Sense-Sational Science is a program offered by a partnership of higher education
institutions, K-12 school districts, state government agencies and non-profit institutions.
Sense-Sational Science is currently offered at two locations â€“ in Tulsa, to serve
eastern Oklahoma teachers, and in Lawton, to serve western Oklahoma teachers. Both
of the workshops utilize community resources to focus on Oklahoma ecosystems. The
activities center on the senses and address topics like animal communication, animal/human
navigation and historical use of the ecosystem. Technology in the form of ipads
and this website allow teachers to document their work and access resources from
the many partners. Writing, in the form of notebooking, is a key element and is
used throughout the program.
The higher education partners in Sense-Sational Science
are The University of Tulsa and Tulsa Community College West Campus. Tulsa Public
Schools, Berryhill Public Schools and Jenks Public Schools are K-12 district partners.
In Tulsa, the non-profit and government partners include Gilcrease Museum, the Linnaeus
Teaching Garden, the Oklahoma Aquarium, the Oklahoma Centennial Garden, Oxley Nature
Center, Philbrook Museum, the Tulsa Air and Space Museum and the Tulsa Zoo. In Lawton
the partners are Comanche Nation College, Hackberry Flats Nature Center, the Wichita
Mountains Wildlife Refuge, the Lawton Fish Hatchery of the Oklahoma Department of
Wildlife and Three Rivers Foundation.
The ultimate goal of Sense-Sational Science
is to provide quality professional development for elementary school teachers across
the state. The objectives of the program include: (1) enhancing teachersâ€™ knowledge
of science content; (2) cultivating their ability to present interdisciplinary science
lessons; (3) stimulating their enthusiasm for teaching science; (4) producing sustainable
change in their instruction; and (5) enhancing the achievement of their students
as measured by standardized test scores.
Evaluations of Sense-Sational Science have
shown that by providing a fun, active atmosphere and by introducing ways to integrate
science with other curricular areas, teachers come away with a quality experience
that changes their approach to the classroom.
Sense-Sational Science is supported
by a No Child Left Behind award administered by the Oklahoma State Regents for Higher