Past Event

Making Sense of SCIENCE: Facilitation Academies

Our world is made of matter — every object we touch, the air we breathe, and the blood that runs through our veins. But what does it really mean to be made of matter? This is just one of several topics teacher leaders will explore in upcoming facilitation academies by Making Sense of SCIENCE (MSS), a transformative approach to professional learning that connects hands-on science with integrated teaching and literacy supports.

Facilitation academies prepare staff developers to effectively lead a Making Sense of SCIENCE professional learning course for teachers (grades 5–12) at their site. Participants are guided not only through intriguing scientific concepts, but through the strategies and principles of effective facilitation, including techniques to promote evidence-based conversations and to support teachers’ analysis of student work and use of formative assessments.

Large-scale studies have demonstrated that Making Sense of Science courses produce significant improvement in teachers’ classroom practices and science content knowledge. A randomized controlled trial completed in 2017, which focused on middle school science in Arizona, found that students of teachers who had taken MSS courses had gained the equivalent of nearly six additional monthsof learning compared with students in control classrooms.

Upcoming Academies

April 30 – March 4, 2018
Walnut Creek, California
Learn to put an interesting new spin on classic topics such as the properties of matter, chemical reactions, physical changes, and the periodic table. View the Course Overview for additional details.

Genes & Traits
April 30 – May 4, 2018
Walnut Creek, California
This academy investigates the internal and external interactions that affect genetic and epigenetic inheritance from cell to cell and organism to organism. Learn more in the Course Overview.

Please contact Louise Du Cray-Medley at or (650) 381-6407 with any questions. For more information about Making Sense of SCIENCE and its impact, visit the project website.

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Event Type


April 30–May 4th, 2018


Walnut Creek, California


Making Sense of SCIENCE


Teacher Educators