National Science Foundation
Graduate Teaching Fellows in K-12 Education Take Science On the Road
Highlight ID 14475PR_html_1272e17f.jpg

Fellows Ian Saginor and Marie Montes-Matias assist students with an activity on pressure and its role in volcanoes.

Credit: GK-12/Rutgers University
Permission Granted

Three projects funded by the National Science Foundation’s Graduate Teaching Fellows in K-12 Education (GK-12) program have established innovative ways to make science accessible to all students. 

The GK-12 project at the University of Puerto Rico (Mayaguez), with additional funding from the Pfizer Foundation, was able to bring science to K-12 students through the “Science On Wheels” program, in which graduate fellows travel to schools and field sites to work with teachers and students.  This has provided the opportunity for students to participate in hands-on demonstrations related to environmental measurements, integrated with mathematics, social studies, and languages into the classroom.  Eleven fellows were divided into five teams to provide assistance and training to both public and private schools.  During the 10-month period, fellows have worked with more than 122 teachers and hands-on lessons reached more than 2,175 students in the ten educational districts in Puerto Rico. 

Rutgers University's GK-12 project is expanding its impact through the use of the Rutgers Science Explorer, a 40-foot mobile laboratory that brings exciting, innovative hands-on science activities to 14 middle schools and communities around the state of New Jersey.  The Science Explorer can accommodate 20 students per session, and is equipped with a wide-screen projection system, networked laptop computers, and satellite Internet access.  The Rutgers Science Explorer showcases the most innovative activities developed by graduate fellows based on their own expertise and research.  Popular lessons focus on volcanoes, DNA and an activity called “Skeleton Detectives,” a type of forensic activity that has students identify missing people from skeletal material. During the first five months of operation, more than 1500 students have participated in activities on the bus.

The Florida Institute of Technology’s GK-12 project focuses on ocean sciences and the role the oceans play in environmental, physical, chemical and biological processes.  With the help of a 35-foot mobile laboratory called SEAS Lab (Science Exploration At Sea), activities and modules created by this project will reach both urban and suburban high school students in Brevard County.  The graduate fellows, in collaboration with the K-12 teachers, have designed modules for high school students such as wave dynamics and its impact on the shores, sea turtle biology, sand composition, and water analysis. The SEAS lab, designed with input from teachers, supports hands-on learning with multiple work stations and specialized equipment including microscopes, GPS systems, a weather station, and Internet access to real-time NOAA data. 

Web URL:

Web URL:

Partner in the University of Puerto Rico project: Pfizer Foundation

More Photos:
Highlight ID 14475PR_html_11f98fe3.jpg

Florida Institute of Technology's 35-foot SEAS (Science Exploration at Sea) Lab.

Credit: GK-12/FIT
Permission Granted
Highlight ID 14475PR_html_1aa0e50a.jpg

Graduate Fellows and students work together to collect samples to analyze the aquatic habitat.

Credit: GK-12/University of Puerto Rico Mayaguez
Permission Granted

  Web Policies and Important Links | Privacy | FOIA | Help | Contact NSF | Contact Web Master | SiteMap