Science Lessons at the North Side Learning Center
We are working with 3rd - 5th students at the North Side Learning Center, which provides teaching services to refugees and immigrants. As part of this program, students learn about science by exploring their local community in Central New York through a range of topics in ecology, environmental science, and Earth Science. We guide the students through collaborative, inquiry-based activities that encourage students to make observations and pose their own questions about the natural world based on what they learn. Some of the activities have involved exploring the different leaf colors and shapes during fall, excavating raptor pellets, and modeling how water moves through different environments.
We have a high ratio of graduate student facilitators to student participants and maintain a consistent group of facilitators throughout the semester. Doing this encourages the development of meaningful relationships between graduate student facilitators and students, which has been found to foster participants’ STEM identities. We are collaborating with teachers at North Side Learning Center and Write Out to create assessments that track progress toward NSEP’s goals.