Blog

From engineer to teacher

Teacher Ambassador Ken Hawthorn

Ken Hawthorn started his career as a prototyping engineer working with early stage companies to develop proof-of-concept technologies: localized surface plasmon resonance (LSPR) in biotech to long-range electric motorcycles. After volunteering in an afterschool program to help academically and socially at-risk students, he discovered that engineering has a lot in common with teaching.

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Doing without cookie cutter labs

Teacher Ambassador Kristina Koster

Kristina Koster first became interested in teaching as a tutor for the TRIO Upward Bound program while in junior college. The program helps low-income, first-generation college-bound students get into and succeed in college by providing free afterschool tutoring, Saturday educational workshops, and college visits. Kristina recalls, “I was able to see that I could combine my love for helping people with my love for science.”

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Never stop learning

Teacher Ambassador Emerlyn Gatchalian

As a child, Emerlyn Gatchalian was always the teacher: “I’d always get the role of teacher whenever I had playtime with my friends.”

She began her formal teaching career in the Philippines, where a passionate chemistry teacher, who sometimes wore a magician hat and waved a fairy wand, inspired her love for teaching science. “She made learning so exciting and fun,” Emerlyn says. In 2005, after a decade teaching in the Philippines, Emerlyn came to the U.S., but, “Teaching here was so different.” Coming from a more disciplined classroom tradition, she wasn’t used to class management issues. So she sought additional training and learned to implement new classroom routines and policies.

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Making connections between the classroom and home

Teacher Ambassador Thomas Troy

Thomas Troy’s dream vacation includes a trip to the Arctic “to witness rapid climate change,” but the best adventure he’s ever had was much closer to the equator. He and his family spent five weeks on a homestay in Costa Rica where they took classes to learn Spanish, which were “both rigorous and rewarding.” While his family “took advantage of opportunities to get to know as many Costa Ricans (or Ticos) as possible, such as local clerks, waiters, and teachers,” they also found time to go snorkeling, bird watching, and swimming.

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Community and citizen science: A brief history and report from CitSci 2019

Paper Mech Crab

From its beginning, we at the Concord Consortium have advocated for the notion that young people can produce high-quality, meaningful data to answer real questions. More than 20 years ago, Concord Consortium founder Robert Tinker sketched a compelling vision for authentic science in schools and communities, making the case that anyone can be a scientist. […]

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Research in Educational Technology in 2018

Water Filter

In 2018, we made an impact with 11 articles published in researcher and teacher practitioner journals that showcase the state of the field in STEM educational technology. Learn how automated scoring during formative assessment can diagnose and enhance students’ argumentation skills (#4), how modeling and simulation on a CAD platform can be used to teach […]

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