Now Shea is using her talents and expertise to educate preschoolers through university graduates.
For the preschool/early elementary ages, she is providing science and literacy content consultation for a new PBS series Hero Elementary. Scheduled for release in summer 2020, the animated series is intended to give children ages 4 to 7 the tools to solve problems by thinking and acting like scientists. The series setting in a school for budding superheroes is intended to cultivate children's natural curiosity and empathy. See the press release at: PBS KIDS Announces New Series HERO ELEMENTARY, Premiering Summer 2020 | PBS About.
“Working with the PBS team has been an incredible opportunity," Shea said. "It’s been a creative joy to incorporate my literacy background with my experiences with the Science Project at UCI. Consulting on the Hero Elementary project, I support revision on the show’s scripts, online content, and educational materials so that the use of language in science is more accessible to language learners. Over the three years that we’ve worked on this project, it’s been a pleasure to watch its progress. We anticipate that the series will invoke a great love for science for all children. I know my own young children are excited for its debut.”
Furthermore, to expand on her former work as an instructor and supervisor at UCI’s CalTeach, she collaborates with George Washington University in its GWTeach program (another UTeach Institute partnership) where she co-teaches the Introduction to Education courses. At both universities, she supervises student teachers in the field.
“I love working with my pre-service teachers, using all of the training I received at UCI," Shea explains. "I was fortunate to work with outstanding professors who are dedicated to developing excellent teachers and making schools better places. As a doctoral student within the School of Education, I had the great fortune to work closely with Dr. Judith Sandholtz to learn deeply about teacher education, Distinguished Professor Greg Duncan on rigorous statistical methodologies, Dr. Rebecca Black on qualitative research methodologies, and with Dr. Mark Warschauer to ensure that my work was of high quality.”
Looking ahead, Shea plans to continue to publish, present, and consult in the field of language/literacy integration in content while working with pre-service teachers to ensure equitable and high-quality experience for all learners.
Shea received her Ph.D. in Education in 2012. In addition to her doctorate, she holds a M.A. in Applied Linguistics from UMass Boston; a M.A. in Language, Literacy, and Technology; and a B.S. in Bilingual Education and English as a Second Language from Boston University.