- Category: Center Info
- Published: March 31, 2015
The MathScience Innovation Center (MSiC) is dedicated to the development and implementation of futuristic STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics programs for Central Virginia’s K-12 students and educators. Annually, over 170,000 students learn STEM and SOL focused lessons both at the Center and in classrooms. In addition, students and parents take advantage of our Saturday and Summer programs and conferences.
At MSiC, educators have opportunities to explore topics related to STEM such as Nanoscience, Fractals, and Engineering, in addition to courses focused on inquiry-based approaches to teaching and learning. Staff at the MSiC work with up to 3,000 educators to improve the ability of teachers to teach STEM-related content through hands-on workshops, conferences, Fellows programs, and short courses taught in collaboration with universities on campus and in the field.
The Center also has a strong distance learning initiative. Approximately one million visitors access these programs annually through web-based courses and video-conferencing. In addition, we offer STEM-baseddistance learning lessons to teachers within our consortium.
Central Virginia's students and teachers will embrace mathematics, science and technology to enrich their lives.
The MathScience Innovation Center provides extraordinary K-12 educational experiences by igniting interest and deepening learning in mathematics, science and technology.
The MathScience Innovation Center is proud to be the leader of K-12 math and science education for the eight Central Virginia school divisions within our forty-nine-year-old consortium. Former students may recall such specialty classrooms as the Spider Room, the Challenger Center, the Dominion Weather Room or the Aquarium classroom. Consortium students continue to come daily, on Saturday or during the summer for special lessons and courses. Staff members also serve as guest educators within the 137 elementary, 43 middle and 36 high schools within the consortium. Virtual programming includes websites, Web-based lessons and courses, streaming videos and videoconferencing.
The MathScience Innovation Center now has an expanded role—leading the educational consortium. Leadership roles include trend analysis, professional development of educators, innovative student programs and advocacy of futuristic programs. As part of Vision 2015, a new vision, mission and strategic plan were adopted in 2006, and a new name and logo were adopted in May 2007. Our new name reflects our new focus—innovative student and teacher programs.
Formed in 1966 as the Mathematics & Science Center, we are the oldest example of regional partnerships in the metro Richmond area. The MathScience Innovation Center is comprised of eight school divisions: Chesterfield, Colonial Heights, Hanover, Henrico, King William, Petersburg, Powhatan and Richmond. Through abbreviated memberships other divisions also participate: Charles City, Dinwiddie, Goochland, Hopewell, and Prince George. The MathScience Innovation Center is governed by a nineteen-member Board consisting of a superintendent and school board member from each consortium division and several at-large members.
Consortium Members' BenefitsThese comprehensive memberships entitle the school division or private school to all Center services.
- Lessons at the Center. Two- to three-hour lessons in the Center's ten designed facilities.
- Lessons in the Classroom. About 100 different lessons in area classrooms that range from 45 to 180 minutes.
- Lessons via Adobe Connect web conferencing. Students from across the consortium learn through a combination of hands-on and virtual experiences via Adobe Connect.
- Lessons on the Web. A general educational website with lesson plans, activities and other resources, as well as specialized resources on engineering, fractal geometry, nanoscience, oceanography and spiders.
- Loan Equipment and Materials. Specialized scientific equipment and hands-on materials are loaned for classroom use.
- Metro Richmond STEM Fair. This regional fair is affiliated with the Intel International Science and Engineering Fair and sends winners to both the state and international competitions.
- Professional Development. The Center offers workshops and non-college and college-credit courses for educators. Multiyear programs are available to enable teachers to secure endorsements in mathematics and science and to pursue an Interdisciplinary Master's Degree through Virginia Commonwealth University.
- Saturday and Summer Student Programs. Saturday morning courses are held for rising K-3 graders and an adult or for students, grades 4-5. One-day conferences are held throughout the year for middle and senior high students. During the summer, the Center offers one-week courses for fourth to eight graders as well as the two-week Regional Governor's School for Middle School Youth.