EiE Welcomes Kentucky PD Collaborator


Supplied by Tully Elementary
Wednesday, April 8, 2015

Engineering is Elementary has a new professional development (PD) collaborator, Laura Keeling of Louisville, KY. Keeling joins a national network of PD providers who support schools and districts that are implementing EiE; she works with schools and districts in the Louisville region and adjoining Indiana.

Keeling is the first to admit she wasn't always enthusiastic about STEM subjects. “I used to teach third-grade, and I would beg my teaching partner to teach science so I could teach social studies,” she laughs. Then in 2009, Gary Rivoli, a professor from the University of Louisville’s engineering outreach program, approached her school,Tully Elementary, asking for volunteers to pilot a curriculum designed to interest young children in STEM careers. The curriculum was EiE. 

“All the teachers were sitting on their hands, we were that intimidated!” Keeling recalls. But for some reason she can’t explain, Keeling volunteered. She tried one EiE unit with her third graders—and got hooked. Within a year she had moved into the job of science lab teacher, facilitating hands-on engineering for all 720 students at the school. “I've learned so much that people now sometimes ask me if I'm an engineer!” she says. “And it’s all because of EiE.”

With Kentucky adopting the Next Generation Science Standards, Keeling is in demand as an EiE PD provider. She finds that her own path to STEM learning is an inspiration to the teachers who attend her workshops. “They’re anxious about teaching engineering until I explain, I was just like them,” she says.

“It’s so funny that I didn’t want to raise my hand. And now here I am, and it’s so rewarding. I can't believe how it's transformed my teaching.”

Engineering is Elementary is a project of the National Center for Technological Literacy at the Museum of Science, Boston.

Engineering is Elementary
Professional Development