CHESTERTOWN - Sultana Projects Inc. is pleased to announce the organization recently culminated a busy winter of working with area history and science teachers. On Feb. 9, 20 educators attended a workshop at the University of Maryland, Baltimore County to learn about the history, culture and environment of the Chesapeake Bay.
The seminar was the fourth professional development program conducted by Sultana Projects in conjunction with NOAA, the National Geographic Society and the Maryland Geographic Alliance as part of the Chesapeake Watershed Initiative, a program designed to help area teachers improve their instruction on Bay-related topics.
Activities included examining maps, using fisheries data to analyze recent trends in the Chesapeake ecosystem, conducting tests to monitor water quality, learning about the 1608 voyages of Captain John Smith and studying ways that human activities have impacted the estuary over the past four centuries. Teachers also learned about FieldScope, a state-of-the-art online program developed by National Geographic that allows students to upload real-time water quality data from the field to an interactive map of the Chesapeake Bay.
Between December 2012 and February 2013, a total of 80 teachers from 14 counties participated in workshops conducted in Saint Michaels, Chestertown, Solomons Island and UMBC. At the end of each session, teachers received free lesson plans, posters, DVDs and water testing equipment.
"This was a fantastic opportunity for Sultana Projects to provide Maryland teachers with the best possible resources for teaching students about the Chesapeake Bay, while allowing us to work together with some of the most prestigious educational organizations in the country," said Chris Cerino, vice president of Sultana Projects and lead instructor at the workshops. "Our hope is that these programs not only increased teachers' knowledge of the content, but gave them the tools they need to enhance and improve their classroom instruction."
In the spring, many of the teachers will be following up their experience by bringing students on field trips aboard the schooner Sultana and on Sultana Projects' mobile canoe program.