Teacher and students with hands on light bulb

Inquiry Teaching Methods: Grounding STEM Education in Science Practices

The University of New Hampshire Extension is offering a course based on the theory and vision of the Next Generation Science Standards to integrate science and engineering practices within your existing class.  Whether you are an elementary school teacher or a middle school teacher, this course is for you. This course works with you on your existing curricula and expanding student-driven inquiry.

Inquiry-based learning is an approach that involves exploring the natural and man-made world around us in a manner that leads to questioning, observing, investigating, testing, and discussing with others what results were found. Participants will learn the fundamentals of inquiry-based instruction and how to integrate NGSS science and engineering practices including how to ask investigable questions, planning an investigation, and sharing results. You will conduct an inquiry investigation and learn how to “shift” or change existing lessons into authentic learning opportunities that integrate NGSS science and engineering practices.

View more about what is covered in each module in the "What You Will Learn" tab.

*Scholarships are available for this program. Please contact Sarah Grosvenor regarding eligibility, sarah.grosvenor@unh.edu.

certificate badgeCompletion of the course will award an Inquiry Teaching Methods: Grounding STEM Education in Science Practices Micro-credential (digital badge) from the University of New Hampshire.

Participants who successfully complete the Inquiry Teaching Methods: Grounding STEM Education in Science Practices program will automatically receive a digital badge micro-credential that verifies their accomplishment and skill that can be shared on social media, blogs, and online portfolios.  

Upon completion of the certificate, participants will receive an email with further information on claiming their badge. For more information on digital badges with UNH PD&T, click here.

What You Will Learn


Inquiry Teaching Methods: Grounding STEM Education in Science Practices

2024 Agenda 

Session 1: Comparing Approaches

March 7, 2024  4:00pm-7:00pm

Session 2: NGSS Science and Engineering Practices

March 14, 2024  4:00pm-7:00pm

Session 3: Raising and Asking Questions

March 21, 2024  4:00pm-7:00pm

Session 4: Full Inquiry Lesson

March 30, 2024  9:00am-3:30pm

Session 5: Subtle Shifts

April 4, 2024  4:00pm-7:00pm

Session 6: Integrating the NGSS Science and Engineering Practices

April 11, 2024 4:00pm-7:00pm

Session 7: Reflection

May 6, 2024 4:00pm-7:00pm

Participant Learning Objectives:

  • Participants will understand and assess different approaches to teaching Science in the classroom
  • Participants will critique, compare and contrast the 8 NGSS Science and Engineering Practices and how they are used by students in varying degrees of competency in a science activity.
  • Participants will practice using an evaluation tool to assess student ability to complete a science activity using the science and engineering practices as outlined in NGSS
  • Participants will learn how to take existing science lessons and include the NGSS practices at appropriate levels for their students. 

Travel & Site Information


Inquiry Teaching Methods: Grounding STEM Education in Science Practices

Abbot-Downing Elementary School

152 South St, Concord, NH 03301

Instructor Bios


Inquiry Teaching Methods: Grounding STEM Education in Science Practices

  • Sarah Grosvenor

    Sarah is a Field Specialist with UNH Cooperative Extension in Science Literacy.  She is also the Program Director of the UNH STEM Discovery Lab at UNH Manchester.  She specializes in science education, where she trains teachers, after-school professionals and volunteers in science curricula and science teaching methods with a focus on inquiry based teaching and learning.  As the director for the UNH STEM Discovery Lab, Sarah is responsible for program design, implementation and evaluation for STEM opportunities for youth and adults.  Sarah received her B.S. in wildlife biology and her M.A.T. in middle level science education from the University of Vermont.

  • Lara Gengarelly

    Lara Gengarelly is a State Specialist with UNH Cooperative Extension in Science Education and an Affiliate Professor with the UNH Joan and James Leitzel Center for Mathematics, Science, and Engineering Education. Lara received a B.A. in Biology and Science Education from Hampshire College (1993) and a M.S. and Ph.D. in Plant Biology from UNH (1999 & 2003). She has taught science in both elementary and secondary schools in New England. Gengarelly was a faculty member in the UNH Education Department (2004–2014), where she taught and supervised undergraduate and graduate preservice teachers. She designs science education projects that involve community partnerships between scientists and K–12 educators and provides professional development for educators and Extension volunteers. She also works as a science education evaluator and curriculum specialist for several federally funded science education programs designed for K-12 students and science teachers. Gengarelly’s current research investigates the underlying factors of professional development that can help educators create learning experiences that ultimately improve learners’ science literacy and attitudes toward STEM disciplines. She is particularly interested in studying how to increase the integration of authentic scientific research practices in K–12 formal and nonformal settings.


This course is currently unavailable.