INTERNATIONAL PROFESSIONAL DEVELOPMENT PROGRAM: MADRID SCIENCE EDUCATORS’ EXPERIENCE IN CHICAGO

T. Oberg De La Garza, R. Ostry

Roosevelt University (UNITED STATES)
This presentation explores an international professional development project in which Madrid Science educators spent 4 weeks engaged in professional development activities and projects at Roosevelt University in Chicago, USA. The objectives of the professional development were to improve teachers’ use of English, increase their knowledge of Science content vocabulary, and expand teachers’ classroom management repertoire.

The professional development was designed to follow the Gradual Release of Responsibility method whereby a new strategy is first modeled, then is practiced in small groups, and finally utilized individually (Pearson & Gallagher, 1983).
Over the four-week project, Madrid educators engaged in various Science experiments at the university and visited local schools’ Science classes of students ranging from ages 11-18 years. Additionally, the educators were paired with students for mini-lessons and tutoring before developing and presenting their own Science lessons to a whole group. Participants of this session will be presented with a description of the continuum of activities, accompanied by a collection of artifacts and photographs of the Madrid educators engaged in the activities.

The objective of the associated research was to explore how the communication and professional skills of Madrid educators changed as a result of engaging in a professional Development project in Chicago. By analyzing responses to survey and interview questions, researchers were able to identify highly successful methods of supporting the project goals and increasing teachers’ use of the English language, knowledge of Science content and vocabulary, and classroom management repertoires. This knowledge can serve as the model for International professional development projects in other content areas and locations.