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Catherine E. Matthews

Teaching and research expertise: K-12 Science and Environmental Education, Multicultural Education, Technology

There are 55 included publications by Catherine E. Matthews :

TitleDateViewsBrief Description
Acorn Alive 2002 1696 As summer turns into fall, oak trees share their bounty acorns. While the number varies with the age, size, species, and weather, a single tree can have as many as 15,000 acorns in a single year, but less than one percent of them will germinate. That...
All Wrapped Up in Kudzu & Other Ecological Disasters 1999 357 This article includes an activity that you can do in your classroom today to reinforce the concept of and problems involved with introduced, nonnative or alien species. Following are seven vignettes about seven different plant and animal species that...
The atomic dating game 2002 6461 Atoms are lonely hearts that are constantly in search of partners to bring stability to their lives—at Least that's the premise of our Atomic Dating Game, a chemistry activity that helps students visualize and understand how and why atoms combine. W...
Bat Bonanza 2013 56 The authors describe a unit on bats developed for kindergartners, which uses models of bats to teach about their physiology, diet, and habitat. The use of online field guides for species identification is discussed, as well as students' drawings, gro...
Beyond Batteries and Bulbs, Circuits and Conductors: Building Green, Activist-Oriented Student Communities 2012 141 In this article we provide an example of how to foster an activist-oriented student community by critically examining green technology. We designed this curriculum unit to teach students about the fundamentals of electricity, green technology, and ex...
The box turtle connection: a passageway into the natural world 2006 3406 Drawing on bog turtle research work with UNCG students, we designed the pilot box turtle study at Bethany Community Middle School (BCMS) in accordance with one already underway at Davidson College under the leadership of Biology Professor Dr. Mike Do...
Build an Interplanetary Scale 1997 271 Help your students understand mass, weight, and gravitational fields with an interplanetary scale. Students can simulate their weight on any planet or satellite with a surface gravitational field equal to or less than Earth's. This includes Earth's m...
Challenging Gender Bias in Fifth Grade 1997 452 As part of a senior research project, we began a year-long study to test interventions designed to make elementary students and teachers more aware of gender equity issues and to give them tools to resolve these situations. After practicing how to re...
Children and Place: A Natural Connection 2002 657 As environmental educators, our responsibility is to see that all children have opportunities to develop relationships with wild places right in their communities to develop this critical sense of place. Every community needs citizens of all ages who...
Cicada Studies 1997 264 The cicadas are coming. The cicadas are coming. Now is the time to prepare students for the annual emergence of a fascinating insect. The annual emergence of periodical cicadas begins in late spring followed by the yearly emergence of annual cicadas ...
Conservation and education: prominent themes in zoo mission statements 2007 2544 In this study, the authors examine the mission statements of 136 zoos in the United States that the American Zoo and Aquarium Association (AZA) has accredited, and report on the predominant themes of education and conservation in the statements. To e...
The Cormorant Controversy 2000 446 Birds and humans have coexisted for thousands of i years but not always harmoniously. In this article, I will address how human behavior has affected bird populations both intentionally and unintentionally. As you know, humans eat birds, but did you...
A decade of concern: A review of multicultural science education issues in The Science Teacher 2005 2427 Multicultural science education has long been of interest to the National Science Teachers Association (NSTA). In 1991, NSTA adopted a position statement on multicultural science education, which was revised in 2000. In 1993, Mary M. Atwater's articl...
(Dis)Solving the Differences: A Physical Science Lesson Using Universal Design 2009 863 Universal design for learning (UDL) holds promise for teachers who are struggling with creating lessons that allow all students access to and engagement with the general science curriculum. In this article, the authors demonstrate how a secondary phy...
EcoTipping points: sharing environmental success stories with students. 2009 503 Contrary to what we often hear and teach, there is good news to be found on the environmental front. Environmental success stories show us not only that sustainability is possible, but also how people have made it happen. We can make these stories an...
Fossil Finds 1996 426 It is easy to tell students that a fossil is "any remains of plant or animal life of some previous geologic period."' But do they really know what that means? When I ask middle school students to apply their knowledge of the term fossil by choosing o...
Frances Hamerstrom: Wildlife Biologist 1999 934 The main purpose of this article is to provide a series of science lessons for grades K-5 geared around the work and life of wildlife biologist Frances Hamerstrom (1907-1998), thus imprinting on students and teachers one naturalist,s amazing life and...
Get a Kick out of Physics: Using the art of Tae Kwon Do to interest students in Physics 1997 1142 Tae Kwon Do, the Korean martial art, literally translates to mean the way of the hand and foot. Educators can use some of the hyungs (forms and patterns) of this martial art to explain to students a fundamental and integral physics equation —f = ma (...
Hands-on Hydrology 2004 604 A professional school and university collaboration enables elementary students and their teachers to explore hydrology concepts and realize the beneficial functions of wetlands. Hands-on experiences involve young students in determining water quality...
Herpetologist transports Third-Graders to Frogland 2004 441 A partnership between a university and a science and technology magnet school brings a renowned her-petologist, Dr. Meg Stewart, to involve third-graders in her studies of coqui frogs. These students prepared to meet this scientist with a series of l...
Herpetology for High School Students 2012 284 Because of the long-term nature of this project, students were able to see major changes in land use including clear-cutting and they were able to assess the environmental impacts on various reptiles and amphibians due to human uses of particular are...
High-Performing High Schools: Patterns of Success 2005 1177 What makes high schools successful in a high-stakes accountability environment? This case study used documents, interviews, and site visits to create profiles of 11 diverse North Carolina high schools with records of high performance on state assessm...
‘Hoeked’ on Science 2004 530 Sometimes a scientist's life is as interesting, if not more so, than the science with which he or she is credited. Such is the case with the life of Anton Von Leeuwenhoek. Students at my school (a science and technology magnet school at which I am t...
An Illuminating Reaction 1996 493 CARBIDE LIGHTS OFFER AN EXCELLENT mechanism for introducing or reviewing many basic chemistry concepts, including elements and compounds, endothermic and exothermic reactions, physical and chemical changes, and balancing chemical equations. A carbid...
Interactive Video: Reviewing science, stereotypes and society 1994 324 Video viewing is typically considered a passive experience for students and an opportunity for direct instruction by teachers. Information is conveyed, and students are expected to receive this information and assimilate it into their cognitive frame...
It's a Bird! It's a Plane! It's a. . . Stereogram! 1995 875 They are popping up everywhere—in books, in the newspaper, on greeting cards, and as poster-size prints—colorful pieces of artwork that contain hidden three-dimensional images. These pictures, commonly known as hidden-image stereograms, are certainly...
Lessons from a “Living Fossil” 1998 507 After visiting the Delaware Bay with my university class to observe the mating of horseshoe crabs, I decided to develop a teaching unit about Limulus polyphemus for my elementary science classes. Because horseshoe crabs have lived on Earth for millio...
Lights, Camera, Action… It’s Science 2002 241 How does one get to Broadway? Perform, perform, perform! How does one learn science? Engage, engage, engage! Now, you can engage your students in learning and teaching science by having them become actors and actresses in the science classroom. The f...
Linking proportionality across the science and mathematics curricula through science literacy maps. 2008 497 Middle level science and mathematics teachers should collaborate to clarify concepts for students in each of these disciplines. The topic of proportionality is an excellent choice for a collaborative effort, as understanding proportionality is import...
Meeting the Standards with Vanishing Frogs 2001 1546 The purpose of this article is to explain how to introduce high school students to the issue of declining amphibian populations by reading the book, Tracking the Vanishing Frogs: An Ecological Mystery (Phillips 1994) and playing a game based on conce...
Naturalist Writers and Environmental Sentiments 2002 751 Naturalist writers provide a myriad of potential learning experiences, from extolling the virtues of uninhibited inquiry to developing an appreciation for observation skills. Simultaneously, the works of naturalist writers offer students the opportun...
The Northern Mockingbird: An Introduction to Ethology for High School Students 1999 634 Observation is deeply rooted in ethology or the study of animal behavior. By observing bird behavior, we can learn a lot about animal behavior in general. The Northern mockingbird (Mimus polyglottus) is a good choice for a behavioral study for high s...
The Not-So-Aloof Luffa 1999 531 A luffa is a natural vegetable sponge. With its skin on, it resembles a cucumber or a zucchini, and it is a member of the same family. Though widely grown, luffas are rarely studied. Since we discovered luffas in North Carolina back yards several yea...
Observing Flat Birds and other Fun Birding Activities for K-12 Students. 2002 550 A flat bird is a life-size, color cutout of a bird. Beginning bird watchers should initially study common species of birds that live in their local parks and backyards, and then they can create a set of flat birds ... There are a variety of reasons w...
Oh, Baby, What a Science Lesson! 1996 375 How can you help first-grade students learn about human development and practice their observation, measurement, graphing, and prediction skills? Just follow Ashton Bates's lead and invite the mother (or father) of a newborn baby to bring the infant ...
Outdoor ventures: Tracking Eastern Box Turtles 2003 588 This project was designed to engage middle-grade students in an authentic task involving the study of an endangered species, the eastern box turtle (Terrapene carolina carolina). It emphasizes learning by doing and promotes character growth, teamwork...
Planetary Paths. 1999 528 Students' natural interest in our solar system makes an interdisciplinary unit on the topic all the more rewarding. The following activities allow you to construct your own path to teaching the solar system. Not only can science teachers get involved...
Plant or Animal? 1996 382 Most secondary science students can readily distinguish between common plants and animals. Many species of marine animals, however, are unfamiliar to students and have characteristics that make it difficult to classify them by casual observation alon...
Pocket science 1998 220 Although changes are constantly occurring in the world of science, [ouch of what we are asked to teach in middle-level science is tried and true. We tend to work with a variety of packaged products like Chemical Education for Public Understanding Pro...
Predation at the Shore 2003 423 This article describes 10 predator/prey relationships that occur at the coast. Predators are compared to criminals and prey to their victims, and details of crime scenes are presented in a tongue-in-cheek manner. Accurate descriptions of the habits a...
The “Science” behind a Successful Field Trip to the Zoo. 2011 561 A field trip to the local zoo is often a staple in many elementary school curricula. Many zoos offer free entry to local teachers and their students. Teachers take students on field trips to enrich the curriculum, make connections to what students ar...
A Second-grade Teacher's Adaptive Teaching During an Integrated Science-literacy Unit 2013 86 This case study explored the nature of one elementary school teacher's adaptive teaching during an integrated science and literacy unit. Data were collected during four consecutive weeks of instruction, weekly interactive planning sessions, 20 classr...
Slithering Into Summer: Ideas for introducing your students to herpetology. 2012 255 The article discusses how elementary school students can learn about herpetology during the summer through educational programs. Activities included studying cover boards, aquatic turtle traps and vernal pools. The author provides factors for teacher...
Snail Shell Science: A whelk-ome activity 1992 1237 Over the last decade, I have discovered that all students— especially those who live in landlocked environments— are fascinated by items from the sea. One such item that few students are familiar with is a whelk egg case. On a typical walk along the ...
Swimming Pool Science 1997 1059 The activity consists of students building a model swimming pool. The only constraint on the pool design is that it can hold only 1.0 liter of water, so a plastic container from any kitchen will suffice. After filling their models with water, student...
Teachers in North Carolina’s Environmental Education Certification Program 2005 533 This article describes the North Carolina Environmental Education (EE) Certification Program, which was established in 1997, and examines the certification experiences of the kindergarten through 12th grade teachers who have completed the program. Be...
Teaching the History of Science to Students with Learning Disabilities 2002 587 The purpose of this article is to present a lesson template designed to engage students in a specific science event from the past in a manner that relates to the students' lives and experiences. Making activities relevant to students aids in retentio...
A Theme-Based, Cohort Approach to Professional Development Schools: An Analysis of the Benefits and Shortcomings for Teacher Education Faculty 2005 489 One of the goals of Professional Development School (PDS) programs is to provide preservice teachers with opportunities for developing in-depth knowledge and experience as they learn to teach (National Council for Accreditation of Teacher Education, ...
Thinking like a Ssssscientist! Fear of snakes inspires a unit on science as inquiry. 2010 296 As supervisors of undergraduate elementary education majors, we are often in the classrooms of local elementary schools, watching science instruction take place. Recently, we were disappointed when a fifth-grade field trip to a river near the school ...
Toads give you warts, Not! 2008 349 The authors provide activities through which teachers can share experiences in the outdoors with young children and teach them about herpetology, the study of amphibians and reptiles. Outdoor activities include observation, classification, and mappin...
The Trouble with Textbooks 2001 1988 Some of these dilemmas are under close scrutiny. According to the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS), 12 of the most popular middle school science textbooks used across the nation are riddled with errors and do not have an acc...
Using a Field Trip Inventory to Determine If Listening to Elementary School Students' Conversations, While on a Zoo Field Trip, Enhances Preservice Teachers' Abilities to Plan Zoo Field Trips 2013 56 This study investigated whether listening to spontaneous conversations of elementary students and their teachers/chaperones, while they were visiting a zoo, affected preservice elementary teachers' conceptions about planning a field trip to the zoo. ...
Using Hypermedia to Educate Preservice Teachers About Gender-Equity Issues in Elementary School Classrooms 1997 501 This study highlights what preservice teachers learned from interacting with a HyperStudio stack about gender-equity issues. Teachers gained background information from the stack and then used this knowledge to resolve inequities presented in vario...
Using Reptile and Amphibian Activities in the Classroom 2008 4067 Reptiles and amphibians are a diverse and interesting group of organisms. The four activities described in this article take students' curiosity into the realm of scientific understanding. The activities involve the concepts of species identification...
What’s Slithering Around on Your School Grounds? 2005 392 Tomasek et al describe the protocols used in an ongoing research project on amphibian and reptile diversity at Cool Springs Environmental Education Center near New Bern NC. Herpetofaunal surveys have been conducted for the past five years on a 1700-a...