SPARK STEM: Problem Based Learning that Supports the SOL’s in Mathematics and Science

Grades 3-8
October 26, 2017

  • Presented by:
    Jennifer Suh & Padhu Seshaiyer
  • Registration Fee:
    $139 ( $189 for non-members)
  • Location:
    Emmet Street Holiday Inn, Charlottesville

Event Details

This session will focus on classroom tested STEM integrated Problem Based Learning (PBL) that supports the 2016 math and science SOL’s through hands-on explorations for students in upper elementary and middle school. Participants will engage in the 5 key elements of our SPARK STEM modules with Scientific and mathematical modeling; Problem-based Learning; Access through Equitable Teaching Practices; Rigorous Content Knowledge; and Knowledge and Confidence as STEM learners/leaders. The presenters will immerse participants in real-world problem-based lessons that delve deeply into the mathematics used to make decisions in STEM fields. Through engaging STEM contexts like the Solar Project, CSI Case, Rollercoaster Design, Traffic Jam Challenge, and other Fermi Problems, participants will see how the strands of number sense, computation, rational numbers, geometry, measurement and data analysis play a critical role in mathematical modeling in STEM fields, in addition to seeing how technology affords opportunities for advanced learning. The presenters will also use various video vignettes to share how teachers can promote mathematical and scientific discourse through rich problem contexts that build students confidence and competence and STEM leaders!

Online Follow-up:  Presenters will establish and facilitate a “peer-to-peer” follow-up for interested participants. 


Grades 3-8

Grades 3-8
Classroom Teachers, and Instructional Leaders


Jennifer Suh (GMU) (Center for Outreach in Mathematics and Educational Technology)

Jennifer Suh is an Associate Professor in the Graduate School of Education, College of Education and Human Development, George Mason University. Dr. Suh teaches mathematics methods courses in the Elementary Education Program and mathematics leadership courses for the Mathematics Specialist Masters and PH.D Programs.  She directs the Center for Outreach in Mathematics Professional Learning and Educational Technology, COMPLETE, a joint center between the College of Education and the College of Science. Her research focuses on mathematics teacher development while using Lesson Study to develop pedagogical mathematics knowledge across the continuum from pre-service teachers to mathematics teacher leaders; Children’s development of mathematical meaning and models by building understanding and representational fluency; and Problem-based Learning Environments to promote equitable access to 21st century skills: Creativity, Critical Thinking, Communication and Collaboration for diverse student populations in STEM disciplines.


Padhu Seshaiyer (GMU) (Center for Outreach in Mathematics and Educational Technology)

Padhu Seshaiyer is a professor of mathematical sciences and serves as the Director of the STEM Accelerator Program and the Center for Outreach in Mathematics Professional Learning and Educational Technology (COMPLETE) at George Mason University in Fairfax, Virginia. During the last decade, he has initiated and directed a variety of educational programs including graduate and undergraduate research, K-12 outreach, teacher professional development, and enrichment programs to foster the interest of students and teachers in mathematical modeling and STEM at all levels. He is also actively involved in multiple global initiatives and training programs that engage students, teachers and faculty to develop innovative STEM-based solutions to real-world problems.

Event Schedule

Conference Runs from 9:00 a.m.  -  3:30 p.m.

Registration and Breakfast Begin at 8:00 a.m.

Lunch will be served at noon.

All registered participants will receive an email with event details in the week before the conference is held.

Registration Details

The conference fee is $139 for each participant who is member of a school division which is a member of VSUP/VaSCL. 

The registration fee for participants from Non-Member school divisions is $189 .

Registration fees include breakfast and lunch, as well as parking and internet access.

The registration deadline is October 6, 2017.

In the registration form (below), required fields are indicated with a red asterisk.  Mistakes made in completing the form will be highlighted in red.

Once you have submitted the registration, the person or people whom you have designated to receive a confirmation email should see that email (with registration information included) within 24 hours.

Pre-Payment is not required for participation.

After the conference has been held, an invoice will be emailed to the person identified in Billing Information on the Conference Registration Form for each participant.

Notification of cancellation must be sent by email to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it., VSUP/VaSCL Coordinator, at least FIVE BUSINESS DAYS before the event is held . . . or the registration fees will be billed in full.

If a Purchase Order Number is provided on the Conference Registration Form for a participant, the invoice from VSUP will reference that Purchase Order Number.

If you wish to be invoiced BEFORE the date of the event or if you have any other questions about payment, please contact This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

Registration Fee

$139   ( $189 for non-members)

Hotel Information

1901 Emmet Street
Charlottesville, VA 22901

(434) 977-7700

VSUP/VaSCL room rate.
VSUP / VaSCL Special Rate: $109
Call 434-977-7700 and ask for the VSUP / VaSCL room rate and provide the following VaSCL / VSUP Rate Code: IX9K5.

Or use the LINK below to make your reservation at the special VSUP / VaSCL room rate.


Contact VSUP/VaSCL

If you have questions or concerns, or would like to receive more information about this conference, please contact our Conference Coordinator, This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

Register for Conference

(Required fields are marked with a red asterisk - * )

Conference Information

Confirmation Email

Participant's Information

Billing Information


Security Verification


Submit Registration

October 26, 2017
SPARK STEM: Problem Based Learning that Supports the SOL’s in Mathematics and Science
Emmet Street Holiday Inn, Charlottesville
October 06, 2017