During these uncertain times, we know that teachers are looking for flexible ways to engage students both virtually and in their classrooms. As former math teachers, we understand the need for new supports to integrate math standards with computational thinking and to support students’ career awareness. As researchers with experience working with rural communities nationwide, we know that long distances and short budgets make it hard to get teachers consistent access to high-quality professional development and a professional network to help them thrive and grow.
We have received a grant from the U.S. Department of Education to meet these needs. Our project, MPACT: Math and Computational Thinking through 3D Making, provides rural teachers with virtual PD on ways to use 3D printing and household items to develop their math instruction by integrating project-based learning, career awareness, computational thinking, and spatial reasoning. The PD and all necessary materials are grant-funded and our program is aligned to the California Common Core State Standards in Mathematics for grades 4-7. All curricular materials will be available for free at the grants’ conclusion and teachers get to keep any technology provided by the grant. We have adapted all program materials for use both in the classroom and in distance learning.
Teachers who piloted MPACT in 2019-20 appreciated its support to bring problem based learning and open-ended questions to their math lessons.
MPACT teachers will:
- Receive 24 hours of PD, all materials necessary to implement the program (a 3D printer, CAD software, classroom materials/home-based materials), and a stipend for their time.
- Be asked to implement the program (between 6-20 lessons per year) during the 20-21 and 21-22 school years, provide feedback via questionnaires every few weeks, and administer a student questionnaire twice a year.
We only have funding to support 35 MPACT teachers and training. We will hold program information sessions June 25, June 30, and July 9 at 8AM. . If you or any of your teachers are interested please email us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Thank you for your consideration,
Nicole Arshan, Ph.D.
MPACT Project Director