Watson Chronicle


Support for Educators in the Field

CESTEM Hosts Workshops for K-12 Teachers

Thursday, September 01, 2022

One of the ways that Watson’s Center for Education in Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (CESTEM) supports STEM within the region is through the Technology Loan Program (TLP). Educators may borrow equipment for free to use in their classrooms to engage students’ interest. CESTEM recently held several workshops to introduce K-12 teachers to equipment including their Mobile 3D Printer, VR System, Venier probes and sensors and more.

Heddy Clark, Interim Director of CESTEM, is pleased to see CESTEM programming return.

“After years spent modifying our loan procedures and programming to keep people safe during the pandemic, it is wonderful to welcome educators back to campus,” she said. “It is energizing to watch teachers work together to experiment with new technology and methodology and share ideas about how to incorporate it into their classrooms.”

Recent workshops were:

3D Mobile Printer Workshop

In this three-day workshop, led by UNCW Randall Library's Alyssa Wharton and CESTEM Program Associate Michelle Hafey, K-12 educators learned 3D modeling using TinkerCAD. Participants also received in-depth instruction for the 3D printing process and hardware with an emphasis on troubleshooting, explored Slicing Software, created an implementation plan to integrate 3D printing with other curriculum standards, and practiced unpacking and setting up CESTEM's mobile 3D printer. CESTEM’s Mobile 3D Printer is now available for checkout through the Technology Loan Program, but prior training is required.

Breakout Box Workshop

In July, 25 D.C. Virgo teachers participated in a Breakout Box workshop led by Michelle Hafey.  During the workshop, participants experienced a Breakout Box Game using a variety of tools solve clues. They also learned how to set up a Breakout Game from scratch including resetting the multi-wheel locks correctly and changing the codes for the 3- and 4-digit locks. Participants used a planning template to create their own Breakout Box Game from scratch and learned how to organize and manage all parts of the Breakout Box to effectively use it during classroom instruction with students. Completion of this workshop allows participants to borrow Breakout Boxes from CESTEM’s Technology Loan Program.

Virtual Reality Workshop

In August, a workshop was held for K-12 educators interested in bringing the world into the classroom and engaging students through virtual reality. During the three-hour hands-on program, participants practiced setting up, operating and managing CESTEM’s VR System. Participants also explored the curricular content available through Google ExpeditionsPro, discussed the best use of VR during classroom instruction, led an expedition using the teacher tablet, and left with a lesson, ready to use VR technology with students.

“CESTEM is pleased to offer VR workshops for teachers interested in borrowing our VR sets,” said Michelle Hafey. “The VR 1 Workshop is designed for teachers to learn to set up and operate the VR devices for guided instruction. Teachers may select from a gallery of virtual tours and choose ones that match their curricular needs. This fall we are adding a second workshop for teachers interested in learning more about using CESTEM’s 360 camera and making their own content for students.”

For more information or to register for CESTEM’s fall Virtual Reality Workshops, visit the CESTEM website.

Science Notebooking Workshop

Manley Midgett led a CESTEM workshop for science teachers in August, Midgett is a science educator and the 2021 recipient of the North Carolina Science Leadership Association Herman Gatling Award for Outstanding Science Education Leadership in North Carolina. During the workshop, participants learned how to set-up Science Notebooks to maximize learning, mark students’ work so they will recognize success, get students to write in a Science Notebook, provide constructive feedback that will promote learning of science skills and concepts, use the Science Notebook as a tool for formative evaluation of student work, and arrive at a grade for Science Notebooking.

Vernier Workshop

Robert Ott, science teacher at New Hanover High School led CESTEM’s most recent workshop, held in September. The engaging session introduced grade 5-12 teachers to the various ways that Vernier probes and sensors can be used for data collection in their classroom. Teachers learned to use the equipment with a variety of interfaces such as Laptops, LabQuests and LabPros. They participated in lab activities and explored ways to integrate this technology tool into their instruction.

Upcoming Events

This fall, CESTEM will offer Virtual Reality Workshops in October and a StarLab Portable Planetarium Workshop on November 9. For more information or to register, visit the CESTEM website or contact Michelle Hafey at hafeym@uncw.edu.

For information on CESTEM’s Lending Library, visit the Technology Loan Program website.