The STEM Education Center offers a variety of professional development workshops for teachers on WPI's campus during the academic year as well as throughout the summer. We focus on enriching STEM education in the classroom at both the subject specific level and as fully integrated subject content & practices across STEM fields. Scroll down to review the upcoming PD offerings. 

Please note: All workshops require a minimum number of registrations to run; registration closes one week prior to each workshop. For more information about any of these professional development opportunities, please email Mia Dubosarsky at mdubosarsky@wpi.edu.

The STEM Club

The STEM Education Center invites you to join the STEM Club - a PD series for current and aspiring STEM teachers (grades 4-12). The STEM Club meets on Wednesday afternoons, from 3:30-6:30 at WPI.  Each club meeting is led by a teacher presenting a STEM project s/he conducted in the classroom; participants get to try, exchange ideas, make connections, and leave with a project they can try in their classrooms. 

STEM Club Dates and topics:

  • Wednesday, October 11, 2017
    Topic: Human vs. Alien game (ecosystems, heredity, tech/engineering); Presented by Tyler Letendre from Hanscom Middle School.
  • Wednesday, December 13, 2017
    Topic: Promoting Grit through STEM Education; Presented by Adam Brunner from the Massachusetts Academy of Math and Science.
  • Wednesday, February 28, 2018
    Topic
    : Protect Your Melon: Designing an All-sport Helmet; Presented by Christine Robbins and Kerry Palumbo from Auburn Middle School.
  • Wednesday, April 25, 2018
    Topic: Locker Redesign
    (scaling, measurement, and engineering technology); Presented by Elizabeth (Betsy) Wermuth from Northbridge Middle School.  

Cost & PDPs
• ​Club participants: $25 per session/$85 for the entire STEM Club series (12 PDPs)
• Club presenters: FREE Club participation if your proposal was selected to be presented (18 PDPs)

For questions regarding registration and session proposals email Mia Dubosarsky at mdubosarsky@wpi.edu.

Increasing Diversity in STEM

  • Target Audience: All
  • Term: Academic Year (February break)
  • Date & Time: February 22, 2018; 8:30-12:30 
  • Registration fee: Free

Description: In preparation for National Engineers Week, February 18-24, 2018, WPI offers a week full of engineering activities for the community. As part of it, the STEM Education Center offers a free PD for educators interested in engaging all students in STEM learning. Participants will take part in an active workshop about the strategies and practices that enhance student motivation and reduce inequalities.

This interactive workshop reflects to participants the bias, stereotypes, and other societal factors that prevent students from certain groups to pursue STEM majors and careers. The workshop then presents research-based methods that make STEM accessible to all groups of students (including girls, students with learning or physical disabilities, students who live in poverty and students from non-English speaking families) and thus reduce the STEM gap. The event is free but requires registration.

Email Mia Dubosarsky to sign up for this workshop.

Project Presentation Day at WPI

  • Target Audience: 6-12 educators, science/math/STEM coordinators
  • Term: Academic Year; Friday, April 20, 2018
  • Registration fee: Free


Description: Join fellow secondary educators during April vacation for a special professional development day that connects standards with quality STEM projects for the classroom. During WPI’s senior capstone STEM Project Presentation Day, you will visit projects in your area of interest and join other educators for an active workshop about the process of designing quality STEM projects. This hands-on session will address educational standards (NGSS and Math Common Core) as well as integrated STEM approaches.

TouchTomorrow for Educators

  • Target Audience: All
  • Date: Saturday, June 9, 2018 
  • Fee: Free 

Description: PK-12 educators in formal, informal, and home-school settings are invited to attend special educators' workshops as part of WPI’s annual TouchTomorrow festival. Join us to learn about bringing STEM to your students or children through robotics and engineering challenges, and about the many opportunities to engage with the STEM Education Center at WPI or in your school. These free workshops are limited to 20 participants each and require pre-registration; Registration opens May 1st, 2018.

**SUMMER 2018 STEM PROFESSIONAL DEVELOPMENT OFFERINGS**    

Register for summer PD
 

LEGO Robotics for Educators

Due to high demand, we offer three types of LEGO Robotics programs: 

  • An entry level program for K-4 grade teachers with no prior experience with robotics; Date: July 9-13, 2018. 
  • An entry level program for 5-7 grade teachers with no prior experience with robotics; This PD is offered during the following weeks: July 16-20, July 23-27, and July 30-August 3
  • An advanced program for 5-12 grade teachers who would like to expand their knowledge with advanced programming and challenging tasks. This program is offered during the following weeks: July 9-13, and July 16-20.  

Hours: 8:30-4:30 
Fee: $580
PDPs/CEUs: 36/3.6
Description (for all levels): All LEGO Robotics for Educators programs include two main components: LEGO Mindstorms EV3 programming, and STEM education pedagogy. The LEGO Mindstorms EV3 component involves hands on practice of using the different sensors to program a robot; the advanced program will focus on more challenging programming & tasks.  The STEM education component includes a review of robotics & engineering related standards, the engineering design process, and discussions of possible classroom scenarios related to robotics challenges. Participants leave the programs with LEGO robotics and general STEM resources. In all LEGO programs educators will be working in small teams alongside middle school students.

Register for summer PD

Engineering a Story  

  • Target Audience: PK-8 educators
  • Term: Summer
  • Date:  Wednesday, July 25, 2018; 8:30-3:30
  • Fee: $85
  • PDPs/CEUs: 6/0.6

Description: This fun and engaging workshop offers a hands-on approach for educators to explore practical ways for using engineering design and thinking skills to enrich learning and expose students to concepts of engineering from a young age. Aligned with the NGSS, this PD presents methods for using a text (fiction or non-fiction) as the context for problem solving. Teachers will use books they already use in the classroom to identify a key problem, generate solutions, focus on the best fit solution and design a prototype to solve the problem presented in the book. This process engages students of any age, fosters critical reading and thinking skills, and stresses creativity and multiple solutions approach. Engineering a Story* does not require any additional curriculum. Instead, it builds on classroom texts already used by teachers and thus creates a true integration of subjects.

** This program is adapted from Bill Wolfson's Engineering Lens program.

Register for summer PD

Teaching and Learning with MA STE Framework

  • Target Audience: K-12 teachers and administrators
  • Term: Summer
  • Date:  Thursday, July 26, 2018; 8:30-3:30
  • Fee: $85
  • PDPs/CEUs: 6/0.6

Description: Let’s unpack the standards and practices in the 2016 MA STE Framework together! Participants will review the spiral structure of core ideas and unpack the 8 science and engineering practices. Participants then engage in hands on tasks and projects that emphasize the integration of content and practices. The workshop ends with sharing resources that are aligned with the 2016 Framework.      

Register for summer PD

Developing and Using Models

  • Target Audience: K-12 teachers and administrators
  • Term: Summer
  • Date:  Tuesday, July 31, 2018; 8:30-3:30.
  • Fee: $85
  • PDPs/CEUs: 6/0.6

Description: This PD unpacks the second NGSS practice: Developing and Using Models. Participants will examine a variety of ways to model/represent a phenomenon and discuss the ways that scientists, engineers, and mathematicians use models in their daily work. Participants will then engage in two hands on activities related to developing and using models and share resources for standard based modeling activities.  

Register for summer PD

STEM/STEAM Projects

  • Target Audience: 4-12 grade teachers and administrators
  • Term: Summer
  • Date:  Wednesday, August 1, 2018; 8:30-3:30
  • Registration Fee: $85
  • PDPs/CEUs: 6/0.6

Description: This day of STEM & STEAM (science, technology, engineering, arts, and math) projects offers participants the opportunity to engage with two different design challenges. First, participants are introduced to the framework of STEM and STEAM and then continue with two integrated STEM projects. Following each project educators will work in grade-level teams to modify the challenges to best fit their students' level of understanding.

Register for summer PD

Vex Robotics for Educators

  • Target Audience: 5-12 educators, VEX team coaches
  • Term: Summer
  • Date:  August 6-10, 2018; 8:30-4:30
  • Fee: $580
  • PDPs/CEUs: 36/3.6

Description: This intensive program weaves together robotics concepts and practices with STEM education topics. The robotics components include VEX robot building and programming using Easy C software. A culminating task will require participants to apply their learning toward the design and programming of a robot that competes in a VEX challenge. The STEM education component includes a review of STEM standards related to robotics, application of the engineering design process, and discussions of possible classroom scenarios related to robotics and robotics challenges. Educators will be working in small teams alongside high school students (rising 9-10 graders).

Register for summer PD