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Ronald Rushing,
NSF Teaching Partner

NSF GK-12 Project: Texas A&M University
Advancing Geospatial Skills in Science and Social Science
URL: http://agsss.tamu.edu

Partner School: Navasota Junior High,
Navasota TX

Degree: B.S., Rangeland/Wildlife Habitat Management; M.S., Plant Breeding/Genetics, Texas A&M University

Years Teaching: 14

Special Accomplishments/Interests
Region VI/TEA Secondary Teacher of the Year, 2000
Woodrow Wilson Foundation Fellow Studies in Tropical Ecology in Costa Rica, Summer 2001
Summer Science Camp featured in Texas Parks and Wildlife, April í05 issue
Teacher Trainer for Environmental Learning Institute in Siían Kahn Biological Reserve, Yucatan, Mexico, Summer 2004
Navasota Education Foundation Grant Recipient, 2005-2007

How will you continue to integrate an aspect of GK-12 and your partnership with graduate students into your teaching, philosophy, etc.?
Technology such as GIS software is an excellent teaching tool that lets students use data sets to construct physical maps. Map making coupled with field experiences is a much more relevant learning technique allowing the student to better understand the relationship between environment and organism. The AGSSS program has been most helpful in keeping me up on latest spatial teaching methods, and technology so that I can pass the learning onto my students.

How has the GK-12 experience changed you, and how has your participation changes the GK-12 project?
The first question is easy. The AGSSS program has improved how and what I teach in the area of environmental education tremendously. Concerning the second question, I know that I came into the program with a bit more experience using GIS technology than some of my teaching peers within this program. Therefore, Iíve had different needs as a teacher than someone just beginning to use spatial technology in the classroom. Iím hoping that the grad students who partnered with me enjoyed getting local data sets ready for me and have enjoyed helping those students use that data in real world applications.

Profile date: July 2007
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