Project Pathways: A Math and Science Partnership in Arizona
Arizona has been in the news because of restrictive laws targeting immigrants, but it is also the scene of innovative programs designed to help immigrant children learn science and math.
Project Pathways, funded by the National Science Foundation, is such a program. It is a collaborative effort involving four school districts (Chandler, Mesa, Tempe, and Tolleson), the Center for Research on Education in Science, Mathematics, Engineering, and Technology (CRESMET) at Arizona State University (ASU), the Maricopa Community College District, and Intel.
Project Pathways is aimed at improving mathematics and science learning in grades 9-12. The project’s purpose is to narrow the majority/minority achievement gap, encourage students to take challenging science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) courses, increase high school student STEM learning and achievement, and improve the pass rates in ASU's introductory calculus, physics and biology courses.
Project Pathways will adapt student modules to research-developed English language learner technology platform.
The materials developed through Project Pathways will be used in four courses in an ASU graduate degree program for in-service teachers.
One example of the research taking place in Project Pathways was reported in a paper titled “How old is the earth? An exploration of geologic time.” In this research, 52 math and science teachers took part in a graduate course studying local landscapes to help them understand the meaning of the enormous spans of time that make up our planet’s history.
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