UA Trains on Integration of Native Cultures, K-14 Science Instruction

La Monica Everett-Haynes

For the last six weeks, science teachers have been immersed in a program designed to help them to more readily introduce optics, physics, electronics, materials science and engineering topics in their K-14 classrooms in a way that incorporates Native languages and cultures.

The teachers, all of whom work with large populations of American Indian students, have received hands-on, research and curriculum design training as part of the UA's Research in Optics for K-14 Educators and Teachers, or ROKET, program. 

The group will present their science lessons July 20 at 3 p.m. on the third floor lobby of the UA's Meinel Optical Sciences Building. A reception will then be held at 4 p.m. The teachers are: 

  • Wendy Atcitty of the Muckleshoot Tribal School will discuss her project on sustainable hydrogen energy.
  • Marland Toyekoyah of Vechij Himdag Alternative School will talk about proteins and protein recrystallization.
  • Lisa Price of the Flagstaff Unified School District will discus optical imaging.
  • Analani Brown of Dilcon Community School will focus on solar energy.
  • Matthew Campbell of the Nixyaawii Community School will discuss butterfly wing optics.
  • Tami Church of Lapwai High School will discuss the use of spectroscopy.

Everyone is welcome to attend.

ROKET is a collaborative program of American Indian Language Development Institute (AILDI) and the Center for Integrated Access Networks at the College of Optical Sciences at the UA, ROKET targets science educators who work primarily with American Indian student populations. A National Science Foundation grant supports the ROKET/AILDI partnership. To learn more, visit AILDI's site.

Photo courtesy of the CIAN Research Experience for Teachers program.


Resources for the media