Cody Tilton, a science teacher at Deer Park High School – South Campus, in Deer Park, TX

Deer Park, TX - Cody Tilton, a science teacher at Deer Park High School – South Campus, in Deer Park, TX, has been named a regional winner in the Shell Science Lab Regional Challenge. Sponsored by Shell Oil Company and administered by the National Science Teaching Association (NSTA), the competition encouraged K-12 science teachers who have found innovative ways to deliver quality lab experiences with limited school and laboratory resources, to share their approaches for a chance to win a school science lab makeover support package. Tilton is one of 36 regional winners named, from which three grand prize winners will be selected.

An effective science teacher presents a data-driven learning environment for his or her students. Cody Tilton is constantly collecting data on his students’ misconceptions through formative assessments. This data drives his instructional strategies. Additionally, science learning necessitates hands-on, real scientific data collection in a safe environment. Students are encouraged to use this data to continuously refine their understanding of chemical concepts and develop a deeper understanding of the big ideas behind these abstract, difficult topics.

Upgrading lab equipment would allow for a lot more hands-on labs rather than simulation labs. Labs completed through simulations are useful but do not provide the same learning experience as actually performing the experiment and collecting the data. Since the AP Chemistry exam often involves questions that require students to be experienced with certain experimental techniques, an updated lab would be a huge boost to students’ understanding of these types of questions. Moreover, the hands-on experience would provide students with a kinesthetic background in these difficult topics and would allow them to remember them long-term.

“We’re thrilled to see Cody Tilton named a regional winner of the Shell Science Lab Challenge,” said Jessica Blackmore, External Relations Manager at Shell Deer Park. “We’re grateful to our teachers who continue to step up and foster a love of science, technology, engineering and math through innovation and creative learning experiences. I’m excited for students in our community who will benefit from the work of our regional winners as they equip their labs with more unique and exciting activities furthering quality education.”

To enter the Shell Science Lab Regional Challenge, K-12 science teachers located in select school districts near Shell assets were asked to describe their school’s current laboratory resources, explain why laboratory upgrade support is needed, and describe their approach to science education instruction utilizing their school’s current lab facilities. A panel of science educators then reviewed and selected the top entries. The regional winners each received a school science lab makeover support package valued at $10,000 (for the elementary and middle levels) and $15,000 (for the high school level).

“During an unbelievably challenging and unprecedented year, these amazing educators went above and beyond to teach and engage their students in science. I am inspired by their resilience and resourcefulness,” said Dr. Elizabeth Allan, NSTA Retiring President. “Congratulations to all the regional winners and best of luck on the next phase of the competition.”

Tilton now advances to the national phase of the competition, where he will have a chance to win an additional $5,000 of support to attend a future NSTA National Conference on Science Education, where they will be honored at a Shell reception and Teachers Awards Gala.

About NSTA

The National Science Teaching Association (NSTA) is a vibrant community of 40,000 science educators and professionals committed to best practices in teaching science and its impact on student learning. NSTA offers high quality science resources and continuous learning so that science educators grow professionally and excel in their career. For new and experienced teachers alike, the NSTA community offers the opportunity to network with like-minded peers at the national level, connect with mentors and leading researchers, and learn from the best in the field.

About Shell Oil Company

Shell Oil Company is an affiliate of the Royal Dutch Shell plc, a global group of energy and petrochemical companies with operations in more than 70 countries. In the U.S., Shell operates in 50 states and employs more than 20,000 people working to help tackle the challenges of the new energy future.

FOR INQUIRIES CONTACT: Shell Oil Company Media Line 832-33-SHELL

Kate Falk, NSTA
(703) 312-9211

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