TOTOS SEEP Grant EE/ESE Program Descriptions

Sustainability and Environmental Education for Pre-Service (SEEP)

Seattle Pacific University – EDSC 4200: Science/Social Studies/Heath Methods II

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Name(s) of instructor(s)

Eleanor Close, Lezlie DeWater, Stamatis Vokos

Name of university

Seattle Pacific University

Level of preparation for the program being described: elementary, middle school, high school (or combination)


University course number

EDSC 4200

University course title

Science/Social Studies/Heath Methods II

University course catalogue description

Prerequisite: EDSC 3200. Expands the ideas built in EDSC 3200 and provides opportunity to apply them in practice teaching. The course will build integration of concepts of healthy living into the science/social studies content. Unit and lesson plans will be developed for implementation.


(big ideas are fine)


All course objectives are for the purpose of helping students address the four commitments of the School of Education’s Conceptual Framework: competence, character, service, and leadership. Additionally, student goals that relate to each course objective are indicated within parentheses.

    1. Students will demonstrate their ability to use technology by using online resources to align curriculum with state standards (e.g., OSPI) (Category V).
    2. Students will demonstrate knowledge of commonly used / School District-adopted elementary curricula in science (e.g., STC, FOSS), social studies (e.g., Storypath, Stories In Time), and health (e.g., Second Step, The Children’s Health Market, The Great Body Shop), as well as the ability to use effective teaching practices, by planning and teaching inquiry-based lessons using one or more adopted curriculum / curricula (Categories III & VIII).
    3. Students will write learning targets (objectives) and assessment plans for science / social studies / health lessons appropriate to the developmental levels of students and the Washington EALRs and GLEs; students will write complete lesson plans to meet the objectives, including assessment strategies and rubrics appropriate for evaluation of performances linked to Washington EALRs and GLEs (Categories I, II, IV, & VIII).
    4. Students will prepare and teach lessons that integrate concepts and skills across subject areas, using a variety of media and taking into account multiple intelligences (Categories I, III, & V).
    5. Students will demonstrate the ability to select appropriate formative assessment by including several tasks and/or probing questions in lesson plans, to be used with students at diverse cognitive and affective levels, and using such questions in interaction with peers and students during their teaching (Categories I, III,IV & VI).
    6. Students will contribute to a positive learning environment by participating openly, cooperatively and enthusiastically in science / social studies / health investigations with peers and students (Categories I & VIII).
    1. Students will examine personal views relating to science, social studies, health, and learning in reflective writing assignments and class discussions (Category VII).
    2. Students will demonstrate the ability to accept and act on constructive criticism of lesson plans and teaching methods provided in peer and instructor feedback on science / social science / health lessons (Category VII).
    1. Students will assist with science / social studies / health teaching and planning in an elementary classroom, helping students individually and in groups (Category III).
    1. Students will demonstrate the ability to provide constructive criticism to peers through participation in and evaluation of peer-taught science / social studies / health lessons (Categories VII & VIII).

Description of the experience(s) the pre-service teachers had to learn EE-ESE strategies

(This is the main, detailed description)

Brief description: Students spend two full days in an outdoor setting, either at SPU’s Blakely Island Field Station (through 2008) or in local parks (beginning in 2009). During this time they spend time observing and reflecting on the natural setting, as well as participating in lessons from Project Learning Tree and becoming familiar with that resource. They begin keeping a Nature Journal, which they continue throughout the course. Pat Otto, a PLT trainer, works with the class during at least one class session to continue their PLT training.

See attachment “1. Blakely rationale Au 08” for more learning goals related to the outdoor education experience.

Materials/equipment needed for the pre-service teacher experience (include technology that may have been used)

Basic materials needed for PLT lessons (string, shovels, paper, etc.)

Were preK-12 children involved? (Yes or no). If yes, describe their involvement and ages.

Not up to now. However, in future offerings of this course we are planning to include a visit to an elementary classroom implementing PLT activities as part of the environmental education experience.

Was this an indoor or outdoor project (or both)?

Describe the setting.


The Blakely Island Field Station is an isolated field station on Blakely Island in the northern San Juan Islands. The field station includes an indoor classroom as well as extensive outdoor acreage. Outdoor sites include second-growth forest, natural lake, man-made lake, and salt-water shore (Puget Sound).

Were other subject area professors involved? Yes or no. If yes, what subjects were integrated? How?

The instructional team for this course consists of faculty with joint appointments in the School of education and the Physics Department, as well as full-time Physics faculty; Pat Otto, our regular guest instructor for the PLT materials, has a background in forestry as well as environmental education.

Were there community/ agency/institution partners? Yes or no. If yes, how was the partnership structured?

The Pacific Education Institute supplies PLT guides for our students and pays Pat Otto for her training activities.

How was the program evaluated? What did the pre-service teachers have to say?

Evaluation was based on reflection questions and end-of-term course evaluations.

Students are always thrilled to have the PLT resource made available and to receive training on how to best use it. Some students find the Nature Journal to be an unexpectedly valuable experience for opening their eyes and spirits to the natural world, while others say that they do not get much out of it. We switched the field experience to take place in local parks in part due to student requests to spend that time becoming familiar with outdoor settings they might be able to visit with their future students.


If another grant was written to support your EE-ESE work, what types of things would you hope to accomplish?

Thank you!