Saturday, January 14, 2012

Building a Better Science Teacher

This academic year marks my 5th year in the teaching profession. I am thinking more about what I want students to know and do as a result of my teaching. While I am guided by state and national standards, I also have ideas about what skills I want students to develop in my courses:

- technical writing

- making and interpreting tables and graphs

- presenting lab data and science content in multiple formats

- thinking/inquiry skills

- reading and vocabulary proficiency

- content knowledge

This semester I will design activities to balance content and skills development. This is consistent with efforts to flip my classroom and incorporate standards-based grading practices. While my students do hands-on activities and experiments on a regular basis, I want to be more deliberate about what I want my students to learn from these activities.

One way I can more deliberately incorporate process skills is having all of my students compete in the Google Science Fair. My intent is to break down their projects into small assignments they can complete before the submission deadline, April 1st.

First, I want them to develop their own research questions. I want them to understand that they can apply the scientific method to many subject areas.

I am hoping that participating in the Google Science Fair will get my students excited about science and help improve their Science understanding and skill set.

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