Supported Site California State University, Long Beach: Induction & Mentoring

Successes

  • A total of 14 CSULB physics majors, credential students, in-service teachers, and faculty attended the California Science Teachers Association Conference, Pasadena, CA (Oct. 21 - 23, 2011).
  • Two TIRs mentored 10 new physics teachers and a prospective teacher - met regularly, shared demos, visited classrooms, and provided ongoing support. The TIR has maintained ongoing e-mail correspondence with two grad students concerning ways to improve instruction and careers in teaching physics at the community college level.
  • A monthly demo-sharing day was a big success for new teachers as well as experienced teachers. It was organized to share the demos from upcoming topics to meet teaching needs in a regular and predictable time/pattern.
  • The bi-annual Physics Teachers Open House and monthly Demo Sharing events are organized to build Physics Teacher Network for pre-service teachers, new and experienced teachers.
  • Second year's TIR (Katie Beck) began a monthly newsletter, What's ν? This is sent to various listservs, posted on the project website and distributed at monthly demo days and other presentations. Year three TIR (Kevin Dwyer) continued the newsletter.
  • The CSULB PhysTEC project hosted a new teacher workshop on the Physics of Waves, Sound, and Light (with Modern Physics) and Electricity and Magnetism by the Southern California AAPT on Feb. 25, 2012 and Dec. 1, 2012.
  • The Physics Teacher Network events received a lot of attention on campus, and the Demo Sharing day was featured in the Daily 49er, the campus student newspaper. This outreach effort helped the department to establish a direct connection with Eric Brundin, K-12 Science Curriculum Leader in the Long Beach Unified School District.

Challenges

  • Induction of new teachers is in the realm of districts.
  • New teachers who don't know about the CSULB PhysTEC project are harder to reach. However, it is improving through the collaboration with the Southern California AAPT and the Long Beach School District Science (Eric Brundin, K-12 Science Curriculum Leader), direct outreach through listservs, and the word of mouth by teachers.

Sustainability

  • The monthly demo-sharing day will continue. This is an event recognized by the department faculty and the College administration as a model to engage high school teachers from science disciplines.
  • The PhysTEC listserv will be maintained and used to continue the Physics Teacher Network. The Open House event will also continue with similar format by the department.

Lessons Learned

  • The Physics Teacher Network will give us ongoing opportunities to mentor and track their progress.

Activities

  • The project identified recent graduates (< 3 years) and students in the pipeline.
  • The PhysTEC Scholars went to California Science Teachers Association (CSTA) meeting in Pasadena, CA (2011).
  • The CSULB PhysTEC project organized and hosted a bi-annual Physics Teachers Open House and monthly Demo Sharing.
  • The PhysTEC Scholars and participating teachers had many opportunities to meet throughout the year with PIs, TIR, and in-service teachers in PHYS 390 and 490 classes, Demo-Sharing, Open House, and Mixer events.
  • We identified and recruited local high school teachers to act as mentors.
  • The announcement of all PhysTEC events were sent out via e-mail to the PhysTEC listserv to in-service and pre-service teachers from CSULB, physics majors, graduate students, and local high school physics teachers and posted on the website.