BioTeach

BioTeach recognizes that educators are one life sciences’ greatest resources. Confident technically skilled teachers embrace new technologies, inspire student curiosity, and ignite student interest. Through our training of life sciences teachers, MassBioEd lays the foundation for the workforce of tomorrow. BioTeach supports teachers by giving them the skills, resources, and mentoring to design and implement hands-on, cutting-edge lessons. With a particular focus on high needs and underserved schools we engage students in the life sciences from an early age. BioTeach programs include:

  • Free teacher professional development and resources
  • Grant and award funding for equipment and lab supplies
  • Low cost and easy to integrate labs
  • Authentic and inquiry-based curricula
  • On-site and remote teacher mentoring
  • College and career awareness experiences
  • Comprehensive district partnerships

Professional Development for Teachers

Workshops prepare teachers to implement authentic and innovative science activities in their classrooms. Workshops and curricula are updated each year and align with NGSS and Massachusetts state standards. Topics include:

  • Basic techniques in biotechnology
  • Personal genetics with PCR
  • Photosynthesis and cellular respiration
  • Bioinformatics

Training is offered in multiple formats, including one-day workshops, multi-day summer institutes, and remote sessions. On-site and remote mentoring is available to newly trained teachers to help with equipment set up and lab activity execution. Participating teachers earn Massachusetts Department of Elementary and Secondary Education Professional Development Points or graduate credits.

Career Exploration for Students

Varied career exploration events are woven into classroom instruction to inspire diverse middle and high school students. Students are introduced to life sciences careers through classroom visits from life sciences professionals, field trips to partner companies and colleges, mentoring, and innovative web-based career role-playing activities.

Aligned Curricular and Career Experiences for Secondary Science (ACCESS Program)

The ACCESS Program serves students in grades 6-10 in high-needs partner districts. Scientists and BioTeach educators are embedded into the classroom to implement life science lessons based on real-world problems. During the multi-year intervention, teachers, science coordinators, scientists, and the BioTeach Instructors form a Community of Practice that ensures sustainability of the program.

The ACCESS Program focuses on four key elements:

  • Student centered learning and career awareness
  • Intensive district-wide teacher training and support that creates independence and sustainability
  • Three years of in-school mentoring for lab implementation
  • All required materials, equipment, and supplies

Take-Out Training and Equipment (TOTE)

TOTE allows schools new to biotechnology lab curricula to borrow equipment for implementing activities and labs that engage students in biotechnology techniques and investigations. As part of the TOTE lending program, BioTeach Instructors provide remote support to partner schools.

Grants for Equipment and Reagents

MassBioEd offers additional support to schools with customized grant funding for lab equipment and consumables. Recipient schools are eligible to receive mentoring from BioTeach instructors.

Awards and Scholarships

Each year, MassBioEd recognizes a school, teacher, and student for their achievements in biotechnology education. Two awards and one scholarship are given annually to support the continuation of life sciences education.

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