Foran High School, Milford, Connecticut
General Public: Museum, General Public: Amateur, Community College, 9, 11, 12
Ms. Ivers is part of the 2013 NITARP class.
I have a new view on doing research. I now understand the need for solid science programs at all levels as a foundation for future scientists, not just astronomers. This experience has made me reflect on my pedagogy and motivates me to continue to strive to improve my techniques.
I have found that “real astronomy” involves a lot of data processing. In addition, I have found that collaboration is a very important aspect of the process.
The best thing about the [Summer] trip was simply being on the campus at Caltech as an active participant in a science project. I still feel honored to be able to participate in this program. On top of that, to be able to extend the tendrils of my own learning to a few of my students only adds to the satisfaction I derive in being a teacher.
I am thrilled with the general friendliness of the scientists. I was made to feel at ease as a participant in the program. It is evident that everything is extremely organized and structured in such a way that a participant gets the most possible out of their time at the meeting. There is time to meet previous participants finishing up, new people on the new teams, the scientists, the students, and many other scientists not affiliated with the project. Just being around cutting edge technology and current astronomy projects is mind-blowing.
The most interesting thing I learned was that it is possible for very young students to wrap their heads around complex “higher level” science if they are motivated and engaged.
The most interesting thing I did was to discuss the learning experience with the students who participated in last year’s project. Being in the final stage of their experience and reflecting on that process was the most fun for me. I truly enjoyed the sense of accomplishment they had gained while engaged in the experience. They were proud of themselves and seemed to be waiting for more.
I am very impressed at the abilities of the [NITARP 2012] youngsters in handling the science. It is wonderful to see teachers engaging students in this way as it is an experience that could help direct them toward becoming scientists.
I learned that there is a lot I need to learn!