Sept. 26, 1996

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    Students, schoolteachers partnersin improving science curricula

    Graduate students, advanced undergraduates, postdoctoral fellows and faculty members in the physical and biological sciences are becoming partners in education with Chicago-area schoolteachers through a new, University-based program run by graduate students. "Science Partners for Teachers" creates one-on-one partnerships between University scientists and elementary and high school teachers to help improve science curricula, especially in relation to use of the Internet. Partnerships are established for one academic quarter, and the time commitment for each participant averages about one hour per week. No teaching is required.

    An introduction and partnership-kickoff meeting will be held at noon Wednesday, Oct. 2, in Research Institutes 480.

    Luisa Rebull and Lucia Munoz-Franco, graduate students in Astronomy & Astrophysics, began the Science Partners for Teachers program in autumn 1995. Their goals include helping make science accessible to the general public, particularly young people; working to change the "mad scientist" perception of scientists among the general public; and working with teachers to include current scientific concepts and research in high school and elementary school curricula.

    "We want both partners to benefit from the interaction," said Rebull. "As scientists, we want to learn more about how to teach, how to develop lesson plans and how to improve our ability to communicate scientific concepts. In exchange, we offer ourselves as a resource for teachers who are looking to update their science curricula and increase the use of computers, the Internet and other information technologies in their classrooms."

    For more information, see http://astro.uchicago.edu/outreach/partners/, e-mail partners@astro.uchicago.edu, or contact Rebull at 702-9348.