I believe that ACS has to focus on the challenge to equip and asist science teachers in preparing our elementary, middle and high school students to be confident in embarking on a scientific carreer.
One of the few ways the national ACS can help is putting together demonstations that the elementary and junior high science teachers can safely do.
Each year, our local section asks the local high school chemistry teachers to nominate their best students. The best student and their teacher are invited to a local ACS section awards dinner and the student gets a prize (usually a CRC handbook).
For the elementary and junior high teachers, it is much more difficult. Over the years, our section tried several times to contact every elementary and junior high science teacher in our area with an invitation to section meeting and an offer of help. Usually the response was close to zero.
I know it's a year and a half since the last post, but as a former science teacher in both high school and middle school, I think I can offer insight into why many teachers tend not to reply to these invitations: they are extremely busy. Particularly the elementary grade teachers - they often have to write 4 or 5 lessons per day. Add to that the mini-lessons in each overarching lesson, and it's easy to see why calling ACS back stays on the to-do list.
A more effective way to reach these teachers is to work with the science coordinator at the school or district level. Arrange an after-school info session at which a member demonstrates the lessons, materials, and support ACS has to offer. Bring a number of kits to give away at these meetings and schedule the next meeting during the first one so the teachers who couldn't come to the first will have the opportunity to come to the second.
In my chapter, we do "magic shows" for schools and science classes. Other places could do the same. We have a set of very safe chemistry demos, that we (college students) can perform for school and community groups, the demos are pretty simple to set up, perform, and take down, and then we explain the science behind them, adjusted to the understanding of the students. This could easily take the place of one of the science lessons.
I just saw this question and wanted to comment. If every ACS member would just give the link to the ACS website to teachers with a comment "Go to this website for help with chemistry ideas" On the ACS website any science teacher(elementary, high school or post secondary) can find so many resources and links. It is our duty as Chenistry Ambassadors to help teachers know where to go for help as well as being mentors. Please share best practices. Ruth Woodall, Nashville
I agree. Chemistry Ambassadors could send an email with this link Share ACS Classroom Resources to teachers at schools in their neighborhood. It has science teaching guides, hands-on activities and more for all grade levels. You can link with a teacher in your community today!
Tennessee ACS had a booth at the Tennessee Science Teachers Association conference and gave away lots of ACS materials, goodies, and information. Nashville also hosted an Industry spotlight on Saturday that brought in 90 attendees to learn about careers in Chemistry.
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