My final day at Invitrogen reinforced my appreciation for science content. I think in educational leadership we think a great deal about pedagogy and student learning, but it always seems to be from a global perspective. We don’t do a good enough job thinking about individual disciplines and the important qualities that each offers for teaching and learning. This is too bad, because it suggests that there can be more of an industrial style to teaching. We talk about differentiation for students, but I think we need to talk more about differentiation for teachers. Professional development – which is turning more and more to building-based learning neglects the importance of collegiality within disciplines. From a science persepctive, it is so critical that teachers participate in the professional associations and programs like CSTA, NSTA, and the JSHS. As an instructional leader it is my job to facilitate this philosophy.
What did we do today that makes me think about this? We ran the protein arrays and learned the techniques – very systematic. But then the important things that happened: eating pizza with the staff of Invitrogen and talking shop. . . looking at the protein array data and thinking about ways to share it with students. . . saying goodbyes and realizing that many scientist are interested in helping teachers. More important – there are companies that will facilitate this as a company philosophy.