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This paper describes the activities of a Computer Science doctoral student and a Secondary Education masters student in the design, development, and implementation of a lesson for a high school science class. The graduate students, called Fellows, worked in secondary classrooms in the Cincinnati Public School District as a part of Project STEP at the University of Cincinnati, which is funded by the National Science Foundation GK-12 Program. The Fellows formed partnerships with secondary math and science teachers to generate new lessons, activities, and resources to enhance the STEM skills of high school students. Additionally, the Fellows used their engineering expertise to bring authentic, inquiry-based learning experiences into the classroom and introduced engineering concepts to underserved student populations. This paper highlights a lesson that integrates data mining and software engineering into a physical science lesson that focuses on the periodic table. Included in the paper are techniques used by the Fellows, reactions and feedback from the students, and observations and reflections by the Fellows regarding aspects of the activity that had the most impact on student learning.
Date of Conference: 22-25 Oct. 2008