Summer Liberal Studies Program Brings Development Opportunities to Future, Current Educators
Liberal Studies major Megan McBrien immersed herself in rich learning experiences this summer at Cal Poly. Joining seasoned teachers in the Liberal Studies-led California Math and Science Project’s professional development program, she poured over curriculum and familiarized herself with the Common Core Standards.
Heading into her senior year, she jumped at the opportunity to spend two weeks as both an assistant and a participant in the workshop.
The program helped her bridge the knowledge gap between her understanding of curriculum and standards and the practical teaching skills she’d learned over the years while working in classroom settings and as a camp counselor.
“It was a unique opportunity for us students to wear both teacher and student hats,” McBrien said.
The program gives primary school educators from Paso Robles the opportunity to discover, analyze and apply the components of the new Next Generation Science Standards.
Each day, the teachers were tasked with completing lessons that they might do with students. Afterward, they discussed the meaning, value and application of those lessons in the context of the new science standards.
McBrien says the program enabled her to look at students and lessons from a teacher’s point of view.
“We were trying to apply this knowledge to our classrooms as teachers, but we were also understanding concepts and connections for the first time as students,” she said. “The hands-on lessons, deep and insightful discussions, and availability of rich resources made this experience useful and one that I will never forget,” she said.