Discover Learning Pathways
Let’s Talk Science is committed to transforming STEM teaching and learning in the modern classroom, and in keeping with this commitment, we’ve launched the certified Learning Pathways.
Effective October 6th, 2021, our professional learning program has been reorganized to link STEM education across the curriculum. Learning Pathways provides educators of all levels opportunities for professional learning certifications in STEM-based concepts.
Joanna Sanders is the Director of Professional Learning at Let’s Talk Science. She sat down for an interview to answer questions prospective participants may have about who the program is for, why educators should enroll and what benefits Learning Pathways provides educators
Question: What are the Learning Pathways? Who are the Learning Pathways designed for?
Joanna: Learning Pathways are various professional learning options that are linked in structure for Canadian educators to progress through. Completion of milestones along pathways results in certification by Let's Talk Science. Within Learning Pathways, there are three levels of certification: Investing, Developing and Innovating.
Learning pathways are designed for K-12 educators of all skill levels who are looking to grow their confidence and understanding as well as their pedagogical skills in STEM, and how they can weave these concepts and skills across the curriculum.
Question: What type of skills will be taught?
Joanna: Educators will focus on concepts and skills related to science, technology, engineering, and math. They’ll also focus on digital literacy, global competencies and integrating diverse perspectives and worldviews into their teaching. This will help educators develop a well-rounded approach that will help their students be engaged citizens, problem solvers and innovators.
Question: What makes the Learning Pathways program offered by Let’s Talk Science different from similar continuing education courses provided elsewhere?
Joanna: Let's Talk Science is able to offer Learning Pathways at no cost to participants in a flexible manner suited to the needs of educators and geared toward individual learning styles. Educators can complete Learning Pathways in-person, live or self-paced online. The program is customizable to the needs of individual educators.
Question: Why should educators participate? What do educators get out of the pathways?
Joanna: We recognize that educators are constantly learning and are always looking to bring innovative approaches into their classrooms. By following pathways, educators will develop the skills, knowledge and confidence required to help them develop an innovative learning culture within their classroom and deliver the necessary learning opportunities for their students to support that culture.
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Question: What role will Teacher Leaders play?
Joanna: Teacher Leaders are classroom educators themselves. They bring a lot of expertise, and experience to this program - playing a massive role in Learning Pathways. Teacher Leaders facilitate live sessions and they add valuable classroom context, tips and examples during sessions. They will also contribute to content, ensuring it is relevant and applicable to Canadian classrooms.
Question: Should non-STEM educators take the time to engage?
Joanna: STEM is everywhere, and non-STEM educators should absolutely enroll regardless of their teaching focus. We need to foster curiosity, innovation and problem-solving skills in students. So regardless of subject, educators will learn the necessary skills to help support inquiry-based learning, design thinking, and infuse global competencies across the curriculum.
Question: How do Learning Pathways support or reinforce the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs)?
Joanna: The UN Sustainable Development Goals are a big part of our Cross-Curriculum Pathway that focuses on incorporating STEM into holistic teaching. This pathway will help educators discover the interrelationship of all subjects. SDGs are a great motivator for students as it helps provide scaffolding and support to help them come up with solutions to real-world problems.
Question: What makes Let’s Talk Science, the perfect organization to offer this program?
Joanna: Let's Talk Science has an award-winning track record as a national charitable organization. In particular, we're known for our work to support youth development to be creative, critical thinkers, and knowledgeable citizens prepared to participate and thrive in complex global environments. We're also known for our relevant and engaging professional learning sessions for K-12 educators. Educators can trust that what they learn and do with Let's Talk Science will be time well spent as they can immediately apply it in their classroom, and our reputation supports that.
Question: Are there any networking opportunities?
Joanna: Participants are invited to be active learners in our online and in-person sessions. So whether it's a webinar and participating through a chat or networking opportunities in person, there's always a lot of opportunities to meet and learn from other educators. They're also invited to become active in our online national community of educators that are linked within our self-paced courses.
Question: How do the Learning Pathways fit into an already busy schedule for educators?
Joanna: Learning Pathways is designed to be flexible to meet the needs of educators. There's a mix of required and optional learning experiences delivered through various delivery methods, including live and selfpace. There's a lot of flexibility to take as long or short a time as you need to pursue Learning Pathways.
Question: Are the Learning Pathways open to educators of all grades? How does it correlate with curriculum across the country?
Joanna: We've designed Learning Pathways for K-12 educators, early years educators, and even those pre-service teachers currently pursuing their teaching degrees and with various skill levels. You don't need to be an expert; you don't need to be a beginner; we meet you where you're at. Our Learning Pathways showcase the excellent curriculum-aligned educational resources on the Let's Talk Science website so educators can easily apply what they learn in Pathways.
Question: When will the program be launched?
Joanna: Learning Pathways is being launched on October 6th with our first pathway. The remaining pathways will be released in the coming months over the next year.
Question: What’s the key benefit of becoming a Let’s Talk Science STEM Certified Educator?
Joanna: The key benefit is that an educator will feel confident using trusted STEM learning strategies and resources as well as incorporating core global competencies into their teaching practice by the end of their journey. They'll also have a recognized certification to include in their portfolio or on their resume and that's an achievement to be proud of!
Learning Pathways officially launches on October 6th. For more information and to register, visit the Learning Pathways Homepage or take a look at the course syllabus.
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