UW-Stout News Story

TEACH Precollege gives students a head start on teaching

June 22, 2012

High school students from around Wisconsin are getting a sneak peek at University of Wisconsin-Stout and at what it’s like to be a teacher.

The fourth annual TEACH Precollege program is being held on campus. A total of 15 students have been on campus the past two weeks taking classes in education, English and math; working on projects; and doing group activities.

The program’s goals are teacher career exploration, academic enrichment and leadership development, according to Dang Yang, program director and a multicultural recruitment and retention coordinator in the School of Education.

Each year the program highlights a different teaching discipline; this year it’s science and technology education. On Thursday afternoon, for example, students worked in pairs making electric parallel circuits.

A total of 15 students who previously went through the program have since graduated from high school; 14 are enrolled in college, Yang said. Half of them are pursuing teaching careers, including two at UW-Stout.

The program targets potential first-generation college students and diverse student populations but is open to anyone. Students must apply, and the number of participants is limited.

“The number of TEACH Precollege students going to college has shown that this program has been very successful in helping to prepare them. However, our success is in the data that indicate what our learning outcomes are. Last year our class average math scores showed a 28.59 percent growth, and our writing scores showed a 12.18 percent growth among our participants,” Yang said.

English classes are taught by Andrea Deacon, associate professor in the English and philosophy department. Math classes are taught by Krystle Mayer, a coordinator in the Math Teaching and Learning Center in Jarvis Hall.

Students are issued laptop computers for the program.

Group activities this year have included a pool party, the university ropes course and trips to Action City in Eau Claire and Beaver Creek Reserve near Fall Creek.

TEACH Precollege was funded in 2009 and 2010 by the UW-Stout Dean of Students Office, Multicultural Student Services and the School of Education. The last two years the program has been funded with a UW System Closing the Achievement Gap Grant.

For more information, go to the website.

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