The K-5 Science Endorsement preparation program is one of the action plans resulting from our conceptual framework process and is part of our core work supported by the RESA staff.
The need for the Science Endorsement program resulted from the following:
- The Georgia Race to the Top grant requires that in 2012 science will count as a second indicator for adequate yearly progress.
- GPS implementation indicated an increased need for developing content knowledge as well as pedagogical techniques for K-5 Science teachers to improve student achievement and reduce achievement gaps in science.
- Needs assessment data from member systems, student performance in the area of science on standardized tests, and the inclusion of action steps to increase science achievement in system and school improvement plans provide further evidence to necessitate the implementation of the K-5 Science Endorsement Program.
The K-5 Science Endorsement consists of the equivalent of four semester-long content courses and an authentic residency/field experience or 200 contact hours. The endorsement provides candidates with the opportunity to increase their science content and pedagogical knowledge appropriate to K-5 teaching. The coursework is equivalent to graduate-level courses. In addition to the identified culminating assessment in the table below, other assignments provide additional assessment evidence that candidates meet program standards. Program evidence must be at the acceptable level to earn the endorsement. Successful participants will earn 20 PLU’s at the completion of the coursework and authentic residency/field experience. The 4 courses will be delivered in a blended format of face-to-face and online instruction with the online instruction not to exceed more than 40% of the course.
The following ideals are embedded in the course series:
- All courses emphasize content knowledge with a focus on the big ideas of science, the nature of science and conceptual understandings.
- All courses are designed to infuse pedagogical strategies with content knowledge and are delivered in a manner to model good teaching practices.
- All courses embed the use of inquiry-based learning, safety, real-world application, using the tools of science, and integrating among science disciplines and other subject areas including mathematics and literacy.
- The courses will emphasize the K-5 PSC Science Endorsement rules, the National Science Education Standards (NSES) and the Georgia Standards.
The K-5 Science Endorsement is composed of the following courses:
|Essentials in Life Science||50 hours/5 PLU|
|Essentials in Earth Science||50 hours/5 PLU|
|Essentials in Physical Science||50 hours/5 PLU|
|Essentials in Pedagogy||50 hours/5 PLU (25 hours pedagogy, 25 hours authentic residency)|
Required resources – Membership to the National Science Teachers Association – $100 in order to access online content resources such as Scilinks, Science Objects, a professional learning community and access to articles from the journals “The Science Teacher”, “Science Scope”, and “Science & Children”.
Prior to completion of the course, and during the authentic residency observations, the residency supervisor, school administrator, or RESA Program Coordinator will also complete a final disposition rubric for the candidate.