Registration Underway for Program that Brings Science Lessons to Life

During their final JSAT sessions for the 2016-17 academic year, JSAT 8 teachers prepared materials for a new classroom activities. They created scientific pinwheels that can be used by students, to reinforce scientific concepts such as equations, units of measurement and scientific methodology; and they participated in a design challenge dubbed the Wicked Fast Water Slide. The challenge posed specific design criteria and constraints.

Teachers Hone Skills, Develop Useful Classroom Activities Through Jefferson Lab’s Science Enrichment Program

NEWPORT NEWS, VA – The U.S. Department of Energy's Thomas Jefferson National Accelerator Facility is accepting applications for its 2017-18 science enrichment program for fifth-, sixth- and eighth-grade teachers of science.

The after-school program is designed to increase teachers' knowledge of the physical sciences and to strengthen their teaching skills. It will run from September 2017 through May 2018 and is called Jefferson Lab Science Activities for Teachers, or JSAT.

"At the elementary- and middle-school levels, teachers, with little or no formal background in science education often find themselves tasked with teaching the science curriculum," said Lisa Surles-Law, the 8th grade JSAT program administrator. "This program is a primer for them and a refresher for those with a formal science education. JSAT provides attendees with a wealth of information, materials and activities to take back to their classrooms, as well as the opportunity to network with other teachers.

“We appreciate the dedication and commitment our teachers have in advancing the knowledge and understanding of their students. We are committed to helping these teachers to succeed and through them, their students,” noted Surles-Law.

The 2017-18 program will include interactive activities to enhance physical science instruction at the upper-elementary and middle school levels, and lectures by Jefferson Lab staff on the applications of science. Topics will include matter, atomic structure, energy transfer, force and motion, magnetism and electricity, waves and sound, simple machines, optics and the watershed cycle. Program participants receive supplies and materials, so that they will be able to conduct all the planned activities in their own classrooms. As a professional development opportunity, they also present an activity at the Region II Jefferson Lab Teacher Night. Participating teachers can earn a stipend and up to 48 recertification points for 2017-18.

The JSAT program, funded over the past 10 years by a grant from the Jefferson Science Associates Initiatives Fund, addresses components of National Science Education Standards and the Virginia Standards of Learning.

Fifth-grade teachers will meet on alternating Thursday evenings, sixth-grade teachers will meet on alternating Tuesdays, and eighth-grade teachers will meet on alternating Wednesdays. Sessions will take place from 5-7 p.m. at Jefferson Lab, located at 12000 Jefferson Ave. in Newport News.

Additional information about the program is available at:

The application form is available online at:

Questions may be directed to Surles-Law at or 757-269-5002. The application deadline for the 2017-18 program is Friday, Sept. 8, 2017.

The JSA Initiatives Fund Program was established by Jefferson Science Associates, to support programs, initiatives and activities that further the scientific outreach, and promote the science, education and technology missions of Jefferson Lab in ways that complement its basic and applied research focus. Initiatives Fund awards are for those projects that benefit the lab user community and that leverage commitments of others. Information about the JSA Initiatives Fund is online at:


Contact: Deb Magaldi,, 757-269-5102


Jefferson Science Associates, LLC, manages and operates the Thomas Jefferson National Accelerator Facility, or Jefferson Lab, for the U.S. Department of Energy's Office of Science. JSA is a wholly owned subsidiary of the Southeastern Universities Research Association, Inc. (SURA).

DOE’s Office of Science is the single largest supporter of basic research in the physical sciences in the United States and is working to address some of the most pressing challenges of our time. For more information, visit