Initial Publication Date: August 4, 2021

Earth and Environmental Science Educator's Institute: Connecting Models and Evidence Agenda

The New Jersey Earth and Environmental Science Educator's Institute was held from August 4 -6, 2021. If you were a participant, you have access to the Google Classroom with team documents. The files below are the equivalent of a three-ring binder that you might typically receive at a face-to-face workshop, but with the added bonus that you have access to all the slide presentations plus video recordings and captured chat during the sessions. If you were not a participant in the workshop, we encourage you to watch the session videos and engage in the activities as self-guided, professional development. We are eager for educators to incorporate MEL scaffolds into their teaching.

Pre-Institute Webinar

  • This webinar sets the stage for the summer Institute by providing a common language when it comes to discussing 3-dimensional teaching and learning. It also highlights the role of critical evaluation in most of the scientific practices and in particular, in engaging in argument from evidence.
  • Recording & Slides

Day 1

8:00 AM to 8:15 AM


Mel Summer Institute Icebreaker 2021 front slide

8:15 AM to 8:30 AM

Welcome and Logistics

Intro Welcome Consent front slide

8:30 AM to 10:00 AM

Linking Scientific Models and Evidence

Linking Scientific Models and Evidence Title Slide

More Linking Scientific Models and Evidence Articles

10:00 AM to 10:15 AM


10:15 AM to 10:45 AM

Virtual MEL

Virtual MEL Screen 1

10:45 AM to 12:00 PM

Plausibility and Climate Change

Plausibility & Climate Change Screen 1

Climate Change MEL

12:00 PM to 12:15 PM

Wrap Up

End of Day 1

Day 2

8:00 AM to 8:30 AM

MEL Architecture - Theory to Practice

Act 1_ MEL Architecture-Theory to Practice front slide.

8:30 AM to 9:15 AM

Moon pcMEL (Student Hat)

Where did the Moon come from? front slide

9:15 AM to 10:00 AM

Assessing Explanation Tasks (Teacher Hat)

Assessing Student Explanation Tasks front slide

10:00 AM to 10:15 AM


10:15 AM to 11:15 AM

Talk Moves

Talk Moves - Promoting Rich Discussion in the Classroom_front_slide

11:15 AM to 12:00 PM

Freshwater baMEL (Student Hat)

Freshwater baMEL_front_slide

12:00 PM to 12:15 PM

Wrap Up

End of Day 2

Day 3

8:00 AM to 8:10 AM

Check-in & Questions

  • Dr. Janelle Bailey answers teachers' questions.

8:10 AM to 8:40 AM

Revisiting Using the Explanation Task Rubric to help Move Students from Beginning Level to Mastery Level of SEP's and CCC's

  • Dr. Missy Holzer guides teachers in assessing student responses on the Explanation Task.
  • [Session Video & Chat]

8:40 AM to 9:30 AM

Origins of the Universe baMEL (Student Hat)

Origins of the Universe baMEL front slide

9:30 AM to 10:00 AM

Compare and Contrast pcMELs with baMELs

Compare & Contrast pcMEL & baMEL front slide

10:00 AM to 10:15 AM


10:15 AM to 10:30 AM

Teacher Guide Overview

MEL Project  Teacher Guide Front Cover

10:30 AM to 11:00 AM

Transfer Task

Transfer Task front slide
  • Transfer Task (Acrobat (PDF) 10.1MB Aug6 21)
  • [Session Video & Chat]

11:30 AM to 11:35 AM

Participant Implementation Plans

  • Dr. Tim Klavon guides discussion of teacher implementation plans.
  • [Session Video & Chat]

11:35 AM to 11:45 AM


11:45 AM to 12:00 PM

Meeting with Teachers interested in Research