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Panama teachers visit Arizona desert

December 10, 2012

Panama teachers visit Arizona desert

Ten Panamanian science teachers got a first-hand taste of research, the desert and American culture during a weeklong training workshop in Arizona in early November

Ten Panamanian science teachers got a first-hand taste of research, the desert and American culture during a weeklong training workshop in Arizona in early November.

Led by STRI's Director of Public Programs, Sharon Ryan, and education specialist, Lidia Valencia, the teachers toured research labs at Arizona State University (ASU), took a field trip to a cactus forest in the Sonoran Desert, and explored the rich plant and animal life along the Rio Salado at the Audubon Arizona Center.

Students and teachers from seven partnering schools in Phoenix hosted the group in their classrooms.

The workshop was part of Desert to Rainforest, a year-long science education program that's helping teachers in underserved schools in Panama and Phoenix develop skills for creating hands-on science activities in their classrooms to celebrate these rich ecosystems. The STRI/ ASU partnership also enables teachers to use interactive video technology to connect students in both countries, and to build critical thinking skills, science know-how and cultural awareness. ”My students have also become more interested in science and many have developed a scientific curiosity, which they never had before.” says Antonio Lozano, a teacher in the Greek School in San Miguelito.

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