Regional science education workshop online through the college of exploration
Fortner, Rosanne W.
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Six days of interactive on-line programming brought the science of the Great Lakes of North America to workshop participants from 20 U.S. states and four countries. Regional leaders of the Center for Ocean Sciences Education Excellence [COSEE] for the Great Lakes region partnered with The College of Exploration, an international not-for-profit educational organization that develops, delivers and evaluates web-based workshops for collaborative learning. They assembled materials and experiences for a regional overview plus topics of resource allocation, life in the lakes, climate change, and invasive species, followed by suggested ways to blend Great Lakes and ocean learning. Each day’s programming included a suggestion for “flow” to make sense of the materials, streaming video programs providing information or demonstrating curriculum activities, and lists of additional resources. In addition to bringing over 350 educators into conversational contact with scientists, the program catalyzed teachers and provided the opportunity to share and organize many resources from each of the COSEE Great Lakes states. The most exciting component was the interaction of participants with the resources and each other. Online entries demonstrated that learning was being constructed with each day’s experiences and perspectives were broadened by discussions among the diverse learners. All workshop materials remain on the College of Exploration web [http://www.coexploration.org/coseegreatlakes/] for continued use.