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My Professional Teaching Portfolio

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Sarah Davis

on 26 April 2014

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Transcript of My Professional Teaching Portfolio

Sarah Davis
A Professional Teaching

About Me...
My Teaching
What does good science teaching look like?
Curriculum Units
Accomplishments and Qualifications
Graduate Project
Reflections on the Lynchburg College Masters of Science Education Program
Brookville High School science teachers struggle to add laboratories into their curriculum. They feel pressured by time constraints, pacing guides, and SOL content. In addition, teachers often feel anxious about doing labs - especially inquiry labs - because of their own lack of experience with them, the prep time involved in putting them together, and the overall feel of a classroom that seems chaotic. I wanted, with my project, to begin to encourage science teachers to become more confident with lab use by putting together easily attainable science reference material, lab supplies, and, for some teachers, container labs (ready to use labs for their classrooms) so their confidence in lab use improves and labs are used more frequently. How did I do this?
Ocean Waves and Movement
Trained and Certified as a
Santa Cruz Teacher Mentor
The Prep Rooms!
The Library
The Container
Completed Laying the Foundation Training in Pre-AP Earth Science
Science Department Chair since 2011
Teacher of the Year 2003
Participant in the Student Scholar Showcase at Lynchburg College, 2013
My family!
I am a product of hard-working, dedicated parents and a childhood that was on-the-go and filled with adventure.

I come home every night to a wonderful husband and a hilarious, strong-willed, happy daughter.
My passions!
I love to read - mostly fiction. I enjoy a page-turner filled with intrigue.

I am passionate about living a healthy lifestyle. My family complains about organic-this and organic-that but I know, in the end, we are doing our bodies and the Earth a favor!
I love a GREAT adventure! Traveling, risk-taking (in a safe way), eating new things, dancing when no one else is...these are the things that keep my life interesting and full of laughter.
I take teaching VERY seriously. After 12 years, I still get excited about using new approaches. I thoroughly enjoy lesson planning and love the thrill of a lesson that works as smooth as butter.
Other interesting tidbits:

I've run 4 half-marathons. The last one (Virginia Beach Rock 'n Roll 1/2 marathon, Sept. 2011) was a personal record.

I was a music major at the University of Iowa for 2 years. It was always a dream of mine to be a band director. However, all it took was taking my first Geology class and I was hooked! Trumpet playing and practicing (especially) took on a different tone - literally.

I am a proud graduate of The University of Iowa!!! Go Hawkeyes!!

I once played the trumpet in front of Pope John Paul II...it was World Youth Day in Denver, CO, 1993. What a thrill!
The Research
Member of NSTA
Member of VAST
Freshman Transition Committee
School Improvement Committee
Coordinator of the school hospitality committee, "Happy Squad"
Differentiated Instruction Advisor
Ocean Sustainability
NSTA Position Statement
According to NSTA, "developmentally appropriate laboratory investigations are essential for students of all ages and ability levels."

"Inquiry-based laboratory investigations at every level should be at the core of the science program and should be woven into every lesson and concept strand."

"Laboratory investigations in the middle and high school classroom should help all students develop a growing understanding of the complexity and ambiguity of empirical work, as well as the skills to calibrate and troubleshoot equipment used to make observations."

- Adopted by the NSTA Board of Directors, February 2007
"Teachers' Perception of Science Laboratory Learning Environment and its Relationship to Teachers' Satisfaction" - Halim, et al (2012)
According to a study conducted by Halim, Ahmad, et al, (2012) "teachers are less satisfied with their current or actual school laboratories in terms of having the opportunity to carry out more open-ended inquiry lab work."

Teachers seem unsure about the value of lab instruction due to factors such as emphasis on examinations, lack of time, and lack of skills.

Teachers perceive their existing laboratory processes, procedures, available lab materials, etc. to be inadequate and this leads to a lower satisfaction with their performance and job.

According to Akklilic and Semeric (2005) satisfaction in performance is important because it adds to a positive teaching attitude and learning environment. This eventually determines the success of the overall program.
"An Investigation of the Relationship between Science Process Skills with Efficient Laboratory Use and Science Achievement in Chemistry Education" - Feyzioglu (2009)
Feyzioglu determined that factors affecting the efficient use of labs in the science classroom include the preparedness of teachers for laboratory applications, science process skills included in laboratory exercises, and creating links between labs and a student's life and science work.
Feyzioglu also determined that there was a link between science process skills and student academic achievement.

Labs, however, are most helpful when students are constructing hypotheses, testing and designing experiments.
Feyzioglu, B. (2009). An Investigation of the Relationship between Science Process Skills with Efficient Laboratory Use and Science Achievement in Chemistry Education.
Journal of Turkish Science Education
, 6, 114-132.
Halim, L., Che Nidzam, C. A., Sharifah, I. A., & Subahan, M. M. (2012). Teachers' Perception of Science Laboratory Learning Environment and Its Relationship to Teachers' Satisfaction.
The International Journal of Learning
, 18, 67-76. Web.

1M. Emin Akkilic and 2Certin Semeric , 2005. The Measurement of Customer`s Satisfaction in Education Services Marketing.
Pakistan Journal of Social Sciences
, 3: 997-1001.
Having a lab that you can pull off the shelf and easily use on any given day, encourages the use of labs for teachers because it removes prep-time - which is often difficult to acquire with all the other time commitments teachers have.

One of our goals next year is to assemble a team of detail-conscience students who can act as lab assistants throughout the year and prep labs the day before use.
As a Teacher Mentor for science teachers, I find that science teachers first starting out struggle with inquiry and constructivist teaching. The internet may be loaded with resources, but they are not often resources that follow real inquiry methods and constructivist teaching. I wanted to put together a library that offers real, hands-on resources that can be adapted to any science instruction. This would allow any teacher to take these books home and peruse their activities and resources to develop their constructivist teaching.
My Resume
Instructional Design
Differentiated Instruction
(Some Examples)
Tiered Assignments
Inquiry Learning
Other Inquiry Learning Opportunities:
Students are asked to solve these problems
throughout the year:

How do Fortune Fish work?
Design a paper vehicle that will fly further than all the rest.
Think as a scientist: If you believe all the continents were once joined, what kind of evidence would you go in search of to support your your hypothesis?
Using on the supplies provided, find a way to blow up a balloon in a plastic bottle.
Test and create the best way to remove oil from water (simulation of an oil spill.)
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