Quarks Go to Middle School

Media contact
  • Spencer Pasero, Fermilab Education Office, spasero@fnal.gov, 630-840-3076
  • Kurt Riesselmann, Fermilab Office of Communication, media@fnal.gov, 630-840-3351

Local teachers learn science-teaching techniques at Fermilab

You can’t see quarks, yet they are essential in explaining the basic structure of matter. How can you teach children about things that they cannot see?

Starting today, July 24, twenty-two local teachers, from Aurora to Villa Park, are attending “Beauty and Charm,” a four-day workshop at the Department of Energy’s Fermilab, to learn classroom-teaching techniques that address this and other challenges. The workshop features simple hands-on experiments that portray concepts such as “How Small is Small” and “How to Measure What We Cannot See,” which teachers can easily implement in their regular 6th-to-9th-grade science curricula.

Although the workshop focuses on real world examples related to particle physics, instructors will emphasize general concepts and approaches to scientific research. Instructors, who are master teachers from suburban schools, will also give teachers plenty of opportunity to conduct science experiments themselves.

“We hope to develop an appreciation for the culture of real scientific research at an active laboratory,” said Spencer Pasero, who organized the workshop.

Fermilab is a Department of Energy national laboratory, operated by Universities Research Association, Inc.