Learning from the Lake: Using Primary Sources at the Lake Champlain Maritime Museum to Teach Key Proficiencies, Chaucer & Witten, Summer 2019

Course Number: EDU 5515 C44 (Graduate)
Instructor: Dr. Harry Yeo Chaucer & Matthew Witten
Location: Lake Champlain Maritime Museum, Vergennes, VT
Dates and Times: June 24-27, 2019.Dress for being outside and/or on the water. Project presentations on August 19, 2019
3 graduate
Tuition: $1,400

Note: Please register directly with the Lake Champlain Maritime Museum (LCMM). LCMM will give you the link to Castleton's online registration form. All payments are payable and due to LCMM.

Course Description

Learning from the Lake: View a live-stream tour of a shipwreck through the camera lens of an underwater robot.  Explore every nook and cranny of a creaky, tarry replica of a Revolutionary War gunboat or a steamboat wreck as weather allows.  Paddle to the shores of an archaeological site that was frequented by indigenous people for thousands of years.  Browse (very carefully!) through boxes of fascinating museum artifacts yet to be displayed.  Closely examine many life forms in the lake, from microscopic plants to flopping fish and microplastics that effect lake quality.

This course immerses teachers in the experience of using Expanded Learning Providers (ELPs), such as the Lake Champlain Maritime Museum, to make learning more empirical, inductive, and personal for their students.  Students will learn from a number of specialists from the Maritime Museum.

Our sessions in the morning will immerse participants in sensory-rich experiences on or near the lake.  During afternoon sessions, the group will work with ideas such as inductive thinking, brain-based learning, progressive education, and project-based learning.  We will also explore literature on human motivation.  After establishing this pedagogy, we will dive into the museum’s collection and create curricula based on artifacts, specimens, and experiences.

All of these concepts will then be incorporated into two culminating projects that participants will collaborate on and ultimately present.  Contact the instructor for a full syllabus.

Each student will have afternoons to access much of the museum’s collection.  Arrangements to work with artifacts, to use equipment, or to work with experts will be arranged through Matt Witten.  In addition, each participant will be given a family pass for one family visit during the 20198-2020 year.  Passes include a 20% discount at the Red Barn Restaurant at Basin Harbor.

Course Objectives

Project Criteria (Presentations on August 19)

  1. Culminating Project I: Modeling Personalized Learning

Culminating Project I must:

  1. Be based on one or more artifacts, other primary sources, or observed processes
  2. Include an inductive tower that results in one or more questions, hypotheses, generalities, or value statements
  3. Draw from museum staff expertise
  4. Draw from literature, ideally primary sources and scholarly/reputable
  5. Includes a visual concept map (in most cases, an “inductive tower”) that illustrates and analyzes the trail of thinking that the student went through and how this thinking can result in a defensible thesis.
  6. Result in a presentation (PowerPoint or other) that will be shared in one of our last two classes and suitable (or could be modified) for use in the teacher’s classroom as well.
  7. Present a representation of the object, document, or process (3-D print?)
  8. Result in a 5-10-page paper, or the equivalent, that reports the project and includes all of the above elements as well as relevant concepts from class (brain-based, project-based, progressive, inductive learning etc.) and identifies key proficiencies that were addressed from the project.

Culminating Project II: Actualizing Personalized Learning using Expanded Learning Providers. (Presentations on August 19)

Culminating Project II must detail a plan through which the teacher will:

  1. Incorporate artifacts or other primary sources into their classroom in the coming academic year
  2. Utilize the LCMM or other expanded learning providers in the area to make learning more vivid and engaging
  3. Personalize learning for an identified group of students
  4. Develop a method to evaluate the effectiveness of their project through authentic and meaningful evaluation
  5. Include one or more lesson and/or unit plans

Other Information Not Listed Above 

Please contact Dr. Chaucer for a complete syllabus and course schedule.

For additional course information

Dr. Harry Yeo Chaucer
(802) 345-3727

For additional registration information

Matthew Witten
(802) 475-2022

Register online now!