Friday, June 01, 2007

Akamai Program

On the 27th, I flew over to Maui to begin the Akamai Short-Course (run by CfAO). I helped to teach this week-long course using a new style (buzzword: inquiry) that I learned in March on Maui at the PDW. It's actually a really neat and common-sense way of learning - try to teach an idea the way you would figure it out on your own.

Instead of sitting through lectures, the kids are shown some interesting things then asked to explain these things to us after they've had an hour or two to play with it. Basically. It's more like teaching science stuff the way science is done. I think the most basic example was one we called color-n-light. We give them colored filters, colored flashlights, light bulbs, projectors, etc. It's their job to tell us how these things work. Anyone could sit through a lecture where you say red+green+blue=white and nod their head in understanding. The interesting things happen when you start making them explain it to you, make a poster on it, explain it to their friends, or make predictions on what might happen when you shine flashlights through the filters. Lots of people come with preconceptions too - some were told in art class that yellow is a primary color. That works in the art world, but for science - it's red, green, blue. Yellow is actually green + red. Others used many colors - ROYGBIV instead of RGB. Read up on it at the Institute for Inquiry if you're interested.

Flying to Maui.

Scott, Ryan, and I, taking images of our reflections......

Ryan being very thoughtful with Scott, Lisa, and Isar.

Making posters to present what they have figured out.

Scott giving a description of career/school pathways. He moves around a lot.....
Giving a tour up at the summit.

A lab on adaptive optics.
Color and light - playing with filters, projectors, flashlights and other things to figure out how color works.

Jess, the long-haired hippie......

Jess and Hilary, in some perfect, should-go-into-promotional-website, happy-worker type advertisement.


Blogger Diane Harrington said...

I'd rather learn that way than just listening

5:00 AM  

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