Hewlett-funded SCORE Collaborative Pilot Projects - Spotlight on MMHub
The Math Modeling Hub (MMHub) serves as a community of practice and resource repository for teachers from pre-kindergarten onward that aims to facilitate the integration of mathematical modeling in classrooms. Since its inception in July, 2018, MMHub has struggled to grow the critical mass of relevant, well-produced materials that is necessary for a resource repository. To address this problem, MMHub is teaming up with CourseSource, an open-access journal of peer-reviewed teaching resources for undergraduate biological sciences. CourseSource has developed a well-established workshop model for developing human expertise and publishable resources, the CourseSource Writing Studio, in which participants are mentored through the process of developing, refining, and preparing open educational resources for publication. MMHub is learning about and implementing the CourseSource workshop model, with some modifications, with a cohort of high school teachers with the aim of 1) generating a substantial collection of high-quality publication-ready OER materials for the Math Modeling Hub, and 2) in so doing, cultivate a cadre of contributors who are actively engaged in the Math Modeling Hub community and are prepared to participate in a sustainable cycle of mentorship and development for future resource contributors. CourseSource will benefit by receiving feedback on online workshop implementation and cultivating collaborations with mathematicians to address a recognized need for additional articles that feature quantitative biology resources.
SCORE members and MMHub Steering Committee members Ben Galluzzo and Jason Douma worked with Michelle Smith and Erin Vinson of CourseSource to learn about the CourseSource workshop model. They attended a CourseSource Writing Studio workshop, which was held virtually for the first time, in July, 2020. Ben and Jason, along with Rose Mary Zbiek (MMHub Steering Committee) then recruited a cohort of 12 high school teachers, who met virtually 3 times at biweekly meetings to develop community ahead of the primary (also virtual) workshop that took place in October. The main workshop event consisted of three four-hour meetings held on consecutive Saturdays. At the meetings, participants worked in both large and small groups to write, share and review modeling activities for use in high school mathematics classrooms. The projects that Writers’ Workshop participants have developed and plan to publish are varied in content and context. Some examples include: How to plan for snow removal in your community? Should your school consider adding solar panels? And, What is the relationship between body mass and one's ability to lift weights?
The MMHub Writers’ Workshop will continue to hold biweekly hour-long meetings through the end of the year to support the development and eventual publication of the participants’ work on the MMHub. While the project will officially conclude at the end of the calendar year, Workshop participants have expressed interest in continuing to engage with each other, as well as more broadly as part of the MMHub Community.