April 25, 2013
Media Contact Only: Casey Kroger (513) 287-7054 office, (513) 608-5777 cell, firstname.lastname@example.org
Cincinnati's Duke Energy Children's Museum was selected as a Promising Practice Award winner because of its Early Childhood Science Inquiry Teacher Education (ECSITE) program. ECSITE is a teacher professional development program designed to sustainably increase the competency and confidence of early childhood teachers in creating science inquiry classroom experiences for their students, thereby maximizing science thinking and key multi-disciplinary developmental skills.
"We are honored to receive the 2013 Promising Practice Award from the Association of Children's Museums," says Douglass W. McDonald, president and CEO of Cincinnati Museum Center. "Our ECSITE program strengthens teachers to give children the opportunities they need to ask and answer questions, conduct investigations and learn to apply problem-solving skills. Children who are equipped with these science process skills are prepared to work cooperatively with others to offer solutions to many of the challenges facing countries throughout the world today."
Supported by MetLife Foundation and administered by ACM, the Promising Practice Award recognizes U.S. and international children's museums as essential places for nurturing children to become global citizens. The Children's Museum of Tacoma (WA), Chicago Children's Museum (IL) and The Children's Museum Jordan (Amman) are the other three award recipients for 2013.
ECSITE is producing a positive impact within our community, resulting in a fourth year of funding by PNC's Grow Up Great with Science program. PNC's contribution inaugurated the ECSITE program and has provided $570,000 over the four years of the program, including the most recent grant of $100,000 for Year 4. ECSITE is also supported through a grant from the Cincinnati/Northern Kentucky Social Innovation Fund and was awarded the 2012 Community Builder Award from the Hamilton County Community Action Agency.
"PNC is committed to early childhood education and improving children's school readiness," says Kay Geiger, PNC's regional president for Greater Cincinnati and Northern Kentucky. "Now in its 4th year, CMC's ECSITE program is dramatically increasing confidence levels of teachers and is positively impacting the student's kindergarten readiness."
As of year three of the ECSITE program, we have achieved the following results:
- Implemented teacher training across four counties in Southwestern Ohio and Northern Kentucky, impacting 61 classrooms and more than 2,700 low-income students, with a current annual impact of more than 1,200 students per year.
- Documented measurable improvement in teacher confidence and competency over the duration of ECSITE. Teacher post-surveys report 100% of ESCITE participants were confident teaching science in their classrooms after completing one year of the program. This is an increase from 70% of the teachers pre-program.
- Documented measurable improvement in student kindergarten readiness scores. In the Bracken Student Readiness Composite scores, used by Hamilton County Community Action Agency, the average raw score increased by 10.9 points and the average scaled score increased by 0.47 points - both statistically significant improvements. A measured positive impact can also be seen with students who participated in the program on the DIAL scores reported by the Northern Kentucky Community Action Commission (NKCAC).
Angela Fletcher, NKCAC Head Start lead teacher, shared her observations: "My students have benefited in so many ways. They begin the year coming into the classroom and are a bit intimidated about science, just like I used to be. But, they quickly learn that it's ok to get dirty, and to 'get down' with science and learn. They ask every day, "what are we going to do today in science?!" They try things freely, on their own, and feel free to ask questions."
About PNC Foundation
The PNC Foundation, which receives its principal funding from The PNC Financial Services Group, Inc. (www.pnc.com) actively supports organizations that provide services for the benefit of communities in which it has a significant presence. The foundation focuses its philanthropic mission on early childhood education and community and economic development, which includes the arts and culture. Through Grow Up Great, its signature cause that began in 2004, PNC has created a $350 million, multi-year initiative to help prepare children from birth to age 5 for success in school and life. For more information, please visit www.pncgrowupgreat.com and www.youtube.com/PNC or follow @PNCGrowUpGreat on Twitter.
About MetLife Foundation
MetLife Foundation was established in 1976 to continue MetLife's longstanding tradition of corporate contributions and community involvement. Our commitment is to build a secure future for individuals and communities worldwide. Since it was established, MetLife Foundation has provided more than $570 million in grants to nonprofit organizations addressing issues that have a positive impact in their communities. For more information visit www.metlife.org.
About Association of Children's Museums
In an increasingly complex world, children's museums provide a place where all kids can learn through play and exploration with the caring adults in their lives. There are approximately 400 children's museums around the world, which annually reach more than 31 million visitors. ACM provides leadership, professional development, advocacy and resources for its member organizations and individuals. In addition to the Freeman Foundation Asian Cultural Exhibit Series, other long-term initiatives include Reimagining Children's Museums, funded by MetLife Foundation, and The Children's Museum Research Agenda, funded by a National Leadership Grant from the Institute of Museum and Library Services. To learn more about ACM and to find an ACM-member children's museum near you, visit www.ChildrensMuseums.org.
About Cincinnati Museum Center
Cincinnati Museum Center (CMC) at Union Terminal is a nationally recognized institution as well as national historic landmark. Dedicated to sparking community dialogue, insight and inspiration, CMC was awarded the 2009 National Medal for Museum and Library Service from the Institute of Museum and Library Services and received accreditation from the American Alliance of Museums in 2012. CMC is one of only 16 museums in the nation with both of these honors, making it a unique asset and a vital community resource. Our Union Terminal has been voted the nation's 45th most important building by the American Institute of Architects. Organizations within CMC include the Cincinnati History Museum, Duke Energy Children's Museum, the Museum of Natural History & Science, the Robert D. Lindner Family OMNIMAX® Theater and the Cincinnati History Library. Recognized by Forbes Traveler Magazine as the 17th most visited museum in the country, CMC welcomes one million plus visitors annually. For more information, visit cincymuseum.org.