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									Student-Parent Laboratories Achieving Science at Home

   Peter Rillero        Arizona State University West
Why is parental involvement
      (please share your thoughts)
What do involved parents do?

What do involved parents know?

      (please share your thoughts)
How can teachers help parents be
more involved?

      (please share your thoughts)
Involving Parents through
Hands-On Science
 Why hands-on science?
 Types of Programs
     Out-of-home experiences
     In-home experiences
Out-of-home experiences

 Family Science Night
 Programs at zoos, museums, or other venues
 Advantages
 Disadvantages
In-home experiences
   Science Kit Programs
     Advantages
     Disadvantages

   Non kit program
     StudentParent Laboratories Achieving Science
      at Home (SPLASH)
 To increase parental involvement in
  education through hands-on science
  activities done at home.
 To provide the opportunity for students to
  have more hands-on science experiences.
Ideal SPLASH Activities & Programs
   Relate to the curriculum
   Required of all children
   Feature parents working with children
   Use readily available materials
   Give time, use little time
   Clearly direct
   Battle procrastination
   Feature class discussion
Relate to the curriculum
   Must relate to concepts learned in the
     Introduce,   review, extend, or apply
   Why?
     What does an involved parent do?
     What does an involved parent know?
Required for all children
 Teachers may be tempted to use
  assignments like this as Extra Credit.
 Problem: Low achieving students opt to not
  do them. They have the most to gain.
 Thus, require for all students.
Feature parents working with
   Parents are active in the activity.
     Writinghypothesis
     Manipulating materials

   Homework sheets end with place for
    parents’ signature and comments.
    Use readily available materials
 Teachers cannot be expected to
  supply materials for at home
 Parents are inconvenienced if they
  have to go and buy materials.
 SPLASH seeks to use materials
  commonly found in the home.
Give time, use little time
 Allow a weekend (plus) for the activity.
 Designed to take 30 minutes or less
Clearly direct
   Early implementations
     Clear   directions are the biggest problem
   Good editing and field tests are needed
Battle procrastination
   Students often waited until the night
    before to show parents the activity.
     Resultsin rushed completion or non-
      completion of activities.
   No perfect solution
     Write  both due date and assigned date on
      the activities.
     Let parents know when to expect
Feature class discussion
   When assigned
     clarify
     motivate

   When returned
     process learning
     build understanding
     share experiences
     motivate
Parents Expressed Positive Attitudes
about the Program
   Their children learned a lot from program
       Strongly Agree or Agree 64.3%
   Enjoyed activities
       Strongly Agree or Agree 63.5%
   Feel more involved as a result of program
       Strongly Agree or Agree 58.8%
   Helped increase child’s understanding by working together
       Strongly Agree or Agree 70.6%
   All parents should do at least one SPLASH activity
       Strongly Agree or Agree 83.6%
Significant differences between parents
in control and treatment groups for
   Reported time spent helping with or monitoring
   Feeling involved with their children’s education
   Knowing what occurs in children’s science class.
    Parents’ Views of Potential Problems
   Required too much time
        Strongly Agree 2.1%; Agree 0%
   Required too much money
        Strongly Agree 2.4%; Agree 0%
   Instructions too confusing
        Strongly Agree 25%; Agree 2.4%
   I did not know enough science to work
        Strongly Agree 14.1%; Agree 3.5%
   Most activities were too difficult
        Strongly Agree 3.5% Agree 0%
   Materials too difficult to get
        Strongly Agree 8.2% Agree 0%
    Parent Interviews: Discoveries
 I think she is even smarter than I
  thought. She is very good at coming up
  with the conclusions. She seems to
  have a real handle on it and she likes
  science more than I knew she did.
  (High-Participation Mother)
 It was kind of fun to actually see her in
  action. (Low- Participation Mother)
Interviews: Changes in behavior
 It was fun to do it together, but ... I don’t
  help her with any homework. So that
  was kind of a new experience for me.
  (Low-Participation Mother)
 Before they used to tell me to do my
  homework and then after SPLASH, my
  Mom or my Dad would sit down and
  help me. (High-Participation Boy)
Apple P.I.E. Award
   Working Mother Magazine, the Family
    Involvement Partnership for Learning, and
    Teachers College, Columbia University
    awarded the Apple PIE Award to the
    SPLASH program. The program was
    featured in Working Mother magazine.
SPLASH Web Site: www.west.asu.edu/coe/splash
Student-Parent Laboratories
 Achieving Science at Home

 Peter Rillero   Arizona State University West

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