How did we get to this point? ... that is, starting to teach teachers how
to use GenScope. Funny you should ask.
Six years ago we started the
GenScope project (http://genscope.concord.org). We took it into classrooms from the beginning, testing
it with kids every step of the way. We made changes in response to
problems that kids had understanding the concepts, their misconceptions which
needed to be cleared up and teachers' wishes for a more friendly
Eventually we found that teachers first had to know the software in order
to be able to use it efficiently in the classroom. The NSF (National
Science Foundation) awarded us a grant offically called Professional Development and the
Use of Computer-Based Manipulatives for Science Teaching to teach teachers how to do this. We wrote a curriculum based on problem solving, providing increasingly difficult problems to the user. We proceeded from there, revising as we went along.