2061 Connections
An electronic newsletter for the science education community


Illinois Physics Teacher Wins AAAS Education Prize

Diane Riendeau

Diane Riendeau

Thanks to her innovative “Make It, Take It, Teach It” program for high school physics, Diane Riendeau will soon take a break from her Illinois classroom and travel to a gathering of science educators in Shanghai, China. Riendeau is the 2008 winner of AAAS’s Leadership in Science Education Prize for High School Teachers.

In Riendeau’s program, students observe basic physics concepts as they build an object like a kaleidoscope or a marshmallow gun. Students then use their creations to demonstrate the physics concepts to their parents. By providing memorable learning activities and casting students in the role of teacher, Riendeau has boosted physics comprehension and interest at Deerfield High School.

In addition to the $1,000 award given to the winner, this year’s prize includes the chance to address science teachers from China and other countries at the Shanghai International Forum on Science Literacy of Precollege Students. The annual Forum is part of a national plan in China to improve science literacy. Riendeau and George DeBoer, Project 2061’s deputy director, will represent AAAS at this year’s October forum.

To learn more about Diane Riendeau and her program, read the AAAS news coverage.

For details about the prize, including how to nominate a high school teacher for 2009, visit AAAS Prizes.

To read about George DeBoer’s participation in the 2007 Shanghai International Forum, visit “Chinese Educators, U.S. Publishers Look to Project 2061” (Project 2061 Connections, January/February 2008).

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For more information, please contact:

Project 2061 Communications Director: Mary Koppal, (202) 326-6643

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