Science Learning and Instructional Center
Newton South High School
Our Mission

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Last update: Monday, October 12, 2009 3:48 PM

Our Mission

Student learning is the heart of the Science Learning and Instructional Center (SLIC). A student who comes to SLIC has the opportunity to work one-on-one with a peer coach toward the goal of developing better understanding in science courses. Although SLIC staff members also assist students with specific questions, the core purpose is the development of better learning habits that will help individuals become better students in all areas of study.

SLIC staff work with students with some or all of the following learning strategies in mind.

  • Focus on understanding over memorization.
  • Improving notes derived from assigned reading in the textbook.
  • Coordinating lecture notes with reading notes.
  • Conceptualization of the intent behind assigned work.
  • Working out approaches to problem solving.
  • Targeting areas of weaker understanding to direct studying efforts.
  • Methods to seek classroom help on targeted areas of weaker understanding.


How SLIC Works

SLIC was established in Fall 2007 with the idea that peer support is one of the most effective means for improving student learning. Students are encouraged to come to SLIC mostly to work with a peer coach or with classmates (peers), although teacher support is also available during some blocks. Peer coaches are junior and senior students in good standing who have recently worked through the material of core science courses. Junior peer coaches are available to work with students on freshman physics and chemistry (I and II). Senior peer coaches are available to work with students on freshman physics, chemistry (I and II), and biology (I and II). Peer coaches work with students on all aspects of the science curriculum (reading, homework, laboratory, etc.) toward the development of good work and study habits that are associated with deeper learning and the construction of a solid foundation for continued learning.

Teacher Support

The SLIC staff also includes support from science teachers. Science teachers are not only available to assist students seeking support, they also serve to mentor peer coaches. Peer coaches work directly with students most of the time, and are the instructional backbone of SLIC. Most blocks are covered by peer coaches. Science teachers monitor the peer coaches and their interaction with students to ensure that the coaching process is progressing appropriately. Peer coaches also meet weekly with Alan Crosby to report on progress, discuss student support methods, and to work on long-term goals for SLIC attendees.


If you find a "broken" link that you think should be working, please send email to Alan Crosby with the details.


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Copyright© 2006, 2007, 2008, 2009, 2010, and 2011 by the teachers of the Newton South High School Science Department
Primary contact: Alan Crosby (adcrosby@nshs-science.org)
Newton South High School, Newton Centre, MA 02459
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