The Teacher Cadre portal of the D.R.E.M.E. Website is in the works. Please check in later to see the new layout, and keep reading for more info.
The Mission of the D.R.E.ME. Teacher Cadre is to improve science and technology education for teachers and students by:
- provide access to relevant, innovative, interdisciplinary, real life, curriculum for everyday instruction.
- motivate meaningful relations with students; inspire educators to teach cognitive skills associated with real life issues.
- supporting teachers through long-term professional development in inquiry-based science in programs.
- developing and implementing innovative curriculum and conducting research on effective teaching.
- inspiring and nurturing students’ natural curiosity and interest in science through active learning with real-world connections.
- engaging our community to help provide exemplary science instruction to all students, regardless of socioeconomic status, race, or gender.
- assist teachers with professional development courses that will lead to skill master, and improving teacher implementation of best practices.
The vision of the D.R.E.M.E Cadre is that every student, regardless of socioeconomic status, race, or gender, receives exemplary science and technology instruction. Exemplary science and technology instruction not only delivers science and technology content as measured by standardized tests, but also creates student success while facilitating the learning of critical thinking skills and nurturing students’ natural curiosity and interest in science and technology.
Dr. Ronald E. McNair Teacher Summer Institute-
Currently, the teacher cadre instructional sessions are delivered through the Summer Institute which provides middle and high school teachers with one full week of professional development. Educators attend the 5 day summer institute for a total of 64 hours of professional development. The sessions focus on understanding the state’s elementary science standards and exploring science content through a constructivist approach where educators adopt the role of students and participate in problem based hands-on activities. An important part of the week’s activities is that the educators work in Professional Learning Communities of approximately 3-5 educators. The later part of the days focus more heavily on implementing effective instructional strategies and building leadership skills. During the weeks session’s educators are paired in groups to work and create a standard unit.
To achieve our vision and leverage our impact on students, we provide access to high quality, large scale, science and technology teacher professional lessons, development programs and student enrichment programs. These lessons and programs focus on science concepts, research-based inquiry teaching strategies, teacher leadership, and developments in science and technology. By using inquiry teaching methods, we promote teacher confidence, curiosity, and appreciation of science teaching. We also contribute to the local, state and national knowledge base to address the national need for improved 6-12 science programs.
Building on the foundation provided by DREME Summer Institute, the Teacher Cadre program offers a variety of web based resources for Educators attempting to change their teaching practices. Chief among these resources is access to lesson plans and curriculum that has proven to be successful for educators in the Houston educational community. Several times during the academic year, DREME facilitators will visit various Teacher Cadre members to help develop instructional and leadership skills. Because exemplary science and technology instruction cannot take place without solid curricular resources and materials, the DREME Cadre also provides these resources in the form of a set of online learning experiences and material resources. The guiding principle behind this program is to provide each Cadre Member with the resources need to support movement along the path towards improved instruction.
D.R.E.M.E. Professional Development -
Our Professional Development goal is to move towards exemplary instruction. This is a long and complicated process that requires a sustained and comprehensive approach to professional development. Therefore, the D.R.E.M.E. Model of professional development includes a variety of components implemented over the course of an entire academic year. Teacher Cadre members experience over 80 hours of professional development activates that are loosely group into two categories: teacher training quarterly labs and on-site campus support.
D.R.E.M.E. Theory of Instruction -
Exemplary science and technology instruction goes beyond preparing students to master the content required by standardized testing. We believe there are many ways to get students to pass a standard test and that not all of these ways qualify as exemplary instruction. The best science and technology teaching not only helps students master content, but also facilitates the development of critical thinking skills and fosters a sense of curiosity. Therefore, our theory of instruction follows the idea that students must be allowed to explore concepts and construct understanding on their own. Teachers must abandon their tendency to control all the actions in their classrooms. By “letting go” teachers empower students to do the important work that leads to constructing understanding. Adopting this constructivist approach to teach and learning is a core principal and our goal for every teacher we serve.
D.R.E.M.E. Theory of Change -
We go from the assumption that every teacher is somewhere on the path towards becoming more constructivist in their teaching and that no teacher is, or can ever be, finished with this process. Science each teacher comes to our summer institute at a different point along this path, success in our professional development program is measured by improvement rather than on an absolute scale. To focus our professional development efforts we have identified a set of areas to facilitate individual and systemic movement towards exemplary science instruction. These focus areas include improving knowledge of science content and state science and technology standards that delineate this content, adopting effecting instructional strategies, and developing leadership skills. To achieve gains in each of these focus areas, teachers are expected to construct their own understanding of the particular tops introduced in professional development sessions.
D.R.E.M.E. Cadre -
Our main goal is to offer professional support to our Cadre members after the summer institute and to build and a collaborative of educators through the Houston educational community who strive for excellence in instruction. To build a community of educators who place student learning first.