TEACHING EARTH SCIENCE IN HIGH SCHOOLS AND ENCOURAGING FUTURE GEOLOGY MAJORS
As it now stands, even in a state with an earth science graduation requirement, most of our college-bound students enter the introductory geology course with limited background. This is a result of both the lack of teacher training and the AP Environmental curriculum. The state Earth/Environmental Science Curriculum, due to go into effect in 2012, minimizes geology even further with increased focus on the environment.
Teachers need training to make the course hands/on science and not worksheet driven. It will take a committed effort to enable them to teach complex subject material at an appropriate level while maintaining the integrity of the discipline. Many of our currently qualified teachers, who have geological backgrounds, are accomplishing wonderful things across the state. If we can increase their numbers, we can increase the number of geology majors at the college level.