QUEST and CONNECT-ED: an inquiry-based summer institute in science and mathematics for grade K-12 teachers


support effective science instruction in alignment with the

Common Core & Next Generation Science Standards

 July 7-18, 2014

QUEST is an institute taught by Princeton University faculty and staff and scientists from neighboring institutions.  CONNECT-ED is offered to K-12 teachers and is taught by teachers, administrators and content experts. Both are designed to enhance teachers' knowledge of science and mathematics through hands-on laboratory experiments and field experiences and to acquaint them with specific ideas and activities to use in their classrooms. Participants perform experiments, as well as discuss pedagogy and the underlying content with colleagues and the faculty.  Educators develop skills for teaching inquiry-based science and math. They work in small, informal groups.
Teachers may attend one or both weeks.

Registration fee: District pays $500 fee for program expenses.

($250 teacher stipend and $250 program expenses)

Application deadline is May 8, 2014.


Teachers who attend the summer institute are expected to also attend the Lemonick Symposium the following spring to share lessons with their colleagues.


Contact Anne Catena, Ed.D.,, for more information.

Summer 2014 - Session Descriptions

Held during the week of July 7-11, 2014:

How Do Humans Impact Local Climate? - For teachers in grades 3 - 8
Types of vegetation affect local and regional climates. Humans can affect both the types and amounts of vegetation in many regions. Data collected by satellites and by ground-based methods will be analyzed by participants to explore interactions between plants and the atmosphere in regions of different levels of human impact. Emphases will be placed on the roles of water and energy systems in New Jersey and the Amazon. Atmospheric and ecological observations from these systems will be incorporated into simple computer models.

At Princeton with:
Dr. David Medvigy, Geosciences, Dr. Steve Carson, John Witherspoon Middle School and formerly with the Geophysical Fluid Dynamics Laboratory and Danielle Schmitt, Geosciences.


Sustainability - Living on the Edge - For teachers in grades 3-12

Engineering in the Next Generation Science Standards focuses on designing solutions to humans' wants and needs. To develop successful strategies for mitigating risks of earthquakes and volcanoes it is critical to understand how humans interact with their environment. Teachers will deepen and enrich their understanding of geologic processes by exploring activities at tectonicplate boundaries, analyzing risks to human populations, and evaluating strategies to mitigate those risks. Using Google Earth, we will analyze geological process data to identify patterns and develop models. We will design solutions to keep a disaster from becoming a catastrophe.

At Princeton with Laurel Goodell, Geosciences.

Held during the week of July 14-18, 2014:

CONNECT-ED Engaging in Argument from Evidence - For teachers in grades K-12 

Science involves the construction explanations and make predictions of natural phenomena through analysis and interpretation of data and engaging in argument from evidence. During this week we will explore different ways to organize data to create the best possible "picture" of the phenomena. We will engage in argument from evidence about the possible interpretations of the data and the best possible explanations. We will reflect on how the practice of engaging in argument from evidence, which is empahsized in the NJCCCS and the Next Generation Science Standards, helps students deepen their understanding of science.

At Rider University with lead scientist Dr. Wil van der Veen, Raritan Valley Community College.

Registration link 2014 QUEST & CONNECT-ED application


Lemonick Science & Mathematics Teaching Award


Professor Emeritus Aaron Lemonick was the director of QUEST and a life long supporter of teachers. In an effort to commemorate his devotion to QUEST, the advisory council agreed that Aaron would want the teachers to be recognized as well.
Thus, in 2004 we named the spring symposium in honor of Aaron and created the Lemonick Science & Mathematics Teaching Award, to help teachers implement inquiry-based science in their classroom. The Program in Teacher Preparation and Ilene Levine, an integral part of the QUEST team and a special friend of Lemonick, support the teaching awards which are presented at the symposium.
The Lemonick Symposium for QUEST and the Science & Mathematics Teaching Awards are a proper tribute to a wonderful mentor, teacher and scientist. This annual event reminds us of the many contributions Aaron Lemonick made to the Program for Teacher Preparation at Princeton University.
The Lemonick Science & Mathematics Teaching award recipients are as follows:

Spring 2013

Donna Stumm, Reading Flemington Intermediate School, in Flemington, NJ, received a $300 award to support Lemonick award winners 2013her lesson, How Does the Transfer of Energy Affect Weather?.  This lesson includes three inquiry based investigations involving the nature of convection currents, warming surfaces and air pressure's affect on temperature. She will use the award to purchase 3 sets of materials to share with her team of teachers.

Martha Friend, Littlebrook Elementary School in Princeton, NJ, received a $200 award for her lesson entitled, Don't Squeeze the Circuits. Students will be learning to identify the parts of a circuit and solve problems involving circuits and switches. Martha will purchase conductive dough and 10 Squishy Circuit Hardware Kits to enhance her 4th grade Electricity Unit.

martha Friend Lemonick award projectHi, Anne!  I just wanted to thank you again for the grant money as I put it to good use with my "Sticky Circuits" this week.  After spending hours creating my own batches of the conductive playdough (so that all four classes could use it as pairs), I've realized that PlayDoh works just as well.  :)  The circuit kits I purchased with your money have been well loved this week by, so far, three out of four 4th grade classes.  It was fabulous to watch the kids apply their understanding of closed vs. open circuits, conductors vs. insulators and series vs. parallel circuits while working with play dough.  Well worth the time spent making my own multiple batches!  Thanks! Martha

Balvir Singh, Burlington City High School, Burlington City, NJ, received a $50 award for his lesson entitled, What Shape is Your Land?. In this geometry lesson students will use string and thumbtacks to lay out plane figures on a grid and calculate the area. The award will be used to purchases materials for  creating the plane figures.

Dave Jungblut
, Oakcrest High School
, Mays Landing, NJ, received a $50 award for his lesson entitled, Water and Air Pollution. His students will research water and air pollution problems and develop a model or  experiment to support their research. Dave will use the award money to fund the student projects.

Spring 2012
Michelle McKenney and Jeff King

Michelle McKenney,
Hillsborough Middle School in Hillsborough  received a $300 award to support her lesson entitled, Is Air Matter?. She will purchase a variety of scales that detect the small numerical value of air. In this three day lesson her 7th grade student will use inquiry to create their own experiments to explore and prove that air is matter.

Jonathan Grom, Mott Elementary School in Trenton received a $200 award for his lesson entitled, What's New Jersey Made of?. He will use his award for the purchase of New Jersey rock and sediment kits and mineral test kits. These kits explore the 17 different rocks and sediments that make up the geology of our state. The kits will be utilized for a 4th and 5th grade cross curricular activity which combines science and social studies in the study of the history of New Jersey.

Jeffrey King, Camden Technical Schools-Pennsauken Campus, received a $100 award. For his lesson entitled Pumpkin Show he will purchase lab materials, pumpkin seeds and carpentry materials for a chemistry lesson on the emission of gasses in collaboration with students in Floriculture and Carpentry classes. Jeff is Program in Teacher Preparation Alumnae.

Spring 2011
Lemonick Symposium award winners 2011Lisa Kiel, Hillsborough Middle School in Hillsborough Township received a $300 award for her lesson entitled Say Cheese! A Photo Finish! She will use her award money to purchase Vernier photogates to use with her existing probeware. The photogates and probeware will provide the 600 7th grade students the opportunity to learn about Forces of Friction Kinetic Energy Potential Motion: Velocity and Acceleration Gravity Energy Transformations.

Keith Redler, Kreps Middle School in the East Windsor Regional School District received a $200 grant. His award entitled Newton in Motion (Balloon Racer) will be used to purchase materials so that 400 students can build their own balloon powered racer. The students will learn Newton�s Laws, balanced/unbalanced forces, how to measure and graph speed and compute the speed of their racer over several checkpoints.

Lisa Stamile, Millstone River School in the West Windsor-Plainsboro Regional School District, received a $100 grant. She will use her award to purchase the "Inquiry Investigations Learning About Food Chemistry and Nutrition Lab� kit. Her students will conduct inquiry investigations by analyzing the chemical and nutritional content of common foods and learn about the food pyramid through hands-on games and activities.

Spring 2010 

Lemonick Symposium award winners 2010Carmel Meyer, Hillsborough High School received a $300 grant to implement a hands on inquiry based activity leading to the understanding of the Valence Shell Electron Pair Repulsion Theory for determining the shape of molecules. This lesson will help students make the leap from 2 dimensional interpretations of Lewis structures to the 3 dimensional interpretations.


Donna Falk, Manalapan-Englishtown Middle School received a $200 grant for her Forensic Science unit. She will use a "CSI� theme in her classroom to solve fictional crimes. Students will use fingerprinting, blood-typing and ink chromatography techniques to learn the scientific principles behind it.


Terry Foltiny, Orchard Hill Elementary School, Skillman, received a $100 grant to improve her classroom library by purchasing nonfiction science books. The books will support the life science and organisms unit while integrating literature and reading into the first grade science curriculum.


Spring 2009   

Lemonick Symposium award winners 2009Carol Houghton, B.C. Gregory Elementary School, Trenton received a $300 grant to purchase Galileoscope kits for 15 students on her Princeton Plasma Physics Science Bowl and Fuel Cell Car Builders Teams. The 6th-8th grade students will use the telescopes to observe and report short-term and long-term changes in the positions of the constellations in the night sky.


Nicole Carmichael, Math Coach, Trenton Public Schools received a $200 grant to enhance an integrated lifecycle unit she created for her fifth grade classes using The Very Hungry Caterpillar by Eric Carle. She will use the money to purchase butterfly kits so that students will analyze caterpillars� eating habits and measure their growth and development prior to metamorphosis.


Heidi Wachtin, Millstone River School, West Windsor-Plainsboro received a $100 grant to further her school recycling program by setting up a vermicomposting bin in her classroom. Her fourth grade students will contribute fruits and vegetable food scraps from their lunches to the composting bins. They will observe how worms convert organic waste into humus.


Spring 2008

Karla Peroni, Sayen Middle School, Hamilton received a $300 grant to extend her Chemical Reactions unit for 40 5th grade students. The students will design their own experiments, use graphing software to test their hypothesis and analyze the data.


Gwen Komyati, Village School, West Windsor-Plainsboro received a $200 grant to purchase maps and science resources for her integrated geology and literature unit that will be used with 50 4th grade students. 


Sashi Gundala, Brooks Crossing, South Brunswick received a $100 grant to enhance her 5th grade sound unit on understanding sound waves and their application in sound, light and seismic activities.


Spring 2007

Jeff Grabell, Dutch Neck School, West Windsor-Plainsboro received a $300 grant to extend his human body unit to make connections to chemistry, rock & minerals and mathematics.  Jeff plans to create this unit for his 3rd grade class and then present it as an in-service session for all 3rd grade teachers in the district to potentially reach 700 students.


Dr. Georgia Fisanick, Watchung Hills High School received a $200 grant to purchase Vernier probes for her forensic science classes that will be used by 80 students in grades 11 and 12.


Helen Chang, Millstone River School, West Windsor Plainsboro received a $100 grant to develop a chemical reactions unit for 800 students, grades 3-5.


Spring 2006

Heidi Watchin, Millstone River School, West Windsor-Plainsboro received a $300 grant to extend a unit on electric circuits for approximately 17 fourth grade classes.


Liv Bowring, Amsterdam Elementary School, Hillsborough received a $200 grant to purchase and build weather instruments with approximately 100 fourth grade students.


Kelly Kramli, Auten Road Intermediate School, Hillsborough received a $100 grant to develop a unit on ecosystems during which her fifth grade team of approximately 50 students will work with a K-2 special needs class.


Spring 2005

Laura Capriotti, Burlington City Jr. School, Burlington City received a $150 grant to implement a chemistry and environmental science unit with her seventh grade classes.


Suzanne Merrill, Lore School, Ewing received a $150 grant toward the purchase of an incubator and brooder pack to enhance her life science unit with 5th grade students who shared with other grade levels in the school.


Spring 2004

Jennifer Errickson Patriarca, Wilbur Watts Intermediate School, Burlington City received a $300 grant to create a school garden for students in grades 4, 5 and 6.


Colleen Lanigan, Robbins School, Trenton received a $200 grant to develop an inquiry-based chemistry unit for the 3 rd and 4th grade students.


Suzanne Merrill, Lore School, Ewing received a $100 grant to support a life science project for 400 fifth grade students.



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