26 episodes

The Labster Podcast gives science educators like you a chance to hear from peers who teach with Labster’s virtual labs and other educational technologies. We’ll reflect on learning and curriculum design, and leave you feeling inspired and energized about reaching and teaching your students.

The Labster Podcast April and SJ

    • Education
    • 5.0 • 3 Ratings

The Labster Podcast gives science educators like you a chance to hear from peers who teach with Labster’s virtual labs and other educational technologies. We’ll reflect on learning and curriculum design, and leave you feeling inspired and energized about reaching and teaching your students.

    “I see my mother in all my students here”

    “I see my mother in all my students here”

    In this episode, our special guest Dr. Edgardo Sanabria-Valentín shares the story of how his mother’s experience as a first-generation college student shaped his approach to teaching biology and continues to inform his leadership as Associate Director of PRISM, the Program for Research Initiatives in Science and Math at John Jay College of Criminal Justice, a Hispanic-Serving institution within the City University of New York (CUNY). You’ll hear exactly how PRISM intentionally “meets students where they are” by actively recruiting undergraduate forensics students for faculty mentoring, career research, and professional development opportunities. PRISM increases student persistence and completion and has been recognized as a model for excellence for improving the number of underrepresented students in the STEM pipeline by the National Science Foundation and the National Academy of Sciences. We first got to know Edgardo when he began teaching with Labster, and we’re proud to say that he was a 2022 winner of the Labster STEM Excellence Award. Stay tuned for the end of this episode, when Edgardo flips the script and interviews SJ!

    • 27 min
    How Bonnie Nieves teaches science through the lens of social, emotional, and behavioral instruction

    How Bonnie Nieves teaches science through the lens of social, emotional, and behavioral instruction

    In this conversation, Bonnie Nieves, M. Ed., shares how she “shrinks” class sizes, differentiates instruction with creative grouping, and guides her students to use ChatGPT prompts as a tool to track and summarize their research in a way that helps them to flesh out their own, unique ideas. This episode is Part Two of SJ’s conversation with Bonnie Nieves, M. Ed., a biology teacher at Nipmuc Regional High School in Massachusetts and author of the book Be Awesome on Purpose.

    • 20 min
    “Letting go” to lead a student-driven biology course

    “Letting go” to lead a student-driven biology course

    In this conversation, we meet Bonnie Nieves, M. Ed., a high school biology teacher who has taken an evidence-based, iterative approach to optimize student learning outcomes without increasing her time spent outside of class. Listen as Bonnie tells the true story of the aha! moment that followed her painful realization that her students were signing out bathroom passes more often when she was talking than at any other time during class. Equipped with nothing more than a gradebook, student feedback, and her own observations, Bonnie put her hypotheses to the test and experimented with student-driven, self-directed learning. You’ll hear everything she tried to reach the point where learning outcomes in her project-based course now rival the outcomes of traditional, teacher-driven courses - while still targeting the same content standards.

    • 22 min
    Dr. Bruno Poellhuber’s research on how to motivate and engage students with Labster

    Dr. Bruno Poellhuber’s research on how to motivate and engage students with Labster

    What is the “best” way to teach with Labster simulations, according to the data? Dr. Bruno Poellhuber wanted to find out. Bruno is a professor of education and Director of the Center for Teaching and Learning at the University of Montreal. Partnering with co-researchers at the University of Montreal and six other colleges, he ran an experiment with 6,000 students and 39 instructors who participated over the course of three terms. Bruno’s team noticed the most successful instructors leaned into using tools based on the pre-briefing, briefing, integration, and debriefing phases from the Jeffries model of teaching with simulation in the nursing field. They observed that instructors with highly engaged and motivated students shared specific pedagogical practices, which you’ll hear about in this episode.

    • 23 min
    Teaching high school biology as a digital pioneer

    Teaching high school biology as a digital pioneer

    Meet Matthias Polte, the first public high school teacher in Germany to teach with Labster. Motivated by his belief that students need to learn more than just facts, Matthias sought out tools and techniques that would allow his students to build 21st-century skills like creativity, critical thinking, communication, and collaboration. In this episode, Matthias tells how he spent years advocating for funding to provide at-school internet access for every biology student at RHG Krefeld. Today, Matthias is successfully teaching with digital learning tools and active learning strategies that help his students understand science at a deeper level - and training new teachers to do the same.

    • 32 min
    Biotech in Action Encourages High School Students to Invent a Better Future

    Biotech in Action Encourages High School Students to Invent a Better Future

    Do you have a science student with an interest in biotechnology, invention, and making a positive difference in the world? Encourage them to apply to this unique, no-cost, virtual program that connects students from different backgrounds and challenges them to develop interest, confidence and capabilities in STEM. Biotech in Action is a collaboration between the Biogen company and the nonprofit Lemelson MIT program. Labster is proud to sponsor the science simulations for Biotech in Action. In this episode, we reflect on the impact of two years of the Biotech in Action program with two faculty members, Nia Gipson of the Lemelson MIT program and Alex Cameron of the Biogen Community Lab, as well as Dr. Stephanie Couch, the executive director of the Lemelson MIT program. Biotech in Action is open for applications. As Nia Gipson says, “Take a chance, you might just learn something.” Students can register for free at https://lemelson.mit.edu/biotech-action.

    • 25 min

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