:: Gazette.net | Deaf school uses lab for learning ::

Deaf school uses lab for learning


by Katherine Mullen | Staff Writer
Thursday, April 5, 2007

Deaf school.jpgJad Gore, 11, and lab partner Lance Brewer, 10, both fifth-graders at the Maryland School for the Deaf, spent hours studying rocks, contemplating plate tectonics and observing water erosion at the Earth and Space Science Laboratory last week.

On Lance’s first visit to the lab March 29, he said it wasn’t all hard work.

‘‘Some of it’s like playing,” Lance said via an interpreter. ‘‘I like it a lot.”

In the last three months, elementary students from the Maryland School for the Deaf have visited the laboratory at Lincoln Elementary School more frequently, thanks to a new closed captioning system and a renewed partnership between the two schools.

Students at the Maryland School for the Deaf are visual and hands-on learners, and the Earth and Space Science Laboratory is an ideal learning environment for them, according to Lisa Houck, director of curriculum and instruction at the Maryland School for the Deaf.

Mark Bowman, co-director of the Earth and Space Science Laboratory, said Maryland School for the Deaf students and teachers had occasionally visited the lab, but their visits had dwindled in recent years.

In December 2006, Bowman and Houck met with Frederick County Public Schools staff to discuss how the school’s students could access the lab.

Bowman said all elementary grades from the Maryland School for the Deaf except first grade will have visited the lab by mid-April.

The Earth and Space Science Laboratory is a hands-on learning lab for mostly elementary students who are studying astronomy, oceanography, meteorology and geology. The lab was established in 1962 to supplement and enrich the elementary and middle school science curriculums with half-day excursions to the lab and planetarium. Continue

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