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October 17, 1998

French, Swedish, and American Teachers with "Vision and the Scientific Habit of Mind" attend Socrates workshop in Alexandria Oct. 23-31, 1998 to prepare for educational celebration of the city's 250th Anniversary.

Vision and the Scientific Habit of Mind

Dr. Mary L. Radnofsky (president of The Socrates Institute, a non-profit educational corporation in Alexandria, and member of the Alexandria-Caen Exchange Committee) will welcome ten teachers from our sister cities of Caen, France and Helsingborg, Sweden from October 23-31, 1998. The French and Swedish educators will join ten teachers from Alexandria's own Patrick Henry Elementary School and St. Coletta School to attend a 5-day professional development workshop on interdisciplinary curriculum, in Stage One of a year-long educational project.

The four stages of Vision and the Scientific Habit of Mind are: (1) The Socrates Institute teacher workshop on interdisciplinary curriculum and Internet integration in October 1998, (2) communication and adaptation of the curriculum between participating educators from Nov 1998-March 1999, (3) simultaneous, international implementation of the curriculum in April 1999, and (4) The Socrates Festival presenting the students' collaborative projects and interdisciplinary mural at Landmark Mall on June 4-5, 1999, showcasing their work locally and on the Internet.

The Socrates Institute is enabling these 20 educators to share the opportunity to customize interdisciplinary programs based on Smithsonian museum exhibits, in order to integrate traditionally fragmented school schedules. Linking diverse disciplines through a central theme helps children better understand and address complex, real-life problems.

Dr. Radnofsky, designer of the project, says, "Students --- regardless of their race, gender, creed, national origin, or handicapping condition --- will actively participate in their own learning as they investigate the interrelationship of science with other subjects such as math, art, social studies, music, and language arts. Once they see how their school subjects are related to each other, via projects with The Socrates Institute, they begin to think about the natural links between different aspects of their lives, and are better able to transfer problem-solving skills from one area to the next."

The activities and projects related to the current theme, Vision and the Scientific Habit of Mind, will involve both traditional learning tools as well as state-of-the-art computer technology and Internet capabilities.They are all correlated to Virginia's Standards of Learning, so that the project meets state and local educational requirements.

In celebration of our 250th Anniversary in 1999, students will design and paint an interdisciplinary mural, "Alexandria's Lifeline to the World" at Landmark Mall, depicting the influence of past local visionaries in the arts, sciences, politics, etc. and how they have shaped Alexandria's relationship with the rest of the world. The mural will also reflect the children's visions of the future of Alexandria at the start of the next millennium.

This international project will connect Alexandria and her sister cities through their children's discoveries and inventions across disciplines. It will increase their chances of gaining the kind of education, both in school and out in the world, that best prepares them for the global job market in the 21st century.

Other Press Releases:
 May 13, 04  Mar, 04  Nov 7, 03  Apr 21, 00  Apr 5, 00
 Mar 23, 00  Mar 13, 00  Mar 8, 00  Apr 15, 99  Mar 30, 99
 Mar 16, 99  Mar 6, 99  Oct 17, 98  Jun 15, 98  Jun 3, 98




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