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Ozarks Teachers Recommend Ways to Interest Students in School

A panel that studied math and science performance in Missouri recommends teachers get kids more excited about math and science. Some area teachers say they know how to interest kids in these areas. KSMU's Christy Hendricks reports.

A panel of education and business people recently recommended ways to get more youth in Missouri excited about math and science.

The panel calls for improving students' performance in math and science from preschool to graduate school.

It says state expectations and assessments should be redone, college courses should be tougher, and calls for more incentives for teachers.

Some local teachers have their own suggestions for getting kids involved in math and science.

Ann Wallenmeyer is the K through 12 science curriculum facilitator for the Springfield Public School district.

She says kids lose interest in science if they feel they can't do it or think it's not "cool".

Wallenmeyer says Springfield Public Schools approach science with a hands-on attitude.

Glenda Thurlkill has been teaching for 17 years.

She teaches third grade at Jeffries Elementary and says teaching methods need to be varied to keep students interested.

Thurlkill says Springfield Public Schools use a spiral method of teaching.

Pam Herd is a math curriculum facilitator for the school district.

She says students today have grown up differently than in the past.

All the teachers agreed that it's important to develop curriculum that engages students and to have incentives to recruit and keep quality math and science teachers.