Center for Engineering, Science and Mathematics Education

Workshop Descriptions

These workshops are structured inquiry approaches to high school chemistry and physics teaching that incorporate computer technology and insights from the Common Core State Standards, Next Generation Science Standard & current education research.​

Physics Level I: Mechanics

Workshop Eligibility: This workshop is open to secondary educators in physics, physical science and other science teachers interested in Modeling.

This professional development workshop introduces participants to a structured inquiry approach to high school physics teaching that incorporates computer technology and insights from physics education research. Emphasis is placed on the use of basic models and the modeling method in teaching mechanics topics.

Teachers will develop skills in fostering scientific discourse and presentation, and in assessment of student learning. By designing and carrying out a series of investigations that use the modeling method, teachers will practice data collection skills, problem solving approaches, and Socratic questioning techniques while interacting with other physics teaching colleagues.

Chemistry II : Modeling Chemistry Workshop

Workshop Eligibility:  This workshop is open to high school chemistry teachers who have previously completed Chemistry Modeling, Level One.

This workshop will:
  1. Guide participants to develop a small set of conceptual models that students can use to explain key phenomena in chemistry commonly taught after stoichiometry. This includes further development of the atom, periodicity and bonding, energy, equilibrium, acids and bases, molecular interactions, and biomolecules.
  2. Identify and use key laboratory investigations as the core of instruction.
  3. Lead students to develop skills from CCSS/NGSS such as reasoning abstractly and quantitatively (including ratio and proportional relationships), evaluating experimental design, analyzing and interpreting data, constructing arguments from evidence, and developing and using models of natural phenomena.
  4. Address common student misconceptions about matter.
  5. Use coordinated representations (descriptive, graphical, mathematical, and diagrammatic) of the core models to enhance student understanding.
  6. Create a student-centered chemistry classroom.

Additional Articles

Instructor Bios

Physics Modeling: Jon Anderson, M.Ed. Physics Education Consultant/Minnesota

Jon Anderson is a physics teacher at Centennial High School in the Minneapolis/St. Paul metro area and also works as a consultant for the PhysTEC Project as the Teacher & TIR Coordinator. He has taught physics for 30 years at both the high school and college levels.  Additionally, he has spent 17 years as a member of the "Physics Force," an outreach team from the University of Minnesota and 14 years as a QuarkNet Lead Teacher.  He has been using the modeling method in his classes for 10 years and has been a modeling workshop leader for eight years.

Chemistry Modeling: Brenda Royce, University High School (CSU Fresno campus)

Brenda began teaching high school science 20 years ago and had the good fortune of being trained in Modeling Instruction after only 3 years of teaching. She currently teaches chemistry at University High School, a college-prep charter school in Fresno, where she's been since 2001. In 2000 she was invited to lead her first workshop in modeling physics, and has since led a number modeling workshops in physics, chemistry, and curriculum development in four states, including an interdisciplinary modeling workshop at Cal Poly in the summer of 2009. Brenda served on the team that developed the MI based curriculum materials in chemistry for AMTA, and has also been a conference presenter at NSTA, WRNC, and ChemEd.


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