2008 Annual Report
Gulf of Maine Research Institute
Education Programs Lobster: Untold Tales Vital Signs Vital Venture
Education Overview

GMRI has built a remarkable continuum of 5th to 8th grade science education programs that inspires deep learning. Through authentic hands-on science, Maine children gain capacity for critical thinking, problem solving, communication and collaboration. They learn how to learn. Our focus is on the practice of science in all its messiness, rather than memorizing right answers. Students build transferable skills and habits of mind through teamwork, analysis, reasoning, and sharing.

We were excited to introduce 5th and 6th graders participating in LabVenture! to a new science mystery. Lobsters: Untold Tales puts Maine children in the driver's seat to investigate what this iconic species eats, where it lives, how it behaves, and where it is caught.

Thousands of Maine's 7th and 8th grade students and their teachers joined our Vital Signs community. We officially launched the website where they can share their findings of invasive species and native species and habitats most vulnerable to future invasions with top scientists, passionate citizens and a statewide network of their peers. The Vital Signs community of novices and experts has contributed and reviewed over 500 species observations statewide.

Through Vital Venture, we published an extraordinary collection of watershed experiences designed to facilitate in-depth learning over the course of the middle school years. Students construct a more sophisticated understanding of systems, hone investigation skills, and apply and extend their learning into local communities. Vital Venture also provides teachers with learning resources and best-practice case studies, as well a library of classroom-tested activities.

All of GMRI's education programs share a deep commitment to teacher professional development. In 2009, over 75 teachers participated in multiple days of GMRI workshops or training. We are working closely with the Maine Department of Education and the Maine Mathematics and Science Alliance to maximize the impact of these experiences by providing a consistent approach to how teachers learn about and enhance the teaching of science in Maine classrooms.

Staff Reflections
  • Alan Lishness
  • Alexa Dayton
  • Blaine Grimes
  • Justine Glynn
  • Katie Flavin
  • Meredyth Eufemia
  • Pete Stetson
  • Ros Goldsborough
  • Sarah Kirn
  • Sarah Morrisseau
  • Tom Farmer
  • Rebecca Martin
  • Gayle Bodge
  • Andy Whitaker
  • Taylor Strout
  • Nick Record
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Deepening Our Impact

Maine children find exciting career role models among GMRI’s science team.

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