Learning Science in Informal Environments

Saturday, February 20, 2010: 8:30 AM-11:30 AM
Room 3 (San Diego Convention Center)
The panel will provide insight into the findings of a report released last year by the National Research Council which has opened up new opportunities for research about and practice of science learning outside the classroom. Informal environments include everyday experiences, such as hunting, walking in the park, and watching a sunrise; designed settings, such as science centers, zoos, aquariums, botanical gardens, and planetariums; and programs, such as afterschool science clubs or environmental monitoring through a local citizens' organization. Cross-cutting features that shape these environments include media as a context and tool for learning and the opportunities these environments provide for inclusion of culturally, socially, and linguistically diverse communities. The report assessed evidence of science learning across settings and age-groups and over varied spans of time, identified qualities of learning experiences special to informal environments and shared with schools, and developed an agenda for research and development of the field.
Bruce V. Lewenstein, Cornell University
Bruce V. Lewenstein, Cornell University
Marcia Linn, University of California
Philip Bell, University of Washington
Strands of Science Learning
Laura Martin, Arizona Science Center
Informal Science Learning in Designed Spaces
Vera Michalchik, SRI International
Afterschool and Adult Programs for Learning Science
Brian Smith, Pennsylvania State University
Role of Media, Including Games, on Learning Science
Kirsten Ellenbogen, Science Museum of Minnesota
Assessing Informal Science Learning
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