MAILED: July 23, 1997|
EAU CLAIRE -- Many Wisconsin elementary and secondary teachers become leaders in their school districts through the Wisconsin Academy Staff Development Initiative Lead Teacher Institute.
Chuck Larson, University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire assistant dean of education outreach, is the director of the Lead Teacher Institute, which began in April and will continue through September.
Each year, organizers of the program identify 60 teachers statewide to develop math and science skills, and to instruct them on how to teach better in their respective classrooms. The purpose also is to teach one-week academies for other teachers across the state and provide staff development in their school districts, Larson said.
The Lead Teacher Institute is a five-year program. Teachers in their second year in the program typically are instructors in the academies, he said.
Participants involved can receive seven graduate credits from UW-Eau Claire and expenses are paid for WASDI.
Many take what they've learned and apply it to their own curriculum, Larson said. Some conduct in-service workshops to share what they've learned with teachers in their school districts, he said.
Kris Dimock, a fifth-grade teacher at Bloomer Elementary and a UW-Eau Claire alumna, has taken what she's learned through WASDI and applied it.
Dimock, in her third year with the program, is the president of the Wisconsin Elementary and Middle Level Science Teachers Association. She also has had the opportunity to go to Washington, D.C., and make presentations to the National Science Foundation.
Dimock said she has learned to teach more than just fact-driven curriculum by focusing on concepts and critical thinking skills.
"It has helped me move beyond activities in the classroom," Dimock said.
Janice B. Wisner
UW-Eau Claire News Bureau
Updated: July 28, 1997