Teacher’s Network Offers Solutions
in Science, Literacy & Technology
Recently, over 320 teachers and administrators gathered at P.S. 124 for the 5th Annual Curriculum, Community, Collaboration and Celebration Conference presented by Teachers Network, a non-profit organization. The conference consisted of workshops providing fresh approaches to helping students improve their academic performance, particularly in science and literacy. Teachers Network is trying to alleviate the chronic problem affecting secondary schools—lack of certified science teachers—by inviting experienced teachers to share their knowledge and ideas with other educators.
The workshops were a great success as attendees worked together on activities and strategies they would incorporate into their classes. “I’m excited about learning how to apply concepts to the actual classroom, concepts that I had only heard about in Teachers College,” exclaimed Margaret Avila after attending the workshops, “How to Set Up an Effective Elementary Classroom” and “Teaching Science Across the Elementary Grades.”
The workshops also provided many networking opportunities. “I appreciated the open discussion format of the workshops and it was really helpful to hear from other teachers,” said Doris Mackey.
An increasingly popular topic among teachers is how to incorporate more technology into the curriculum. Educators are interested in learning how to harness the power of the Internet and integrate it into the classroom. According to Communications and Development Associate, Whitney English, two of the most popular workshops were “Technology Tools to Promote Scientific Thinking” in which science teacher Conrad Fernandez of the Mott Hall School discussed strategies for using computer probes in the secondary classroom and the “21st Century Classroom” where teachers learned how to enhance their lessons with technological tools such as the Internet. Even workshops that did not directly address technology included websites for teachers to log onto for additional information. As more students rely on digital resources to complete their assignments, it is important that teachers become “tech-savvy” as well.
Supporting the needs of teachers has always been the purpose of Teachers Network. “There is a huge demand right now for Internet training, but we’re ready for the onslaught,” stated Teachers Network President and CEO, Ellen Dempsey. Dempsey pointed out that Teachers Network built its website ten years ago, long before it was common for companies to have websites. As Deputy Chancellor Carmen Fariña observed during her closing remarks, “Teachers Network has always been at the forefront of what teachers need to succeed.” Just as today’s conference empowered teachers to find new ways to improve student learning, Dempsey confirmed that Teachers Network will continue to address the challenges teachers face through workshops and other resources.#