Session S55c (Wednesday, 5:15pm, Willaman Gateway)

P869: Promoting STEM goals with action research: A study of the Chippewa River by gifted middle school students

Sharyl Majorski (Central Michigan University & Saginaw Chippewa Tribal College, USA), Sarah Murphy (Central Michigan University, USA)

On April 28th, 2009 President Obama called on the nation to make STEM education a top priority in this country. At Central Michigan University this mission has been taken on at many levels. Fitting with this year’s theme “Education for All”, chemistry educators at CMU participate in an outreach program for gifted middle school students interested in the sciences. To fulfill this mission, it is recognized that science cannot be simply a subject that students passively learn through only lectures and tests, but they must do.  During the fall semester, gifted middle school students embark on the campus of CMU and proceed to collect, analyze, and present water quality data collected along the Chippewa River in an action research project for sustaining the fresh water supply in mid-Michigan.  This presentation highlights how to engage young students in action research and how to make it relevant and exciting.


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