When a school system has 600 schools and 400,000 students, you don't have time to make changes one kid at a time. You need programs that scale, whether that's the recent Spring Into Sports that attracted 800 kids a day to four schools during Spring Break, or the Family Science Nights that result from trainings by the Museum of Science of Industry.
My wife Pam came home from Stockton School in Uptown tonight with a bunch of nice photos of that school's annual Family Science Night. More than 150 students, parents and teachers (and the principal with her own two kids) turned out to participate in scientific inquiries including Ultraviolet Beads; Sink, Hover and Float; Sound Sandwich; Bee Hummer (a spinning rope that makes noise); Slime; Garden in a Glove; Making Paper; Marbles at Work; and Ink Chromotography.
All the activities originated in the museum's education department, which trains nearly 1,000 teachers a year on ways to engage students in hands-on science activities, which are also available online.
So do the math. A thousand teachers, perhaps 30 kids each, that's 30,000 students. Scale.