ASSET's professional development is hands-down the best I've ever had as an educator. You take so much with you—the strategies, the content, everything—it sticks with you.
ASSET introduced me to the world of inquiry-based science and taught me how to develop critical thinkers who can solve problems and create solutions for the 21st century.
Sisters e S.T.E.A.M.
ASSET gives teachers the tools to make our students lifelong learners — not just in science, but in all subjects.
We look at student data and really roll up our sleeves and work as colleagues together and say, "What are we going to do to help all of these students move and achieve?" You no longer feel like you're standing on an island.
ASSET's professional development is the most meaningful we've had in years. You walk down the hall and see teachers and students doing things that we learned. Just seeing how excited the kids are about science motivates us to keep going.
ASSET’s incredible growth and emergence as one of the country’s leading forces in achieving systemic reform in elementary and middle school science education begins with its research and development programs.
PPG Industries Foundation
All fingers point to our experience with ASSET and its programs and workshops as the reason for our success. We've been able to obtain the knowledge needed to lead our children to success.
As a father of 6 and an employee of a high tech company, I appreciate the impact of the ASSET Science Program on both a personal and professional level. ASSET is our national endowment: as we invest in the growth of our science and math educators, we create a foundation for greater science and math literacy, greater career development and higher levels of analytical thinking. This is a foundation on which our country can grow and develop. We owe a great deal to the hard work of ASSET. Thank you for your work.
We've seen nice improvements in writing, math and reading. It's a moving target with all of the changes in state testing, but we're leaning on ASSET to help us through those transitions.
Director of Curriculum and Instruction
Many of my students started without having much of any literacy in their home environment, but now they've surpassed expectations of their reading level. And I think it has a lot to do with problem solving and inquiry—not just in science, but in language arts and math as well.
I love going in and seeing teachers bring back all these things that they learned in their professional development. I think ASSET has helped me to focus on the assessment pieces, the inquiry pieces and the student-centered approach to teaching. And it's impacted our practice, because teachers know that I'm looking for those things, too.
I feel more empowered. Yes, I teach, but I have a voice and a professional opinion that needs to be heard and shared with colleagues.
I remember ASSET making science class exciting because of all the sensory aspects of it. It was all very visual, which I believe helped me to relate the things I was learning to the ‘real world.’ Throughout high school I remained interested in science taking advanced chemistry and physics classes.
Graduate Major: Supply Chain Management
It used to be “my” students. I'd have 25 students and they were “my” students. And now they're “our” students. K-5, all 238 of them—they're our students, and we all want them to be successful.
ASSET's work is grounded in research that they bring to life through hands-on activities and thought-provoking discussions.
Grants & Special Projects Coordinator
Allegheny County Library Association
The kids take a lot more ownership of what they're doing and learning. They can answer things. They can draw pictures and label them. And they can come up with meaningful reasons.
After going through the professional development and trying some of the inquiry strategies with my first-grade students, I'm amazed. Yes, they can do this; yes, they want to learn more.
ASSET has helped us keep a focus on inquiry-based learning. We continue to grow with ASSET.
Director of Curriculum
ASSET professional development supports our educators by providing a better understanding of the technology and engineering that surrounds our everyday lives. Many of us do not come from technology backgrounds and lack knowledge in the engineering field. However, the professional development sessions allow us to jump over that barrier so we can successfully facilitate learning with our girls.
Dr. Kathi Elliott
Our scores since we've been involved with ASSET have been amazing—they just keep going up, and I know it's because of what we're learning.
Our science scores are through the roof, and I think it absolutely has to do with ASSET and the professional development. The inquiry-based practices really get kids to think about what they're doing and learning. Inquiry makes it stick, and that's what we really want.
Some students do best when everything is broken down and explained. Others love the freedom of exploration. The amazing thing about ASSET’s approach to science is that it works for both learning styles. You can follow an experiment step by step — or cut loose and go crazy. I still apply the skills I learned in ASSET classes to my studies today.
Major: Finance; Minor: Economics
ASSET trainings are truly the best professional development I have ever received. I have seen students become further engaged in learning and become better at asking questions during inquiry lessons.
Teachers often are exposed to one-shot training that is soon replaced by another ‘flavor of the day.’ As a result, they’re wary of many training programs. But ASSET is in a league of its own. It offers credible professional development teachers trust.
Although ASSET may appear to be 'materials and professional development for hands-on science,' I realized in its early years of development that at its core, it is fundamentally about shifting the teaching profession so that teachers are active architects for building student thinking and conceptual understanding— which can be applied in any content area. The ASSET professional development around inquiry helps teachers push back against pressures to have the teacher at the center of the classroom and instead orient their classrooms around students' thinking. This realization has changed the way I work with other education organizations— I look beyond the context and strategies that the organization employs to understand its core message about teaching and learning.
Jennifer Iriti, PhD
Co-Director, Evaluation for Learning Group
Learning Research and Development Center, University of Pittsburgh
ASSET has played a very important national leadership role in the growth and the success of the hands-on, inquiry-based model in elementary school science classrooms—not only in western Pennsylvania, but across the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania and from coast to coast. I believe that ASSET is a model for the nation.