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Math, Science and Language Arts Academies Set

By Linda Abel
University Communications

APRIL 20, 2009 | The University of Wisconsin-River Falls is hosting model academies in math, science and language arts for educators teaching pre-kindergarten through grade 12.

The academies have been held in February and March and the final session for the semester will be May 1 from 4:45 to 8:45 p.m. and May 2 from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. in the Wyman Education Building on campus.

Designed to bring educators and UW faculty together, the Model Academies give educators a forum to share their insight on a variety of topics.

“The idea behind the academies is for faculty members to develop a stronger connection with Wisconsin teachers and be aware of what is going on in schools today,” says Mary Manke, professor and associate dean of the College of Education and Professional Studies.

The reason for including a wide range of educators is to provide a broad topic area and expand ideas throughout the grade levels, said Manke.

In the academies, educators learn new ideas that they can use in their own classrooms and provide examples of what they have learned and used in the past. Technology is used throughout the academies to complete projects and expand the use of digital learning.  

As a leader in the academies project, Manke explains: “If teachers can understand what is going on in other education levels, than it will lead to a better school system over all.”  

The funding for the academies is provided by a PK-16 grant that is designed to improve teacher quality in the UW System. To receive funding the content of the program has to be related to the teacher development and the idea must be submitted for approval.

“Upon completion of the academies, teachers are asked to complete a one-credit assignment in which they describe how they have used what they have learned in their classrooms,” said Manke.

The UWRF mathematics department has taken the lead on the academies, and six have been held since fall 2006. Some UWRF faculty members who have been involved with the academies include Erick Hofacker, Kathy Ernie, Laurel Langford, Kathy Tomlinson, Robert Coffman, Marilyn Duerst, Jamie Schneider and Hilary Pollack, Manke said. The PK-12 teachers who have attended are from school districts in River Falls, Ellsworth, Prescott, Pepin, St. Croix Central, Hudson, Somerset, New Richmond and Osceola.   

“I really enjoy these academies a lot,” says Manke “They are enhancing our educators and in turn helping the students.”

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Last updated: Thursday, 22-Apr-2010 16:09:34 Central Daylight Time

 

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