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Getting the geosciences into teacher candidates class schedule...  

This post was editted by Wendi Williams on Jun, 2010
According to data from the U.S. Department of Education, many of the teacher candidates (elementary and middle childhood tracks that mainly do not require content majors outside of Education Majors) take the math and science --all of it-- through a community college. How can we make sure that geology/earth science (or whatever other label we can use) is one of their core courses?

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This post was editted by Wendi Williams on Jun, 2010
[My apologies of transposing letters and dropping punctuation...symptomatic of typing too fast... I actually expect more from my own students; my bad. :) ]

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The most popular classes at our institutions for teacher candidates are: physical science (physics, chemistry, astronomy, and geology -- but weak on geology); oceanography; physical geography; geology.

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A number of years ago, our elementary ed students were required to take an intro course in physical science by their transfer schools; I'm not sure if that is still the case. I do get a fair number of students who intend to become teachers taking my intro physical geology course. I also have had some students who are employed teachers coming back to take intro geology because they are picking up a second certification area.

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Elementary Ed majors are required to take one life science and one physical science course (which was a recent frustrating change since it used to be 2 science courses, less specificity). Many take geology since it's perceived as the least intimidating. However, I have also worked with education faculty to bring future teachers into my classroom.

Then I try to be explicit about why I use different types of techniques in my classroom--ideally, I'd love to be able to create a pre-service cohort where we could coordinate between methods courses and content courses.

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I want to thank everyone posting thus far. It is more clear to me now that during the workshop of the interest in preparing K-12 teachers. A very very important role that community colleges take on...

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