Educator-In-Residence At U.Va. Center Shares Love Of Math And Science
With Albemarle Teachers
28, 2000 -- Jill Cragg loves math and science. And
thanks to the University of Virginia Center for Science, Mathematics
and Engineering Education and the Alcoa Foundation, the Albemarle
County elementary school teacher has been able to take time off
from her classroom to share her enthusiasm with other teachers.
is taking a year-long leave of absence from her job as the lead
science teacher at Agnor-Hurt Elementary School to serve as the
first Alcoa Educator-in-Residence at the U.Va. Center for Science,
Mathematics and Engineering Education. In this pilot program, Cragg
travels to elementary schools throughout Albemarle County, offering
suggestions, procuring new materials,
and fueling the fire of classroom teachers.
has been extremely helpful researching new materials and methods
to share with classroom teachers who are stretched for time," said
Marlene Robinson, K-12 instructional coordinator in mathematics
for the Albemarle County schools. "She's done co-teaching and provided
one-on-one professional development for teachers, helping them see
where new ideas fit in with the curriculum and with the SOLs" (Virginia's
Standards of Learning).
with third-, fourth- and fifth-grade math teachers in Albemarle
County, Cragg is helping to plan, put in place and evaluate the
best methods of teaching the math concepts and skills required by
the SOLs. Cragg is concentrating her efforts at four schools: Agnor-Hurt,
Scottsville, Stone-Robinson and Yancey elementary schools.
educator-in-residence is a bridge between the University and the
community," said Kathy Thornton, director of the U.Va. Center for
Science, Mathematics and Engineering Education. "Jill helps us strengthen
ties between theory and practice by sharing her expertise and classroom
experiences with college students, giving prospective teachers firsthand
knowledge of how to apply their learning to actual classrooms. She
also brings new ideas about teaching and learning to Albemarle County's
and science teacher for the past seven years, Cragg served on the
Albemarle County School science and mathematics textbook adoption
committees. As the lead science teacher at Agnor-Hurt Elementary
School, she shared ideas with colleagues to help them make science
more fun for naturally curious children.
part of the educator-in-residence program, Cragg is teaching a course
as well as studying at the Curry School of Education. She'll also
attend state and national mathematics and science education conferences.
recent years, educators, especially those in math and science, have
come under fire as American children continue to perform poorly
on international tests compared with children from other industrialized
Virginia, only a small fraction of the state's schools have succeeded
in meeting the academic expectations set out in the state SOLs.
Under current state policy, beginning with the class of 2004, students
in Virginia must pass at least six of 11 final SOLs to graduate
from high school. Schools that fall short of 70 percent of their
students passing the SOLs risk losing their state accreditation.
hope we can expand this partnership between U.Va., Albemarle County
and the Alcoa Foundation in the future," Thornton said.
more information, call Kathy Thornton, director of the U.Va. Center
for Science, Mathematics and Engineering Education, at (804) 924-7565
or at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Charlotte Crystal, (804) 924-6858