Local teachers win AFCEA Science Teaching Tools awards
Seven teachers from the Central Savannah River Area recently received Science Teaching Tools Awards for their schools from the Augusta Fort Gordon Chapter of the Armed Forces Communications and Electronics Association.
The local chapter of AFCEA treated the teachers to brunch Feb. 6 at the National Science Center’s Fort Discovery’s Fat Man’s Riverfront Café in downtown Augusta. Immediately following the brunch retired Col. Joe Yavorsky, the Fort Gordon chapter AFCEA president, and Ollie Washington, the National Science Center -U.S. Army director, presented each teacher with up to $750 in the National Science Center’s Fort Discovery Paul S. Simon Discovery Theater.
About 14 applications for this annual award were received, according to Horace Carney, an engineer with Kratos and a member of the Fort Gordon Chapter of AFCEA. “The intent of this program is to help teachers make math and science exciting and en- courage students to consider pursuing a degree in science, math, technology or engineering when they go to college,” said Carney.
AFCEA International, established in 1946, is a nonprofit membership association serving in the military, government, industry and academia as an ethical forum for advancing professional knowledge and relationships in the fields of communications, information technology, intelligence and global security, according to their website.
Local recipients were Pamella Ferris, River Middle School; Beverly Neal, New Hope Christian School; David Kassner, Lakeside High School; Stacey Meade on behalf of third grade teachers at Aiken Elementary School; William Tam, Thomson- McDuffie Junior High School; John Sessions, CSRA Home Education Association; and Amy Harrison, Lucy Craft Laney High School.
Ferris, a 6-8th grade teacher at Riverside Middle School in Columbia County, plans to use the grant to purchase a Vernier probe ware. It will be used to detect and measure frequencies beyond the visible electromagnetic spectrum, according to Ferris.
James, a 6-8 thgrade teacher at New Hope Christian School in Columbia County, received the grant check for Beverly Neal, who could not be at the award presentation. Neal plans to use the award money to purchase an interactive white board to be used with her computer and projection system for teaching math to about 85 students.
Kassner plans to purchase a global positioning system to use in environmental science.
Meade will purchase a “Handling Math” project which will provide about 170 third graders with hands-on opportunities in working with fractions, probability and measuring lengths.
Tam plans to use the $750 award to purchase PLAYAWAY audio books and e-books in math and science.
Sessions is expected to purchase tools and resources for Home School Math Team and Science Olympiad.
“Science Olympiad shows how science works with emphasis on problem-solving and understanding concepts of various branches of science,” said Sessions.
Harrison, who transferred as a teacher from Aiken County to Richmond County, and is in her second year of teaching at Lucy Laney High School, plans to purchase 20 hot plates to support physical science lab classes. “Without these resources students complete written work and view virtual labs via a video,” said Harrison. “They get excited about putting on a pair of goggles, an apron and actually conducting the experiments.”
The AFCEA Community Education Fund sponsors were Harris Corporation, ESP, Rockwell Collins, Janus Research Group, Lockheed Martin, Raytheon, General Dynamics and ITT. Local sponsors were GB& T, Kratos, Shakespeare, RLM and Club Car.
Teachers interested in applying and competing for an AFCEA Science Teaching Tools award can visit www. afcea.augusta.org to fill out an on-line application.