College of Education > News and Publications > 2016: 10-12 news > Heard on Campus: Science education focus of annual Waterbury Lecture

Heard on Campus: Science education focus of annual Waterbury Lecture

Brett Moulding, former science supervisor for Utah, and Peter McLaren, founding director of Next Gen Education, LLC, discussed the importance of research and development in science education at the annual Waterbury Lecture held Nov. 29 at The Penn Stater Hotel and Conference Center.

Brett Moulding
Brett Moulding, former science supervisor for Utah, speaks to current and future educators at the annual Waterbury Lecture held Tuesday, Nov. 29.
“Do we in fact see changes in teaching and learning as a result of what’s happening in professional development? Does the professional development lead to changes in the classroom? And for three-dimensional learning, that means that the teacher has to, in fact, change the way they interact with children.

“As we’re looking at teaching and learning, we need to ask the questions, do the protocols we have, do the things we observe classroom instruction with currently in science education measure changes in the three-dimensional learning component that’s in the framework of the Next Generation Science Standards. We have to always remember — it’s not about teaching, it’s about teaching and learning.”

— Former Utah State Science Supervisor Brett Moulding spoke about the need for research and development in science teacher learning at the annual Waterbury Lecture held Nov. 29 at the Penn Stater Hotel and Conference Center. Moulding’s presentation addressed the importance of professional development for science teachers to meet the Next Generation Science Standards (NGSS), a set of K-12 science content standards that have been adopted by 16 states.

“You can’t think of science education as just curriculum and instruction and assessment. You have to think about professional development and learning. You have to think about high-quality instruction materials. You have to think about the whole ball of wax because if you’re talking about a new vision of practices, cross-curricular concepts and core ideas, those three all have to come together in every aspect of all the systems. It needs to be three-dimensional. Every aspect needs to be three-dimensional.”

Peter McLaren
Peter McLaren, founding director of Next Gen Education, LLC, speaks as part of the annual Waterbury Lecture.

— Peter McLaren, founding director of Next Gen Education, LLC, addressed the need for research and development for high-quality instructional materials and assessments at the annual Waterbury Lecture, sponsored by the College of Education. His presentation discussed NGSS and the need for a three-dimensional approach to teacher learning.

Following the presentations, Moulding and McLaren were joined by Nancy Songer, distinguished professor and dean of the School of Education at Drexel University, and Christine Cunningham, vice president of the Boston Museum of Science, for a panel discussion focusing on science and STEM education.

The annual Waterbury Lecture is sponsored by an endowment from Kenneth Waterbury to the Penn State College of Education. The endowment also funds the Kenneth B. Waterbury Chair in Secondary Education, a position currently held by Richard Duschl.