Mines offers water-energy training to school teachers

Teachers taking part learned was to infuse standards-based, active-learning lessons with current research and understanding from the water-energy sector. | File photo

The Colorado School of Mines recently offered the inaugural summer training experience of the Water-Energy Education for the Next Generation (WE²NG) to nine Colorado public school teachers, giving them the understanding and educational tools to better teach STEM topics.

“This first cohort of teachers has set the bar high,” Mines assistant professor Andrea Blaine, who helped lead the program, said. “I believe that a systemic, sustained method of bringing real and exciting science problems into the classroom could revolutionize the way the next generation of scientists addresses critical issues.”

The program is sponsored by the National Science Foundation and is a component of the ConocoPhillips Center for a Sustainable WE²ST. Blaine is leading the initiative with civil and environmental engineering professor Terri Hogue.

The public school teachers taking part learned was to infuse standards-based, active-learning lessons with current research and understanding from the water-energy sector, and the six-week program included opportunities for the teachers to meet with and forge connections with industry leaders.

“I learned a lot about hydrology, geology and geochemistry, which has made me rethink the way I want to teach our energy transformation unit,” STEM teacher Patricia Brandenburger, who works with eighth-graders in Littleton, Colorado, said.

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Colorado School of Mines 1500 Illinois St Golden, CO 80401

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