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REPORT ON THE REVIEW OF LITERATURE ALABAMA MATHEMATICS, SCIENCE, AND TECHNOLOGY INITIATIVE COMMITTEE Presented to the State Board of Education October 26, 2000 Acknowledgements Members of the Alabama Mathematics, Science and Technology Initiative Committee: Trudy Anderson Science Teacher Jefferson County International Baccalaureate School Jefferson County School System Mary Boehm Manager Community and Education Relations BellSouth Patricia Buchanan Mathematics Teacher Albertville High School Albertville City School System Paula Cannon Education Specialist Twenty-First Century Solutions, Inc. Camille Cochrane Mathematics Instructor Shelton State Community College Gregory N. Cox Assistant Director for US Partnerships The GLOBE Program - Washington, DC Senior Research Scientist National Space Science and Technology Center University of Alabama in Huntsville - Huntsville, AL Ron Dodson Assistant Principal and International Baccalaureate Coordinator Hoover High School Hoover City School System Anita Dominick-Hardin, Ed. D. Teacher South Shades Crest Elementary School Hoover City School System 2 Julie Ferriss Director of Education U. S. Space and Rocket Center Huntsville, Alabama John A. Fulgham Administrative Assistant Brewbaker Primary School Montgomery County School System Wilma Guthrie Science Teacher Talladega County Central High School Talladega County School System Kim Harris Mathematics Teacher Eufaula High School Eufaula City School System Pam Henson Secondary Curriculum Supervisor Baldwin County School System Tim Huddleston Director of the Aerospace Development Center Jacksonville State University David Laurenson, Ph. D. Executive Director Alabama School of Mathematics and Science Brenda Litchfield, Ed. D. Professor University of South Alabama Sara Little Mathematics Teacher Baker Middle - High School Mobile County School System Jennifer Lockett Deputy Director GLOBE in Alabama 3 Chiquita Marbury Project Manager Technology In Motion Bill Martin Science Teacher Fort Payne Middle School Fort Payne City School System Alethia Mauldin Science Teacher Notasulga High School Macon County School System Donna McKay School Counselor Clay County High School Clay County School System Charles Ray Nash, Ed. D. Vice Chancellor for Academic Affairs University of Alabama System Elizabeth Offutt Professor Director of Educational Technology Center Samford University Keith Price Technology Coordinator Alabama School of Fine Arts Susan Pruet, Ph. D. Director, Maysville Math Initiative Mobile Area Education Foundation Jim Pruitt Manager Education Programs Department NASA Marshall Space Flight Center Rebecca Richardson Assistant Project Director Alabama Science In Motion University of Montevallo 4 Shelly R. Rider Mathematics Teacher Spanish Fort School Baldwin County School System Sandra Taylor Elementary Teacher Dadeville Elementary School Tallapoosa County School System Mary Thomaskutty Science Teacher Demopolis High School Demopolis City School System Linda Ussery Mathematics Teacher Colbert Heights High School Colbert County School System Victor Vernon Director of Education and Workforce Development Business Council of Alabama Joyce Waid Mathematics Teacher Locust Fork High School Blount County School System Nancy Washburn Benjamin Russell High School Alexander City School System Judy Welch Elementary Teacher Wetumpka Elementary School Elmore County School System Larry Williams Assistant Principal Bibb County High School Bibb County School System Donna M. Wolfinger Ed. D. Professor of Science and Mathematics Education Auburn University Montgomery 5 Alabama State Department of Education Project Staff: Anita Buckley-Commander, Ed. D., Director Steve Ricks, Initiative Coordinator Deborah Borcik, Mathematics Specialist Bob Davis, Science Specialist Martha Donaldson, Mathematics Specialist John Halbrooks, Science Specialist Robin Long, Assessment and Science Specialist Melinda Maddox, Office of Technology and Information Coordinator DeAnn Stone, Curriculum and Technology Specialist Lisa Woodard, Office of Technology and Information Coordinator Consultants: Ken Kansas President, Ken Kansas Communications Former Manager of Communications, Contributions, and the Exxon Foundation Exxon, International Malcolm B. Butler, Ph. D. Program Specialist Eisenhower Consortium for Mathematics and Science Education @ SERVE 6 Table of Contents EXECUTIVE SUMMARY ............................................................................................ 9 Summary of Activities ...................................................................................... 13 RECOMMENDATIONS .............................................................................................. 15 INTRODUCTION ........................................................................................................ 19 Current State of Mathematics, Science, and Technology Education ............................ 20 The Third International Mathematics and Science Study.......................... 21 Findings on Curriculum and Teaching ................................................. 21 The National Assessment of Educational Progress .......................................... 22 Findings................................................................................................. 23 Indicators of Mathematics and Science Learning in Alabama ......................... 24 Use of Technology in Mathematics and Science Classrooms .......................... 26 Calculators ............................................................................................ 26 Computers ............................................................................................. 26 National Reform Movements ........................................................................................ 26 Project 2061: Science for All Americans.......................................................... 26 Benchmarks....................................................................................................... 27 National Standards in Mathematics, Science, and Technology .................................... 27 Principles and Standards for School Mathematics ........................................... 27 National Science Education Standards ............................................................. 29 National Educational Technology Standards ................................................... 30 Business/Industry Research .......................................................................................... 31 The Alabama State Courses of Study in Mathematics and Science ............................. 32 Summary of Alabama Mathematics, Science, and Technology Initiative Survey Results. ........................................................................................................................ 34 Questionnaire Results ....................................................................................... 34 Comments, Suggestions, and Recommendations ............................................. 36 Discussion of Terms ..................................................................................................... 37 Curriculum ........................................................................................................ 37 Instruction ......................................................................................................... 37 Resources .......................................................................................................... 37 Assessment ........................................................................................................ 38 Professional Development ................................................................................ 38 7 MATHEMATICS ......................................................................................................... 40 Professional Development ............................................................................................ 40 Curriculum .................................................................................................................... 43 Instruction ..................................................................................................................... 44 Worthwhile Mathematical Tasks ...................................................................... 45 The Role of the Teacher .................................................................................... 45 The Role of the Student .................................................................................... 46 Resources/Instructional Tools ........................................................................... 46 The Learning Environment ............................................................................... 46 Analysis of Teaching and Learning .................................................................. 47 Resources ...................................................................................................................... 47 Assessment .................................................................................................................... 48 SCIENCE ...................................................................................................................... 50 Professional Development ............................................................................................ 50 Curriculum .................................................................................................................... 52 Instruction ..................................................................................................................... 53 Resources ...................................................................................................................... 57 Assessment .................................................................................................................... 59 TECHNOLOGY ........................................................................................................... 62 Professional Development ............................................................................................ 62 What should teachers know to be successful in technology integration? ......... 64 Curriculum and Instruction ........................................................................................... 66 Resources ...................................................................................................................... 66 Effective Integration ......................................................................................... 67 Assessment .................................................................................................................... 68 Bibliography ................................................................................................................. 69 Endnotes........................................................................................................................ 91 8 EXECUTIVE SUMMARY In November of 1999, the Alabama State Board of Education requested the development of an initiative to improve mathematics, science, and technology education throughout the state. A 38 member committee was appointed by the board and charged with making recommendations and formulating an action plan to begin implementing the recommendations. The committee was comprised of K – 12 educators, university professors and administrators, and leaders from business and industry with a strong interest in mathematics, science, and technology education in Alabama. A Design Team was also appointed from among the committee members to assist with setting meeting agendas and to serve as subcommittee leaders. The initiative, named AMSTI for the Alabama Mathematics, Science, and Technology Initiative, set as its mission to improve mathematics and science education in Alabama such that all students are provided the opportunities to develop the skills necessary for success in post secondary studies and the work force. The first phase of the initiative focused on reviewing research and existing programs, formulating recommendations for improvement, and devising a plan to begin implementing the recommendations on a statewide level. Second and subsequent phases were visualized as program development and implementation periods that would follow after the adoption of the recommendations by the Alabama State Board of Education. Key to the formation of the committee and to the success of the initiative was the inclusion of the business community. The Alabama Mathematics, Science, and Technology Education Coalition, Inc. (AMSTEC) was founded in 1998 as an advocacy coalition for the improvement of mathematics, science, and technology education in Alabama. It is comprised of leaders from business, education, and public policy organizations. The coalition has been highly supportive of the Department of Education activities regarding the initiative. Several AMSTEC members, including its president, served as members of the AMSTI committee. Two members of AMSTEC were also included on the Design Team. The AMSTI committee met on a monthly basis to survey mathematics, science, and technology education throughout the world and to relate the information to education in Alabama. The committee heard presentations on mathematics, science, and technology initiatives of Minnesota, Louisiana, and South Carolina. A member of the National Commission on Mathematics and Science Teaching for the 21st Century (Glenn Commission) also shared the research findings of the commission. A teleconference and a visit to selected mathematics, science and technology education hubs in South Carolina enabled members of the committee to better understand the programs of that state. In addition, the Georgia Department of Education provided the committee an on-line demonstration of its extensive new web site, the Georgia Learning Connection (GLC). Presentations were also given by the National Science Resources Center's planning organization, LASER; the environmental centered organization, GLOBE; and the state programs, Science in Motion and Technology in Motion. Presentations from the A+ Task Force on Teaching and Student Achievement, the Maysville Math Initiative, Integrated Science, and AMSTEC provided the committee with additional insight into activities and programs currently 9 in place in Alabama. The committee also participated in an extremely important session on the effective use of classroom resources and materials kits. Other presentations shared with the committee are listed in the following "Summary of Activities." Concurrent with the presentations, the committee set to work identifying research relevant to mathematics, science, and technology education and applied it to the work of the committee. As a result of initial research, the committee agreed that more information specific to Alabama teachers was needed. Therefore, a survey was developed and administered to mathematics and science teachers. This survey is the most extensive survey of mathematics and science teachers in the history of Alabama. It provided significant information regarding the needs, practices, and resources of mathematics and science teachers in the state. Results from the survey underscored the severe need for more resources, particularly technology, and for professional development, especially in the area of technology integration. This survey was one of the most significant and original pieces of research used by the committee. Though many of the findings regarding mathematics and science instruction were positive in nature, the survey pointed out a distressing lack of access to resources, including access to technology, and the glaring need for professional development. The committee found many of the nation's best practices are in use in Alabama. However, such practices are only found sporadically and are not being universally applied or coordinated throughout the state. The committee felt a need to identify and emphasize these practices and to devise a system for the universal application and delivery to the entire state. In reviewing the research, the committee found that the classroom teacher is the most important factor in influencing student performance. The committee also identified five components that play a significant role in determining the effectiveness of teachers. These components must be in place to assure that students receive the best education possible. 1.) Curriculum The curriculum specifies what students should know and be able to do and provides the teacher with an understanding of what is to be taught. In Alabama, content area curricula are defined by the Alabama courses of study. Research has found that mathematics and science curricula in the United States tends to be "overstuffed and undernourished;" that is, that they contain too much information in too little depth. Recommendations include reducing the number of topics so that those that are taught are covered in greater depth. 2.) Instruction Research clearly indicates that the most effective mathematics and science instruction emphasizes hands-on, inquiry learning. In addition to producing significant improvements in achievement, hands-on, inquiry-based instruction has been proven to have positive effects on the development of higher-order, critical thinking and process skills, on problem solving abilities, and in fostering positive attitudes towards mathematics and science. Teachers should infuse 10 technology into instruction so that it becomes an integral part of the learning experience and provides students with opportunities and experiences beyond the traditional setting. 3.) Resources Without proper resources, hands-on, activity-based instruction is impossible. One of the major obstacles associated with hands-on instruction is the availability of the needed resources at the appropriate time. Research calls for the establishment of an effective infrastructure that can identify, maintain, store, and make available needed resources to teachers in a timely manner. The National Science Resources Center has concluded that the most efficient and cost effective way to provide teachers with needed supplies is through the creation of materials support centers. Other issues that must be addressed when providing mathematics and science resources include properly relating the resources to the curricula and adequately training teachers in their use. In today's classrooms, technology must be viewed as a basic resource for teaching and learning. 4.) Assessment Teachers must understand and be skilled in the use of a variety of assessments with their students. While paper-and-pencil tests are important, research also calls for teachers to understand and utilize performance-based and alternative assessments with their students. Such assessments align well with hands-on, activity-based instruction. 5.) Professional Development Professional development is the mechanism for helping teachers understand each of the four previously listed components and for linking the four components to assure that students receive a quality education. Many well meaning educational programs and initiatives fail due to lack of adequate teacher preparation and support. Research indicates that for professional development to be effective, it should be content specific, ongoing, and involve teachers with the resources and strategies that they will use in their classrooms. In addition, research emphasizes that new teachers need the support and guidance of mentors. Based on the foregoing research, the committee recommends the development of a support system that will assure consistency and coordination in the delivery of the best practices throughout the state. Key to the plan is the establishment of a series of Mathematics, Science, and Technology Education Resource sites (MASTER sites) throughout the state. Each MASTER site is charged with delivering the needed professional development, resources, and support discussed above to teachers. The committee believes that this structure, which has similarities to initiatives in other states, makes the best use of our state resources and can result in better managerial oversight. Each MASTER site will employ a director, a mathematics specialist, a science specialist, a resource manager, and an office assistant. There are three keys to the effective development and use of MASTER sites. The first is structuring the site for effective collaboration. The site should be organized so as to assure collaboration among local universities, colleges, inservice centers, science museums and centers, and other public organizations and businesses wishing to support mathematics and science 11 education. Having the site associate with such entities would help provide schools in the service area access to resources far beyond those at the MASTER site itself. It would also result in reduced costs. The second key is putting the educational materials, supplies and equipment necessary for effective instruction in the hands of teachers and students. Ready access to such materials and equipment will provide students with opportunities to engage in the types of hands-on, inquiry-based activities that are strongly advocated by research. Finally, each MASTER site will provide teachers with quality professional development. The training will be content specific, relating proper resources to the curriculum, and will provide sustained support for the teacher at the local school. The committee respectfully requests that the Alabama State Board of Education adopt and implement the submitted recommendations as a complete framework so as to assure the goals of the initiative are met. The deletion of any of the recommendations would weaken the plan and reduce the effectiveness. The committee further believes that, when implemented, the recommendations will help ensure that the students of Alabama are provided a world-class education that will allow them to succeed in the workplace of the 21st century. 12 Summary of Activities Members from the Alabama Mathematics, Science, and Technology (AMSTI) committee participated in the following activities, presentations, and visits: Presentation to establish ground rules - The committee agreed to consider any research brought forward, to avoid personal agendas, and to let the research guide the recommendations and implementation plan. Presentation on the Third International Mathematics and Science Study (TIMSS) and the National Assessment of Educational Progress (NAEP) - Implications for Alabama classrooms Overview of initiatives in other states - Minnesota, Louisiana, and South Carolina Mathematics, science, technology and business/industry subcommittees compiled a lists of the strengths, weaknesses, and needs for improving mathematics and science education Presentation on certification requirements pertinent to mathematics and science Maysville Math Initiative presentation A+ Task Force presentation Presentation on national standards for mathematics (NCTM) Presentation on national standards for science (NRC and NSES) Presentation on national standards for technology (NETS) Alabama Reading Initiative presentation Science in Motion presentation Technology in Motion presentation Presentation on the Alabama Course of Study: Science Presentation on the Alabama Course of Study: Mathematics Update on the National Alliance of State Science and Mathematics Coalition (NASSMC) TIMSS presentation and video on instructional practices Presentation of extracted comments report from the AMSTI mathematics and science teacher survey Presentation on research and findings by the National Commission on Mathematics and Science Teaching for the 21st Century (by national committee member) 13 Audio conference with the state coordinator and local hub directors of the South Carolina Math, Science, and Technology Initiative Presentation on the National Science Resource Center's LASER program (by Deputy Director of NSRC) Presentation on GLOBE (by the Assistant Director for U S Partnerships) Integrated Science presentation (by the project director) Trip to South Carolina to observe operation of three regional hubs sites involved in implementing that state's initiative * Presentation on the report of data analysis from the AMSTI mathematics and science teacher survey Trip to Huntsville to participate in the HASP Strategic Planning Institute for Middle Grades (in association with NSRC) * Trip to meet with University of Alabama in Birmingham research mathematicians to discuss needs/concerns for mathematics education * Trip to Mobile to observe Maysville Math Initiative * Presentation and hands-on exposure to science resource kits * Presentation on selected mathematics programs * Trip to Washington D.C. to participate in the LASER Strategic Planning Conference for Mathematics and Science provided by NSRC (in association with the Smithsonian Institute and National Academy of Sciences) * Presentation of findings from the South Carolina trip Presentation of the Alabama Mathematics, Science, and Technology Education Coalition's (AMSTEC) research and recommendations pertaining to business needs and opportunities for involvement Presentation on the Georgia Learning Connection web site Tour of the McWane Center* Workshop on how to enhance science literacy for all Americans through the development of instructional materials for classroom use. Presented by the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS) with support from NASA* * Indicates that only selected members participated, not the entire committee. 14 ALABAMA MATHEMATICS, SCIENCE, AND TECHNOLOGY INITIATIVE RECOMMENDATIONS October 26, 2000 The Alabama Mathematics, Science, and Technology Initiative Committee recommends the following: Instruction 1. Focus mathematics and science instruction on understanding and concept development at all grade levels. Strategies will address the diverse needs of students and will incorporate the following: a) Purposeful, hands-on, inquiry-based instruction b) Active engagement in problem solving, reasoning, and investigation c) Relevant, real-life experiences d) Effective questioning e) Appropriate application of knowledge in novel situations f) Meaningful communication of mathematical and scientific ideas g) Mastery and application of basic computational skills h) Integration of appropriate technology Curriculum 1. Reduce the breadth of mathematics and science content to allow time for increased depth of student understanding and to eliminate unnecessary repetition. 2. Develop and implement courses of study for mathematics and science that define grade-level knowledge, process, and application standards aligned with NCTM, NRC, and ISTE standards. 3. Identify benchmarks for student achievement in mathematics and science curricula at each grade K-8. 4. Establish alternative learning opportunities that provide intervention and remediation at all grade levels. Assessment 1. Implement an appropriate student assessment program that is ongoing, an integral part of instruction, and reflective of NCTM and NRC standards. This program will include varied forms of assessment at both the classroom and statewide levels. 2. Align forms of student assessment with instructional objectives. 15 3. Implement criterion-referenced benchmark tests in mathematics and science to replace norm-referenced tests in Grades 3 and 7. Professional Development 1. Provide appropriate, effective, ongoing, and extensive professional development for mathematics and science teachers and administrators. a) Professional development for teachers will include the following: i.) Content knowledge and pedagogy ii.) Knowledge of state curricula requirements iii.) Effective research-based teaching strategies iv.) Appropriate selection and use of curricula, materials, and resources v.) Multiple assessment strategies vi.) Strategies for working with students from diverse backgrounds vii.) Technology integration in planning and instruction b) Professional development for administrators will address the following: i.) Understanding the need for effective mathematics and science instruction ii.) Orientation regarding successful teaching and assessment strategies iii.) Enhancing superintendents', principals', and other system and school administrators' technology leadership skills in support of mathematics and science teaching and learning 2. Ensure the placement of qualified, well-prepared teachers in all K-12 mathematics and science classrooms. This will be achieved through the following strategies: a) Early identification and recruitment of talented people b) Careful screening of teacher education candidates c) Development and implementation of a mentoring system for supporting the specific needs of new teachers, career change teachers, and experienced teachers assigned to mathematics or science for the first time d) Incentive programs to attract and retain well-qualified teachers and administrators in all schools, especially those that are high-need and at-risk 3. Ensure that pre-service education programs are consistent with the mathematics standards promoted by the National Council of Teachers of Mathematics (NCTM), the science standards promoted by the National Research Council (NRC), and the technology standards promoted by the International Society for Technology in Education (ISTE). The following components will be included in approved pre-service programs: a) Revised requirements for General Science certification that include increased coursework in biology, chemistry, physics, and earth/space science b) Extensive fieldwork, observations, and interaction with students and teachers c) Extended, intensive student teaching experiences with an exemplary cooperating teacher d) Coordinated coursework and fieldwork e) Time to reflect on and improve instruction and to collaborate with peers 16 f) Revised requirements for elementary certification, including coursework that develops a deep and thorough knowledge of the mathematics and science that will be taught 4. Promote broad participation in meaningful teacher externships, where interdisciplinary teams of teachers from the same school or school clusters take on responsibilities of the workplace and formally transfer to their classrooms the knowledge gained through workplace experiences. 5. Establish graduate-level certification programs as follows: a) Elementary (K-6) mathematics specialist b) Elementary (K-6) science specialist c) Middle grades (6-8) mathematics specialist d) Middle grades (6-8) science specialist Resources 1. Provide grade-level appropriate mathematics and science teacher leaders for every school. These individuals will have appropriate training and reduced teaching responsibilities in order to assist teachers with the following: a) Planning b) Location and use of resources c) Curriculum implementation d) Content knowledge e) Instructional methodologies f) Assessment g) Classroom and laboratory management h) Safety 2. Provide a full-time technology specialist at each school to handle hardware, software, and related questions; provide training for teachers; document usage data for assessment; enable integration of technology into the curriculum; and work collaboratively with the mathematics and science teacher leaders. 3. Equip, update, and maintain all mathematics and science classrooms so teachers have easy access to appropriate materials, supplies, and technology necessary to deliver quality instruction. Appropriate materials, supplies, and technology include, but are not limited to, the following: a) Manipulatives b) Activity kits c) Science consumables d) Science nonconsumables e) Literature f) Related media (videos, CDs, audiotapes, etc.) g) Computers (minimum ratio of one computer for every five students in each classroom) h) Internet access 17 i) Calculators (grade appropriate) j) Software k) Peripherals (probe-ware, overhead calculators, data collectors, graph links, digital imaging and capturing devices, palm top interactive devices, etc.) l) Overhead projectors m) Laboratory safety equipment 4. Provide adequate space, including dedicated laboratory areas or classrooms, conducive to mathematics and science teaching. 5. Provide a web site that offers mathematics and science resources or links. The site will include the following: a) State Department of Education documents that support mathematics, science, and technology instruction b) Database of lesson plans targeting course of study objectives (searchable by key word) c) Grant information that supports mathematics, science, and technology (searchable by key word) d) Business, community, and higher education contacts that are available to schools (searchable by key word) e) Schedules for professional development training, workshops, and institutes available to mathematics and science teachers f) Postings of local school system positions available in mathematics, science, and technology g) Mathematics, Science, and Technology Education Resource (MASTER) site information (including a local mentor contact list) h) Status and plans of the Alabama Mathematics, Science, and Technology Initiative i) Links to professional organizations related to mathematics, science, and technology instruction j) Alabama Learning Resource Center and Office of Technology Initiatives information k) Research in mathematics, science, and technology l) Other resources available to mathematics and science teachers m) Links to the Alabama Virtual Library 6. Establish business, family, and community partnerships with local schools, school systems, and MASTER sites to enhance mathematics and science programs and to facilitate input from business and industry as to the skills and competencies that are needed in the workplace. 7. Create and make available to educators a video collection of lessons taught by exemplary teachers on key concepts, topics and objectives in mathematics and science. 8. Establish Mathematics, Science, and Technology Education Resource (MASTER) sites across the state to assist local schools and school systems in implementing the above list of recommendations. MASTER sites will promote high student achievement in mathematics, science, and technology by providing resources, professional development, and support, emphasizing on-site service in the classroom. 18 ALABAMA MATHEMATICS, SCIENCE, AND TECHNOLOGY INITIATIVE COMMITTEE REPORT ON THE REVIEW OF LITERATURE INTRODUCTION Beginning in January 2000, a committee of thirty-eight representatives of K - 12 educators, university professors, and business persons convened under the direction of the Alabama State Department of Education to consider ways in which to improve mathematics and science education in Alabama. This committee believed that technology should play a vital role in this endeavor, known as the Alabama Mathematics, Science, and Technology Initiative (AMSTI). The Committee continued to meet on a monthly basis to address the following tasks: Consider the strengths and weaknesses of mathematics and science education in Alabama. Hear presentations dealing with the current state of mathematics and science education in the world, the nation, and the state. Develop and administer a questionnaire to determine the perceptions of teachers as to the status and needs of mathematics and science education in Alabama. Examine promising programs already being implemented in the state. Study initiatives for mathematics and science education in other parts of the United States. Review research dealing with effective practices in mathematics and science education as well as with effective means for infusing technology into the mathematics and science curricula. Develop a plan of action focusing on the teacher as the central agent for improving mathematics and science education in Alabama. Discuss issues relating to mathematics, science, and technology with leaders in the fields of education, business, and industry. The Committee reviewed statewide systemic initiatives in Louisiana, Minnesota, and South Carolina. The common themes among these initiatives were professional development, social and material resources, web access, and information dissemination. These four areas enabled the states to improve mathematics and science instruction through the use of technology. An audio conference with officials from South Carolina prompted representatives from the Committee to travel to Clemson, Greenville, and Aiken for further investigation of the South Carolina Statewide Systemic Initiative. Valuable information was gathered on this trip that positively impacted the recommendations made by the AMSTI Committee. AMSTI Committee members began to realize during the early stages of the literature review that common themes were repeated. The literature indicates that the teacher is the most important factor in educational achievement in the elementary through high school classroom.i As a result of the discussion and research of the Committee, AMSTI chose to focus on five areas directly affecting the performance of science and mathematics teachers: professional development, curriculum, resources, instruction, and assessment. The graphic on page 39 illustrates how these areas work together to influence the effectiveness of the teacher. 19 The mission of the Alabama Mathematics, Science, and Technology Initiative is to improve mathematics and science education in Alabama so all students develop the concepts, skills, and understanding necessary for success in post secondary studies and in the work force. Current State of Mathematics, Science, and Technology Education Mathematics and science are vital areas of study in today‘s technological world. Citizens must make decisions based on their knowledge of mathematics and science. University students complete mathematics and science requirements in every area of study. Businesses seek individuals able to solve problems and make decisions based on fact. Society is surrounded by technology: personal computers, VCRs, DVD players, cell phones, and automobiles with performance monitored by computer chips. Today, over 1.6 million computers are in American schools, and billions of dollars are being spent to connect these computers to the Internet. Despite this investment, a recent survey completed by the National Center for Education Statistics found that only 20 percent of the 2.5 million teachers who currently work in public schools feel comfortable using technology in their classrooms.ii For a society to function effectively both now and in the future, its citizens must be well-grounded in mathematics and science. They must understand how technology is incorporated into the application of these disciplines. That foundation and comprehension of technology and its uses must begin in Alabama‘s schools. A major challenge that America faces as it moves into the 21st Century is assuring that its citizens have the mathematical, scientific and technological skills and knowledge necessary to be productive members of society. Another challenge that America faces is finding a way to replenish the pool of scientists, engineers, and mathematicians. It is important that our educational system keep the rapidly diminishing pool vibrant, alive, and filled with people who have innovative ideas and are armed with the skills and knowledge required to assure that America remains a leader in technology. For example, over the past two decades females have made impressive strides toward equal representation and achievement in most high school mathematics and science courses. However, despite receiving good grades and test scores in high school, current trends indicate that disproportionately few females will pursue degrees or careers in the technological fields of science, mathematics, or engineering. In our increasingly complex and technological world, American scientists and engineers cannot afford to disregard half the creative population.iii Similar cases may be made for other under-represented groups. One outcome of the Alabama Mathematics, Science, and Technology Initiative must be to increase the educational achievement and participation of all Alabama students in mathematics and science by preparing citizens who value critical thinking and life-long learning. This goal will be accomplished by the preparation and support of elementary, middle, and secondary teachers to teach in the rapidly changing age of information and technology and through fostering public understanding, collaboration, and support of mathematics, science, and technology education by stakeholders. 20 The Third International Mathematics and Science Study The Third International Mathematics and Science Study (TIMSS) is the largest and most comprehensive of the international comparative studies of achievement in science and mathematics. Students from over forty countries in five grade levels are included in the study. The 1999 data are reported on three grade levels: fourth, eighth and twelfth. The following tables show the mathematics and science achievement scores for students in the United States. Mathematics Achievementiv Grade Level Mean for Mean for United International Alabama States Mean Fourth Grade No data 545 529 Eighth Grade 463 500 513 Twelfth Grade No data 461 500 Science Achievementv Grade Level Mean for Mean for United International Alabama States Mean Fourth Grade No data 565 524 Eighth Grade 502 534 516 Twelfth Grade No data 480 500 Students in fourth grade scored above the international mean in mathematics achievement. However, at the eighth and twelfth grade levels, the mean scores for mathematics fall below the international mean. In science achievement, fourth grade students tied for second place among all nations participating in the TIMSS study. Eighth-grade students scored slightly above the international mean, and twelfth grade students scored below the international mean. Alabama students in eighth grade scored below the national and international means in both mathematics and science, according to TIMSS data that was linked to National Assessment of Education Progress (NAEP) data.vi American students tend to score at an average level or a below average level in international comparisons. Trends in international rankings show that in the areas of mathematics and science, scores continually decline from fourth grade through twelfth grade. The TIMSS data provides some insight as to the differences in curricula and teaching strategies in the United States as compared to those in other nations. Findings on Curriculum and Teaching The TIMSS study revealed the following findings about curricula and teaching in the United States:vii Textbooks in the United States include more topics in science and mathematics than other nations. Science and mathematics curricula in the United States lack coherence. Science and mathematics curricula in the United States lack intellectual rigor. Teaching strategies in the United States emphasize direct instruction by the teacher. 21 When compared with other nations, mathematics and science textbooks in the United States include more topics than other nations. ―We have characterized U.S. science and mathematics curricula as ‗a mile wide and an inch deep.‘ We can hardly be surprised to find the achievement gains in all of those topics only an ‗inch deep‘ as well.‖viii, ix Rather than a coherent, conceptually organized curriculum, which demonstrates interrelationships among the various branches of mathematics and science, the curriculum fragments. ―Americans have chosen to distribute educational responsibilities so consistently to states and local districts that it is not meaningful to speak of a single U.S. educational system but only of ‗educational systems.‘‖x As a result, the children in the United States receive their mathematics and science through a fragmented system. Such fragmentation is not conducive to learning with understanding. The continual attention to elementary fundamentals may be the most compelling reason for the decline in American test scores from the fourth through the twelfth grades. While the fundamentals are covered in all international curricula up to the fourth grade, the curricula become more detailed, more advanced, and more challenging as students progress through school. American schools, in contrast, continue to devote a large amount of time to reviewing and re-teaching fundamentals in the middle and higher grades. Mathematics and science classrooms in the United States are predominately organized around teacher-led instruction. Instructors in other nations consistently involve students in problem solving, hands-on learning, discussion, and group work. Teachers in the United States are predominantly purveyors of information. The results of the TIMSS study give important information as to the current status of science and mathematics teaching in the United States. However, any international comparison has the difficulty of comparing different curricula. Perhaps a more appropriate means for assessing the current state of science and mathematics in the United States lies in the National Assessment of Educational Progress. The National Assessment of Educational Progress The National Assessment of Educational Progress (NAEP) assesses what students in fourth, eighth, and twelfth grades know and can do in various content areas. This test is administered to a small number of randomly-selected schools. The NAEP assessment measures a mathematics domain containing five mathematics strands (number sense, properties, and operations; measurement; geometry and spatial sense; data analysis, statistics, and probability; and algebra and functions). The science assessment includes questions to assess students‘ knowledge of important facts and concepts. It also uses hands-on tasks to probe students‘ abilities to use materials to make observations, perform investigations, evaluate experimental results, and apply problem-solving skills. The results are reported both as average scale scores on the NAEP scale and in terms of the percentage of students attaining NAEP achievement levels in accordance with the standards developed by the National Assessment Governing Board.xi 22 Findings In 1990 Congress authorized a voluntary state-by-state NAEP assessment. The 1990 Trial State Assessment in mathematics at eighth grade was the first state-level NAEP assessment. Since then, state-level assessments have taken place in 1992 and 1994 in reading (fourth grade), in 1992 and 1996 in mathematics (fourth and eighth grades), and in 1996 in science (eighth grade). In 1996, 44 states, the District of Columbia, Guam, and the Department of Defense Schools took part in the NAEP state assessment program.xii The 1996 NAEP results in the areas of mathematics and science showed that Alabama students at the fourth and eighth grade levels scored below the national average. Alabama scores were among the lowest in the United States.xiii The NAEP mathematics scale ranges from 0 to 500. Major findings for Alabama include the following:xiv The average mathematics scale score for a student in fourth grade was 212. This average was lower than the national average of 222. In terms of achievement levels established for the NAEP mathematics assessment, 11 percent of the fourth-grade students in Alabama performed at or above the Proficient level. Nationally, 20 percent of students scored at or above the Proficient level. >From 1992 to 1996, the average scale score of fourth-grade students in Alabama did not change significantly, while that of students across the nation increased. Only fourth-grade students in Guam and the District of Columbia scored lower than fourth-grade students in Alabama. The average mathematics scale score for eighth-grade students in Alabama was 257. This average was lower than the national average of 271. In terms of achievement levels, 12 percent of the eighth-grade students in Alabama performed at or above the Proficient level. Nationally, 23 percent of students scored at or above the Proficient level. >From 1992 to 1996, the average scale score of eighth-grade students in Alabama did not change significantly while that of students across the nation increased somewhat. The average scale score for eighth graders in Alabama in 1996 (257) was not significantly different from that in 1990 (253). Only eighth-grade students in Mississippi, Guam, and the District of Columbia scored lower than eighth graders in Alabama. The NAEP 1996 state science assessment was administered in the eighth grade only, although grades four, eight, and twelve were assessed at the national level as usual. The NAEP science scale ranges from 0 to 300. Major findings for Alabama include the following: xv The average science scale score for eighth-grade students in Alabama was 139. This average was lower than the national average of 148. In terms of achievement levels established for the NAEP science assessment, 18 percent of the eighth-grade students in Alabama performed at or above the Proficient level, with only one percent at the Advanced level. Nationally, 27 percent of students scored at or above the Proficient level, with 60 percent at or above the Basic level, and three percent at the Advanced level. 23 Only eighth-grade students in Louisiana, Mississippi, Guam, and the District of Columbia scored lower than eighth graders in Alabama. Indicators of Mathematics and Science Learning in Alabama In the report State Indicators of Mathematics and Science Education 1999, data gathered in 1998 showed that 92 percent of mathematics teachers and 84 percent of science teachers in grades 9 – 12 in Alabama were certified in their field. xvi Nationally, 88 percent of mathematics teachers and 83 percent of science teachers reported certification in their field.xvii The following chart reports professional development practices of teachers in the areas of mathematics and science.xviii 8th Grade Public School Teachers‘ Reports on Professional Development During the last year, how much ALABAMA NATION time in total have you spent in professional development workshops or seminars in your field? Math Science Math Science None 4% 4% 5% 8% Less than 6 hours 22% 10% 19% 16% 6 – 15 hours 30% 29% 28% 19% 16 – 35 hours 23% 23% 21% 26% More than 35 hours 22% 34% 27% 31% As noted in the chart and in the information on certification, lower standings of Alabama students on the NAEP cannot be directly traced to teachers teaching without proper certification or the amount of professional development they receive. Exposure to mathematics and science and the opportunity to learn have a positive effect on the performance of students. The following statements report course-taking patterns for students in Alabama and the nation:xix In eighth grade, more than half of the students reported taking eighth-grade mathematics (54 percent), compared to 21 percent taking pre-algebra and 20 percent taking algebra. The percentage of students taking algebra did not differ significantly from that for the nation (24 percent). Less than half of the eighth-grade students expected to take pre-algebra (12 percent) or algebra (33 percent) in the ninth grade. Another 16 percent anticipated taking a geometry class. In eighth-grade, one percent of the students in Alabama reported not taking a science course this year. This did not differ significantly from the national percentage (3 percent). In Alabama, 90 percent of the students reported studying science three or more times a week. Lower standings cannot be traced to the amount of mathematics and science exposure students have. What then are indicators that might explain the lower scores of Alabama students in mathematics and science? 24 Although graduation requirements in both mathematics and science have increased recently in Alabama, data shows that in 1998 only 18% of students took trigonometry/pre-calculus and only 9% completed calculus by graduation. Similarly, only 11% of students had taken physics by the end of twelfth grade. Alabama ranks last of all states in the number of students taking advanced mathematics and science courses.xx Instructional practices may also contribute to Alabama's lower scores on the NAEP assessment. These practices in mathematics teaching were included in the NAEP data for eighth grade. In the following table, Alabama is compared to the four high-ranking states:xxi STATE Discuss math Write about math Use calculators 30 minutes problems almost problems once a Daily/weekly homework a day daily week or more Alabama 36% 25% 30%/57% 73% Minnesota 33% 27% 65%/86% 70% North Dakota 37% 25% 71%/86% 78% Montana 39% 35% 60%/85% No data Connecticut 35% 34% 44%/73% 74% A consideration of the above table indicates that Alabama students engage in discussion and writing about mathematics problems at about the same rate as students in high scoring states. Students in Alabama differ only slightly in the amount of homework given. The main area of difference is in the use of calculators. Students in higher-scoring states have the opportunity to use calculators more frequently than students in Alabama. The NAEP 1996 Science Assessment included a teacher and student survey, and results were reported by state on instructional practices in science classrooms in eighth grade. In the following table, Alabama is compared to the four high-ranking states:xxii STATE Teacher demonstrates Hands-on activities Long-term science once a week or more once a week or more projects Alabama 60% 47% 58% Maine 62% 80% 77% Michigan 69% 74% 63% Wisconsin 58% 82% 65% Minnesota 62% 85% 62% A comparison of instructional practices in mathematics and science between high and low scoring states gives an indication of reasons for lower scores. Alabama science teachers include demonstrations in their classrooms at about the same rate as teachers in higher scoring states. The difference begins to show when Alabama‘s schools are compared to schools in high-scoring states in terms of hands-on activities and the use of long-term science projects. A part of the difficulty in this area may be that only 64 percent of mathematics teachers and 40 percent of science teachers in Alabama indicate getting most or all the resources they need for instruction. This is in comparison to the national average of 67 percent in mathematics and 63 percent in science.xxiii 25 Use of Technology in Mathematics and Science Classrooms Recommendations for facilitating mathematics and science instruction in the nation‘s schools often include increasing the use of calculators and computers.xxiv The National Council of Teachers of Mathematics (NCTM) Standards recognizes the technological world in which students are living and the opportunities that technology provides for students to learn and use mathematics. The use of computers in the collection of data, interpretation of results, and communication of findings is part of the Benchmarks for Science Literacy and the recently published National Science Education Standards.xxv Given the importance of using technology in mathematics and science instruction, NAEP asked students and their teachers about the use of calculators and computers. Calculators Less than half of the students in Alabama used a calculator in their mathematics class almost every day (26 percent) or once or twice a week (20 percent). About one quarter of the students never or hardly ever used a calculator (27 percent). The percentage of students using a calculator almost every day was smaller than that for xxvi the nation (57 percent). Computers In Alabama, 10 percent of students had teachers who reported that no computers were available for use in their mathematics class, and 9 percent had teachers who reported that computers were available in a computer laboratory but difficult to access or schedule. Nationally, 6 percent of students had teachers who reported that no computers were available. xxvii In Alabama, 29 percent of students were in science classes where computers were not available. This percentage was greater than that for the nation (17 percent).xxviii National Reform Movements In science and mathematics, we are not where we want to be. To go forward, we need to work together to develop a national focus, or coherent vision, of math and science education. Our diversity must become part of our solution. Our children, our teachers, and our schools are working hard. We must think clearly together so that we may help them to work smart as well.xxix Project 2061: Science for All Americans Project 2061: Science for All Americans reported on scientific literacy and attempted to define the understandings and habits of mind that are essential for a scientifically literate society. Project 2061 could be considered as the beginning of the newest reform movement in both mathematics and science education. It was through Project 2061 that certain problems associated with science education were brought to the forefront. The Science for All Americans report identified three problem categories in mathematics and science education: teachers, textbooks, and curricula. According to the report, elementary and junior high school teachers are under prepared to teach mathematics and science. Some 26 high school teachers are not as prepared as they should be. Textbooks and methods of instruction often emphasize memorization at the expense of critical thinking, understanding, and doing. Textbooks rarely encourage students to work together, to share information, or to use technology as part of their mathematics and science studies. The curricula for mathematics and science were described as ―overstuffed and undernourished,‖xxx thus focusing attention on the volume of information presented in textbooks. Science for All Americans affirmed the idea that all children deserve to have a basic education that will prepare them for a future world shaped by mathematics, science, and technology. This basic education would require a firm foundation in each of these disciplines. Benchmarks While Science for All Americans identified the problems in mathematics and science education in the United States and presented a beginning framework of content for developing a literate population, it did not attempt to provide curriculum guidelines for schools. Curriculum was addressed in the second report developed in 1993, entitled Project 2061: Benchmarks for Science Literacy. Benchmarks specifies how students should progress toward literacy, recommending what they should know and be able to do by the time they reach specified grade levels. Grades two, five, eight, and twelve were established as checkpoints, or benchmarks, for estimating student progress. Benchmarks provides curriculum developers with a common core of learning for students. In terms of the reform movement, Benchmarks calls attention not only to the content of science, but to the very nature of science as a human endeavor. It develops and defines the concepts of inquiry and its integral role in the scientific enterprise as well as the necessity for integrating mathematics into the science program. Benchmarks provides support for three areas of curriculum development: Content from all areas of science focusing on the themes of systems, models, stability, patterns of change, evolution, and scale found in Science for All Americans The integration of science, mathematics, and technology The use of inquiry-based learning in order to demonstrate science as a human endeavor conducted in teams rather than in isolation Both Project 2061: Science for All Americans and Project 2061: Benchmarks for Science Literacy address the three major areas of mathematics, science, and technology as an integration into scientific literacy rather than as separate areas of study. National Standards in Mathematics, Science, and Technology Principles and Standards for School Mathematics Principles and Standards for School Mathematics (PSSM) defines a vision in which all students have the opportunity to participate in ―rigorous, high-quality mathematics instruction, including four years of high school mathematics.‖xxxi It provides a ―guide for focused, sustained 27 efforts to improve students‘ school mathematics education,‖xxxii but leaves decisions related to specific curriculum issues to local schools. The document has four main components: 1. A foundation for school mathematics programs is provided by Principles and Standards for School Mathematics. The document describes the broad issues of equity, curriculum, teaching, learning, assessment, and technology. It also describes particular characteristics of high-quality mathematics programs.xxxiii Equity. Excellence in mathematics education requires equity – high expectations and strong support for all students. Curriculum. A curriculum is more than a collection of activities: it must be coherent, focused on important mathematics, and well articulated across the grades. Teaching. Effective mathematics teaching requires understanding what students know and need to learn and then challenging and supporting them to learn it well. Learning. Students must learn mathematics with understanding, actively building new knowledge from experience and prior knowledge. Assessment. Assessment should support the learning of important mathematics and furnish useful information to both teachers and students. Technology. Technology is essential in teaching and learning mathematics; it influences the mathematics that is taught and enhances students‘ learning. 2. Ten standards, five content and five process, describe a connected body of mathematical understanding and competencies that specify the knowledge and skills students need from pre-kindergarten through grade 12. The five content standards present goals in the mathematical content areas of number and operations, algebra, geometry, measurement, and data analysis and probability. Each standard spans the entire range from pre-kindergarten through grade 12 and gives a sense of how the ideas encompassed in a standard develop over all four grade bands, highlighting points at which certain levels of mastery or closure are appropriate. The five process standards describe goals for the processes of problem solving, reasoning and proof, connections, communication, and representation.xxxiv 3. The knowledge base, mathematical understandings, and skills students should acquire throughout their school careers are described by Principles and Standards for School Mathematics.xxxv The document describes grade-level bands (PreK-2, 3-5, 6-8, and 9-12) that provide a set of expectations for each level and focus on the anticipated growth of students‘ knowledge as they progress from grade to grade.xxxvi The bands can be used to design instructional programs, to provide a set of expectations for implementation at each grade level, and to define the teacher‘s role in that process.xxxvii 4. The ―critical issues related to putting the Principles into action and…key roles played by various groups and communities in realizing the vision of Principles and Standards‖ are identified by Principles and Standards for School Mathematics. xxxviii To accomplish the goal of high quality mathematics programs, teachers should not make all the decisions. ―Others – students themselves; mathematics teacher-leaders; school, district, and state or province administrators; higher-education faculty; families, other caregivers, and community members; and professional organizations and policymakers – have resources, influence, and responsibilities that can enable teachers and their students to be successful.‖xxxix 28 Mathematics teachers must develop and maintain the mathematical and pedagogical knowledge they need to teach their students well. Mathematics teacher-leaders should position themselves between classroom teachers and administrators and assist teachers in building their mathematical and pedagogical knowledge. Administrators at all levels must be responsible for the instructional program in their schools, provide for the professional development of teachers, design and implement policies, and allocate resources. Students must work seriously with the material, strive to make the connections that are needed to support their learning, and communicate their understandings. Higher-education faculties must model the effective practices teachers should employ and ensure that they enter the profession with a strong knowledge of mathematics content, teaching, and learning. Families, other caregivers, and community members must participate in examining, understanding, supporting, and improving mathematics education. Professional organizations and policymakers should provide regional and national leadership to support the continued improvement of mathematics education. Organizations can assist through professional development, conferences, publications, and web-based materials. Policymakers can assist with funding, rigorous teacher-certification and accreditation requirements, and resources. National Science Education Standards Developed by the National Research Council, the National Science Education Standards were created in order to help achieve the goal of scientific literacy for all students in American schools regardless of age, gender, cultural or ethnic background, disabilities, aspirations, or interest and motivation in science. In addition, the Standards emphasize that different students will learn in different ways, will achieve different depths of understanding, and will relate to science in different ways depending on interest, ability, and context. In particular, the Standards emphasize that:xl Student achievement is dependent on how they are taught. Students learn by constructing information on their own and in cooperation with others. Achievement is greatest when students are able to use science tools, materials, media, and technological resources to carry out extended investigations. Effective professional development for teachers should engage teachers in inquiry strategies to introduce teachers to content, scientific literature, media, and technological resources. Assessment tasks should measure the aspects of science which are important, including content, inquiry skills, and scientific habits of mind. Science content in an effective program should include science as inquiry, physical science, life science, earth and space science, science and technology, personal and social perspectives on science, and the history and nature of science. The Standards particularly emphasize the role of the teacher in effective science teaching, the role of inquiry-oriented teaching utilizing appropriate materials, and the necessity for authentic assessment. 29 National Educational Technology Standards The National Educational Technology Standards (NETS) provide guidelines for teachers and students in the use of technology. The Standards for Teachers include essential conditions that should be in place for each phase in the teacher preparation process to support effective use of technology to improve learning, communication, and productivity. Prospective teachers have a variety of paths to initial licensure. Regardless of the configuration of the program, all teachers must have opportunities for experiences that prepare them to meet technology standards. The Technology Performance Profiles for Teacher Preparation suggest ways programs can examine how well candidates meet the standards. The Profiles correspond to four phases in the typical preparation of a teacher: xli General Preparation Performance Profile Professional Education Performance Profile Student Teaching/Internship Performance Profile First-Year Teacher Performance Profile In addition, NETS contends that all classroom teachers should be prepared to meet the following standards: Demonstrate a sound understanding of technology operations and concepts. Plan and design effective learning environments and experiences supported by technology. Implement curriculum plans that include methods and strategies for applying technology to maximize student learning. Apply technology to facilitate a variety of effective assessment and evaluation strategies. Use technology to enhance their productivity and professional practice. Understand the social, ethical, legal, and human issues surrounding the use of technology in PreK-12 schools and apply that understanding in practice. The National Educational Technology Standards for Students provides a framework for preparing students to be lifelong learners who make informed decisions in their lives. The Technology Standards are divided into six categories: Basic operations and concepts – students demonstrate a sound understanding of the nature and operation of technology systems and become proficient in the use of technology. Social, ethical, and human issues – students understand the ethical, cultural, and societal issues related to technology and practice responsible use of technology systems, information, and software. Technology productivity tools – students use technology tools to enhance learning, increase productivity, and promote creativity. They use productivity tools to collaborate in constructing technology-enhanced models, prepare publications, and produce other creative works. Technology communication tools – students use telecommunications to collaborate, publish, and interact with peers, experts, and other audiences. Students also use a 30 variety of media and formats to communicate information and ideas effectively to multiple audiences. Technology research tools – students use technology to locate, evaluate, and collect information from a variety of sources. Students use technology tools to process data and report results. They also evaluate and select new information, resources, and technological innovations based on their appropriateness for specific tasks. Technology problem-solving and decision-making tools – students use technology resources for solving problems and making informed decisions. Students also employ technology in the development of strategies for solving problems in the real world. When the national standards for mathematics, science, and technology are all considered, certain commonalties emerge: Mathematics and science are useful bodies of knowledge in problem solving and decision making. They are not pieces of information to be memorized in order to show competency. Mathematics, science, and technology should be integrated, when appropriate. Mathematics, science, and technology are viewed as integral to the education of all children from kindergarten through twelfth grade and beyond. The methods for presenting mathematics and science to children are seen to be as important as the content presented. The use of technology is a tool for more effectively teaching mathematics and science. Business/Industry Research In order to assure that the needs of Alabama business and industry were addressed, the AMSTI Committee requested assistance from the Alabama Mathematics, Science, and Technology Education Coalition (AMSTEC). AMSTEC was founded in 1998 as an advocacy coalition for the improvement of mathematics, science, and technology in Alabama and is comprised of leaders from business, education, and public policy organizations. The AMSTI Committee requested that AMSTEC research and provide the Committee with information on two topics related to education in Alabama. Specifically, AMSTEC was asked to investigate the following questions: What skills will students need in the areas of mathematics and science as they enter the workforce of the twenty-first century? How might education better involve business and the community in science, math, and technology instruction? As part of a formal presentation, the president of AMSTEC provided the requested information to the AMSTI Committee. The skills students need for success in the workforce were taken from the labor Secretary's Commission on Achieving Necessary Skills (SCANS) report, which identifies five major competencies. The competencies are as follows:xlii Resources: Identifies, organizes, plans, and allocates resources 31 - Time - Money - Materials and facilities - Human resources Interpersonal: Works with others - Participates as a member of a team - Teaches others new skills - Serves clients/customers - Exercises leadership - Negotiates - Works with diversity Information: Acquires and evaluates information - Acquires and evaluates information - Organizes and maintains information - Interprets and communicates information - Uses computers to process information Systems: Understands complex inter-relationships - Understands systems - Monitors and corrects performance - Improves or designs systems Technology: Works with a variety of technologies - Selects technology - Applies technology to tasks - Maintains and troubleshoots equipment In addition, AMSTEC identified a three-part foundation that schools should address in order for students to succeed in the workforce. The components of the foundation are listed as follows: Basic skills: Reads, writes, performs arithmetic and mathematical operations, listens, and speaks Thinking Skills: Thinks creatively, makes decisions, solves problems, visualizes, knows how to learn, and reasons Personal Qualities: Displays responsibility, self-esteem, sociability, self-management, and integrity and honesty The results of the Tuscaloosa County's Employee Skills Analysis were also shared with the Committee. AMSTEC identified partnerships, work interns, and financial and material support as ways that business might better be involved in education. In particular, job shadowing, where teams of teachers from schools participate in industry experiences, was stressed. 32 The Alabama State Courses of Study in Mathematics and Science The State of Alabama provides K-12 teachers with courses of study developed by committees composed of elementary and secondary classroom teachers, school administrators, college and university faculty, and representatives of business and industry. All members of courses of study committees have knowledge in the subject area for which a course of study is being revised. The courses of study prescribe the minimum required content students in Alabama‘s public schools should be taught at specified grade levels or in specific courses such as chemistry or geometry. This required curriculum, stated as content standards, indicates what students should know or be able to do upon the completion of a particular grade or course. The Alabama Course of Study: Mathematics was released in 1997. It reflects the National Council of Teachers of Mathematics‘ 1989 Curriculum and Evaluation Standards for School Mathematics and the 1991 Professional Standards for Teaching Mathematics.xliii The document focuses on the goal of developing mathematical power in all students. With such power, students value the mathematics they learn, become more confident in their own abilities, solve problems, and make connections or links to other subject areas and to real-world applications.xliv Four content strands are addressed in the mathematics course of study: Number Sense, Number Systems, Number Theory Geometry, Spatial Sense, Measurement Patterns, Functions, Algebra Probability, Statistics, Discrete Mathematics These strands are interwoven with the processes of problem solving, communication, connections, and reasoning, and are addressed at every grade level and course. They provide continuous threads that unify the total mathematics program.xlv The Alabama Course of Study: Mathematics includes nine position statements:xlvi The use of a variety of instructional techniques is essential to ensure that all students have an opportunity to learn mathematics and to become actively involved in meaningful activities that focus on conceptual understanding rather than memorization of algorithms. Manipulatives should be used to aid in conceptual and procedural understanding. Lessons should incorporate physical materials that provide opportunities for students to develop concepts and procedures concretely. A variety of assessments should be used to assess concepts and skills and to determine whether students can apply those concepts and skills in real-life situations. Mathematics should provide opportunities for students to communicate orally, in writing, graphically, and algebraically. Students should have the opportunity to explore problem-solving situations and to describe the results of their conjectures and conclusions. Technology should be used to support instruction in the mathematics classroom on a regular basis. Problem solving should provide the context in which concepts and skills are learned. 33 All students are entitled to a mathematics education that provides success in mathematics and adequate preparation for the future. Students should be provided opportunities to demonstrate estimation and mental math skills. Real-world experiences provide opportunities for students to extend mathematics skills beyond the classroom. The Alabama Course of Study: Science is currently under revision, but the current edition is in effect until the adoption of the new version. The Alabama Course of Study: Science, like the National Standards and supporting materials for science, emphasizes the development of scientific literacy. The Alabama Course of Study: Science states, xlvii People who are literate in science are able to use Scientific Processes and Scientific Knowledge to think about and make sense of many of the ideas and events that they encounter in everyday life in a society where the accomplishments of science are central. The scientifically literate person is able to reflect on the effects of science, to comprehend the explanations offered, to weigh the positive and negative features of science-related issues, and to make informed decisions based on the merits of the issues. The scientifically literate person is not overwhelmed by the rapidity of changes in the world and is able to face the world with a high degree of confidence. This state level view of science literacy as the goal of science education is in line with the views of the National Standards. In addition, the Alabama Course of Study: Science emphasizes six issues: The importance of teaching science every day to every student in every grade The necessity for an inquiry-based science program, including process, knowledge, and application The incorporation of various types of technology into science instruction An emphasis on laboratory instruction in science An emphasis on critical thinking and investigative processes that reveal consistencies, relationships, and patterns An emphasis on interdisciplinary instruction Summary of Alabama Mathematics, Science, and Technology Initiative Survey Results The Alabama Mathematics, Science, and Technology Initiative Committee requested that the Alabama State Department of Education randomly survey teachers across the state to better understand their needs and to determine what is occurring in classrooms. The Committee also wanted to determine what technology currently exists in the classrooms. In addition to a questionnaire, teachers were provided the opportunity to list comments, suggestions, and recommendations concerning mathematics and science teaching. Five hundred mathematics teachers were surveyed in grades K-12. A similar number were surveyed in science.xlviii Questionnaire Results Analysis of the data reveals that Alabama mathematics and science teachers need resources and professional development designed to assist them in effectively using resources in 34 the classroom. Accessing technology and incorporating it into the classroom are listed as primary concerns by teachers, as are accessing quality hands-on activities, accessing supplies and equipment, using a variety of instructional techniques, and having time to develop lessons. Alabama students are at a severe disadvantage if one assumes at least five computers are necessary in a classroom for students to spend even a modest amount of time using a computer. Only 5 percent of mathematics classrooms and 3 percent of science classrooms are equipped with five or more computers. Forty-nine percent of mathematics teachers and 48 percent of science teachers have only a single computer in their classrooms. Students use technology on a daily or weekly basis in 44 percent of mathematics classes and in 39 percent of science classes. Thirty-seven percent of mathematics teachers and 36 percent of science teachers rarely or never have their classes use technology. Approximately one out of every four mathematics teachers and one out of every five science teachers are either uncertain of their technology skills or feel that they do not have the technology skills needed to enhance instruction. Planning with other teachers occurs much more frequently in grades K-2 than at higher grades. When planning does occur, it is usually with teachers in the same school. Still, 39 percent of mathematics teachers and 42 percent of science teachers rarely or never plan at least monthly with other teachers who teach the same course. Over 90 percent of teachers report that they rarely or never have the opportunity to participate in vertical feeder pattern planning where teachers meet with teachers at other schools who either had or will have their students. Mathematics teachers list teacher demonstrations (69 percent), small group work (47 percent), worksheets (47 percent), group discussion (45 percent), student board work (43 percent), and hands-on activities (43 percent) as the primary instructional methods that they use in the classroom. The most commonly used instructional methods of science teachers include group discussion (56 percent), lecture (51 percent), experiments performed by students (41 percent), worksheets (41 percent), and teacher demonstrations (40 percent). No math or science teachers report using lecture as a primary method of instruction for grades K-2; however, the percentages increase steadily at each higher grade grouping. By grades 9-12, lecture is used as a primary method of instruction by 60 percent of the mathematics teachers and 77 percent of science teachers. In science, this is the highest reported method for the grade grouping. Approximately 10 percent of mathematics teachers and 20 percent of science teachers do not appear to be guided by the course of study in lesson preparation. This means that one out of ten mathematics teachers and one out of five science teachers may not be covering the curriculum that students need to pass the Alabama High School Graduation Exam. Four percent of mathematics teachers and 7 percent of science teachers indicate a strong need for assistance in understanding the course of study. Following the course of study, textbook chapters are most often used to plan lessons (72 percent mathematics, 60 percent science). Ninety-seven percent of mathematics teachers and 89 percent of science teachers report using traditional paper and pencil tests as a common means of assessment. No other assessment methods are reported by over 45 percent of mathematics teachers as being used regularly; in science, 65 percent of teachers report assessing students by having them create a project, 49 percent by having them perform an experiment, and 45 percent by having them write a report. 35 Comments, Suggestions, and Recommendations Many teachers indicate that technology simply does not exist in their classrooms. Where it does exist, it often is not adequately supported or provided in sufficient quantities to allow it to be used effectively. Some teachers feel that they are missing what many employees outside education would consider the most basic and rudimentary technology. As one teacher commented, "We also need better access to a phone to have private conversations with parents or school officials about students. Usually there is only one phone, and this is in the office which may be some distance from the teacher's classroom." Lack of equipment, materials, and supplies is also a major concern. Science teachers indicate that they want to provide students with hands-on, inquiry-based learning activities, but they are often unable to do so because of lack of resources. Similarly, many mathematics teachers voice a need for manipulatives for student use. A number of teachers specifically praised the Alabama Science in Motion (ASIM) program that provides equipment and technology to classrooms. They suggest the program be expanded to other schools. Every reference to ASIM was positive. Lack of time to complete all of the requirements of the school day is listed consistently as a problem. Teachers feel they do not have time to collaborate, plan quality lessons, prepare for classes and labs, complete the paperwork documentation required by the state and system, and effectively teach their students. According to many respondents, the courses of study for mathematics and science are too broad in scope and contain too many content objectives. Teachers indicate that they feel overwhelmed and frustrated from having to cover many objectives without time to teach the material in detail. Some teachers are trying to address all course of study, SAT-9, and Alabama High School Graduation Exam (AHSGE) objectives, all of the material contained in their textbooks, remediate students on objectives not mastered in previous grades, and teach other mandated topics like character education and health. As a result, little is taught well, and students are being exposed only briefly to many of the objectives or skills. In addition, some teachers express concern that science instructional time is often shortened in order to address other school needs. At the elementary level, other subjects like reading and mathematics are often viewed as more important, thus relegating science instruction to whatever time is left in the school day. In mathematics, the number of students that are being promoted or placed in classes but are unable to perform basic computations frustrates middle and high school teachers. These teachers complain that they must spend time reteaching skills that should have been mastered in the elementary grades. At the high school level, both mathematics and science teachers feel they are being forced to assume the major responsibility for helping students pass the AHSGE, with little accountability being shared by middle or elementary school teachers. Teachers state that they need more opportunities for professional development. Specific recommendations for training range from deepening subject matter knowledge to helping teachers better understand and apply technology. Teachers see little practical use for generic workshops that address multiple disciplines and subjects. Recommendations suggest that inservice activities should be content specific and extend over time to provide teachers with an opportunity to practice and master the material being taught. 36 Several comments raise questions regarding teacher quality and appropriate certification. There is a concern that the shortage of mathematics and science teachers is encouraging some systems to assign teachers to these content areas who lack the training and skills necessary to teach effectively. In addition, several teachers express concerns about whether or not students are receiving adequate science and mathematics experiences at the elementary level, due to the lack of specialization during teacher preparation. Discussion of Terms Research indicates that the classroom teacher is the greatest factor in influencing student performance.xlix All students deserve to be taught by motivated, capable, and qualified teachers. Based upon this knowledge, the Committee identified five major components that play significant roles in determining the effectiveness of teachers. Assuring that these components are in place will allow teachers to provide the best education possible for their students. Curriculum The curriculum specifies what students should know and be able to do after receiving instruction. It provides the teacher with an understanding of what is to be taught. The curriculum must be age-appropriate as it defines the content of what is to be learned. Curriculum is mandated by the Alabama State Board of Education through the adopted courses of study. Classroom teachers must have a clear and thorough understanding of the curriculum. They must also understand how different parts of the curriculum are related. Obviously, teachers who are weak in content knowledge have more difficulty helping students master content than teachers who have a more thorough knowledge of the subject. Teachers who are guided by a quality curriculum and who themselves have a thorough and in-depth understanding of the content are most likely to be successful in helping their students master course material. Instruction Instruction is a second component that must be addressed if students are to receive the best education possible. Teachers must understand how to present the curriculum so that it is mastered. This requires an understanding of how students learn and of effective methods, activities, and techniques for presenting content. Teachers must also understand how to structure and sequence lessons for optimal learning. Most importantly, they must possess the skills needed to effectively implement the methods and activities in the learning setting. Included in the instructional component is the ability to organize and manage classes. Resources A third component that is necessary for teachers to be successful with students is access to and knowledge of physical and social resources. Teachers must have easy access both to the materials, supplies, and equipment needed for instruction and to the physical settings needed to support the instructional methods and activities associated with instruction. Technology is a physical resource that supports many of the methods and activities of the classroom. It can also 37 serve as a means for helping provide curriculum and social resources. Social resources such as university, business and community contacts, and other colleagues and staff members are necessary as well. Assessment Assessment is identified as the fourth component for assuring success in the classroom. Teachers must understand and be skilled in using a variety of assessment techniques with their students. Paper and pencil tests definitely have a place in evaluation; however, it is important that teachers also use performance-based and alternative assessments with their students. Teachers need to understand how to adequately and frequently assess their students and use the results in planning for future instruction. Assessment should not only help assure that the curriculum is being mastered, it should also assist teachers in making decisions concerning the structure and content of future lessons. In addition to student assessment, teachers need opportunities to assess their own skills and effectiveness, both formatively and summatively. Such assessment allows teachers to hone their own skills so that they provide the best possible instruction for their students. Professional Development The final component, professional development, is the mechanism for helping teachers understand each of the four other components and for linking them together to assure that students receive a quality education. It includes both preservice and inservice activities. An infrastructure must exist to assure that teachers have and receive the support and professional development required for success in the classroom. New teachers need support and guidance from mentors. All teachers need frequent access to relevant quality professional development and time for planning, lesson development, and collaboration. 38 CURRICULUM INSTRUCTION RESOURCES TEACHER ASSESSMENT 39 MATHEMATICS Professional Development Major changes in mathematics education began in the early 1980s and were driven in large part by the National Council of Teachers of Mathematics (NCTM). These changes grew from research that began to look not only at student achievement outcomes, but also at the depth to which students understood the mathematical procedures they were taught. The results of two decades of research have revealed that understanding the logic behind the mathematics is key to becoming a confident, competent student of mathematics. Studies by Kamii, Lewis, and Livingston show that students who are being taught with traditional, skills-focused methods do not necessarily understand the logic of the mathematics taught. When students are encouraged to invent their own problem-solving strategies based on common understandings, however, they become more proficient in understanding the logic of mathematics. Students taught with more traditional methods often fail to connect with the reasoning behind the mathematical procedures.l To become proficient in teaching methods that foster understanding, many teachers need additional training. A 1994 survey of middle school teachers in Columbia, South Carolina, revealed that teachers felt uncomfortable with the mathematics they were being asked to teach. The teachers requested help in implementing new techniques of instruction and in choosing appropriate materials. li For these teachers and others, intensive and on-going professional development is needed. A brief prepared for the National Institute for Science Education offers seven principles for the best professional development experiences. lii 1. Base professional development on a clear, well-defined image of effective classroom teaching and learning: Commit to the concept that all students can and should learn mathematics. Create sensitivity to diverse learning needs. Emphasize inquiry-based learning, problem solving, student investigation and discovery, and application of knowledge. Carefully approach the understanding of mathematics and science skills that help students acquire new understanding through experiences that extend and challenge what they already know. Develop in-depth understanding of core concepts in mathematics and science, not just breadth of topics. Encourage collaboration among teachers. Determine desired outcomes and assess the progress toward these outcomes, accurately reflecting meaningful achievement. 2. Provide teachers with opportunities to develop knowledge and skills and broaden their teaching approaches: 40 Engage teachers in learning experiences that enhance their understanding of major mathematics and science concepts. Strengthen teachers‘ knowledge of how children learn. Enable teachers to make informed decisions about curriculum content and implementation. 3. Prepare teachers using a variety of instructional methods that mirror the methods to be used with students. Provide extensive learning opportunities for teachers: Build on current knowledge. Allow for the acquisition of knowledge through immersion in doing mathematics. Provide opportunities to work in collaborative teams, to engage in discourse, and to observe modeling of relevant, effective teaching strategies. Provide adequate and ongoing support for reflecting on learning and receiving feedback. Unify the set of learning experiences through a comprehensive plan. (Effective programs unite these experiences through a set of goals, strategies, and support over time.) 4. Build or strengthen the learning community of mathematics teachers. In an effective learning community, teachers: Participate in collaborative professional exchanges. Encourage experimentation. Support the idea that everyone is always engaged in learning. 5. Prepare and support teachers to serve in leadership roles. Prepared teachers: Plan and implement professional development opportunities for themselves and others. Act as agents of change. Promote a shared vision of mathematics and science education. Support other teachers. 6. Provide links to other parts of the educational system: Integrate professional development activities with other initiatives of the school or district. Align activities with curriculum frameworks, academic standards, and assessments. Establish active support within the school, district, and community. 7. Include continuous assessment to determine participant satisfaction and engagement and to make adjustments. Research shows that if professional development is not designed as part of a larger change process, it is not likely to be effective. liii Loucks-Horsley, Stiles, and Hewson report, however, 41 Professional development is often experienced as a patchwork of fragmented, one-time learning opportunities, with limited potential to truly impact teaching and learning. Effective programs unite those experiences through a set of goals, strategies, and support over time.liv Sparks and Hirsh conclude that …student achievement goes up more for every $500 spent on increasing teacher professional training than for spending the same amount on raising teacher salaries or reducing class size. Studies indicate that teachers who participate in activities that are longer than eight hours and who participate in weekly common planning periods are more likely to say these activities improved their teaching.lv It follows that effective professional development includes teachers working together and learning from each other throughout the day. Schools must redesign their professional development to provide continual, collaborative opportunities for teachers. Another aspect associated with professional development is pre-service education. Pre-service training is a critical stage at which change can occur. Many problems associated with mathematics education can be appropriately addressed at this level. Methods courses taught in college must foster teaching of mathematics for understanding and stress the importance of including real-world applications and problem solving. Universities must require high entrance standards for their teacher programs, and provide comprehensive pre-service training for their participants if advances are to be made in the profession.lvi Quinn notes, Research indicates that a mathematics methods course can have an impact on pre-service teachers‘ beliefs and affect the pedagogies that they employ. It is particularly important to give preservice teachers the opportunity to construct the same mathematical knowledge that they will be teaching and to integrate manipulatives into the methods courses.lvii The National Commission on Teaching and America‘s Future assessed several teacher education programs. The following list shows the distinct features of effective programs:lviii A common, clear vision of good teaching that is apparent in all coursework and clinical experiences Well-defined standards of practice and performance that are used to guide and evaluate courses and clinical work A rigorous core curriculum Extensive use of problem-based methods, including case studies, research on teaching issues, performance assessments, and portfolio evaluation Intensively supervised extended clinical experiences (at least 30 weeks), carefully chosen to support what students learned in their courses (In contrast to the inadequate eight to twelve weeks of practice teaching that traditional education programs typically offer, students in these programs get a full year of experience under the guidance of master teachers who work closely with the university.) Strong relationships with reform-minded local schools that support development of common knowledge and shared beliefs among school and university-based faculty 42 Vacc and Bright conclude that ―if preservice teachers are to internalize coherent applications to teaching and learning mathematics, the environment in which they student teach and the support they receive need to be consistent with the principles being advocated in their professional preparation program.‖lix Teacher education programs must prepare new teachers to transition through change successfully, learning from reflection, student reaction, and the advice of veteran teachers.lx The quality of pre-service education, then, is extremely important. Professional development, however, must not stop at the college level. NCTM states, ―Pre-service preparation is the foundation for mathematics teaching, but it gives teachers only a small part of what they will need to know and understand throughout their careers.‖ lxi Building on the foundation of an in-depth pre-service program, ongoing professional development must be meaningful and supportive in order to provide teachers with the tools needed to give students a useful mathematics education. Curriculum The United States Department of Education notes, ―Both research and common sense tell us that what students learn depends upon what they are taught.‖ lxii Moreover, the programs, textbooks, and other curriculum materials that schools choose largely determine what students are taught. If a curriculum guide is too rigid, it may be too constraining for the teacher. If the curriculum guide is so open as to only suggest topics to be taught, the effect on the student will be minimal.lxiii Ostler and Gradgenett agree that ―those educators who feel they have latitude in the instructional process are more likely to be successful using the good suggestions from documents such as the NCTM Standards because they will realize that implementing them is not an all or nothing venture.‖ lxiv Therefore, a school curriculum should be balanced between prescriptive and open. Principles and Standards notes, …a focused curriculum is shown to be an important aspect of what is needed to improve school mathematics. … Focus is promoted through the idea of ‗moving on.‘ School mathematics programs should not address every topic every year. Instead, students will reach certain levels of conceptual understanding and procedural fluency by certain points in the curriculum.lxv Bay and Reys conclude that ―change is difficult. And few kinds of change are more challenging for teachers than changing the curriculum and the teaching materials they use.‖lxvi These changes, however, must take place if schools are to redefine the mathematics education of students. One such change needed in many classrooms is the introduction of active learning experiences. Principles and Standards for School Mathematics encourages students to engage in doing mathematics to help them understand the why as well as the how of the mathematics they study. Goldsmith and Mark report,lxvii To support students‘ construction of a deep, flexible understanding of mathematical content, NCTM recommends that students of all ages: 43 Interact with a range of materials for representing problem situations, such as manipulatives, calculators, computers, diagrams, tables, and charts Work collaboratively as well as individually Discuss mathematical ideas Focus on making sense of the mathematics they are studying as well as on learning to achieve accurate and efficient solutions to problems Standards-based programs must support teachers in creating classrooms in which learning can occur through lessons and activities that motivate and engage students. Phi Delta Kappan published an article in 1999 that listed the top ten elements that must be in place to implement a standards-based mathematics curriculum. For teaching, the critical elements of implementation are as follows:lxviii Administrative support Opportunities to study NCTM standards and specific curricula Opportunities to sample the curricula prior to implementation Daily planning Interaction with experts Collaboration with colleagues Incorporation of new assessments Communication with parents Willingness to help students adjust to problem-solving situations that require them to read and write as well as think mathematically Planning for transition An effective mathematics curriculum should prepare students for problem-solving situations at home, at school, and in the work place. In addition, to be effective, curriculum articulation must occur across all grade levels, allowing students to develop increasing levels of understanding and content knowledge.lxix Instruction Motivation, engagement, attention, imagination, communication, and group processes are descriptors associated with the classrooms of the best teachers.lxx Principles and Standards for School Mathematics states, Effective mathematics teaching requires understanding what students know and need to learn and then challenging and supporting them to learn it well…To be effective, teachers must know and understand deeply the mathematics they are teaching and be able to draw on that knowledge with flexibility in their teaching tasks. They need to understand and be committed to their students as learners of mathematics and as human beings and be skillful in choosing from and using a variety of pedagogical and assessment strategies (National Commission on Teaching and America‘s Future 1996). In addition, effective teaching requires reflection and continual efforts to seek improvement. Teachers must have frequent and ample opportunities and resources to enhance and refresh their knowledge.lxxi 44 In order to improve student learning, instruction must first be improved. Students‘ mathematical understanding, problem-solving abilities, and confidence in mathematics are all shaped by the teachers they have in school. NCTM‘s 1991 Professional Standards for Teaching Mathematics presented six standards for the effective teaching of mathematics. These standards address worthwhile mathematical tasks, the role of the teacher in discourse, the role of the student, tools, learning environment, and analysis of teaching and learning. lxxii Worthwhile Mathematical Tasks ―In effective teaching, worthwhile mathematical tasks are used to introduce important mathematical ideas and to engage and challenge students intellectually. Well-chosen tasks can pique students‘ curiosity and draw them into mathematics.‖ lxxiii These tasks should be challenging, be approached sometimes in more than one way, and often involve real-world applications. Furthermore, teachers must be able to support students without doing the work or the thinking for them.lxxiv The Role of the Teacher Raising the bar for student performance also means raising the bar for teachers. lxxv Well-qualified teachers have a significant impact on student achievement. The Alabama Task Force on Teaching and Student Achievement states, In a study of 900 Texas school districts, researcher Ronald Ferguson found that, although social and economic status has the greatest influence on student success (49 percent), a qualified teacher and a well-organized school also have a major impact on achievement (43 percent)…In recent years, study after study has confirmed that skillful teachers who have a deep understanding of their subjects and how to teach them can help all students make dramatic gains in academic achievement.lxxvi These studies indicate that regardless of the background of students, well-prepared teachers can make a difference. They point out that ―…students whose initial achievement levels are comparable have ‗vastly different academic outcomes as a result of the … teachers they are assigned.‘‖ lxxvii To be effective, teachers need pedagogical knowledge that enables them to understand how students learn mathematics. They also should be able to use a variety of teaching techniques and instructional resources and be able to successfully manage and organize their classrooms. lxxviii Battista finds, ―Numerous scientific studies have shown that traditional methods of teaching mathematics not only are ineffective but also seriously stunt the growth of students‘ mathematical reasoning and problem-solving skills.‖lxxix Most students, if taught in typical classrooms, do not truly develop an understanding of why their computations work or when they should be applied. Battista also suggests that students must know basic number facts, but symbolic manipulations must never become disconnected from reasoning about quantities. Even bright students who learn symbolic algorithms quickly and do well on standard mathematics tests may experience only superficial learning and be shortchanged by typical mathematics instruction.lxxx 45 The role of the teacher is multi-faceted. Battista acknowledges this in stressing the validity of a conceptual approach to mathematics: In the classroom environment envisioned by NCTM, teachers provide students with numerous opportunities to solve complex and interesting problems; to read, write, and discuss mathematics; and to formulate and test the validity of personally constructed mathematical ideas so that they can draw their own conclusions.lxxxi By bringing real-world problem situations into mathematics classrooms, teachers better motivate students to learn mathematics. Such problems ―…have great potential for attracting and holding the attention of high school students because they deal with situations with which students have experience, for example, the clothes they wear, the places they work, or the lines in which they wait.‖lxxxii The Role of the Student Standards-based instruction shifts away from reliance on the teacher as ―sole authority for right answers‖ and toward the use of ―logic and mathematical evidence as verification.‖ lxxxiii Students are active participants in their everyday world. They should also be active participants in their education, discussing mathematics, participating in hands-on activities, and engaging in problem-solving activities and projects on a regular basis.lxxxiv Researchers have found that students can benefit from an instructional plan that includes three learner-centered components: choice, time with manipulatives, and student self-reflection. lxxxv In addition to benefiting from activity-based instruction and the use of manipulatives, students learn more when they are allowed to make choices. When a choice is given, they select activities that interest them, that are developmentally appropriate, and that motivate, challenge, and intrigue them. Self-reflection is also beneficial. It helps students construct meaning from their activities. It also leads to decreased math anxiety, increased mastery of content, and improved problem-solving and learning skills.lxxxvi Resources/Instructional Tools The selection and use of suitable curricular materials and appropriate instructional resources is an important part of the instructional process.lxxxvii If mathematics instruction is to be effective, teachers must choose manipulatives that help students develop mathematical understanding and help them visualize abstract mathematical ideas.lxxxviii Research also shows that ―the curriculum for all students must provide opportunities to develop an understanding of mathematical models, structures, and simulations applicable to many disciplines.‖ lxxxix Instructional materials should be used that focus learning, help develop concepts, include effective questions, and create a fostering classroom atmosphere.xc The Learning Environment The learning environment is also important for instruction. An environment must be created that fosters mathematical thinking and problem solving, essential skills in today‘s society. ―Effective teaching requires a challenging and supportive classroom learning environment.‖xci Maintaining this positive, supportive atmosphere places teachers in a better position to create teachable moments. Battista states, 46 Problem solving, reasoning, justifying ideas, making sense of complex situations, and learning new ideas independently – not pencil-and-paper computation – are now critical skills for all Americans. In the Information Age and the web era, obtaining the facts is not the problem; analyzing and making sense of them is.xcii Effective teaching produces an environment in which such complex analyses can occur. Under these positive conditions, students have a better opportunity to participate in in-depth, independent learning. Analysis of Teaching and Learning Teachers need time to reflect on and refine their teaching. Principles and Standards suggests that teachers must be able to analyze what they and their students are doing, and to consider the effect of their actions on students‘ learning.xciii Teachers also need guidance in recognizing whether they have achieved their instructional goals and in changing their teaching strategies if goals have not been met. Many could benefit from resource teachers, resource partners, or experienced colleagues who could provide assistance by giving feedback on specific issues after classroom observations, debriefing, and discussing how lessons went and why. xciv Resources Manipulatives are models that can be used to help students develop mathematical understanding. Research shows that manipulatives are important in assisting students as they move from concrete to abstract. Studies also show that ―…students who learn math with these types of models understand math better, develop better problem solving skills and do better on standardized achievement tests.‖xcv Research findings on the classroom use of manipulatives are varied. They range from cautious to whole-hearted endorsement.xcvi The use of manipulatives, however, must be linked to content. Ostler and Gradgenett contend, ―Manipulative use is most effective when taught in unison with the procedure or concept that the manipulative is being used to reinforce. The isolated use of manipulatives may even cause confusion in procedural processing in cases where visual or tactile links are not needed.‖xcvii In an article written for the Journal for Research in Mathematics Education, the results of 60 studies were compiled to provide data on the effectiveness of using manipulatives in mathematics instruction. Students involved in the studies ranged from kindergarten through college and studied a variety of mathematics courses. Results showed that through the long-term use of concrete instructional materials, in classrooms where teachers are knowledgeable about their use, students‘ achievement in mathematics increased, and attitudes toward mathematics improved.xcviii The tools available to aid mathematics instruction have changed dramatically over the last fifty years. Standards writers agree that technology has become an essential component in 47 the teaching and learning of mathematics. Proven to enhance students‘ learning, technology should be used widely and responsibly with the goal of enriching the learning experience.xcix The early 1970‘s brought the first four-function calculator to the classroom. Solar powered and scientific calculators were introduced to classrooms in the 1980‘s. In 1985, the first calculators appeared that could graph functions.c Though controversy has surrounded the use of calculators, especially in the elementary grades, appropriate and powerful calculator use may enhance mathematics learning at any level, creating an environment that encourages reasoning and communication. The key to their effective use appears to be appropriate professional development for teachers and constant availability in the classroom.ci Myths impeding the acceptance of calculators in the classroom exist. Pomerantz, in the report on The Role of Calculators in Math Education, notes, ―Evidence from research has proven calculators to be effective learning tools; yet, because of the circulation of misinformation with regard to their use, many people continue to believe they are harmful.‖ cii The report provides the following benefits of calculator use in mathematics: ciii Calculators simplify tasks, but they do not do the real work for students. Calculators enable students to focus more on the ―whys‖ of mathematics than on the ―hows.‖ Calculators do not harm a student‘s algebraic skills or procedural knowledge. Students who use them often demonstrate a better understanding of concepts than do their non-calculator-using counterparts. Calculators relieve mathematics anxiety. Other technological tools include computer-based laboratories (CBLs) and computers. CBLs allow students to gather data, transmit it directly to a computer or graphing calculator, and build models based on real-life situations. civ Computers allow students to use a variety of software programs, construct spreadsheets, gather information via the Internet, and create and use simulations to deepen their understanding of mathematical concepts and explore connections to other content areas.cv Assessment Research reveals five major themes regarding assessment and mathematics:cvi Assessment should be an integral part of instruction. Assessment should be more than merely a test at the end of instruction to see how students perform under special conditions; rather, it should be an integral part of instruction that informs and guides teachers as they make instructional decisions…a routine part of the ongoing classroom activity rather than an interruption.cvii Assessment should be a key component throughout the entire instructional process. As such, it will contribute to and provide multiple sources of evidence about student learning.cviii 48 Multiple forms of assessment should be used. NCTM‘s Principles and Standards for School Mathematics states that students‘ understanding can be enhanced by the use of multiple forms of assessment. cix Teachers can assess student understanding much more thoroughly when informal assessments, such as peer questioning and small-group presentations, are coupled with more formal testing. ―The picture of a child‘s understanding is collected in the context of the child‘s personality, preferred learning styles, their background and experiences, and what they choose to show us that they know about mathematics.‖cx Assessment should be a measurement of progress over time. Assessment needs to shift from focusing on isolated skills and procedures toward collecting information over a period of time. cxi Shafer and Foster believe that complete assessment, over time, must measure and describe a student‘s growth and achievement in the four major mathematical domains of algebra, geometry, number, and statistics and probability.cxii Assessment should be authentic. Researchers report the following conclusions concerning truly authentic assessment: ―A major goal of authentic assessment is to help students develop the capacity to evaluate their own work against public standards, to revise, modify, and redirect their energies, taking initiatives to assess their own progress.‖cxiii ―Indeed, to access genuine understanding of a concept, test items must assess whether students can apply their knowledge in novel situations.‖cxiv ―A comprehensive program of mathematics assessment includes opportunities for students to show what they can do with mathematics that they may not have studied formally, but that they are prepared to investigate.‖cxv Assessment should support instructional goals. Teachers are caught in the dilemma of choosing between what they believe best enhances their students‘ learning and what is required to survive in the educational system. Principles and Standards for School Mathematics stresses, ―High-stakes assessments must be closely linked to the goals teachers are being asked to achieve; where they are not, teachers must be supported in the decisions they make.‖ cxvi Unfortunately, many school districts rely on standardized tests as the measures of student learning. This puts a demand on students to only use abstract mathematical procedures instead of a deep understanding of problem solving and analytical thought. Achievement tests do not show how or what students are learning.cxvii 49 SCIENCE Professional Development A study conducted by Loucks-Horsley, Stiles, and Hewson in 1999 looked at the characteristics of teachers who were considered highly effective in the classroom. This study identified six characteristics of highly effective teachers of science and mathematics: cxviii Highly effective teachers have a commitment to the concept that all children can and should learn mathematics and science. Highly effective teachers show sensitivity to diverse learning needs of individuals. Highly effective teachers place an emphasis on inquiry-based learning, problem solving, student investigations, and the discovery and application of knowledge. Highly effective teachers have an approach to teaching mathematics and science that allows students to construct new understandings through experience. Highly effective teachers teach for the development of in-depth understanding of core concepts in mathematics and science. Highly effective teachers use collaborative work in their classrooms. The characteristics of highly effective teachers should also include some consideration of outside forces on teacher quality. Research conducted by Darling-Hammond showed that teacher quality characteristics such as certification status and degree in field were significantly and positively correlated with student achievement. The author showed no correlation between teacher salaries and student achievement, class size and student achievement, or per pupil spending and student achievement. The most consistent predictor of statewide student achievement is the proportion of well-qualified teachers in the state: those with full certification and a major in the field they teach. cxix The Darling-Hammond study also enumerated seven principles for effective professional development: Professional development should be driven by a clear, well-defined image of effective classroom instruction. Professional development should provide teachers with opportunities to develop knowledge and broaden their teaching approaches so they can create better learning opportunities for their students. Professional development should use instructional methods to promote learning for adults, which mirror the methods to be used with students. Professional development should build or strengthen the learning community of science and mathematics teachers. Professional development should prepare and support teachers to serve in leadership roles. Professional development should provide links to other parts of the educational system by a) integrating development activities with support initiatives, b) aligning activities with curriculum frameworks, academic standards, and assessment, and, c) establishing support within the school, district, and community. 50 Professional development should include continuous assessment procedures. The most successful teachers are those with strength in content knowledge. Exemplary teachers use questions effectively, use concrete examples in teaching, use analogies, and employ laboratory-based teaching strategies. Tobin and Fraser‘s work shows four characteristics of exemplary science teachers: (1) they use management strategies that facilitate sustained student engagement, (2) they use strategies designed to increase student understanding of science, (3) they utilize strategies that encourage students to participate in learning activities, and (4) they maintain a favorable classroom climate. cxx The characteristics listed here can be developed as a part of a professional development program. However, developers of professional development programs, particularly those for induction of teachers into the classroom setting, must focus on content specific methods and models. cxxi ―A discipline-specific beginning teacher-induction program will generate both greater rates of retention of new teachers and the display of more effective science teaching.‖cxxii The first two to three years of teaching are the most critical. Research by Lomask states that it is during this time period that teachers develop their unique teaching styles, teaching strategies, and philosophies of teaching. cxxiii This research suggests that a teacher induction program should extend over a three year period. The first year should focus on managing the classroom environment, the second year on content specific strategies, and the third year on assisting teachers who have not met the standards of the first two years of the induction program. While the work of Lomask considers first, second, and third year teachers as a total group, Bartles and Shore state that when it comes to professional development, a single program will not be effective for all new teachers. The authors go on to state that there are three categories of novice teachers, and each category requires a different type of program. These categories are the new college graduate just beginning a teaching career, the mid-career change individual just entering the teaching profession, and the experienced teacher assigned to a science classroom for the first time. New, young teachers are not reform minded, even if they came from a reform-minded preservice teacher program. cxxiv These teachers tend to be overwhelmed by the basic management issues of a classroom. Teachers in their third to fifth years of teaching, however, tend to be ready to utilize innovative practices in their classrooms. Strategies for presenting professional development have also been considered in the research literature. Research indicates that the strategies used in presenting professional development programs should be the same as those the teachers will be expected to use in their classrooms.cxxv Teachers involved in a learning cycle in-service implemented the learning cycle teaching strategy into their classrooms. The authors go on to say that teachers must be made knowledgeable about the concepts they will teach so that they can select activities. Research also supports the use of teacher leaders to help introduce, disseminate, and sustain reform efforts in their subject matter areas. ―…Because of their teaching background and connections to the classroom, teacher leaders are an obvious choice for addressing the challenge of going to scale with reforms in math, science, and technology.‖cxxvi Finally, state-supported teacher networks are an extremely useful alternative to conventional in-service training programs. cxxvii Statewide professional development networks benefit teachers by connecting them with a variety of resources, providing ongoing support, expanding their leadership opportunities, and providing services in a cost effective manner. 51 Curriculum Reform initiatives in the science curriculum generally begin with the Science for All Americans statement that the curriculum in science is ―overstuffed and undernourished,‖ that is; it contains too much information in too little depth. A similar notion is echoed by the TIMSS findings that the science curriculum of the United States has great breadth of coverage but little depth. The basic movement is toward the concept that ―more is less.‖ Curriculum reform in science education requires fewer topics be taught; the topics that are covered are explored in greater depth. Textbooks are generally the foundation for the science curriculum. Textbook curricula present science content through reading and printed materials with emphasis on vocabulary and recall of facts.cxxviii This causes students to view science, not as a mode of thought and means of problem solving, but as a static collection of facts and concepts to be acquired through memorization. In addition, textbook-based curricula may lead students to view science as more of a history of what has been discovered about the world around them rather than a process for solving problems and finding answers. In contrast, hands-on, inquiry-based approaches present science content as dynamic and science as an on-going process of exploration and discovery rather than as a finished product to be memorized.cxxix A study of middle school textbooks by Project 2061, funded by the Carnegie Corporation, found that not one of the widely used science textbooks for middle school rated satisfactory. The study examined how well textbooks for the middle grades can help students learn key ideas in earth science, life science, and physical science. The study concluded that these key resources for many classrooms "…cover too many topics and don't develop any of them well. All texts include many classroom activities that either are irrelevant to learning key science ideas or don't help students relate what they are doing to the underlying ideas." cxxx High-school biology textbooks scored slightly higher than the middle-grades science texts, though none received a high rating. According to the report, "biology textbooks fail to make important biology ideas comprehensible and meaningful to students. . . . evidence from the current study points to serious shortcomings both in content coverage and instructional design." cxxxi The content of the curriculum in the reform movements of the 1990‘s focused on the concept of scientific literacy including an integration of science, math, and technology. cxxxii ―Science literacy is not an option but a must if the United States is to develop a generation of well-informed and educated citizenry.‖cxxxiii ― The well-educated, confident adult will, in the future, be communicating through what, until very recently, was an unimaginable range of means and will be network and information rich. By contrast, those who are not well educated, who lack access to communication and lack confidence will be excluded from countless networks and become information poor. They will find life increasingly difficult as the pace of change quickens and societies become less able to fund the welfare systems characteristic of the late 20th century.‖cxxxiv 52 Other factors must also be taken into account when curriculum is considered. First, no curriculum can succeed without teachers who are able to effectively present that curriculum to students. Research found that for many elementary teachers, teaching science is a least favored part of their jobs. cxxxv Consequently, science is often taught from textbooks and without enthusiasm. Furthermore, most elementary teachers have little preparation in science content or pedagogy, and few school districts have the staff development programs to support science curricula. This finding reinforces the necessity for a strong statewide system of professional development. At the secondary level, high school science teachers face certain problems in implementing the science curriculum:cxxxvi Insufficient funds for equipment and supplies Insufficient student problem-solving skills Inadequate laboratory facilities Poor reading ability on the part of students Lack of student interest in science Lack of science career role models Class sizes that are too large In addition, with many schools now moving to block scheduling, restructuring instruction to fit the new scheduling pattern is an additional challenge being imposed on teachers. A study by Bateson examined the effect of semester versus year-long courses in science achievement. This study found that students in semester-long courses did not perform as well on multiple choice, standardized tests as did students who took year-long courses.cxxxvii Instruction As early as 1973, science educators agreed that science teaching should be based on the work of psychologist Jean Piaget.cxxxviii Piaget‘s work into how children develop understanding of the world has become a foundation for the major reform efforts in science education. His work demonstrated that learners, whether in elementary school or high school, best approach new learning through the use of concrete materials and active involvement. Listening is not enough to generate learning. Watching is not enough to generate understanding. Directly experiencing new information enhances understanding and understanding enhances permanent learning. The bulk of research into the effectiveness of hands-on science teaching was conducted in the 1960‘s and 1970‘s. Investigations into hands-on programs such as Science: A Process Approach, The Science Curriculum Improvement Study, Elementary Science Study, Biological Science Curriculum Study, PSSC Physics, and many others repeatedly confirmed the efficacy of hands-on programs over traditional textbook based programs for teaching science. In 1990, Shymansky, Hedges, and Woodworth reaffirmed the efficiency of such programs through a resynthesis of the previous research.cxxxix The resynthesis showed that the hands-on curricula of the 1960‘s and 1970‘s were more effective in enhancing student performance than traditional textbook series. In addition to significant positive effects on achievement, these hands-on programs showed positive effects on learning science process skills, in developing problem-solving abilities, and in developing positive attitudes towards science. 53 More recent research continues to document the effectiveness of hands-on, inquiry-based research programs. In a major review of science programs, a report from the Bayer Corporation concludes, "…research data supports those who prefer using a hands-on, inquiry-based approach to science education. An activity-based science curriculum exerts a positive impact on student performance across most measures, especially attitudes and academic achievement." cxl Research by Chang and Mao finds additional affirmation of the use of hands-on, inquiry-based science teaching in their 1999 study. In comparing traditional science instruction to inquiry-based science instruction at the junior high school level, the inquiry group had significantly higher achievement and significantly more positive attitudes toward science. As Chang and Mao stated, ―The findings in this study have demonstrated that instruction which incorporates both inquiry strategies and cooperative learning can lead to improved student achievement and attitudes towards subject matter.‖cxli The authors recommended that inquiry instruction be broadly developed and widely used in science classrooms. Similarly, Rainey has shown that, when equated for per capita income, teacher salary, government support, race, and parental unemployment, schools who participated regularly in a formal activity-based inquiry science program produced significantly higher Stanford Achievement Test scores than students not participating in such a program. In addition, the difference between scores of participating schools compared with nonparticipating schools continued to increase the longer the schools remained in the program.cxlii The understanding that hands-on, laboratory-based activity is most appropriate for learners whether at the elementary school, middle school, or high school level has become an accepted fact. All reform movement documents are based on the assumption that hands-on, minds-on teaching will form the foundation for science education programs. This view of science education is particularly well stated in the National Science Education Standards: Learning science is something students do, not something that is done to them. In learning science, students describe objects and events, ask questions, acquire knowledge, construct explanations of natural phenomena, test those explanations in many different ways, and communicate their ideas to others. Science teaching must involve students in inquiry-oriented investigations in which they interact with their teachers and peers.cxliii Research in science teaching also focuses on strategies that will help teachers make the most effective use of hands-on instruction. One of the most researched strategies in science teaching is the use of cooperative learning. Cooperative learning is a grouping strategy in which students within the group are given specific tasks to complete. The total group then becomes responsible for the learning process. Research reveals the following conclusions: Comparisons of the use of cooperative groups with lab activities to the use of traditional lab approaches show that students in high school biology have significantly higher levels of achievement. Research shows that the use of heterogeneous grouping along with rewards for group work increases the effectiveness of learning.cxliv Investigation of two types of grouping patterns within cooperative learning revealed different results. When homogeneous grouping procedures were compared to heterogeneous grouping procedures, no differences were found in achievement. This contradicts the general conception that heterogeneous groupings are more efficacious in increasing achievement. However, a difference was found between students in 54 homogeneous groups versus heterogeneous groups. The difference appeared in the affective and social domains. Heterogeneously grouped students became more aware of their learning and more positive about their learning.cxlv Comparison of cooperative learning to traditional groups showed no differences in over-all achievement. However, closer analysis of the data demonstrated that students in cooperative groups performed better than traditionally grouped students on higher-order tasks that required application of information. cxlvi ―Working collaboratively with others not only enhances the understanding of science, it also fosters the practice of many of the skills, attitudes, and values that characterize science.‖cxlvii Investigation of cooperative work on concept-focused tasks showed that learners were enabled to overcome their scientific misconceptions. Research also indicates that the key to effectiveness of cooperative grouping is in the leadership.cxlviii In conclusion, research on cooperative learning supports the use of cooperative groups in conjunction with hands-on approaches to learning. Such an approach increases achievement, particularly in application level tasks. In addition, students practice science skills, and become more positive toward science as a result of cooperative learning. In a second area of research, lab experiences were considered. This research studied the effect of confirmation and open-inquiry labs on student learning. In confirmation labs, students simply followed directions in order to confirm what was already known. In open inquiry labs, students developed lab experiences to answer questions. The research showed no differences in thinking processes between the two groups. Shepardson, in his discussion of results, warns, ―…the nature of student thinking in open-inquiry labs may be disappointing in that simply providing students with curriculum opportunities, such as open-inquiry labs, is insufficient to engage all students in thinking. That is, for some students open inquiry labs become no more than the physical manipulation of materials.‖ cxlix This points to the need for purposeful lab experiences including interaction with the teacher and with other students. The constructivist approach to learning has also received significant attention in the research. A constructivist approach considers the learner to be instrumental in the learning process. In this case, the learner does not simply take in information presented by the teacher or textbook, but rather gathers information and attempts to make sense of that information in light of past experiences and background knowledge. In constructivist teaching the students learn new information by relating that knowledge to what they already know. One model for constructivist teaching is the Conceptual Change Model.cl Lonning investigated the use of the Conceptual Change Model with and without the use of cooperative learning. cli Students using cooperative learning in conjunction with conceptual change showed greater achievement gains than students using only the conceptual change approach. He went on to state that ―a key characteristic of these models (constructivist approaches) is the importance placed on the examination of the students‘ personal conceptions. Involving the students in discussions with peers and the teacher is recognized as one of the major means of achieving this goal.‖ clii Research has also indicated that the quality of the knowledge constructed by the learner depends on the individual‘s interest, the individual‘s prior knowledge, and the richness of the learning environment.cliii Attitudes and science self-concept have also been researched in science education. Simpson states, "Recent research, however, has produced new evidence that the learning of 55 science is influenced by the way students feel toward science."cliv The TIMSS data showed a decrease in achievement among American students from fourth to eighth grade and from eighth grade to twelfth grade. The work of Dimitrov showed a similar decrease in attitude towards science from fifth grade to seventh grade to tenth grade.clv Simpson considered attitudes at the early childhood, middle school, and high school levels. His work showed, first, that self-concept, motivation, and science anxiety are important indicators of science achievement. Furthermore, he determined that self-concept significantly influenced achievement. Interest and achievement are influenced beginning in early childhood years by experiences with science. Lifelong interest in science and commitment to science learning is influenced by the experiences of elementary school children both with their families and in the schools. At the middle school level students were found to enjoy science when they experienced a reasonable level of success. And at the high school level, Simpson‘s work showed that attitude towards science and science self-concept influenced the selection of eleventh and twelfth grade science courses by tenth graders. Greenfield concludes, "…programs emphasizing hands-on discovery-oriented science can have positive academic and affective impacts on teachers . . . and their students."clvi Research shows a variety of specific teaching strategies are successful in science education. The use of the learning cycle strategy showed that the learning cycle allowed for greater involvement in the learning process, resulted in more enjoyable and stimulating classes, developed a more thorough understanding of science concepts, and resulted in greater critical thinking on the part of students.clvii Other research has demonstrated that concept mapping was a more effective strategy than traditional expository teaching in enhancing achievement in biology.clviii Research conducted by Willerman and MacHarg showed that using concept maps prior to laboratory investigations resulted in significant differences in achievement over students who did not receive concept maps. Stavy showed that teaching by analogy could be an effective tool in science, particularly when analogies were built on correct preconceptions of students. clix Finally, Ayer and Milson demonstrated that providing middle school students with study skills such as note taking and underlining did not affect achievement.clx Such factors as home achievement, gender, and ethnicity have also been considered in the research. For tenth graders, a significant relationship exists between a student‘s home and school environment in science achievement.clxi A study of fifth grade students looked at gender and ethnicity. This study found that ethnicity had no effect on science achievement, gender made no difference on achievement in low and middle ability groups, and that high ability boys did better than girls on open-ended physical science questions but not in other areas.clxii Finally, in looking at students with disabilities, research showed that for students with disabilities, activity-oriented curricula offer fewer difficulties.clxiii However, the authors caution that schools adopting a content-based approach to science education needed to provide a variety of support materials for special education students including study skills, peer mentoring, audio/video tapes, cooperative learning, and inquiry-based instruction. A study by Spector and Gibson asked middle school students what they perceived to be helpful in learning science.clxiv The students listed the following characteristics: Experiencing situations about which they were learning Having live presentations by professional experts Doing hands-on activities Using inductive reasoning to generate new knowledge Being active learners 56 Exploring interdisciplinary approaches to problem solving Having adult mentors Interacting with peers and adults Trusting the individuals in the learning environment. Experiencing self-reliance. The list developed by these middle school students reflects both the research and the contentions of reform movements. Research indicates hands-on, active-learning in cooperative groups, coupled with interaction with peers and adults in a trusting environment, tends to be highly effective in improving science achievement. It is also perceived as most effective by students. Resources The 1993 National Survey of Science and Mathematics Education found that instructional resources were cited as the most serious problem affecting instruction. Mathematics and science department heads reported lack of funds to purchase equipment and supplies, lack of materials for individualized instruction, inadequate access to computers, and lack of appropriate computer software as highly problematic to quality mathematics and science education. clxv Similar concerns were reported by the Alabama Mathematics, Science, and Technology Initiative survey.clxvi The concerns and limitations of a textbook dominated curricula have been previously mentioned. Yet, in many classrooms the textbook is the only physical resource that students experience in science. If science education is to move from a textbook and worksheet driven curriculum to the hands-on, inquiry-based reform that is called for by the major reform movements, then providing appropriate resources must become a critical component of any plan for improvement.clxvii As indicated in the National Science Education Standards, "An effective science learning environment requires a broad range of basic science materials, as well as specific tools for particular topics and learning experiences."clxviii One of the greatest problems facing a hands-on, inquiry-based science program is simply supplying the needed resources at the appropriate time. Teachers must have the forethought to order materials in the correct quantities well in advance of their use by the students. When materials must be processed on school purchase orders, the teacher may be required to place orders months before the materials will actually be used. Storage of supplies and equipment also becomes an issue. Once a class has performed the activity, consumable materials must be replenished for future classes. Even when funding is not a problem, many teachers simply do not have time, skills, or motivation to manage the ordering and refurbishment of materials that are required for a hands-on, inquiry based science program. To address this need, the National Science Education Standards suggest that,"…an effective infrastructure for materials support be a part of any science program. School systems need to develop mechanisms to identify exemplary materials, store and maintain them, and make them available to teachers in a timely fashion. Providing an appropriate infrastructure frees teachers' time for more appropriate tasks and assures the necessary materials are available when needed."clxix Expecting teachers to gather all of the materials needed for hands-on activities has proven to be neither realistic nor efficient. The National Science Resource Center has concluded that 57 the most efficient and cost-effective way to provide teachers with the supplies needed is through the creation of science materials support centers. clxx, clxxi, clxxii Moreno calls attention to the importance of material and supply refurbishment centers to support science programs as follows: Much more desirable is centralized management of science materials by schools or districts. Some localities with well-established science programs for grades K-8 provide teachers with kits containing all of the science materials necessary for a 3-9 week unit….science centers are also responsible for refurbishing used kits so they may be distributed and reused several times during each school year (Lapp 1980). Centralized management and distribution of supplies help to ensure that all students have equally rich science experiences. clxxiii Lack of appropriate supplies and equipment for science classes is a significant problem that limits the quality of students' hands-on experiences throughout grades K-12. The problem is most notable in elementary schools, where, in some cases, teachers and students do not have access to even the most rudimentary tools and materials necessary for teaching and learning science. Research indicates that resources to support hands-on science must extend from elementary school through high school if the benefits of inquiry-based instruction are to be fully realized. clxxiv The National Science Foundation has financed the development of resource kits that allow elementary and middle school teachers to easily provide their students with quality, hands-on, inquiry-based science instruction. The resource kits, designed by leading science educators, support the National Education Science Standards and have received extensive field testing for effectiveness. Numerous studies demonstrate the positive impact of the activity-based resource kits on student performance. clxxv The National Science Education Standards also address the need for adequate space and facilities for hands-on science investigations. There must be space for students to work together in groups, to engage safely in investigation with materials, and to display both work in progress and finished work. There also must be space for safe and convenient storage of materials needed for science. At the lower grade levels, schools do not need separate rooms for laboratories . . . . at the upper grade levels, laboratories become critical to provide the space, facilities, and equipment needed for inquiry and to assure that the teacher and students can conduct investigations without risk. All spaces where students do inquiry must meet appropriate safety regulations. clxxvi Technological resources can and should play a valuable role in inquiry based science instruction. As Stager indicates, "The continuous miniaturization of electronic components and the drop in the cost of computing is making the microcomputer-based labs both cost-effective and more portable. . . . Now the student scientist, with lab instruments and digital lab assistant software, may go out into the real world and collect real data where it exists, not merely in textbooks." clxxvii Efforts to change the way science is taught in schools often focus on a single-shot effort to place equipment, materials, and technology in the classroom. Key issues necessary for the effective use of the resources often go unaddressed and lead to the ineffective and inappropriate use of resources, or to the resources not being used at all. Issues that must be addressed when providing science resources include the following: clxxviii 58 Properly relating the resources to the curriculum Adequately training teachers in the use of the resources, including related science content and teaching strategies Effectively supporting the implementation of the curriculum and resources Systematically resupplying materials and equipment as needed Assessment The fact that one entire chapter from the National Science Education Standards is devoted to assessment helps draw attention to the importance that assessment must play in any educational plan. The chapter provides specific standards that are to serve as guides for developing assessment tasks, practices, and policies. The assessment standards are as follows: clxxix Assessments must be consistent with the decisions they are designed to inform. Achievement and opportunity to learn science must be addressed. The technical quality of the data collected is well matched to the decisions and actions taken on the basis of their interpretation. Assessment practices must be fair. The inferences made from assessments about student achievement and opportunity to learn must be sound. Hein and Price have defined assessment as "using any possible means to make judgements about what students have learned." clxxx Assessment should provide teachers and the students with information about the students' skills, knowledge, and understanding. Traditionally, learning in science classes has been measured by using paper and pencil tests. Yet such tests have increasingly come under criticism for not adequately judging students' higher-order thinking skills or their ability to apply content knowledge. clxxxi, clxxxii In addition, problems occur when science programs do not match the mandated examinations. Teachers may feel compelled to "teach the test" at the expense of implementing the official science program. Moreno states that "this situation should change gradually as individual states and school districts continue to align their guidelines with NRC Standards and generate corresponding standardized tests."clxxxiii Still, standardized testing programs can provide valuable data to teachers. Without such data, teachers would never know how their students' achievement compares with that of other students across the state, nation, or world. As Domain points out, "Standardized tests give me a window to the reality beyond my classroom, beyond my own measure of how things ought to be." clxxxiv Aware of the limitations of conventional tests, many educators now encourage the use of alternative and authentic forms of assessment in the classroom. Students may be asked to solve a real life problem, perform an experiment, or prepare a presentation on a topic. Such evaluation reflects the inquiry, process-oriented and collaborative nature of science by having students "work together or separately, using equipment, materials, and procedures that they would use in good, hands-on science instruction." clxxxv A limitation of these types of 59 assessments is the difficulty in using them to project student performance or correlating them from one task to another. Research shows that factors in the classroom assessment environment such as frequency and format can affect student achievement. Brookhart found that the frequency of assessment, written reports, science projects, and graded homework had positive effects on student achievement. This supports the view that active learning, student construction, curiosity and motivation, and self-evaluation lead students to achieve at significantly higher levels. clxxxvi While multiple-choice tests continue to play a major role in assessment, it is important that teachers be knowledgeable of other forms of assessment that fit well with desired student outcomes in science. Portfolios, observations, performance tests, student interviews, journals, projects, surveys, and self-assessments are all valuable ways of gaining insight into what students know and can do.clxxxvii The challenge of the teacher is to match the most appropriate assessment to the desired goal or outcome. When planning for assessment, it is important that the purpose of the activity be clear. Assessment activities should serve the following six purposes: Assessment should help guide instruction to make teaching more effective. To do this, it must establish what students already know and what is being learned by students from the instruction that they receive. clxxxviii Assessment should help clarify what should be learned by students. Assessment should document students' progress at the end of an extended period of instruction. Assessment should monitor the outcomes of instruction, including the competencies and achievements in the subject. Assessment should provide a basis for formulating approaches to improve instruction, especially when combined with other information. Assessment should guide how resources might be used differently or augmented to improve education. A report from the National Center for Improving Science Education identifies key practices for quality assessment in science. Exemplary assessment practices in science must address the following: clxxxix Assessments should model exemplary instruction in that the evaluation exercises are indistinguishable from good instructional practices. Assessments should allow students to demonstrate their proficiency in laboratory activities and scientific thinking by requiring hands-on tasks. Assessments should investigate both knowledge of subject matter and depth of understanding. Assessments should examine both the final answer and the process or approach used to obtain the answer. Assessments should include a research or design component. Assessments used should extend beyond written reports about experiments and answers to test questions to speeches, models, drawings, group presentations, and displays. 60 Assessments should monitor the student's proficiency in management skills by encouraging opportunities for group work designed around tasks too complex for students to accomplish individually. Assessments should extend beyond student outcomes to include school context and science programs when used to evaluate and make improvements in science education. 61 TECHNOLOGY Professional Development Technology has dramatically penetrated every area of society and every aspect of our social and cultural lives. Technology has changed the very nature of our work. Although schools are embedded in our culture and reflect its values, the technological changes that have swept through society have left the educational system largely unchanged. In the course of 20 years, a dramatic gap has opened between the process of teaching and learning in schools and the ways of obtaining knowledge in society at large. This gap has been made obvious by the fact that the process of teaching has not changed substantially, even in the past 100 years.cxc, cxci A well-qualified teacher who is willing to use technological tools for the purpose of helping students master established educational goals is the key to success for computer technology. Continued investments in hardware will be worthless without investing in teacher skills. The AMSTI Committee commissioned the State Department of Education to perform an extensive survey of mathematics and science educators from across the state. This survey is the most comprehensive research on mathematics, science, and technology education ever performed in the state. Results from the survey indicate that access to technology and assistance with technology integration were the greatest needs of Alabama mathematics and science teachers.cxcii When asked to indicate their four greatest needs, both mathematics (56 percent) and science teachers (54 percent) most frequently listed incorporating technology into the classroom. In addition, 37 percent of mathematics teachers and 40 percent of science teachers listed accessing technology as one of their greatest needs. Only 5 percent of mathematics and 3 percent of science classrooms are equipped with five or more computers. Forty-nine percent of mathematics and 48 percent of science teachers have only a single computer in their classrooms. Over 13 percent of mathematics and 12 percent of science teachers report not having a computer in their classrooms. Approximately 55 percent of the mathematics and science classrooms currently have Internet access. In terms of peripheral devices, 67 percent of both mathematics and science teachers indicate they have a printer in their classrooms. However, less than 5 percent of teachers report using other peripheral devices such as probes, sensors, scanners, or touch screens. An exception is the 15 percent of high school science teachers who indicate they use probeware with their students. Probeware is apparently used in science classes only at the high school level. Students use technology on a daily or weekly basis in 44 percent of mathematics classes and in 39 percent of science classes. Thirty-seven percent of mathematics teachers and 36 percent of science teachers rarely or never have their classes use technology. Of those that have computers in their classrooms, over 50 percent of mathematics and science teachers indicate they are used for gradebook record keeping and teacher writing. In terms of computer usage by students, activities in mathematics classes that show the greatest percentages are remediation (36 percent), games (30 percent), and practice (28 percent). In 62 science classes computers are mainly used for student writing (30 percent), remediation (26 percent), and student on-line research (26 percent).cxciii A national poll of 1,407 teachers conducted in 1999 for Education Week asked teachers three questions. The questions and tabulated results reveal a noteworthy trend: cxciv 1. Including this year, for how many years have you been using computer technology in your classroom lessons? Have not started yet 18% One year 14% Two years 16% Three to five years 29% More than five years 23% 2. About how many hours of basic technology skills training did you receive in the last 12 months? None 27% 1 – 5 hours 31% 6-10 hours 17% 11 – 20 hours 11% More than 20 hours 14% 3. About how many hours of training did you receive on integrating technology into the curriculum within the last 12 months? None 36% 1 – 5 hours 36% 6 – 10 hours 14% 11 – 20 hours 7% More than 20 hours 8% Many state, regional, and federal organizations are realizing that increased funding for teacher training and tougher standards for technology competency are needed if computers are to become a standard part of mathematics and science instruction. Virginia and North Carolina have developed successful professional development programs for their teachers in technology integration. Virginia established teacher competency standards in technology, although they are not related to re-certification. cxcv North Carolina adopted ―Technology Competencies for Educators‖ as part of their School Technology Users Task Force Report in 1995. Legislators at the federal and state levels are insisting that new technology programs include a staff development requirement. Teachers need abundant professional development to use technology effectively in order to promote high levels of learning for all students. The technology must be integrated into a standards-based instructional program. A recent study estimated that only 5percent of a typical school district‘s budget for technology is actually spent on staff instruction. The National Staff Development Council recommends that 30 percent of monies allocated for technology should be used for professional development.cxcvi 63 The Southern Association of Colleges and Schools (SACS) elementary and middle school standards that relate to professional growth require that all professional employees ―earn at least six (6) semester hours of college credit or the equivalency during each five (5) year period.‖ In 1997, the State Board of Education adopted the Alabama Technology Plan for K12 Education. The plan recommended a minimum of eight (8) hours of training in technology each year. cxcvii This training has focused, to a large degree, on the use of technology to perform administrative tasks. To impact student learning, training should emphasize the integration of technology into the mathematics and science curricula. Bringing the existing teaching force up to speed is a massive task that will require extensive professional development over many years. This problem will be greatly exacerbated if the teachers entering the profession have not been adequately prepared to use information technologies. In 1998, the Milken Exchange on Educational Technology set out to establish baseline data on the status of technology use in teacher-training programs in the United States. The report found that, in general, teacher-training programs do not provide future teachers with the kinds of experiences necessary to prepare them to use technology effectively in their classrooms. The U. S. Office of Technology Assessment has identified technology skill stages for teachers. Teachers need at least 30 hours of training in order to adopt technology. A minimum of 45 hours plus 3 months experience is required for the teacher to adapt technology. Adaptation is defined as moving from basic use to discovery of potential in a variety of applications. In order for teachers to enter the appropriation stage, a minimum of 60 hours training and two years of experience are required. In this stage, the teacher has mastery over the technology and can use it to accomplish a variety of instructional and classroom management goals. To reach the highest skill stage, invention, the teacher must participate in 80 or more hours of training and have 4 – 5 years of experience. At this level, the teacher must actively develop entirely new learning techniques that utilize technology as a flexible tool.cxcviii What should teachers know to be successful in technology integration? The National Council for Accreditation of Teacher Education (NCATE) now includes in its accreditation review process for all teacher preparation programs a set of national standards for educational technology. The standards were developed by the International Society for Technology in Education (ISTE). The standards recommend that every teacher acquire a set of foundational skills and concepts related to technology, regardless of the teacher‘s area of specialization. These include the following skills:cxcix Operate school computers to access and use the basic software available (access/open applications, create/save/retrieve documents, etc.). Evaluate, use, and relate Information Technology tools for instruction (i.e. to instruct large or small groups or individuals). Apply current instructional principles, research, and appropriate assessment practices to the use of information technologies. Evaluate educational software. Use computers for problem-solving data collection (spreadsheet, database, etc.). Send and receive electronic mail. Create effective, computer based presentations (slideshows, overheads, etc.). Access and search the Internet for personal/professional resources. 64 Integrate Information Technology tools into student learning activities across the curriculum. Use information technologies to facilitate student-centered learning. Create multimedia documents to support instruction. Create hypertext documents to support instruction. Demonstrate knowledge/modeling of ethical and equity issues related to technology (i.e. observing copyright, privacy, personal safety, etc.). Demonstrate knowledge of current resources related to educational technology. Use computer-based technology to access information and for personal/professional productivity (CD-ROMs, record keeping/reporting on student progress, etc.). Even today, despite the importance of technology, computer training does not hold a prominent place in the preparation experiences of teachers in some colleges of education. According to Cheryl Williams, director of Education Technology Programs at the National School Boards Association, there are several reasons why colleges of education have not integrated technology into their courses. First, many teacher education programs lack the hardware and software necessary to incorporate technology into the teacher agenda. Second, in many instances, the education faculties have not been provided the training they need to use technology effectively. Third, a majority of teacher education departments have not been able to invest in the technical support required to maintain a high-quality technology program. And finally, some higher education faculties have little understanding of the changes technology is bringing to K – 12 classrooms, and they have not adjusted their own teaching methodologies to reflect these changes.cc NCATE has also been encouraged to require that technology be fully integrated across entire teacher preparation programs. Failure to prepare teacher education graduates to use technology effectively and wisely will cause billions of dollars invested in education technology initiatives to go to waste.cci Professional development for technology use should include essential components that research has found to be important. These components include the following: ccii a connection to student learning hands-on technology use a variety of learning experiences curriculum-specific applications new roles for teachers collegial learning active participation of teachers ongoing process sufficient time technical assistance and support administrative support adequate resources continuous funding built-in evaluation Whether technology should be used in schools is no longer the issue in education. Instead, the current emphasis is ensuring that technology is used effectively to create new 65 opportunities for learning and to promote student achievement. This requires the assistance of educators who integrate technology into the curriculum, align it with state and national standards, and use it for engaging learning projects. Therefore, professional development for teachers becomes the key issue in using technology to improve the quality of learning in the classroom. Lack of professional development for technology use is one of the most serious obstacles to fully integrating technology into the curriculum.cciii Traditional sit-and-get training sessions or one-time-only workshops have not been effective in making teachers comfortable with using technology or adept at integrating it into their lesson plans. Instead, a well-planned, ongoing professional development program that is tied to the school's curriculum goals, designed with built-in evaluation, and sustained by adequate financial and staff support is essential if teachers are to use technology appropriately to promote learning for all students in the classroom. Curriculum and Instruction Educational reform calls for shifting away from the traditional method of organizing instruction in lecture format or practicing skills in specific academic disciplines toward an emphasis on engaging students in long-term, meaningful projects.cciv Computer technology is changing schools in ways different from previous reform fads because of three significant reasons: ccv Children are becoming a driving force for educational change instead of being its passive recipients. Computers are learner‘s technology, not teacher‘s technology such as televisions and filmstrip projectors. Powerful advanced ideas can become elementary without losing their power. Standards for Technological Literacy: Content for the Study of Technology was released in April, 2000. This book incorporates the International Society for Technology in Education (ISTE) Standards into various core subjects from kindergarten through twelfth grade. The twenty ISTE standards, with benchmarks at different levels, specify what students should know about the history, design, effects, and use of technologies. Incorporating the ISTE Standards into the Alabama mathematics and science courses of study would encourage the implementation of technology into these core subjects. ―School subjects such as mathematics and science do not always have or allow time for exploration and development. Technology education is a conduit for this discovery and exposure, and it provides an opportunity for interaction and deeper development of related areas of study.‖ccvi The power of technology as it relates to other school subjects and how it helps students build their educational understanding through problem solving is well documented in projects that promote the integration of technology education with mathematics and science.ccvii Resources Research shows that the once popular goal of one computer in every classroom is just the beginning, not the end, of a classroom‘s technology needs. In today‘s classrooms, technology 66 must be viewed as a basic resource for teaching and learning, and that means more than one computer per class. It also means more than just a computer. The television, telephone, and computer industries are rapidly merging, and as they do, they are turning yesterday‘s science fiction into today‘s reality. What technology should each classroom target for integration? While there is no correct answer, every classroom needs enough technology to accomplish the following:ccviii Support individual, small group, and whole-class learning activities Connect to information sources outside the classroom (i.e., Internet, network, and telecommunications access) Access CD-ROM and laser videodisc sources Display the output from both computer and video sources on a large screen Provide software to support adequately teaching the subject This minimum requirement is necessary in colleges of education, as well as K – 12 classrooms. Technology needs of teachers extend beyond the purchase of hardware and software. A competent technical staff is also required to ensure the integration of technology into the classroom. ―Providing sufficient technical staff to set up, maintain, enhance, and repair the computers remains a constant challenge for most schools. International Data Corporation reports that ‗per student, schools exhibit extremely low levels of technical support or roughly one support person for every 500 students. In the business environment, the ratio is typically 1 to 50.‘‖ccix The CEO Forum School Technology and Readiness report, >From Pillars to Progress, published in 1997 notes that while ―technology is being leveraged in the classroom, lack of on-site technical support…may discourage teachers from using technology to its fullest potential.‖ ccx In the past decade, Alabama schools have steadily increased the number of computers and decreased their ratios of students per computer. It seems reasonable to request capable tech-support to maintain the expensive equipment in each school. The University of Rhode Island and Tech Corps evaluated Rhode Island's programs in mathematics, science and technology using instruments developed by the National Center for Public Education and Social Policy at the University of Rhode Island. The project found that: 1) even in a small state, complete and lasting coordination is difficult to achieve; 2) teachers need real contexts and projects before they will adopt technological applications and new instructional techniques; and 3) ongoing technical support for frameworks, standards, and technology use is integral to the success of a project. Effective Integration Effective technology integration is attained through the development of technology skills that can be applied directly and immediately in teachers‘ classrooms and the development of strategies for using technology as a teaching and learning tool. Through technology integration, instruction becomes motivating, timely, and relevant learning that is case-based, active, and collaborative. Teachers must model innovative approaches and practice using tools that maximize student-to-student interaction and reduce the administrative workload. Integration will improve student learning and increase the number of students served. Access to 67 a national on-line learning community and contact with other teachers - motivating and facilitating teacher implementation of newly acquired skills - is also an essential component of integration. Assessment Educators agree that various forms of assessment should be used to check student understanding. Computers can provide instant analysis of the strengths and weaknesses of individual students, whole classes, and entire schools and districts, while teachers and administrators must wait weeks and sometimes months to see how students perform on paper tests.ccxi ―A big draw of computer-based exams is they are more adaptive than paper-and-pencil tests.‖ ccxii Some test formats incorporate adaptive branching. Adaptive tests are personalized for each individual being tested. As a test-taker answers questions correctly, the computer makes the questions a little bit harder. If the person starts answering incorrectly, the level of difficulty drops. The Northwest Evaluation Association (NWEA) has designed a computerized adaptive testing program that school districts can tailor to their local or state standards. If technology standards are incorporated into mathematics and science courses of study, students will be using technology more in classrooms. Teachers must then extend the use of technology into the area of assessment. Students will be able to participate in performance-based evaluations through the use of technology. Students will grasp the true meaning of technology and its benefit in their daily lives. 68 BIBLIOGRAPHY ―Achievement Tests for Young Children,‖ The National Center for Fair & Open Testing. Retrieved May 18, 2000 [on line] http://fairtest.org/facts/ACHIEVE.html Aghadiuno, M. C., "A Causal Model of Secondary Students' Achievement in Chemistry," Research in Science and Technology Education, Vol. 12, No. 2, 1995, pp. 123-133. 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Poftak, ―New Teachers and Technology: Are They Prepared?‖ Technology and Learning, April, 1999. iii ―Integrating Gender Equity and Reform,‖ Center for Education Integrating Science, Mathematics and Computing Retrieved May 18, 2000 [on line] http://www.ceismc.gatech.edu/ceismc/programs/ingear/ingear.htm iv Third International Mathematics and Science Study, Office of Educational Research and Improvement, U. S. Department of Education, June 1997. v Third International Mathematics and Science Study, Office of Educational Research and Improvement, U. S. Department of Education, June 1997. vi Linking the National Assessment of Educational progress (NAEP) and the Third International Mathematics and Science Study (TIMMS): Eighth-Grade Results. National Center for Education Statistics, Research and Development Report, July 1998. vii William H. Schmidt, and C. C. McKnight, ―What Can We Really Learn from TIMSS?‖ Science Vol.. 282, 1999. viii William H. Schmidt, TIMMS United States National Research Center, Report No. 8, April 1998. ix M. Coeyman, ―Lessons From Abroad: Plan Better and Delve Deeper,‖ Christian Science Monitor, Vol. 92, 1999. x William H. Schmidt, TIMMS United States National Research Center, Report No. 8, April 1998. xi The Proficient achievement level represents solid academic performance for each grade assessed. Students reaching this level have demonstrated competency over challenging subject matter, including subject-matter knowledge, application of such knowledge to real-world situations, and analytical skills appropriate to the subject matter. xii NAEP 1996 Science State Report for Alabama, U. S. Department of Education Office of Educational Research and Improvement, Washington, D. C., September 1997, p. 1. xiii R. K. Blank, and D. Langesen, State Indicators of Science and Mathematics Education: 1999, Council of Chief State School Officers, 1999. xiv NAEP 1996 Mathematics State Report for Alabama, U. S. Department of Education Office of Educational Research and Improvement, Washington, D. C., September 1997, p. 4 . xv NAEP 1996 Science State Report for Alabama, U. S. Department of Education Office of Educational Research and Improvement, Washington, D. C., September 1997, p. 1. xvi Science teachers include biology, chemistry, physics, and earth science only. 91 xvii R. K. Blank, and D. Langesen, State Indicators of Science and Mathematics Education: 1999, Council of Chief State School Officers, 1999. xviii NAEP 1996 Mathematics State Report for Alabama, U. S. Department of Education Office of Educational Research and Improvement, Washington, D. C., September 1997, p. 126. . xix NAEP 1996 Mathematics State Report for Alabama, U. S. Department of Education Office of Educational Research and Improvement, Washington, D. C., September 1997, p. 53. . xx R. K. Blank, and D. Langesen, State Indicators of Science and Mathematics Education: 1999, Council of Chief State School Officers, 1999, pp. 30 and 36. xxi R. K. Blank, and D. Langesen, State Indicators of Science and Mathematics Education: 1999, Council of Chief State School Officers, 1999, pp. 54-55. xxii R. K. Blank, and D. Langesen, State Indicators of Science and Mathematics Education: 1999, Council of Chief State School Officers, 1999, p. 57. xxiii NAEP 1996 Mathematics State Report for Alabama, U. S. Department of Education Office of Educational Research and Improvement, Washington, D. C., September 1997, p. 44. xxiv ―Curriculum and Evaluation Standards for School Mathematics,‖ National Council for Teachers of Mathematics, Inc., Reston, VA, 1989. xxv Digest of Education Statistics 1995, National Center for Education Statistics, U. S. Department of Education, 1995. xxvi NAEP 1996 Mathematics State Report for Alabama, U. S. Department of Education Office of Educational Research and Improvement, Washington, D. C., September 1997, p. 135. xxvii NAEP 1996 Mathematics State Report for Alabama, U. S. Department of Education Office of Educational Research and Improvement, Washington, D. C., September 1997, p. 137. xxviii NAEP 1996 Science State Report for Alabama, U. S. Department of Education Office of Educational Research and Improvement, Washington, D. C., September 1997, p. 60. xxix Third International Study of Science and Mathematics Education, press release November 20, 1996. xxx Science For All Americans: Project 2061, American Association for the Advancement of Science, Oxford university Press, Inc., New York, 1990, p. xvi. xxxi Principles and Standards for School Mathematics, National Council of Teachers of Mathematics, Inc., Reston, VA, 2000, p. 1. xxxii Principles and Standards for School Mathematics, National Council of Teachers of Mathematics, Inc., Reston, VA, 2000, p. 6. xxxiii Principles and Standards for School Mathematics, National Council of Teachers of Mathematics, Inc., Reston, VA, 2000, p. 11. xxxiv Principles and Standards for School Mathematics, National Council of Teachers of Mathematics, Inc., Reston, VA, 2000, pp. 29-30. 92 xxxv Principles and Standards for School Mathematics – An Overview, National Council of Teachers of Mathematics, Inc., Reston, VA, 2000, p. 7. xxxvi Principles and Standards for School Mathematics, National Council of Teachers of Mathematics, Inc., Reston, VA, 2000, p. 30. xxxvii Principles and Standards for School Mathematics, National Council of Teachers of Mathematics, Inc., Reston, VA, 2000, p. 7. xxxviii Principles and Standards for School Mathematics, National Council of Teachers of Mathematics, Inc., Reston, VA, 2000, p. 8. xxxix Principles and Standards for School Mathematics, National Council of Teachers of Mathematics, Inc., Reston, VA, 2000, pp. 373-379. xl National Science Education Standards, National Academy Press, Washington, D.C., pp. 1-255. xli National Educational Technology Standards for Students: Connecting Curriculum and Technology, International Society for Technology in Education, 2000, pp. 1-373. xlii Secretary's Commission on Achieving Necessary Skills. 1991. What work requires of schools: A SCANS report for America 2000. Washington, D.C.: U.S. Department of Labor. xliii Alabama Course of Study: Mathematics, Alabama State Department of Education, Bulletin 1997, No. 4, pp. 1, 117. xliv Alabama Course of Study: Mathematics, Alabama State Department of Education, Bulletin 1997, No. 4, p. 1. xlv Alabama Course of Study: Mathematics, Alabama State Department of Education, Bulletin 1997, No. 4, p. 1. xlvi Alabama Course of Study: Mathematics, Alabama State Department of Education, Bulletin 1997, No. 4, pp. 7-8. xlvii Alabama Course of Study: Science, Alabama State Department of Education, 1995, page 1. xlviii Survey Analysis Report: Alabama Math, Science, and Technology Initiative, Alabama State Department of Education, 2000. xlix "Teaching and Learning: Meeting the Challenge of High Standards", Alabama Task Force on Teaching and Student Achievement, A+ Education Foundation, Montgomery, AL, 1999. l Constance Kamii, Barbara A. 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Stiles, Designing Professional Development for Teachers of Science and Mathematics, Corwin Press, Inc., Thousand Oaks, CA, 1998, p. 40. liv Susan Loucks-Horsley, Katherine Stiles, and Peter Hewson, ―Principles of Effective Professional Development for Mathematics and Science Education: A Synthesis of Standards,‖ National Institute for Science Education Brief, Vol. 1, No. 1, May 1996, p. 2. lv Dennis Sparks and Stephanie Hirsh, ―A National Plan for Improving Professional Development,‖ p. 1. Retrieved May 4, 2000 [on line] http://www.nsdc.org/library/NSCDPlan.html. lvi Liping Ma, Knowing and Teaching Elementary Mathematics, Lawrence Erlbaum Associates, Mahwa, New Jersey, 1999, Chapter 7, pp. 144-153; Robert J. 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