With support from an NSF grant, Smithsonian Science Education Center developed the Science and Technology Concepts Program™ (STC™): A basal, science and engineering-practices centered program for grades K-10.
Each STC™ unit provides opportunities for students to experience scientific phenomena firsthand. The units cover life, earth, and physical sciences with technology.
The Smithsonian Science Education Center received a 5-year, $30 million Investing in Innovation (i3) grant to improve K-8 science education. We are working with researchers, communities, districts, schools, and teachers in three regions to evaluate the effectiveness of our inquiry-based science education model (LASER: Leadership and Assistance for Science Education Reform).
A Community of Support
The LASER model addresses classroom instruction using a research-based science curriculum with aligned professional development for teachers. LASER also provides the entire support system with excellent science education. This prepares students for the opportunities of our 21st century economy.
Diversity of Classrooms
Our goal is to develop practices and procedures that can be replicated in other schools, districts, and states. LASER i3 is currently working with over 75,000 students and 3,000 teachers from urban and rural schools in grades one through eight. Learn more
Founded in 1846, the Smithsonian is the world's largest museum and research complex, consisting of 19 museums and galleries, the National Zoological Park and nine research facilities. The Smithsonian Science Education Center (SSEC) was established by the Smithsonian and the National Academies in 1985. Its mission is to improve the learning and teaching of science for all students in the United States and throughout the world. Go to the Smithsonian home page.
How do you learn? Think about it honestly for a second. Do you create notecards? Do you watch instructional videos? Do you even know? Have you ever asked your students how they learn best?
Discussing the science of learning with students tends to be a messy business. It takes time and is usually outside our areas of expertise. Understanding how students prepare for an assessment is arguably more important than how they perform. At least then we, as teachers, have something to work with as we reconstruct our students’ misconceptions.
Student working on an assignment from a unit in STC™. Photo by Smithsonian Science Education Center.