MIT Massachusetts Institute of Technology

MIT BLOSSOMS fosters international partnerships in Malaysia and China

January 27, 2014

by Stefanie Koperniak, Engineering Systems Division

MIT BLOSSOMS (Blended Learning Open Source Science or Math Studies) recently traveled to Malaysia and China to further develop ongoing projects.

In Malaysia, BLOSSOMS Principal Investigator Richard Larson and Project Manager Elizabeth Murray met with leadership at Universiti Teknologi Malaysia (UTM) and the Ministry of Education. BLOSSOMS aims to help develop 10 new videos made by Malaysian teachers. (Read more here: “Teachers blossom with help of videos.")

In September 2013, BLOSSOMS initiated a one-year partnership with the Verakin High School of Chongqing in China. Under this partnership, Larson, the Mitsui Professor of Engineering Systems, and Murray traveled to China this month to conduct a five-day workshop on the creation and use of MIT BLOSSOMS lessons. They also gave two demo classes to the students and one educational seminar to principals and presidents from local high schools and universities. The visit received extensive coverage from local media.

Over the coming year, Verakin teachers, students and technical staff will design and create eight new lessons. Five current lessons will be translated into Mandarin Chinese. During this summer, two Verakin educators will visit MIT for professional development and to explore MIT’s high school-related programs.

In addition to these international partnerships, BLOSSOMS continues to develop video modules with schools throughout the United States, including in Massachusetts.

“BLOSSOMS brings professional development to teachers in a new way, training STEM educators in teaching approaches that emphasize active learning, creativity and critical thought,” says Larson, who is also the director of the Center for Engineering Systems Fundamentals at MIT. “Each class evolves in a new way and is exciting in a new way.”