A table topped with a large sheet of paper sat in the middle of a dark room. It was illuminated by the only lights in the room, a projector and a web cam suspending from the ceiling six feet above the table. Printed on the paper was a grid, a legend and a stylized urban landscape. Several students hovered around and talked about where to place colored tokens on the paper landscape.
Cracking secret codes can be a lot of fun: Little Orphan Annie’s decoder ring may have kept plenty of backyard bad guys at bay. It’s also often no laughing matter: Julius Caesar used ciphers to protect his correspondence. Julian Assange unlocked databases that few people were meant to see.
Researchers with the Climate Literacy Zoo Education Network never thought their project on climate change would end up as a permanent exhibit in Brookfield Zoo.
They originally intended to examine why some members of the public showed a lack of concern about climate change and struggled to make sense of scientific evidence about its impact on the environment. The team planned to offer Brookfield Zoo general strategies to educate their visitors on climate change based on the data they collected.
High school chemistry classes typically go something like this: A teacher stands in front of the room and writes symbols on the blackboard. Students copy them, then move to a wet lab to mix a concoction in a test tube.
The Learning Sciences Research Institute’s Mike Stieff is changing that formula.
With the Connected Chemistry Curriculum, Stieff and his fellow researchers are bringing the seemingly abstract world of chemistry to life for students – and raising test scores, while they’re at it.
Researchers in curriculum development at UIC’s Learning Sciences Research Institute know that successful, small-scale education reforms can sometimes lose their spark when they're introduced to a wider audience of classrooms and schools. LSRI researcher Jim Lynn and his team set out to investigate how to help struggling ninth-graders succeed in algebra. Even in the early stages the Intensified Algebra Project showed promise beyond the research setting.