from counties in our service area, known as High School STEM Day. These students attended various interactive STEM activities throughout the day, led by faculty from various STEM departments, such as Construction Management, Physics, Biology, Engineering, and MSITE, just to name a few. Ron Preston led a very well received session on Mathematics Education. Click for more information: High School STEM Day