Monday, September 17, 2012

Watch Scientist Inspire Diverse Middle Schoolers to Think About Pursuing Careers in the Sciences:)

It is never too early to start inspiring students of all ages and backgrounds to think about their future careers.  Though students know that school is there to assist them in planning for their lives beyond high school, they often times fail to make connections between courses and career options.  Including guest speakers on a monthly basis, for example, is one very effective way to tap student interest in the subject matter and link career options to it. 

With an upcoming shortage of scientists in many parts of the world, why not start bringing in professionals from various science fields to ignite sparks of interest in the minds of students.  Many of the presenters are trained on how to work with diverse student bodies including ELLs.  Some may have a background in education while others are just naturally talented in assisting kids on making those connections from the classroom to the lab for example. Further, since diversity in the workforce is increasingly more common than in the past, it would be possible to have female/male speaker representatives from all the ethnic groups.  This would be quite empowering for minorities especially.


Notice how Daniele Bergeron, Vertex Pharmaceuticals, delivers a presentation on careers in science and in doing so, employs many tried and true instructional techniques to capture and then maintain student interest.  In fact, this would be a wonderful video to share with teachers in general since Daniele uses many checks-for-understanding, has excellent classroom management skills, employs short videos to spark interest, validates all answers without passing judgement, relates academic concepts to student background knowledge, addresses academic vocabulary by relating it to what they know, has a great sense of humor, etc. 

Share this with colleagues who rarely try new approaches.  It might motivate them to do something different:)


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