Practicum Academy to Improve Science Education (PRACTISE)
The project goal is to improve science instruction between grades 3 - 5 while researching and refining the best methods to deliver the PD. Research shows that engaging in argumentation helps students reach a deeper understanding of scientific concepts and the PRACTISE PD trains teachers to be able to facilitate argumentation-based classroom discussion.
There are three cohorts in the project. The first receives the most elaborate version of the PD, a week-long summer academy plus a two week summer practicum as well as four follow-up sessions throughout the school year. The second cohort receives everything but the practicum. Finally, the third cohort continues “business as usual” PD provided by the school district until year 3 when they partake in a revised version of the institute, practicum, and four follow-up sessions.