Telling Your Story

Most scientists are accustomed to presenting their research to colleagues or lecturing college or graduate students. But if asked to speak in front of a classroom full of elementary school or junior high school students, many scientists feel less comfortable. How should they prepare? What’s the attention span of a typical student? What types of questions are the students likely to ask? Is the aim to impart information, or to inspire a new generation of scientists?

COSEE NE has designed a workshop to help scientists develop skills for working with educators.

The Center for Ocean Sciences Education Excellence-New England (COSEE-NE) presented a final Telling Your Story workshop at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology on January 16th, 2009.  The workshop included tips for scientists and engineers for working with both formal (classroom) and informal (museum, e.g.) educators. 

Scientists have much to offer to teachers, students, and museums and their visitors. Their work, when communicated appropriately, can add an exciting new dimension to a science curriculum or to programs in informal educational venues, as well as play a role in the professional development of educators. However, most scientists are not practiced in communicating with multiple audiences. The goal of the Telling Your Story Workshop is to help scientists develop the necessary skills and understanding to communicate effectively with a variety of audiences, and ultimately to increase the number of people in New England who benefit from communication with ocean scientists.

Here are some of the benefits of the Telling Your Story experience: 

  • Marine scientists, engineers, and technologists learn to construct stories that communicate their research and passion for the ocean.
  • Classroom teachers connect with scientists and learn how to plan a successful visit.
  • Students learn about the challenges and excitement of ocean research through first-hand contact with an ocean scientist.
  • Administrators learn how their school’s collaboration with ocean scientists can invigorate teachers and increase students’ engagement, understanding, and achievement in science.
  • Education and outreach staff learn how TYS can be a powerful addition to their outreach efforts as they help scientists achieve broader impact in public education.


 Telling Your Story Overview Poster


Telling Your Story - Tools and Resources

Downloadable materials for scientists and workshop facilitators are available here.



Telling Your Story - Experiences