WorldWideScience

Sample records for science night elementary

  1. Science Night

    CERN Multimedia

    2004-01-01

    Would it surprise you to know that you can measure the speed of light using chocolate and a microwave oven? If you're interested in this and in finding out much more, come along to the Museum of the History of Science on 3 and 4 July 2004, when dozens of companies, institutions, colleges and organizations will be running exhibits, shows, and displays on the theme of counting and measuring. CERN will be there with a display stand that includes two particle detectors. Full details are available from the Museum website at: http://www.lanuitdelascience.ch/

  2. A Midsummer Night's Science

    CERN Multimedia

    2001-01-01

    Last year, the first Science Night attracted nearly 1500 people. Dipping into history for the space of one night? This is the idea of Geneva's Museum of the History of Science, which is organizing its second Science Night, on 7 and 8 July, on the history of science. The first such event, held last year, was a considerable success with almost 15 000 visitors. The second Science Night, to be held in the magnificent setting of the Perle du Lac Park in Geneva, promises to be a winner too. By making science retell its own history, this major event is intended to show how every scientific and technical breakthrough is the culmination of a long period of growth that began hundreds of years in the past. Dozens of activities and events are included in this programme of time travel: visitors can study the night sky through telescopes and see what Galileo first observed, and then go to see a play on the life of the Italian scientist. Another play, commissioned specially for the occasion, will honour Geneva botanist De ...

  3. Elementary Science Resource Guide.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Texas Education Agency, Austin. Div. of Curriculum Development.

    This guide for elementary teachers provides information on getting ideas into action, designing and implementing the right situation, ways in which to evaluate science process activities with students, and seven sample units. The units cover using the senses, magnets, forces, weather forecasting, classification of living things, and the physical…

  4. Piaget and Elementary Science

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chittenden, Edward A.

    1970-01-01

    Describes the intellectual development stages ascribed to children by Jean Piaget. Characteristics and examples are given for sensori-motor, preoperational, concrete operational, and formal operational thinking periods. Implications are given for elementary school science education, including (1) formal instruction does not accelerate acquisition…

  5. Crowdfunding for Elementary Science Educators

    Science.gov (United States)

    Reese, Jessica; Miller, Kurtz

    2017-01-01

    The inadequate funding of science education in many school districts, particularly in underserved areas, is preventing elementary science educators from realizing the full potential of the "Next Generation Science Standards" ("NGSS"). Yet many elementary science teachers may be unaware that millions of dollars per year are…

  6. Multitudes attend the Night of Science

    CERN Multimedia

    2006-01-01

    The Night of Science, which took place in the Parc de la Perle du Lac in Geneva last weekend, was a great success, with 30 000 visitors attending according to the organisers. Many curious people flocked to the stands and animations until late on Saturday night and all afternoon on Sunday. The CERN stand (photo) received a great amount of interest from participants. Both kids and adults discovered the activities of the Laboratory and the data-processing revolution initiated by CERN, from the Web to the Computing Grid. Hats off to the CERN collaborators in the Communication Group and IT Department who made this event a success.

  7. Peer Assessment of Elementary Science Teaching Skills

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kilic, Gulsen Bagci; Cakan, Mehtap

    2007-01-01

    In this study, peer assessment was applied in assessing elementary science teaching skills. Preservice teachers taught a science topic as a team to their peers in an elementary science methods course. The peers participating in the science lesson assessed teacher-groups' elementary science teaching skills on an assessment form provided by the…

  8. Researchers' Night: science at the shops

    CERN Multimedia

    Corinne Pralavorio

    2015-01-01

    On 25 September, as part of European Researchers’ Night, CERN and POPScience joined forces to welcome the public at the Balexert shopping centre in Geneva. The Bulletin presents its gallery of photographs from the exciting and educational event.   Science through comic strips, games, cinema and television: POPScience approaches scientific questions through popular culture, with great success! Around 500 children attended the sessions for schools at Balexert's multiplex cinema, and 600 spectators flocked to the public screenings.  Using the big screen, scientists, directors and authors were on hand to disentangle truth from untruths and science from science fiction. The guests, some of whom appeared in person and others via video link, included Jorge Cham, author of PhD Comics and the spin-off film; David Saltzberg, physicist at CMS and scientific consultant for the television series The Big Bang Theory; Kip Thorne, scientific consultant for the film Interstellar; Lawrence ...

  9. Teaching planetary sciences to elementary school teachers: Programs that work

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lebofsky, Larry A.; Lebofsky, Nancy R.

    1993-01-01

    Planetary sciences can be used to introduce students to the natural world which is a part of their lives. Even children in an urban environment are aware of such phenomena as day and night, shadows, and the seasons. It is a science that transcends cultures, has been prominent in the news in recent years, and can generate excitement in young minds as no other science can. Planetary sciences also provides a useful tool for understanding other sciences and mathematics, and for developing problem solving skills which are important in our technological world. However, only 15 percent of elementary school teachers feel very well qualified to teach earth/space science, while better than 80 percent feel well qualified to teach reading; many teachers avoid teaching science; very little time is actually spent teaching science in the elementary school: 19 minutes per day in K-3 and 38 minutes per day in 4-6. While very little science is taught in elementary and middle school, earth/space science is taught at the elementary level in less than half of the states. It was pointed out that science is not generally given high priority by either teachers or school districts, and is certainly not considered on a par with language arts and mathematics. Therefore, in order to teach science to our youth, we must empower our teachers, making them familiar and comfortable with existing materials. In our earlier workshops, several of our teachers taught in classrooms where the majority of the students were Hispanic (over 90 percent). However, few space sciences materials existed in Spanish. Therefore, most of our materials could not be used effectively in the classroom. To address this issue, NASA materials were translated into Spanish and a series of workshops for bilingual classroom teachers from Tucson and surrounding cities was conducted. Our space sciences workshops and our bilingual classroom workshops and how they address the needs of elementary school teachers in Arizona are

  10. Elementary Children's Retrodictive Reasoning about Earth Science

    Science.gov (United States)

    Libarkin, Julie C.; Schneps, Matthew H.

    2012-01-01

    We report on interviews conducted with twenty-one elementary school children (grades 1-5) about a number of Earth science concepts. These interviews were undertaken as part of a teacher training video series designed specifically to assist elementary teachers in learning essential ideas in Earth science. As such, children were interviewed about a…

  11. The Globe of Science and Innovation at night

    CERN Multimedia

    Maximilien Brice

    2005-01-01

    The Globe of Science and Innovation, CERN's exhibition centre is seen lit up at night. This wooden building was given to CERN in 2004 as a gift from the Swiss Confederation to mark 50 years since the Organization's foundation.

  12. Science by night – it's magic!

    CERN Document Server

    CERN Bulletin

    2010-01-01

    The control rooms of the LHC and its experiments threw open their doors to 150 youngsters on European Researchers Night and the place was buzzing with excitement all evening!    It's just possible that a few scientists' vocations were born last Friday night, as the sixth European Researchers Night took place across Europe. CERN was taking part for the first time and invited young people aged from 12 to 19 into the control rooms of the LHC machine and five experiments. From 5.00 in the afternoon until 1.00 in the morning, 150 youngsters and physics teachers got the opportunity to sit with scientists at the controls of the accelerator and experiments. This meeting of minds went down very well for all concerned, the scientists being only too happy to wax lyrical about their passion. The youngsters were thrilled with their visit and amazed at being allowed so close to the controls of these mighty machines. The night-time setting added an extra touch of magic to the whole event. Some just could...

  13. Preservice Elementary Teachers' Adaptation of Science Curriculum Materials for Inquiry-Based Elementary Science

    Science.gov (United States)

    Forbes, Cory T.

    2011-01-01

    Curriculum materials are important resources with which teachers make pedagogical decisions about the design of science learning environments. To become well-started beginning elementary teachers capable of engaging their students in inquiry-based science, preservice elementary teachers need to learn to use science curriculum materials…

  14. Preparing Elementary Mathematics-Science Teaching Specialists.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Miller, L. Diane

    1992-01-01

    Describes a professional development program to train math/science specialists for the upper elementary school grades. Using results from an interest survey, 30 teachers were chosen to participate in a 3-year program to become math/science specialists. Presents the teaching model used and the advantages for teachers and students in having subject…

  15. A night without limits for science

    CERN Multimedia

    CERN Bulletin

    2010-01-01

    On 10 and 11 July some 400 scientists came down to Geneva's Perle du Lac park to meet the public for the Nuit de la Science.   One of the many attractions at the Nuit de la Science. The theme of this year's event, now in its eighth year, was "Extremes and Limits". Numerous attractions including stands, workshops, mini-conferences and plays were set up in the park, all with the aim of conveying their passion for research and thirst for knowledge to the visitors. Several CERN guides were on hand to tell the public about that machine of the extreme, the LHC. CERN was also represented on the stand of the Réseau romand science & cité. For more information, clic here.      

  16. Factors Influencing Science Content Accuracy in Elementary Inquiry Science Lessons

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nowicki, Barbara L.; Sullivan-Watts, Barbara; Shim, Minsuk K.; Young, Betty; Pockalny, Robert

    2013-06-01

    Elementary teachers face increasing demands to engage children in authentic science process and argument while simultaneously preparing them with knowledge of science facts, vocabulary, and concepts. This reform is particularly challenging due to concerns that elementary teachers lack adequate science background to teach science accurately. This study examined 81 in-classroom inquiry science lessons for preservice education majors and their cooperating teachers to determine the accuracy of the science content delivered in elementary classrooms. Our results showed that 74 % of experienced teachers and 50 % of student teachers presented science lessons with greater than 90 % accuracy. Eleven of the 81 lessons (9 preservice, 2 cooperating teachers) failed to deliver accurate science content to the class. Science content accuracy was highly correlated with the use of kit-based resources supported with professional development, a preference for teaching science, and grade level. There was no correlation between the accuracy of science content and some common measures of teacher content knowledge (i.e., number of college science courses, science grades, or scores on a general science content test). Our study concluded that when provided with high quality curricular materials and targeted professional development, elementary teachers learn needed science content and present it accurately to their students.

  17. Public outreach: Multitudes attend the Night of Science

    CERN Multimedia

    2006-01-01

    The Night of Science, which took place in the parc de la Perle du Lac in Geneva last weekend, was a great success, with 30000 visitors attending according to the organisers. Many curious people flocked to the stands and animations until late on Saturday night and all afternoon on Sunday. The CERN stand (photo) received a great amount of interest from participants. Both kids and adults discovered the activities of the Laboratory and the data-processing revolution initiated by CERN, from the Web to the Computing Grid. Hats off to the CERN collaborators in the Communication Group and IT Department who made this event a success.

  18. Science Specialists or Classroom Teachers: Who Should Teach Elementary Science?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Levy, Abigail Jurist; Jia, Yueming; Marco-Bujosa, Lisa; Gess-Newsome, Julie; Pasquale, Marian

    2016-01-01

    This study examined science programs, instruction, and student outcomes at 30 elementary schools in a large, urban district in the northeast United States in an effort to understand whether there were meaningful differences in the quality, quantity and cost of science education when provided by a science specialist or a classroom teacher. Student…

  19. Implementing Elementary School Next Generation Science Standards

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kennedy, Katheryn B.

    Implementation of the Next Generation Science Standards requires developing elementary teacher content and pedagogical content knowledge of science and engineering concepts. Teacher preparation for this undertaking appears inadequate with little known about how in-service Mid-Atlantic urban elementary science teachers approach this task. The purpose of this basic qualitative interview study was to explore the research questions related to perceived learning needs of 8 elementary science teachers and 5 of their administrators serving as instructional leaders. Strategies needed for professional growth to support learning and barriers that hamper it at both building and district levels were included. These questions were considered through the lens of Schon's reflective learning and Weick's sensemaking theories. Analysis with provisional and open coding strategies identified informal and formal supports and barriers to teachers' learning. Results indicated that informal supports, primarily internet usage, emerged as most valuable to the teachers' learning. Formal structures, including professional learning communities and grade level meetings, arose as both supportive and restrictive at the building and district levels. Existing formal supports emerged as the least useful because of the dominance of other priorities competing for time and resources. Addressing weaknesses within formal supports through more effective planning in professional development can promote positive change. Improvement to professional development approaches using the internet and increased hands on activities can be integrated into formal supports. Explicit attention to these strategies can strengthen teacher effectiveness bringing positive social change.

  20. Elementary and middle school science improvement project

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mcguire, Saundra Y.

    1989-01-01

    The Alabama A and M University Elementary and Middle School Science Improvement Project (Project SIP) was instituted to improve the science knowledge of elementary and middle school teachers using the experimental or hands-on approach. Summer workshops were conducted during the summers of 1986, 1987, and 1988 in the areas of biology, chemistry, physics, and electricity, and magnetism. Additionally, a manual containing 43 lessons which included background information, experiments and activities for classroom and home use was provided to each teacher. During the course of the project activities, the teachers interacted with various university faculty members, scientists, and NASA staff. The administrative aspects of the program, the delivery of the services to participating teachers, and the project outcome are addressed.

  1. Roles of Teachers in Orchestrating Learning in Elementary Science Classrooms

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhai, Junqing; Tan, Aik-Ling

    2015-01-01

    This study delves into the different roles that elementary science teachers play in the classroom to orchestrate science learning opportunities for students. Examining the classroom practices of three elementary science teachers in Singapore, we found that teachers shuttle between four key roles in enabling student learning in science. Teachers…

  2. Learning Science through Talking Science in Elementary Classroom

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tank, Kristina Maruyama; Coffino, Kara

    2014-01-01

    Elementary students in grade two make sense of science ideas and knowledge through their contextual experiences. Mattis Lundin and Britt Jakobson find in their research that early grade students have sophisticated understandings of human anatomy and physiology. In order to understand what students' know about human body and various systems,…

  3. Effects of Instruction on Preservice Elementary Teachers' Conceptions of the Causes of Night and Day and the Seasons.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Atwood, Ronald K.; Atwood, Virginia A.

    1997-01-01

    Details a study that tests the effectiveness of brief instruction on the causes of night and day and the seasons. Employs simple, inexpensive models. Findings are useful for science teacher educators. Contains 32 references. (DDR)

  4. Reconceptualizing Elementary Teacher Preparation: A Case for Informal Science Education

    Science.gov (United States)

    Avraamidou, Lucy

    2015-01-01

    The purpose of this case study was to explore the ways in which 3 different informal science experiences in the context of an elementary methods course influenced a group of prospective elementary teachers' ideas about science teaching and learning as well as their understandings about the role of informal science environments to teaching and…

  5. Globe at Night Citizen Science: Reaching for the Stars

    Science.gov (United States)

    Walker, C. E.; Pompea, S. M.

    2017-12-01

    Citizen-science is a rewardingly inclusive way to bring awareness to the public on the disappearance of the starry night sky, its cause and solutions. Globe at Night (GaN) encourages citizen-scientists worldwide to record the brightness of the night sky. During ten-days per month of moonless evenings, children and adults match the appearance of a specific constellation with 7 star maps of progressively fainter stars found at www.globeatnight.org. They then submit their choice of star map in-situ using the "webapp" on a smart device. In eleven years of the program, over 160,000 observations from 180 countries have been contributed to a light pollution map. The GaN (open) database is a source of research projects. For example, students conducted research to understand the lesser long-nosed bats' avoidance of city center at night. With its analytical tools, Fieldscope will be a conduit for comparing GaN to other databases. On-the-fly mapping enables citizen-scientists to see observations immediately. There are 4 ways of taking measurements. The online app for data reporting is in 26 languages. STEM activities for young children and problem-based learning activities for older students were created to experience real-life scenarios: role-playing sea turtles hatching (misdirected by lights on shore) or analyzing an ISS image of Houston to estimate the wasted energy, cost and carbon footprint. In-situ and on-line workshops have been given on using GaN, as well as the activities. Our Facebook page exists to encourage dialogue and bring cutting edge news. To entice interest, we had monthly newsletters and serial podcasts starring the Dark Skies Crusader. GaN has been part of special campaigns like with the National Park Service, the National Geographic BioBlitz and Tucson in 2011. We have built a community of practitioners in various ways worldwide and have metrics on behavioral changes. To maintain the community and create new partnerships, we have teamed with Sci

  6. Science Alive!: Connecting with Elementary Students through Science Exploration

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Aarti Raja

    2016-05-01

    Full Text Available A novel program called Science Alive! was developed by undergraduate faculty members, K–12 school teachers, and undergraduate students to enrich science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM literacy at community schools located near the university. The ultimate goal of the program is to bolster the scientific knowledge and appreciation of local area students and community members and serve as a model for similar programs. Through the program, we observed that elementary school students made gains toward learning their grade-level science curricula after a hands-on learning experience and had fun doing these hands-on activities. Through the program, undergraduate students, working with graduate students and alumni, build scientific learning modules using explanatory handouts and creative activities as classroom exercises. This helps better integrate scientific education through a collaborative, hands-on learning program. Results showed that elementary school students made the highest learning gains in their performance on higher-level questions related to both forces and matter as a result of the hands-on learning modules. Additionally, college students enjoyed the hands-on activities, would consider volunteering their time at such future events, and saw the service learning program as a benefit to their professional development through community building and discipline-specific service. The science modules were developed according to grade-level curricular standards and can be used year after year to teach or explain a scientific topic to elementary school students via a hands-on learning approach.

  7. Science Alive!: Connecting with Elementary Students through Science Exploration.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Raja, Aarti; Lavin, Emily Schmitt; Gali, Tamara; Donovan, Kaitlin

    2016-05-01

    A novel program called Science Alive! was developed by undergraduate faculty members, K-12 school teachers, and undergraduate students to enrich science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) literacy at community schools located near the university. The ultimate goal of the program is to bolster the scientific knowledge and appreciation of local area students and community members and serve as a model for similar programs. Through the program, we observed that elementary school students made gains toward learning their grade-level science curricula after a hands-on learning experience and had fun doing these hands-on activities. Through the program, undergraduate students, working with graduate students and alumni, build scientific learning modules using explanatory handouts and creative activities as classroom exercises. This helps better integrate scientific education through a collaborative, hands-on learning program. Results showed that elementary school students made the highest learning gains in their performance on higher-level questions related to both forces and matter as a result of the hands-on learning modules. Additionally, college students enjoyed the hands-on activities, would consider volunteering their time at such future events, and saw the service learning program as a benefit to their professional development through community building and discipline-specific service. The science modules were developed according to grade-level curricular standards and can be used year after year to teach or explain a scientific topic to elementary school students via a hands-on learning approach.

  8. Elementary student teachers' science content representations

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zembal-Saul, Carla; Krajcik, Joseph; Blumenfeld, Phyllis

    2002-08-01

    This purpose of this study was to examine the ways in which three prospective teachers who had early opportunities to teach science would approach representing science content within the context of their student teaching experiences. The study is framed in the literature on pedagogical content knowledge and learning to teach. A situated perspective on cognition is applied to better understand the influence of context and the role of the cooperating teacher. The three participants were enrolled in an experimental teacher preparation program designed to enhance the teaching of science at the elementary level. Qualitative case study design guided the collection, organization, and analysis of data. Multiple forms of data associated with student teachers' content representations were collected, including audiotaped planning and reflection interviews, written lesson plans and reflections, and videotaped teaching experiences. Broad analysis categories were developed and refined around the subconstructs of content representation (i.e., knowledge of instructional strategies that promote learning and knowledge of students and their requirements for meaningful science learning). Findings suggest that when prospective teachers are provided with opportunities to apply and reflect substantively on their developing considerations for supporting children's science learning, they are able to maintain a subject matter emphasis. However, in the absence of such opportunities, student teachers abandon their subject matter emphasis, even when they have had extensive background and experiences addressing subject-specific considerations for teaching and learning.

  9. Reconceptualizing Elementary Teacher Preparation : A case for informal science education

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Avraamidou, Lucy

    2015-01-01

    The purpose of this case study was to explore the ways in which 3 different informal science experiences in the context of an elementary methods course influenced a group of prospective elementary teachers' ideas about science teaching and learning as well as their understandings about the role of

  10. Science Night at the Museum of the History of Science

    CERN Multimedia

    2004-01-01

    Would it surprise you to know that you can measure the speed of light using chocolate and a microwave oven? If you're interested in this and in finding out much more, come along to the Museum of the History of Science on 3 and 4 July 2004, when dozens of companies, institutions, colleges and organizations will be running exhibits, shows, and displays on the theme of counting and measuring. CERN will be there with a display stand that includes two particle detectors; one to sense muons arriving from cosmic rays that strike the Earth's atmosphere, and the other a prototype of an element of the OPAL detector which was used in the LEP to measure particle tracks from high energy electron-positron collisions. Full details are available from the Museum website at: http://www.lanuitdelascience.ch/

  11. Dialogical argumentation in elementary science classrooms

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kim, Mijung; Roth, Wolff-Michael

    2018-02-01

    To understand students' argumentation abilities, there have been practices that focus on counting and analyzing argumentation schemes such as claim, evidence, warrant, backing, and rebuttal. This analytic approach does not address the dynamics of epistemic criteria of children's reasoning and decision-making in dialogical situations. The common approach also does not address the practice of argumentation in lower elementary grades (K-3) because these children do not master the structure of argumentation and, therefore, are considered not ready for processing argumentative discourse. There is thus little research focusing on lower elementary school students' argumentation in school science. This study, drawing on the societal-historical approach by L. S. Vygotsky, explored children's argumentation as social relations by investigating the genesis of evidence-related practices (especially burden of proof) in second- and third-grade children. The findings show (a) students' capacity for connecting claim and evidence/responding to the burden of proof and critical move varies and (b) that teachers play a significant role to emphasize the importance of evidence but experience difficulties removing children's favored ideas during the turn taking of argumentative dialogue. The findings on the nature of dialogical reasoning and teacher's role provide further insights about discussions on pedagogical approaches to children's reasoning and argumentation.

  12. How In-Service Science Teachers Integrate History and Nature of Science in Elementary Science Courses

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hacieminoglu, Esme

    2014-01-01

    The purpose of this study is to investigate how the in-service science teachers' (IST) perceptions and practices about curriculum and integration of the history of science (HOS) and the nature of science (NOS) affect their science courses. For this aim, how ISTs integrated the NOS and HOS in their elementary science courses for understanding of…

  13. Do Elementary Science Methods Textbooks Promote Understanding of Shadows?

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Lloyd H. Barrow

    2016-02-01

    Full Text Available Elementary science methods textbooks can be an important resource for future elementary teachers of science. Since shadows are a common topic in elementary school and Next Generation Science Standards (NGSS Lead States, 2013. A series of ten shadows concepts were formed into a learning progression by Wizman and Fortus (2007. For this research, ten science methods textbook were read and analyzed about how each of the shadow concepts were addressed. These methods textbooks focused on a limited number of shadow concepts. Consequently, as a future reference, they are very limited in addressing all ten shadow concepts.

  14. Elementary children’s retrodictive reasoning about earth science

    OpenAIRE

    Matthew H. Schneps; Julie C. Libarkin

    2012-01-01

    We report on interviews conducted with twenty-one elementary school children (grades 1-5) about a number of Earth science concepts. These interviews were undertaken as part of a teacher training video series designed specifically to assist elementary teachers in learning essential ideas in Earth science. As such, children were interviewed about a wide array of earth science concepts, from rock formation to the Earth’s interior. We analyzed interview data primarily to determine whether or not ...

  15. Elementary Science and Reading Activities for Teacher Educators.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rezba, Richard J.

    The author suggests ways reading can be integrated with science and describes the reading activities in an elementary science methods course. The activities include: (1) selecting a science tradebook for children to review and for the teacher to analyze vocabulary; (2) helping children review science tradebooks; and (3) encouraging independent…

  16. Finding the Hook: Computer Science Education in Elementary Contexts

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ozturk, Zehra; Dooley, Caitlin McMunn; Welch, Meghan

    2018-01-01

    The purpose of this study was to investigate how elementary teachers with little knowledge of computer science (CS) and project-based learning (PBL) experienced integrating CS through PBL as a part of a standards-based elementary curriculum in Grades 3-5. The researchers used qualitative constant comparison methods on field notes and reflections…

  17. Investigation of preservice elementary teachers' thinking about science

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cobern, William W.; Loving, Cathleen C.

    2002-12-01

    It is not uncommon to find media reports on the failures of science education, nor uncommon to hear prestigious scientists publicly lament the rise of antiscience attitudes. Given the position elementary teachers have in influencing children, antiscience sentiment among them would be a significant concern. Hence, this article reports on an investigation in which preservice elementary teachers responded to the Thinking about Science survey instrument. This newly developed instrument addresses the broadrelationship of science to nine important areas of society and culture and is intended to reveal the extent of views being consistent with or disagreeing with a commonly held worldview of science portrayed in the media and in popular science and science education literature. Results indicate that elementary teachers discriminate with respect to different aspects of culture and science but they are not antiscience.

  18. Digital Science Notebooks: Perspectives from an Elementary Classroom Teacher

    Science.gov (United States)

    Paek, Seungoh; Fulton, Lori A.

    2017-01-01

    This study investigates how tablet-based note-taking applications can be integrated into elementary science classes as digital science notebooks. A teacher with 20 students in Grades 4-5 from a public charter school in Hawaii participated in the study. The participating science teacher introduced a tablet-based note taking application (TNA) to her…

  19. Dilemmas of Teaching Inquiry in Elementary Science Methods

    Science.gov (United States)

    Newman, William J., Jr.; Abell, Sandra K.; Hubbard, Paula D.; McDonald, James; Otaala, Justine; Martini, Mariana

    2004-01-01

    Because various definitions of inquiry exist in the science education literature and in classroom practice, elementary science methods students and instructors face dilemmas during the study of inquiry. Using field notes, instructor anecdotal notes, student products, and course artifacts, science methods course instructors created fictional…

  20. In-Service Turkish Elementary and Science Teachers' Attitudes toward Science and Science Teaching: A Sample from Usak Province

    Science.gov (United States)

    Turkmen, Lutfullah

    2013-01-01

    The purpose of this study is to reveal Turkish elementary teachers' and science teachers' attitudes toward science and science teaching. The sample of the study, 138 in-service elementary level science teachers from a province of Turkey, was selected by a clustered sampling method. The Science Teaching Attitude Scale-II was employed to measure the…

  1. Transforming Elementary Science Teacher Education by Bridging Formal and Informal Science Education in an Innovative Science Methods Course

    Science.gov (United States)

    Riedinger, Kelly; Marbach-Ad, Gili; McGinnis, J. Randy; Hestness, Emily; Pease, Rebecca

    2011-01-01

    We investigated curricular and pedagogical innovations in an undergraduate science methods course for elementary education majors at the University of Maryland. The goals of the innovative elementary science methods course included: improving students' attitudes toward and views of science and science teaching, to model innovative science teaching…

  2. Elementary science education: Dilemmas facing preservice teachers

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sullivan, Sherry Elaine

    Prospective teachers are involved in a process of induction into a culture of teaching that has rules, or codes of conduct for engaging in teaching practice. This same culture of teaching exists within a larger culture of schooling that also has values and norms for behaviors, that over time have become institutionalized. Teacher educators are faced with the challenging task of preparing preservice teachers to resolve dilemmas that arise from conflicts between the pressure to adopt traditional teaching practices of schooling, or to adopt inquiry-based teaching practices from their university methods classes. One task for researchers in teacher education is to define with greater precision what factors within the culture of schooling hinder or facilitate implementation of inquiry-based methods of science teaching in schools. That task is the focus of this study. A qualitative study was undertaken using a naturalistic research paradigm introduced by Lincoln and Guba in 1985. Participant observation, interviews, discourse analysis of videotapes of lessons from the methods classroom and written artifacts produced by prospective teachers during the semester formed the basis of a grounded theory based on inductive analysis and emergent design. Unstructured interviews were used to negotiate outcomes with participants. Brief case reports of key participants were also written. This study identified three factors that facilitated or hindered the prospective teachers in this research success in implementing inquiry-based science teaching in their field placement classrooms: (a) the culture of teaching/teacher role-socialization, (b) the culture of schooling and its resistance to change, and (c) the culture of teacher education, especially in regards to grades and academic standing. Some recommendations for overcoming these persistent obstacles to best practice in elementary science teaching include: (a) preparing prospective teachers to understand and cope with change

  3. Confronting Barriers to Teaching Elementary Science: After-School Science Teaching Experiences for Preservice Teachers

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cartwright, Tina; Smith, Suzanne; Hallar, Brittan

    2014-01-01

    This qualitative study examines the transition of eight elementary preservice teachers into student teaching after participating in a science methods course that included a significant amount of teaching after-school science to elementary grade students. These eight participants had a chance to practice teaching inquiry-based science and to reform…

  4. Caught in the Balance: An Organizational Analysis of Science Teaching in Schools with Elementary Science Specialists

    Science.gov (United States)

    Marco-Bujosa, Lisa M.; Levy, Abigail Jurist

    2016-01-01

    Elementary schools are under increasing pressure to teach science and teach it well; yet, research documents that classroom teachers must overcome numerous personal and school-based challenges to teach science effectively at this level, such as access to materials and inadequate instructional time. The elementary science specialist model…

  5. Rethinking the Elementary Science Methods Course: A Case for Content, Pedagogy, and Informal Science Education.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kelly, Janet

    2000-01-01

    Indicates the importance of preparing prospective teachers who will be elementary science teachers with different methods. Presents the theoretical and practical rationale for developing a constructivist-based elementary science methods course. Discusses the impact student knowledge and understanding of science and student attitudes has on…

  6. GLOBE at Night: a Worldwide Citizen-Science Program to Increase Awareness of Light Pollution by Measuring Night Sky Brightness

    Science.gov (United States)

    Walker, C. E.; Pompea, S. M.

    2011-12-01

    The emphasis in the international citizen-science, star-hunting campaign, GLOBE at Night, is in bringing awareness to the public on issues of light pollution. Light pollution threatens not only observatory sites and our "right to starlight", but can affect energy consumption, wildlife and health. GLOBE at Night has successfully reached a few 100,000 citizen-scientists. What has contributed to its success? Foundational resources are available to facilitate the public's participation in promoting dark skies awareness. The GLOBE at Night website explains clearly the simple-to-participate-in 5 step program and offers background information and interactive games on key concepts. To promote the campaign via popular social media, GLOBE at Night created Facebook and Twitter pages. The program has been expanded to include trainings of the general public, but especially educators in schools, museums and science centers, in unique ways. Education kits for dark skies awareness have been distributed at the training workshops. The kit includes material for a light shielding demonstration, a digital Sky Quality Meter and "Dark Skies Rangers" activities. The activities are on how unshielded light wastes energy, how light pollution affects wildlife and how one can participate in a citizen-science star-hunt like GLOBE at Night. To increase participation in the 2011 campaign, children and adults submitted their sky brightness measurements in real time with smart phones or tablets using the web application at www.globeatnight.org/webapp/. With smart phones and tablets, the location, date and time register automatically. For those without smart mobile devices, user-friendly tools on the GLOBE at Night report page were reconfigured to determine latitude and longitude more easily and accurately. As a proto-type for taking multiple measurements, people in Tucson found it easy to adopt a street and take measurements every mile for the length of the street. The grid of measurements

  7. Enhancing the "Science" in Elementary Science Methods: A Collaborative Effort between Science Education and Entomology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Boardman, Leigh Ann; Zembal-Saul, Carla; Frazier, Maryann; Appel, Heidi; Weiss, Robinne

    Teachers' subject matter knowledge is a particularly important issue in science education in that it influences instructional practices across subject areas and at different grade levels. This paper provides an overview of efforts to develop a unique elementary science methods course and related field experience through a partnership between…

  8. Brain-Based Learning and Standards-Based Elementary Science.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Konecki, Loretta R.; Schiller, Ellen

    This paper explains how brain-based learning has become an area of interest to elementary school science teachers, focusing on the possible relationships between, and implications of, research on brain-based learning to the teaching of science education standards. After describing research on the brain, the paper looks at three implications from…

  9. Astronomy Meets the Environmental Sciences: Using GLOBE at Night Data

    Science.gov (United States)

    Barringer, D.; Walker, C. E.; Pompea, S. M.; Sparks, R. T.

    2011-09-01

    The GLOBE at Night database now contains over 52,000 observations from the five annual two-week campaigns. It can be used as a resource to explore various issues related to light pollution and our environment. Students can compare data over time to look for changes and trends. For example, they can compare the data to population density or with nighttime photography and spectroscopy of lights. The data can be used in a lighting survey, to search for dark sky oases or to monitor ordinance compliance. Students can study effects of light pollution on animals, plants, human health, safety, security, energy consumption, and cost. As an example, we used data from the GLOBE at Night project and telemetry tracking data of lesser long-nosed bats obtained by the Arizona Game and Fish Department to study the effects of light pollution on the flight paths of the bats between their day roosts and night foraging areas around the city of Tucson, AZ. With the visual limiting magnitude data from GLOBE at Night, we ran a compositional analysis with respect to the bats' flight paths to determine whether the bats were selecting for or against flight through regions of particular night sky brightness levels. We found that the bats selected for the regions in which the limiting sky magnitudes fell between the ranges of 2.8-3.0 to 3.6-3.8 and 4.4-4.6 to 5.0-5.2, suggesting that the lesser long-nosed bat can tolerate a fair degree of urbanization. We also compared this result to contour maps created with digital Sky Quality Meter (http://www.unihedron.com) data.

  10. Shoring Up Math and Science in the Elementary Grades: Schools Enlist Specialists to Teach Science Lessons

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jacobson, Linda

    2004-01-01

    As science gets squeezed in the elementary curriculum, at least two Florida districts are trying a new approach to keeping hands-on lessons a part of pupils' experiences. This article reports how Broward and Palm Beach county districts have increased the number of science specialists working in their elementary schools--teachers who, like physical…

  11. Preparing perservice teachers to teach elementary school science

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lewis, Amy D.

    The development of scientifically literate citizens begins in the elementary school. Yet elementary school teachers are ill prepared to teach science (Trygstad, Smith, Banilower, Nelson, & Horizon Research, Inc., 2013). The research base on teacher preparation finds that programs designed to prepare elementary teachers are inadequate in providing both the content knowledge and pedagogical content knowledge necessary to teach science effectively (Baumgartner, 2010; Bodzin & Beerer, 2003; Bulunuz & Jarrett 2009). This mixed methods study examined what happened when a science methods course was interactively co-taught by an expert in elementary teaching methods and a physics expert. This study also aimed to discover what aspects of the curriculum pre-service teachers (PSTs) said helped them in developing their understanding of science content and scientific reasoning, and how to implement inquiry practices to teach science. A nested case study of three PSTs provided descriptive portraits of student experiences in the class. A whole class case analysis was used to examine what PSTs learned in terms of science, scientific reasoning skills, and pedagogical content knowledge (PCK) from their experiences in the course. It was found that students often conflated science content with the experiences they had in learning the content. Although PSTs felt the interactive co-teaching model effectively created a balance between theory and practice, it was their experiences doing science--conducting physical experiments, developing and discussing scientific models, and the use of inquiry-based instruction--that they credited for their learning. Even with careful curriculum planning, and a course purposely designed to bridge the theory to practice gap, this study found one semester-long methods course to be insufficient in providing the vast content knowledge and PCK elementary school science teachers need.

  12. So, You Want to Host a Family Science Night?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lundeen, Cynthia

    2005-01-01

    With the exception of periodic science fairs or the occasional home-science project, science is not usually the galvanizing force for the school community. But, through family science events, it can be. It is no secret that students whose families are involved in their children's education significantly benefit in achievement, attitudes, and…

  13. Fostering Student Sense Making in Elementary Science Learning Environments: Elementary Teachers' Use of Science Curriculum Materials to Promote Explanation Construction

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zangori, Laura; Forbes, Cory T.; Biggers, Mandy

    2013-01-01

    While research has shown that elementary (K-5) students are capable of engaging in the scientific practice of explanation construction, commonly-used elementary science curriculum materials may not always afford them opportunities to do so. As a result, elementary teachers must often adapt their science curriculum materials to better support…

  14. Teaching science as argument: Prospective elementary teachers' knowledge

    Science.gov (United States)

    Barreto-Espino, Reizelie

    For the past two decades there has been increasing emphasis on argumentation in school science. In 2007, the National Research Council published a synthesis report that emphasizes the centrality of constructing, evaluating, and using scientific explanations. Participating in argumentation is seen as fundamental to children's science learning experiences. These new expectations increase challenges for elementary teachers since their understanding of and experiences with science are overwhelmingly inconsistent with teaching science as argument. These challenges are further amplified when dealing with prospective elementary teachers. The current study was guided by the following research questions: (1) What are the ways in which preservice elementary teachers appropriate components of "teaching science as argument" during their student teaching experience? (2) To what extent do components from prospective elementary teachers' reflections influence planning for science teaching? (3) What elements from the context influence preservice elementary teachers' attention to teaching science as argument? This study followed a multi-participant case study approach and analyses were informed by grounded theory. Three participants were selected from a larger cohort of prospective elementary teachers enrolled in an innovative Elementary Professional Development School (PDS) partnership at a large Northeast University. Cross-case analysis allowed for the development of five key assertions: (1) The presence of opportunities for interacting with phenomena and collecting first hand data helped participants increase their emphasis on evidence-based explanations. (2) Participants viewed science talks as an essential mechanism for engaging students in the construction of evidence-based explanations and as being fundamental to meaning-making. (3) Participants demonstrated attention to scientific subject matter during instruction rather than merely focusing on activities and/or inquiry

  15. Promoting Prospective Elementary Teachers' Learning to Use Formative Assessment for Life Science Instruction

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sabel, Jaime L.; Forbes, Cory T.; Zangori, Laura

    2015-01-01

    To support elementary students' learning of core, standards-based life science concepts highlighted in the "Next Generation Science Standards," prospective elementary teachers should develop an understanding of life science concepts and learn to apply their content knowledge in instructional practice to craft elementary science learning…

  16. Dark Skies Awareness through the GLOBE at Night Citizen-Science Campaign

    Science.gov (United States)

    Walker, C. E.

    2011-10-01

    The emphasis in the international citizen-science, star-hunting campaign, GLOBE at Night, is in bringing awareness to the public on issues of light pollution. Light pollution threatens not only observatory sites and our "right to starlight", but can affect energy consumption, wildlife and health. GLOBE at Night has successfully reached a few hundred thousand citizen-scientists during the annual 2-week campaign over the past 6 years. Provided is an overview, update and discussion of what steps can be taken to improve programs like GLOBE at Night.

  17. Elementary Children’s Retrodictive Reasoning about Earth Science

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Julie C. LIBARKIN

    2012-10-01

    Full Text Available We report on interviews conducted with twenty-one elementary school children (grades 1-5 about a number of Earth science concepts. These interviews were undertaken as part of a teacher training video series designed specifically to assist elementary teachers in learning essential ideas in Earth science. As such, children were interviewed about a wide array of earth science concepts, from rock formation to the Earth’s interior. We analyzed interview data primarily to determine whether or not young children are capable of inferring understanding of the past based on present-day observation (retrodictive reasoning in the context of Earth science. This work provides a basis from which curricula for teaching earth and environmental sciences can emerge, and suggests that new studies into the retrodictive reasoning abilities of young children are needed, including curricula that encourage inference of the past from modern observations.

  18. NASA Family Science Night: Changing perceptions one family at a time

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mitchell, Sara E.; Drobnes, Emilie; Sol Colina-Trujillo, M.; Noel-Storr, Jacob

    2008-12-01

    Parents and families have the greatest influence on children's attitudes towards education and career choices. If students' attitudes towards science, particularly the physical sciences, are not influenced positively by parental/familial attitudes, efforts to improve the quality of content and teaching of these subjects in school may be futile. Research shows that parental involvement increases student achievement outcomes, and family-oriented programs have a direct impact on student performance. Based on this premise, the NASA Goddard Space Flight Center started a series of Family Science Nights for middle school students and their families. The program provides a non-threatening venue for families to explore the importance of science and technology in our daily lives by engaging in learning activities that change their perception and understanding of science - making it more practical and approachable for participants of all ages. Family Science Night strives to change the way that students and their families participate in science, within the program and beyond.

  19. Teaching Science as Science Is Practiced: Opportunities and Limits for Enhancing Preservice Elementary Teachers' Self-Efficacy for Science and Science Teaching

    Science.gov (United States)

    Avery, Leanne M.; Meyer, Daniel Z.

    2012-01-01

    Science teaching in elementary schools, or the lack thereof, continues to be an area of concern and criticism. Preservice elementary teachers' lack of confidence in teaching science is a major part of this problem. In this mixed-methods study, we report the impacts of an inquiry-based science course on preservice elementary teachers' self-efficacy…

  20. STEM Is Elementary: Challenges Faced by Elementary Teachers in the Era of the Next Generation Science Standards

    Science.gov (United States)

    Isabelle, Aaron D.

    2017-01-01

    For students to achieve the goals of the Next Generation Science Standards (NGSS) by Grade 12, thinking and acting like scientists and engineers must begin in the elementary grades. However, elementary teachers may find this challenging -because language arts and mathematics still dominate many classrooms--often at the expense of science. This…

  1. Effective Programs for Elementary Science: A Best-Evidence Synthesis

    Science.gov (United States)

    Slavin, Robert E.; Lake, Cynthia; Hanley, Pam; Thurston, Allen

    2012-01-01

    This article presents a systematic review of research on the achievement outcomes of all types of approaches to teaching science in elementary schools. Study inclusion criteria included use of randomized or matched control groups, a study duration of at least 4 weeks, and use of achievement measures independent of the experimental treatment. A…

  2. Hybrid-Mentoring Programs for Beginning Elementary Science Teachers

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bang, EunJin

    2013-01-01

    This study examines four induction models and teacher changes in science teaching practices, as a result of several mentoring programs. It explores three different computer-mediated mentoring programs, and a traditional offline induction program--in terms of interactivity, inquiry-based teaching, and topics of knowledge. Fifteen elementary science…

  3. Elementary Students' Retention of Environmental Science Knowledge: Connected Science Instruction versus Direct Instruction

    Science.gov (United States)

    Upadhyay, Bhaskar; DeFranco, Cristina

    2008-01-01

    This study compares 3rd-grade elementary students' gain and retention of science vocabulary over time in two different classes--"connected science instruction" versus "direct instruction." Data analysis yielded that students who received connected science instruction showed less gain in science knowledge in the short term compared to students who…

  4. Sources of Science Teaching Self-Efficacy for Preservice Elementary Teachers in Science Content Courses

    Science.gov (United States)

    Menon, Deepika; Sadler, Troy D.

    2018-01-01

    Self-efficacy beliefs play a major role in determining teachers' science teaching practices and have been a topic of great interest in the area of preservice science teacher education. This qualitative study investigated factors that influenced preservice elementary teachers' science teaching self-efficacy beliefs in a physical science content…

  5. Why do science in space? Researchers' Night at CERN 2017

    CERN Multimedia

    Nellist, Clara

    2017-01-01

    Space topic and debate "Why do science in space?" With the special presence of Matthias Maurer, European Space Agency astronaut, and Mercedes Paniccia, PhD, Senior Research Associate for space experiment AMS.

  6. Saudi Elementary School Science Teachers' Beliefs: Teaching Science in the New Millennium

    Science.gov (United States)

    Alghamdi, Amani K. Hamdan; Al-Salouli, Misfer Saud

    2013-01-01

    This study explored Saudi elementary school science teachers' beliefs about the process of teaching and learning science. This involved the exploration of their views about the new Saudi science curriculum, which emphasizes critical thinking and problem solving. Comprehensive interviews were held in 8 schools with 4 male and 6 female--2 of whom…

  7. Earth Systems Science in an Integrated Science Content and Methods Course for Elementary Education Majors

    Science.gov (United States)

    Madsen, J. A.; Allen, D. E.; Donham, R. S.; Fifield, S. J.; Shipman, H. L.; Ford, D. J.; Dagher, Z. R.

    2004-12-01

    With funding from the National Science Foundation, we have designed an integrated science content and methods course for sophomore-level elementary teacher education (ETE) majors. This course, the Science Semester, is a 15-credit sequence that consists of three science content courses (Earth, Life, and Physical Science) and a science teaching methods course. The goal of this integrated science and education methods curriculum is to foster holistic understandings of science and pedagogy that future elementary teachers need to effectively use inquiry-based approaches in teaching science in their classrooms. During the Science Semester, traditional subject matter boundaries are crossed to stress shared themes that teachers must understand to teach standards-based elementary science. Exemplary approaches that support both learning science and learning how to teach science are used. In the science courses, students work collaboratively on multidisciplinary problem-based learning (PBL) activities that place science concepts in authentic contexts and build learning skills. In the methods course, students critically explore the theory and practice of elementary science teaching, drawing on their shared experiences of inquiry learning in the science courses. An earth system science approach is ideally adapted for the integrated, inquiry-based learning that takes place during the Science Semester. The PBL investigations that are the hallmark of the Science Semester provide the backdrop through which fundamental earth system interactions can be studied. For example in the PBL investigation that focuses on energy, the carbon cycle is examined as it relates to fossil fuels. In another PBL investigation centered on kids, cancer, and the environment, the hydrologic cycle with emphasis on surface runoff and ground water contamination is studied. In a PBL investigation that has students learning about the Delaware Bay ecosystem through the story of the horseshoe crab and the biome

  8. Perspectives on learning, learning to teach and teaching elementary science

    Science.gov (United States)

    Avraamidou, Lucy

    The framework that characterizes this work is that of elementary teachers' learning and development. Specifically, the ways in which prospective and beginning teachers' develop pedagogical content knowledge for teaching science in light of current recommendations for reform emphasizing teaching and learning science as inquiry are explored. Within this theme, the focus is on three core areas: (a) the use of technology tools (i.e., web-based portfolios) in support of learning to teach science at the elementary level; (b) beginning teachers' specialized knowledge for giving priority to evidence in science teaching; and (c) the applications of perspectives associated with elementary teachers' learning to teach science in Cyprus, where I was born and raised. The first manuscript describes a study aimed at exploring the influence of web-based portfolios and a specific task in support of learning to teach science within the context of a Professional Development School program. The task required prospective teachers to articulate their personal philosophies about teaching and learning science in the form of claims, evidence and justifications in a web-based forum. The findings of this qualitative case study revealed the participants' developing understandings about learning and teaching science, which included emphasizing a student-centered approach, connecting physical engagement of children with conceptual aspects of learning, becoming attentive to what teachers can do to support children's learning, and focusing on teaching science as inquiry. The way the task was organized and the fact that the web-based forum provided the ability to keep multiple versions of their philosophies gave prospective teachers the advantage of examining how their philosophies were changing over time, which supported a continuous engagement in metacognition, self-reflection and self-evaluation. The purpose of the study reported in the second manuscript was to examine the nature of a first

  9. Using Citizen Science to Engage Preservice Elementary Educators in Scientific Fieldwork

    Science.gov (United States)

    Scott, Catherine M.

    2016-01-01

    Preservice elementary teachers' lack of confidence in teaching science is an ongoing concern. Only 29% of elementary teachers in the field felt "very well prepared to teach life science," according to the National Survey of Science and Mathematics Education. Research has suggested that bridging informal and formal science education can…

  10. Examining student-generated questions in an elementary science classroom

    Science.gov (United States)

    Diaz, Juan Francisco, Jr.

    This study was conducted to better understand how teachers use an argument-based inquiry technique known as the Science Writing Heuristic (SWH) approach to address issues on teaching, learning, negotiation, argumentation, and elaboration in an elementary science classroom. Within the SWH framework, this study traced the progress of promoting argumentation and negotiation (which led to student-generated questions) during a discussion in an elementary science classroom. Speech patterns during various classroom scenarios were analyzed to understand how teacher--student interactions influence learning. This study uses a mixture of qualitative and quantitative methods. The qualitative aspect of the study is an analysis of teacher--student interactions in the classroom using video recordings. The quantitative aspect uses descriptive statistics, tables, and plots to analyze the data. The subjects in this study were fifth grade students and teachers from an elementary school in the Midwest, during the academic years 2007/2008 and 2008/2009. The three teachers selected for this study teach at the same Midwestern elementary school. These teachers were purposely selected because they were using the SWH approach during the two years of the study. The results of this study suggest that all three teachers moved from using teacher-generated questions to student-generated questions as they became more familiar with the SWH approach. In addition, all three promoted the use of the components of arguments in their dialogs and discussions and encouraged students to elaborate, challenge, and rebut each other's ideas in a non-threatening environment. This research suggests that even young students, when actively participating in class discussions, are capable of connecting their claims and evidence and generating questions of a higher-order cognitive level. These findings demand the implementation of more professional development programs and the improvement in teacher education to help

  11. Changes in Student Science Interest from Elementary to Middle School

    Science.gov (United States)

    Coutts, Trudi E.

    This study is a transcendental phenomenological study that described the experience of students’ interest in science from elementary school through middle school grades and the identification of the factors that increase or decrease interest in science. Numerous researchers have found that interest in science changes among children and the change in interest seems to modulate student motivation, which ultimately leads to fewer children choosing not only science classes in the future but science careers. Research studies have identified numerous factors that affect student interest in science; however, this study incorporated the lived experience of the child and looked at this interest in science through the lens of the child. The study design was a collective cross-case study that was multi-site based. This study utilized a sample of children in fifth grade classes of three different elementary schools, two distinct seventh grade classes of different middle schools, and ninth grade children from one high school in the State of Illinois. The phenomenon was investigated through student interviews. The use of one-on-one semi-structured interviews limited to 45 minutes in length provided the researcher with data of each child’s description of science interest. All interviews were audio- recorded and transcribed verbatim. The data was collected and analyzed in order to identify themes, and finally checked for validity. The most significant findings of this study, and possible factors contributing to science interest in children as they progress from elementary to high school, were those findings relating to hands-on activities, the degree to which a student was challenged, the offering of new versus previously studied topics in the curriculum, the perceived relevance of the curricular materials to personal life, and the empowerment children felt when they were allowed to make choices related to their learning experiences. This study’s possible implications for

  12. Emotions and elementary school science teaching: Postmodernism in practice

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zembylas, Michalinos

    This is an ethnographic study about an elementary school teacher's emotions in her science teaching and pedagogy. This study is an interdisciplinary account of emotions in teaching and draws both methodologically and theoretically from a variety of disciplines: philosophy, sociology, psychology, anthropology, cultural studies and feminist studies. The account developed here is based on my understanding of the role of one teacher's (Catherine) emotions in her classroom life for three years. I describe my approach in terms of what I call emotional genealogies of teaching; referring to an account of the events, objects, persons and their relationships that are present or absent in the realization of emotions, and the ways that these emotions are experienced in relation to the self (individual reality), the others (social interactions) and the world in general (sociopolitical context). Applied to my study, an emotional genealogy of Catherine's science teaching seeks not to trace the gradual evolution of her emotions but to record the singularity of various events that make some emotions present and others absent. My study shows how certain emotions are constructed in the science classroom and how they are transformed over the years (as mediated by values, philosophies, beliefs and so on). Catherine's emotions in science teaching is a "history of the present," a history of her emotions' "presences and absences" in her daffy interactions with her students, parents and administrators in the context of the science classroom. This work raises important questions that go beyond the meaning and interpretation of teachers' emotions: How can teachers' emotions become a legitimate topic in (science) education as well as in efforts for science curricular reform? Further, how can educational institutions (universities and schools) and elementary school science teachers themselves support their personal and professional emotional growth?

  13. Elementary Science Indoors and Out: Teachers, Time, and Testing

    Science.gov (United States)

    Carrier, Sarah J.; Tugurian, Linda P.; Thomson, Margareta M.

    2013-10-01

    In this article, we present the results from a mixed-methods research study aimed to document indoor and outdoor fifth grade science experiences in one school in the USA in the context of accountability and standardized testing. We used quantitative measures to explore students' science knowledge, environmental attitudes, and outdoor comfort levels, and via qualitative measures, we examined views on science education and environmental issues from multiple sources, including the school's principal, teachers, and students. Students' science knowledge in each of the four objectives specified for grade 5 significantly improved during the school year. Qualitative data collected through interviews and observations found limited impressions of outdoor science. Findings revealed that, despite best intentions and a school culture that supported outdoor learning, it was very difficult in practice for teachers to supplement their classroom science instruction with outdoor activities. They felt constrained by time and heavy content demands and decided that the most efficient way of delivering science instruction was through traditional methods. Researchers discuss potentials and obstacles for the science community to consider in supporting teachers and preparing elementary school teachers to provide students with authentic experiential learning opportunities. We further confront teachers' and students' perceptions that science is always best and most efficiently learned inside the classroom through traditional text-driven instruction.

  14. The International Globe at Night Citizen-Science Campaign: Shedding Light on Light Pollution

    Science.gov (United States)

    Walker, C. E.; Pompea, S. M.

    2013-12-01

    For 8 years now, the Globe at Night campaign has invited citizen-scientists worldwide to measure and record the brightness of their night sky by hunting for the faintest stars in a particular constellation. Students for science projects and scientists for research use the data to monitor levels of brightness or 'light pollution' around the world. They also use the Globe at Night data to understand light pollution's effects on energy consumption, plants, wildlife and human health, as well as our ability to enjoy a starry night sky. The dates of the campaign for 2014 have been extended to every month during the year. Ten days each month (when the Moon is not up between 8pm and 10pm) are the recommended times to take measurements for the campaign. However, one can participate at other times and dates, as long as the Moon is not in the night sky and it is more than an hour after sunset or more than an hour before sunrise. New in 2014 will be an Android app that will allow you to input visual measurements anytime the Moon is not up. Also possibly included will be an iPhone app that will take sky brightness measurements. The campaign dates and the 5 easy steps to participating in the campaign are listed at www.globeatnight.org. You do not need to register. Once on the report page, you enter your location, date and time (automatic for a smart device). You find the constellation of the month in the night sky. (Help is on the website.) Then you choose which chart looks most like what you see toward the constellation. Choose the icon for how clear or cloudy it is and hit the submit button and you are done! The fifth step is returning later to the website to compare your observations on the world map to others from around the globe. Included on the Globe at Night website are many helpful resources and tools from finding the constellations used in the campaign, to understanding concepts like light pollution, to games that test your expertise in choosing 'limiting magnitudes

  15. Elementary girls' science reading at home and school

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ford, Danielle J.; Brickhouse, Nancy W.; Lottero-Perdue, Pamela; Kittleson, Julie

    2006-03-01

    Although reading is a critical part of science and science learning, it is no longer a part of many children's elementary science instruction. This is of concern because girls often develop strong identities as readers, but do not develop scientific identities with ease. In this study, we investigate girls' science reading to know (1) if science books were available to girls in homes and classrooms, (2) if girls were choosing to read them, and (3) what influences their choices. Forty-five third-grade girls, 29 of their families, and three of their teachers were interviewed to ascertain girls' preferences among various book genres, as well as to learn the ways in which families and teachers influence the choices girls make. We found that girls had access to science books at school, and teachers had strategies to encourage reading them. At home, parents encouraged reading, but were generally less directive than teachers as to what the girls read, and underestimated their daughters' science-related interests. The families studied rely largely on major bookstores as their primary source of books. Our findings suggest we need to understand better the way gender influences girls' engagement with science in a variety of contexts, particularly those in which girls exercise choice.

  16. Investigating the Self-Perceived Science Teaching Needs of Local Elementary Educators

    Science.gov (United States)

    Carver, Cynthia G.

    Elementary teachers in one school system have expressed low self-efficacy teaching science and desire more support teaching science. However, little research has been conducted on how best to meet these teachers' needs. The theories of perceived self-efficacy, social cognition, and behaviorism make up the conceptual framework of this study. The focus of this qualitative project study was on the needs of local elementary educators. These teachers were asked what they felt they needed most to be more effective science educators. The methodology of phenomenology was used in this study in which local elementary teachers were questioned in focus groups regarding their own science teaching efficacy and perceived needs. Using inductive analysis, data were coded for links to discussion questions as well as any additional patterns that emerged. Findings indicated that local elementary teachers desire improved communication among administrators and teachers as well as better science content support and training. Focus group participants agreed that teacher self-efficacy affects the time spent, effort toward, and quality of elementary science education. Using the results of the study, a science mentor program was developed to support the needs of elementary teachers and increase teacher self-efficacy, thus improving local elementary science education. Implications for positive social change include the development and support of elementary science programs in other school systems with the goal of improving science education for elementary students.

  17. Elementary Teachers' Beliefs about Teaching Science and Classroom Practice: An Examination of Pre/Post NCLB Testing in Science

    Science.gov (United States)

    Milner, Andrea R.; Sondergeld, Toni A.; Demir, Abdulkadir; Johnson, Carla C.; Czerniak, Charlene M.

    2012-01-01

    The impact of No Child Left Behind (NCLB) mandated state science assessment on elementary teachers' beliefs about teaching science and their classroom practice is relatively unknown. For many years, the teaching of science has been minimized in elementary schools in favor of more emphasis on reading and mathematics. This study examines the…

  18. Instructional Support and Implementation Structure during Elementary Teachers' Science Education Simulation Use

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gonczi, Amanda L.; Chiu, Jennifer L.; Maeng, Jennifer L.; Bell, Randy L.

    2016-01-01

    This investigation sought to identify patterns in elementary science teachers' computer simulation use, particularly implementation structures and instructional supports commonly employed by teachers. Data included video-recorded science lessons of 96 elementary teachers who used computer simulations in one or more science lessons. Results…

  19. GLOBE at Night: Raising Public Awareness and Involvement through Citizen Science

    Science.gov (United States)

    Walker, C. E.; Pompea, S. M.; Sparks, R. T.

    2010-12-01

    With half of the world’s population now living in cities, many urban dwellers have never experienced the wonderment of pristinely dark skies and maybe never will. Light pollution is obscuring people’s long-standing natural heritage to view stars. The GLOBE at Night program (www.globeatnight.org) is an international citizen-science campaign to raise public awareness of the impact of light pollution by encouraging everyone everywhere to measure local levels of night sky brightness and contribute observations online to a world map. In the last 5 years, GLOBE at Night has been the most productive public light pollution monitoring campaign, collecting over 52,000 observations in a two-week period annually. This year, during the moonless two weeks in March, the campaign set a record high of over 17,800 measurements from people in 86 countries. Foundational resources are available to facilitate the public’s participation in promoting dark skies awareness. The GLOBE at Night website explains clearly the simple-to-participate-in 5 step program and offers background information and interactive games on key concepts. The program has been expanded to include trainings of the general public, but especially educators in schools, museums and science centers, in unique ways. Education kits for dark skies awareness have been distributed at the training workshops. The kit includes material for a light shielding demonstration, a digital Sky Quality Meter and “Dark Skies Rangers” activities. The activities are on how unshielded light wastes energy, how light pollution affects wildlife and how you can participate in a citizen-science star-hunt like GLOBE at Night. In addition, projects are being developed for what to do with the data once it is taken. The GLOBE at Night data from different years can be compared to look for trends over time or with population density maps. The data can also be used to search for dark sky oases or to monitor lighting ordinance compliance. Most

  20. Learning by doing? Prospective elementary teachers' developing understandings of scientific inquiry and science teaching and learning

    Science.gov (United States)

    Haefner, Leigh Ann; Zembal-Saul, Carla

    This study examined prospective elementary teachers' learning about scientific inquiry in the context of an innovative life science course. Research questions included: (1) What do prospective elementary teachers learn about scientific inquiry within the context of the course? and (2) In what ways do their experiences engaging in science investigations and teaching inquiry-oriented science influence prospective elementary teachers' understanding of science and science learning and teaching? Eleven prospective elementary teachers participated in this qualitative, multi-participant case study. Constant comparative analysis strategies attempted to build abstractions and explanations across participants around the constructs of the study. Findings suggest that engaging in scientific inquiry supported the development more appropriate understandings of science and scientific inquiry, and that prospective teachers became more accepting of approaches to teaching science that encourage children's questions about science phenomena. Implications include careful consideration of learning experiences crafted for prospective elementary teachers to support the development of robust subject matter knowledge.

  1. Science Language Accommodation in Elementary School Read-Alouds

    Science.gov (United States)

    Glass, Rory; Oliveira, Alandeom W.

    2014-03-01

    This study examines the pedagogical functions of accommodation (i.e. provision of simplified science speech) in science read-aloud sessions facilitated by five elementary teachers. We conceive of read-alouds as communicative events wherein teachers, faced with the task of orally delivering a science text of relatively high linguistic complexity, open up an alternate channel of communication, namely oral discussion. By doing so, teachers grant students access to a simplified linguistic input, a strategy designed to promote student comprehension of the textual contents of children's science books. It was found that nearly half (46%) of the read-aloud time was allotted to discussions with an increased percentage of less sophisticated words and reduced use of more sophisticated vocabulary than found in the books through communicative strategies such as simplified rewording, simplified definition, and simplified questioning. Further, aloud reading of more linguistically complex books required longer periods of discussion and an increased degree of teacher oral input and accommodation. We also found evidence of reversed simplification (i.e. sophistication), leading to student uptake of scientific language. The main significance of this study is that it reveals that teacher talk serves two often competing pedagogical functions (accessible communication of scientific information to students and promotion of student acquisition of the specialized language of science). It also underscores the importance of giving analytical consideration to the simplification-sophistication dimension of science classroom discourse as well as the potential of computer-based analysis of classroom discourse to inform science teaching.

  2. Developing Elementary Science PCK for Teacher Education: Lessons Learned from a Second Grade Partnership

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bradbury, Leslie U.; Wilson, Rachel E.; Brookshire, Laura E.

    2017-06-01

    In this self-study, two science educators partnered with two elementary teachers to plan, implement, and reflect on a unit taught in second grade classrooms that integrated science and language arts. The researchers hoped to increase their pedagogical content knowledge (PCK) for elementary science teaching so that they might use their experiences working in an elementary context to modify their practices in their elementary science method instruction. The research question guiding the study was: What aspects of our PCK for elementary science teaching do we as science educators develop by co-planning, co-teaching, and reflecting with second grade teachers? Data include transcripts of planning meetings, oral reflections about the experience, and videos of the unit being enacted. Findings indicate that managing resources for science teaching, organizing students for science learning, and reflecting on science teaching were themes prevalent in the data. These themes were linked to the model of PCK developed by Park and Oliver (Research in Science Education, 38, 261-284, 2008) and demonstrate that we developed PCK for elementary science teaching in several areas. In our discussion, we include several proposed changes for our elementary science methods course based on the outcomes of the study.

  3. Parent Involvement Practices of High-Achieving Elementary Science Students

    Science.gov (United States)

    Waller, Samara Susan

    This study addressed a prevalence of low achievement in science courses in an urban school district in Georgia. National leaders and educators have identified the improvement of science proficiency as critical to the future of American industry. The purpose of this study was to examine parent involvement in this school district and its contribution to the academic achievement of successful science students. Social capital theory guided this study by suggesting that students achieve best when investments are made into their academic and social development. A collective case study qualitative research design was used to interview 9 parent participants at 2 elementary schools whose children scored in the exceeds category on the Science CRCT. The research questions focused on what these parents did at home to support their children's academic achievement. Data were collected using a semi-structured interview protocol and analyzed through the categorical aggregation of transcribed interviews. Key findings revealed that the parents invested time and resources in 3 practices: communicating high expectations, supporting and developing key skills, and communicating with teachers. These findings contribute to social change at both the local and community level by creating a starting point for teachers, principals, and district leaders to reexamine the value of parent input in the educational process, and by providing data to support the revision of current parent involvement policies. Possibilities for further study building upon the findings of this study may focus on student perceptions of their parents' parenting as it relates to their science achievement.

  4. Development of preservice elementary teachers' science self- efficacy beliefs and its relation to science conceptual understanding

    Science.gov (United States)

    Menon, Deepika

    Self-efficacy beliefs that relate to teachers' motivation and performance have been an important area of concern for preservice teacher education. This study used a mixed-methods approach to investigate the changes in preservice elementary teachers' science self-efficacy beliefs and the factors associated in a specialized elementary physics content course. In addition, the study is one of few to investigate the relationship between the changes in science self-efficacy beliefs and changes in physical science conceptual understanding. Participants included fifty-one preservice elementary teachers enrolled in two term of the physical science content course. Data collection and analysis procedures included both qualitative and quantitative measures. Data collection included implementation of Science Teaching Efficacy Belief Instrument-B (STEBI-B) (Bleicher, 2004) and Physical Science Concept Test as pre- and post-test, two semi-structured interviews with 18 participants (nine each semester), classroom observations and artifacts. A pre-post, repeated measures multivariate analysis of variance (MANOVA) design was used to test the significance of differences between the pre- and post-surveys across time. Results indicated statistically significant gains in participants' science self-efficacy beliefs on both scales of STEBI-B - personal science teaching beliefs and outcome expectancy beliefs. Additionally, a positive moderate relationship between science conceptual understandings and personal science teaching efficacy beliefs was found. Post-hoc analysis of the STEBI-B data was used to select 18 participants for interviews. The participants belonged to each group representing the low, medium and high initial levels of self-efficacy beliefs. Participants' responses indicated positive shifts in their science teacher self-image and confidence to teach science in future. Four categories that represented the course-related factors contributing towards science self

  5. Do science coaches promote inquiry-based instruction in the elementary science classroom?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wicker, Rosemary Knight

    The South Carolina Mathematics and Science Coaching Initiative established a school-based science coaching model that was effective in improving instruction by increasing the level of inquiry-based instruction in elementary science classrooms. Classroom learning environment data from both teacher groups indicated considerable differences in the quality of inquiry instruction for those classrooms of teachers supported by a science coach. All essential features of inquiry were demonstrated more frequently and at a higher level of open-ended inquiry in classrooms with the support of a science coach than were demonstrated in classrooms without a science coach. However, from teacher observations and interviews, it was determined that elementary schoolteacher practice of having students evaluate conclusions and connect them to current scientific knowledge was often neglected. Teachers with support of a science coach reported changes in inquiry-based instruction that were statistically significant. This mixed ethnographic study also suggested that the Mathematics and Science Coaching Initiative Theory of Action for Instructional Improvement was an effective model when examining the work of science coaches. All components of effective school infrastructure were positively impacted by a variety of science coaching strategies intended to promote inquiry. Professional development for competent teachers, implementation of researched-based curriculum, and instructional materials support were areas highly impacted by the work of science coaches.

  6. Predicting Turkish Preservice Elementary Teachers' Orientations to Teaching Science with Epistemological Beliefs, Learning Conceptions, and Learning Approaches in Science

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sahin, Elif Adibelli; Deniz, Hasan; Topçu, Mustafa Sami

    2016-01-01

    The present study investigated to what extent Turkish preservice elementary teachers' orientations to teaching science could be explained by their epistemological beliefs, conceptions of learning, and approaches to learning science. The sample included 157 Turkish preservice elementary teachers. The four instruments used in the study were School…

  7. Who Wants to Learn More Science? The Role of Elementary School Science Experiences and Science Self-Perceptions

    Science.gov (United States)

    Aschbacher, Pamela R.; Ing, Marsha

    2017-01-01

    Background/Context: Much science education reform has been directed at middle and high school students; however, earlier experiences in elementary school may well have an important impact on young people's future science literacy and preparation for possible STEM careers. Purpose/Objective/Research Question/Focus of Study: This study explores the…

  8. Self-Efficacy for Science Teaching Scale Development: Construct Validation with Elementary School Teachers

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yangin, Selami; Sidekli, Sabri

    2016-01-01

    The measurement of teacher self-efficacy has a history of more than 30 years. The purpose of this research is to evaluate the development and validation of a new scale to measure the science teaching self-efficacy of elementary school teachers. Therefore, a scale has been created to measure elementary teachers' science teaching self-efficacy and…

  9. Impacts of Contextual and Explicit Instruction on Preservice Elementary Teachers' Understandings of the Nature of Science

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bell, Randy L.; Matkins, Juanita Jo; Gansneder, Bruce M.

    2011-01-01

    This mixed-methods investigation compared the relative impacts of instructional approach and context of nature of science instruction on preservice elementary teachers' understandings. The sample consisted of 75 preservice teachers enrolled in four sections of an elementary science methods course. Independent variables included instructional…

  10. Exploring Elementary Teachers' Perceptions about the Developmental Appropriateness and Importance of Nature of Science Aspects

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sahin, Elif Adibelli; Deniz, Hasan

    2016-01-01

    This study explored how four elementary teachers assessed the developmental appropriateness and importance of nine nature of science (NOS) aspects after participating in a yearlong professional development program. A multiple-embedded case study design was employed. The primary data sources included (a) Views of Nature of Science Elementary School…

  11. Developing Preservice Teachers' Self-Efficacy through Field-Based Science Teaching Practice with Elementary Students

    Science.gov (United States)

    Flores, Ingrid M.

    2015-01-01

    Thirty preservice teachers enrolled in a field-based science methods course were placed at a public elementary school for coursework and for teaching practice with elementary students. Candidates focused on building conceptual understanding of science content and pedagogical methods through innovative curriculum development and other course…

  12. The Effects of a STEM Intervention on Elementary Students' Science Knowledge and Skills

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cotabish, Alicia; Dailey, Debbie; Robinson, Ann; Hughes, Gail

    2013-01-01

    The purpose of the study was to assess elementary students' science process skills, content knowledge, and concept knowledge after one year of participation in an elementary Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics (STEM) program. This study documented the effects of the combination of intensive professional development and the use of…

  13. National Science Resources Center Project for Improving Science Teaching in Elementary Schools. Appendix A. School Systems With Exemplary Elementary Science Programs. Appendix B. Elementary Science Network

    Science.gov (United States)

    1988-12-01

    Glass, Lawrence, Deer Park High School Glass, Millard, K-12 Science Supervisor Bloomfield Municipal School District Glassman, Neil, Gleason, Steve...Superientendent Vaughn Municipal Schools Knop, Ronald N., Teacher Grissom Junior High School Knox, Amie, Director of Master Teacher Program W. Wilson...Science Supervisor Pequannock Township Public Schools Mercado , Roberto, Science Coordinator Colegio Radians, Inc. Merchant, Edwin, K-12 Science

  14. Status of teaching elementary science for English learners in science, mathematics and technology centered magnet schools

    Science.gov (United States)

    Han, Alyson Kim

    According to the California Commission on Teacher Credentialing (2001), one in three students speaks a language other than English. Additionally, the Commission stated that a student is considered to be an English learner if the second language acquisition is English. In California more than 1.4 million English learners enter school speaking a variety of languages, and this number continues to rise. There is an imminent need to promote instructional strategies that support this group of diverse learners. Although this was not a California study, the results derived from the nationwide participants' responses provided a congruent assessment of the basic need to provide effective science teaching strategies to all English learners. The purpose of this study was to examine the status of elementary science teaching practices used with English learners in kindergarten through fifth grade in public mathematics, science, and technology-centered elementary magnet schools throughout the country. This descriptive research was designed to provide current information and to identify trends in the areas of curriculum and instruction for English learners in science themed magnet schools. This report described the status of elementary (grades K-5) school science instruction for English learners based on the responses of 116 elementary school teachers: 59 grade K-2, and 57 grade 3-5 teachers. Current research-based approaches support incorporating self-directed learning strategy, expository teaching strategy, active listening strategies, questioning strategies, wait time strategy, small group strategy, peer tutoring strategy, large group learning strategy, demonstrations strategy, formal debates strategy, review sessions strategy, mediated conversation strategy, cooperative learning strategy, and theme-based instruction into the curriculum to assist English learners in science education. Science Technology Society (STS) strategy, problem-based learning strategy, discovery learning

  15. Instructional leadership in elementary science: How are school leaders positioned to lead in a next generation science standards era?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Winn, Kathleen Mary

    The Next Generation Science Standards (NGSS) are the newest K-12 science content standards created by a coalition of educators, scientists, and researchers available for adoption by states and schools. Principals are important actors during policy implementation especially since principals are charged with assuming the role of an instructional leader for their teachers in all subject areas. Science poses a unique challenge to the elementary curricular landscape because traditionally, elementary teachers report low levels of self-efficacy in the subject. Support in this area therefore becomes important for a successful integration of a new science education agenda. This study analyzed self-reported survey data from public elementary principals (N=667) to address the following three research questions: (1) What type of science backgrounds do elementary principals have? (2) What indicators predict if elementary principals will engage in instructional leadership behaviors in science? (3) Does self-efficacy mediate the relationship between science background and a capacity for instructional leadership in science? The survey data were analyzed quantitatively. Descriptive statistics address the first research question and inferential statistics (hierarchal regression analysis and a mediation analysis) answer the second and third research questions.The sample data show that about 21% of elementary principals have a formal science degree and 26% have a degree in a STEM field. Most principals have not had recent experience teaching science, nor were they every exclusively a science teacher. The analyses suggests that demographic, experiential, and self-efficacy variables predict instructional leadership practices in science.

  16. Teaching for Conceptual Change in Elementary and Secondary Science Methods Courses.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Marion, Robin; Hewson, Peter W.; Tabachnick, B. Robert; Blomker, Kathryn B.

    1999-01-01

    Describes and analyzes two science methods courses at the elementary and secondary levels for how they addressed four ideas: (1) how students learn science; (2) how teachers teach science to students; (3) how prospective science teachers learn about the first two ideas; and (4) how methods instructors teach prospective science teachers about the…

  17. Graduate students teaching elementary earth science through interactive classroom lessons

    Science.gov (United States)

    Caswell, T. E.; Goudge, T. A.; Jawin, E. R.; Robinson, F.

    2014-12-01

    Since 2005, graduate students in the Brown University Department of Earth, Environmental, and Planetary Studies have volunteered to teach science to second-grade students at Vartan Gregorian Elementary School in Providence, RI. Initially developed to bring science into classrooms where it was not explicitly included in the curriculum, the graduate student-run program today incorporates the Providence Public Schools Grade 2 science curriculum into weekly, interactive sessions that engage the students in hypothesis-driven science. We will describe the program structure, its integration into the Providence Public Schools curriculum, and 3 example lessons relevant to geology. Lessons are structured to develop the students' ability to share and incorporate others' ideas through written and oral communication. The volunteers explain the basics of the topic and engage the students with introductory questions. The students use this knowledge to develop a hypothesis about the upcoming experiment, recording it in their "Science Notebooks." The students record their observations during the demonstration and discuss the results as a group. The process culminates in the students using their own words to summarize what they learned. Activities of particular interest to educators in geoscience are called "Volcanoes!", "The "Liquid Race," and "Phases of the Moon." The "Volcanoes!" lesson explores explosive vs. effusive volcanism using two simulated volcanoes: one explosive, using Mentos and Diet Coke, and one effusive, using vinegar and baking soda (in model volcanoes that the students construct in teams). In "Liquid Race," which explores viscosity and can be integrated into the "Volcanoes!" lesson, the students connect viscosity to flow speed by racing liquids down a ramp. "Phases of the Moon" teaches the students why the Moon has phases, using ball and stick models, and the terminology of the lunar phases using cream-filled cookies (e.g., Oreos). These lessons, among many others

  18. Elementary school children's science learning from school field trips

    Science.gov (United States)

    Glick, Marilyn Petty

    This research examines the impact of classroom anchoring activities on elementary school students' science learning from a school field trip. Although there is prior research demonstrating that students can learn science from school field trips, most of this research is descriptive in nature and does not examine the conditions that enhance or facilitate such learning. The current study draws upon research in psychology and education to create an intervention that is designed to enhance what students learn from school science field trips. The intervention comprises of a set of "anchoring" activities that include: (1) Orientation to context, (2) Discussion to activate prior knowledge and generate questions, (3) Use of field notebooks during the field trip to record observations and answer questions generated prior to field trip, (4) Post-visit discussion of what was learned. The effects of the intervention are examined by comparing two groups of students: an intervention group which receives anchoring classroom activities related to their field trip and an equivalent control group which visits the same field trip site for the same duration but does not receive any anchoring classroom activities. Learning of target concepts in both groups was compared using objective pre and posttests. Additionally, a subset of students in each group were interviewed to obtain more detailed descriptive data on what children learned through their field trip.

  19. Power dynamics and questioning in elementary science lessons

    Science.gov (United States)

    Reinsvold, Lori Ann

    Discourse interactions between a teacher and students in an inquiry-based fourth-grade science classroom were analyzed to investigate how power dynamics and questioning strategies within elementary science lessons help support students in building their science understanding. Five inquiry-based classroom sessions were observed; verbal interactions were audio- and video-recorded. Research data consisted of observation transcripts, teacher interviews, student work, and instructional materials. Analyses were conducted on the frequencies of utterances, participation roles, power categories, and questioning categories. Results revealed that when students used more frequent power, (a) no significant differences were noted between frequencies of teacher and student talk, (b) the teacher posed more questions than did the students, and (c) students explained what they knew and asked questions to clarify their understanding. When the teacher used more frequent power, she asked questions to provide students opportunities to negotiate investigative processes and explain what they knew and how they knew it. Evidence of student understanding of the science concepts was found in how students used subject matter to discuss what they knew and how they knew it. Pre-service and in-service teachers should be encouraged to consider how their use of power and questioning strategies can engage students to reflect on how they build understanding of science concepts. Teachers can use Professional Learning Communities to reflect on how their practice engages students. Future research should be employed to observe classrooms across an entire school year to determine how power and questioning dynamics flow among students and teachers and change over time. Research can also be used to understand the influence of gender and culture on power and questioning dynamics in classroom settings.

  20. Minimizing the Threat of Light Pollution on Observatories through Education: Globe at Night Citizen-Science

    Science.gov (United States)

    Walker, Constance E.; M, Pompea, Stephen

    2018-01-01

    Citizen-science is a rewardingly inclusive way to bring awareness to the public on the disappearance of the starry night sky, its cause and solutions. Globe at Night (GaN) encourages citizen-scientists worldwide to record the brightness of the night sky. During ten-days per month of moonless evenings, children and adults match the appearance of a specified constellation with 7 star maps of progressively fainter stars found at www.globeatnight.org. They then submit their choice of star map in-situ with the “webapp” by smart device to add to a light pollution map worldwide. In the eleven years of the program, over 170,000 observations from 180 countries have been contributed to the campaign.The Globe at Night (open) database is a source of research projects, even with other disciplines. For example, students conducted research to understand the lesser long-nosed bats’ avoidance of city center at night. On-the-fly mapping enables citizen-scientists to see contributed observations immediately. The 12 campaigns per year offer 4 ways of taking measurements. The online app for data submission is in 28 languages. STEM activities for young children and problem-based learning activities for older students were created to experience real-life scenarios: role-playing sea turtles hatching (misdirected by lights on shore) or analyzing an ISS image of Houston to estimate the wasted energy, cost and carbon footprint. In-situ and on-line workshops have been given on using GaN in all its capacities, as well as for the activities. Our Facebook page exists to encourage dialogue and bring cutting edge news. To entice interest, we had monthly newsletters and serial podcasts starring the Dark Skies Crusader. GaN has been part of special campaigns like with the National Park Service, the National Geographic BioBlitz and Tucson in 2011. Partnerships also include SciStarter (working with participants), Fieldscope (working with data analysis), and STARS4ALL (working with other light

  1. The Science Semester: Cross-Disciplinary Inquiry for Prospective Elementary Teachers

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ford, Danielle J.; Fifield, Steve; Madsen, John; Qian, Xiaoyu

    2013-10-01

    We describe the Science Semester, a semester-long course block that integrates three science courses and a science education methods course for elementary teacher education majors, and examine prospective elementary teachers’ developing conceptions about inquiry, science teaching efficacy, and reflections on learning through inquiry. The Science Semester was designed to provide inquiry-oriented and problem-based learning experiences, opportunities to examine socially relevant issues through cross-disciplinary perspectives, and align with content found in elementary curricula and standards. By the end of the semester, prospective elementary teachers moved from naïve to intermediate understandings of inquiry and significantly increased self-efficacy for science teaching as measured on one subscore of the STEBI-B. Reflecting on the semester, prospective teachers understood and appreciated the goals of the course and the PBL format, but struggled with the open-ended and student-directed elements of the course.

  2. Five male preservice elementary teachers: Their understandings, beliefs and practice regarding science teaching

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hoover, Barbara Grambo

    Many factors influence teacher choices concerning the frequency, instructional methods, and content of science teaching. Although the role of gender in science learning has been studied extensively, the gender of elementary teachers as it intersects their teaching of science has not been investigated. In this ethnographic study, I focused on five male preservice elementary teachers as they experienced their student teaching internship, aiming to understand their underlying beliefs about science and science teaching and how those beliefs influenced their practice. In an attempt to illuminate the complex interplay of personality, experience, interests, and gender in the professional lives of these men, this study emphasized the importance of context in the formation and expression of their science beliefs and pedagogy. For this reason, I collected data from a number of sources. From September, 2001 to May, 2002, I observed my participants in their science methods courses and on multiple occasions as they taught science in elementary classrooms in a suburban school district. I reviewed journal entries required for the science methods class and examined documents such as handouts, readings and teacher guides from their elementary teaching experience. I conducted semi-structured and informal interviews. I analyzed data from these sources using grounded theory methodology. Although these five men had many similarities, they differed in their love of science, their exposure to science, their avocational interests, and their views of science pedagogy. This study, however, revealed a unifying theme: each participant had his own set of personal and academic resources that he carried into the classroom and used to construct a distinctive science learning environment. Some of these resources intersect with gender. For example, several men had science-related avocational interests. There was a common emphasis on creating a relaxed, enjoyable, hands-on teaching environment as

  3. How the nature of science is presented to elementary students in science read-alouds

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rivera, Seema

    Students as early as elementary school age are capable of learning the aspects of the nature of science (NOS), and the National Benchmarks incorporate the NOS as part of the learning objectives for K--2 students. Learning more about elementary science instruction can aid in understanding how the NOS can be taught or potentially integrated into current teaching methods. Although many teaching methods exist, this study will focus on read-alouds because they are recommended for and are very common in elementary schools. The read-aloud practice is particularly helpful to young students because most of these students have a higher listening comprehension than reading comprehension. One of the main components of the read-aloud practice is the discourse that takes place about the trade book. Both explicit and implicit messages are communicated to students by teachers' language and discussion that takes place in the classroom. Therefore, six multisite naturalistic case studies were conducted to understand elementary teachers' understanding of the NOS, students' understandings of the NOS, trade book representations of the NOS, and read-aloud practices and understandings in upstate New York. The findings of the study revealed that teachers and students held mostly naive and mixed understandings of the NOS. The trade books that had explicit connections to the NOS helped teachers discuss NOS related issues, even when the teachers did not hold strong NOS views. Teachers who held more informed NOS views were able to ask students NOS related questions. All teachers showed they need guidance on how to translate their NOS views into discussion and see the significance of the NOS in their classroom. Explicit NOS instruction can improve student understanding of the NOS, however the focus should be not only on teachers and their NOS understanding but also on the books used. These results show that quality trade books with explicit connections to the NOS are a useful instructional tool

  4. Integrating Inquiry-Based Science and Education Methods Courses in a "Science Semester" for Future Elementary Teachers

    Science.gov (United States)

    Madsen, J.; Fifield, S.; Allen, D.; Brickhouse, N.; Dagher, Z.; Ford, D.; Shipman, H.

    2001-05-01

    In this NSF-funded project we will adapt problem-based learning (PBL) and other inquiry-based approaches to create an integrated science and education methods curriculum ("science semester") for elementary teacher education majors. Our goal is to foster integrated understandings of science and pedagogy that future elementary teachers need to effectively use inquiry-based approaches in their classrooms. This project responds to calls to improve science education for all students by making preservice teachers' experiences in undergraduate science courses more consistent with reforms at the K-12 level. The involved faculty teach three science courses (biology, earth science, physical science) and an elementary science education methods course that are degree requirements for elementary teacher education majors. Presently, students take the courses in variable sequences and at widely scattered times. Too many students fail to appreciate the value of science courses to their future careers as teachers, and when they reach the methods course in the junior year they often retain little of the science content studied earlier. These episodic encounters with science make it difficult for students to learn the content, and to translate their understandings of science into effective, inquiry-based teaching strategies. To encourage integrated understandings of science concepts and pedagogy we will coordinate the science and methods courses in a junior-year science semester. Traditional subject matter boundaries will be crossed to stress shared themes that teachers must understand to teach standards-based elementary science. We will adapt exemplary approaches that support both learning science and learning how to teach science. Students will work collaboratively on multidisciplinary PBL activities that place science concepts in authentic contexts and build learning skills. "Lecture" meetings will be large group active learning sessions that help students understand difficult

  5. Citizen Science- Lessons learned from non-science majors involved in Globe at Night and the Great Worldwide Star Count

    Science.gov (United States)

    Browning, S.

    2011-12-01

    Non-science majors often misunderstand the process of science, potentially leading to a fear or mistrust of scientific inquiry and current scientific theory. Citizen science projects are a critical means of reaching this audience, as many will only take a limited number of science courses during their undergraduate careers. For the past three years, our freshman Earth Science students have participated in both Globe at Night and the Great Worldwide Star Count, citizen science programs that encourage simple astronomical observations which can be compiled globally to investigate a number of issues. Our focus has been introducing students to the effect of light pollution on observational astronomy in an effort to highlight the effect of increasing urbanization in the U.S. on amateur astronomy. These programs, although focused on astronomy, often awaken natural curiosity about the Earth and man's effect on the natural world, a concept that can easily be translated to other areas of Earth science. Challenges encountered include content specific issues, such as misinterpreting the location or magnitude of the constellation being observed, as well as student disinterest or apathy if the project is not seen as being vital to their performance in the course. This presentation reports on lessons learned in the past three years, and offers suggestions for engaging these students more fully in future projects.

  6. Urban School Leadership for Elementary Science Education: Meeting the Needs of English Language Learners

    Science.gov (United States)

    Alarcon, Maricela H.

    2012-01-01

    Science education reform and state testing accountability call upon principals to become instructional leaders in science. Specifically, elementary school principals must take an active role in science instruction to effectively improve science education for all students including English Language Learners. As such, the research questioned posed…

  7. From inside the black box: Teacher perceptions of science instruction at the elementary level

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ferrini, Cynthia D.

    Science education reform projects aimed at elementary school children arose in the 1960's. The most prevalent of these reforms utilized the inquiry, or hands-on, science method. Billions of dollars have been invested in these reforms. Yet, reports indicate that science is not being taught at the level one might expect in elementary schools. This research was an analysis of the problems and concerns teachers at one school district faced as they tried to implement and sustain elementary inquiry science instruction. The district chosen was a large suburban district in the Western United States. The population was ninety percent Caucasian with a slightly more ethnically diverse school population. This district was chosen because it had an elementary science program for over twenty years and had received national acclaim for that program. The district had a stable and homogeneous staff there was a low administrator and teacher turnover rate and the elementary teaching population was ninety percent Caucasian and ninety percent female. Interviews with administrators and teachers were conducted. Data were collected from focus groups of teachers and science partners. Observations of elementary science classroom instruction and professional development sessions were made. Results of this research indicated that one important key to elementary science reform rests in the hands of teachers. Once the door to the classroom is closed, the teacher can decide to teach or not to teach science. The findings of this research illustrate that teachers hold ideas about science and science instruction that are antithetical to some tenets of inquiry science. Until these ideas are addressed it will be difficult, if not impossible, to implement a systemic elementary inquiry science program. This study demonstrates that professional development for elementary teachers in science needs to change from a focus on the mechanical usage of individual units to a focus on teacher expectations for

  8. Integrating E-Books into Science Teaching by Preservice Elementary School Teachers

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lai, Ching-San

    2016-01-01

    This study aims to discuss the issues of integrating e-books into science teaching by preservice elementary school teachers. The study adopts both qualitative and quantitative research methods. In total, 24 preservice elementary school teachers participated in this study. The main sources of research data included e-books produced by preservice…

  9. Exploring the Effects of Concreteness Fading across Grades in Elementary School Science Education

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jaakkola, Tomi; Veermans, Koen

    2018-01-01

    The present study investigates the effects that concreteness fading has on learning and transfer across three grade levels (4-6) in elementary school science education in comparison to learning with constantly concrete representations. 127 9- to 12-years-old elementary school students studied electric circuits in a computer-based simulation…

  10. Development and Validation of Nature of Science Instrument for Elementary School Students

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hacieminoglu, Esme; Yilmaz-Tüzün, Özgül; Ertepinar, Hamide

    2014-01-01

    The purposes of this study were to develop and validate an instrument for assessing elementary students' nature of science (NOS) views and to explain the elementary school students' NOS views, in terms of varying grade levels and gender. The sample included 782 students enrolled in sixth, seventh, and eighth grades. Exploratory factor analysis…

  11. Collaborating to Improve Inquiry-Based Teaching in Elementary Science and Mathematics Methods Courses

    Science.gov (United States)

    Magee, Paula A.; Flessner, Ryan

    2012-01-01

    This study examines the effect of promoting inquiry-based teaching (IBT) through collaboration between a science methods course and mathematics methods course in an elementary teacher education program. During the collaboration, preservice elementary teacher (PST) candidates experienced 3 different types of inquiry as a way to foster increased…

  12. Teacher Perspectives on Specialisation in the Elementary Classroom: Implications for Science Instruction

    Science.gov (United States)

    Poland, Susan; Colburn, Amanda; Long, David E.

    2017-01-01

    In the current educational climate of testing and accountability, many elementary teachers find they lack adequate time and confidence to enact reform-based science teaching due to pressure to perform in reading and mathematics. With this tension in mind, we explore the phenomenon of elementary teacher specialisation in comparison to the…

  13. Changes in Preservice Elementary Teachers' Personal Science Teaching Efficacy and Science Teaching Outcome Expectancies: The Influence of Context

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hechter, Richard P.

    2011-01-01

    This study investigated contextual changes in perceptions of science teaching self-efficacy through pre-, post- and retrospective administrations of the Science Teaching Expectancy Belief Instrument (STEBI-B) among preservice elementary teachers when exposed to a science teaching methods course. Findings revealed that the number of postsecondary…

  14. A Longitudinal Investigation of the Science Teaching Efficacy Beliefs and Science Experiences of a Cohort of Preservice Elementary Teachers

    Science.gov (United States)

    Deehan, James; Danaia, Lena; McKinnon, David H.

    2017-01-01

    This paper assesses the relationship between participation in two tertiary science courses and the science teaching efficacy beliefs (STEBs) of one cohort of preservice elementary teachers over a four-year period. Two Type II case studies were conducted within the courses. Data were collected through 26 administrations of the Science Teaching…

  15. Effects of a Science Content Course on Elementary Preservice Teachers' Self-Efficacy of Teaching Science

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bergman, Daniel J.; Morphew, Jason

    2015-01-01

    The preparation of elementary teachers to successfully teach science in their classrooms is a central issue in science education. The teacher preparation program at a large Midwestern university was modified to include a new science content course aimed at this need. A pre-/postassessment research model involved participants (N = 154) completing a…

  16. Promoting Creative Thinking and Expression of Science Concepts among Elementary Teacher Candidates through Science Content Movie Creation and Showcasing

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hechter, Richard P.; Guy, Mark

    2010-01-01

    This article reports the phases of design and use of video editing technology as a medium for creatively expressing science content knowledge in an elementary science methods course. Teacher candidates communicated their understanding of standards-based core science concepts through the creation of original digital movies. The movies were assigned…

  17. Effects of Engineering Design-Based Science on Elementary School Science Students' Engineering Identity Development across Gender and Grade

    Science.gov (United States)

    Capobianco, Brenda M.; Yu, Ji H.; French, Brian F.

    2015-01-01

    The integration of engineering concepts and practices into elementary science education has become an emerging concern for science educators and practitioners, alike. Moreover, how children, specifically preadolescents (grades 1-5), engage in engineering design-based learning activities may help science educators and researchers learn more about…

  18. Science Teaching Efficacy of Preservice Elementary Teachers: Examination of the Multiple Factors Reported as Influential

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tastan Kirik, Özgecan

    2013-01-01

    This study explores the science teaching efficacy beliefs of preservice elementary teachers and the relationship between efficacy beliefs and multiple factors such as antecedent factors (participation in extracurricular activities and number of science and science teaching methods courses taken), conceptual understanding, classroom management…

  19. The Self-Efficacy of Preservice Elementary Teachers in Kuwaiti Science Programs

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ebrahim, Ali H.

    2012-01-01

    This study examined educational factors that positively influenced the confidence of students training to be elementary science educators (self efficacy). Specifically, it compared the impacts of a science method course and a practicum teaching course on Kuwait University students. Using a pre/post design, The Science Teaching Efficacy Belief…

  20. Pathways in Learning to Teach Elementary Science: Navigating Contexts, Roles, Affordances and Constraints

    Science.gov (United States)

    Smith, Deborah C.; Jang, Shinho

    2011-01-01

    This case study of a fifth-year elementary intern's pathway in learning to teach science focused on her science methods course, placement science teaching, and reflections as a first-year teacher. We studied the sociocultural contexts within which the intern learned, their affordances and constraints, and participants' perspectives on their roles…

  1. An Analysis of Pre-Service Elementary Teachers' Understanding of Inquiry-Based Science Teaching

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lee, Carole K.; Shea, Marilyn

    2016-01-01

    This study examines how pre-service elementary teachers (PSETs) view inquiry-based science learning and teaching, and how the science methods course builds their confidence to teach inquiry science. Most PSETs think that inquiry is asking students questions rather than a formal set of pedagogical tools. In the present study, three groups of PSETs…

  2. Learning Environment and Attitudes Associated with an Innovative Science Course Designed for Prospective Elementary Teachers

    Science.gov (United States)

    Martin-Dunlop, Catherine; Fraser, Barry J.

    2008-01-01

    This study assessed the effectiveness of an innovative science course for improving prospective elementary teachers' perceptions of laboratory learning environments and attitudes towards science. The sample consisted of 27 classes with 525 female students in a large urban university. Changing students' ideas about science laboratory teaching and…

  3. The Effects of a STEM Professional Development Intervention on Elementary Teachers' Science Process Skills

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cotabish, Alicia; Dailey, Deborah; Hughes, Gail D.; Robinson, Ann

    2011-01-01

    In order to increase the quality and quantity of science instruction, elementary teachers must receive professional development in science learning processes. The current study was part of a larger randomized field study of teacher and student learning in science. In two districts in a southern state, researchers randomly assigned teacher…

  4. Curriculum-Dependent and Curriculum-Independent Factors in Preservice Elementary Teachers' Adaptation of Science Curriculum Materials for Inquiry-Based Science

    Science.gov (United States)

    Forbes, Cory T.

    2013-01-01

    In this nested mixed methods study I investigate factors influencing preservice elementary teachers' adaptation of science curriculum materials to better support students' engagement in science as inquiry. Analyses focus on two "reflective teaching assignments" completed by 46 preservice elementary teachers in an undergraduate elementary science…

  5. A narrative study of novice elementary teachers' perceptions of science instruction

    Science.gov (United States)

    Harrell, Roberta

    It is hoped that, once implemented, the Next Generation Science Standards (NGSS) will engage students more deeply in science learning and build science knowledge sequentially beginning in Kindergarten (NRC, 2013). Early instruction is encouraged but must be delivered by qualified elementary teachers who have both the science content knowledge and the necessary instructional skills to teach science effectively to young children (Ejiwale, 2012, Spencer, Vogel, 2009, Walker, 2011). The purpose of this research study is to gain insight into novice elementary teachers' perceptions of science instruction. This research suggests that infusion of constructivist teaching in the elementary classroom is beneficial to the teacher's instruction of science concepts to elementary students. Constructivism is theory that learning is centered on the learner constructing new ideas or concepts built upon their current/past knowledge (Bruner, 1966). Based on this theory, it is recommended that the instructor should try to encourage students to discover principles independently; essentially the instructor presents the problem and lets students go (Good & Brophy, 2004). Discovery learning, hands-on, experimental, collaborative, and project-based learning are all approaches that use constructivist principles. The NGSS are based on constructivist principles. This narrative study provides insight into novice elementary teachers' perceptions of science instruction considered through the lens of Constructivist Theory (Bruner, 1960).

  6. Can You See the Stars? Citizen-Science Programs to Measure Night Sky Brightness

    Science.gov (United States)

    Walker, Constance E.

    2009-05-01

    For the IYA2009 Dark Skies Awareness Cornerstone Project, partners in dark-sky, astronomy and environmental education are promoting three citizen-scientist programs that measure light pollution at local levels worldwide. These programs take the form of "star hunts", providing people with fun and direct ways to acquire heightened awareness about light pollution through first-hand observations of the night sky. Together the programs are spanning the entire IYA, namely: GLOBE at Night in March, Great World Wide Star Count in October, and How Many Stars during the rest of the year. Citizen-scientists - students, educators, amateur astronomers and the general public - measure the darkness of their local skies and contribute observations online to a world map. Anyone anywhere anytime can look within particular constellations for the faintest stars and match them to one of seven star maps. For more precise measurements, digital sky-brightness meters can be used. Measurements, along with the measurement location, time, and date, are submitted online, and within a few days to weeks a world map showing results is available. These measurements can be compared with data from previous years, as well as with satellite data, population densities, and electrical power-usage maps. Measurements are available online via Google Earth or other tools and as downloadable datasets. Data from multiple locations in one city or region are especially interesting, and can be used as the basis of a class project or science fair experiment, or even to inform the development of public policy. In the last few years these programs successfully conducted campaigns in which more than 35,000 observations were submitted from over 100 countries. The presentation will provide an update, describe how people can become involved and take a look ahead at the program's sustainability. For further information about these and other Dark Skies Awareness programs, please visit www.darkskiesawareness.org.

  7. Solar Science Digital Comic Series that promotes Science Literacy with Upper Elementary and Middle School Students

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kellagher, E.; Scherrer, D. K.; Buhr Sullivan, S. M.

    2013-12-01

    The SDO instruments (EVE, AIA and HMI) teams have created a digital comic book series for upper elementary and middle school students featuring solar science aficionados Camilla and Colours, 2 cool mascot characters. These comics may be printed or read on mobile devices and are available as a free download. Many teachers are looking for resources to use with their students via the IPad so our collaboration helps supply teachers with a great resource that teaches about solar concepts and helps dispel solar misconceptions. It doesn't come as a surprise to a lot of us, but a recent study confirms what's been theorized for years: Comics are a stronger learning tool than text books. Image-based storytelling is a powerful educational tool. Comics are probably more able to combine story and information simultaneously, more effectively and seamlessly, than almost any other medium. There's also a great potential to incorporate interactive elements into digital versions, so that more information can be presented on certain items on a page. For example, videos, animations and even historic footage and audio can be embedded into digital comics. Really, the possibilities are limited only by the creators' imaginations as to how to find new ways to create a rich experience that is interesting to explore for students. We are excited to unveil this new series of solar science comics that promotes science literacy with upper elementary and middle school students.

  8. A qualitative case study to identify possible barriers that limit effective elementary science education

    Science.gov (United States)

    Foster, Donald Carey

    The purpose of this case study was to identify barriers that limit the effectiveness of elementary teachers in the teaching of science. It is of the utmost urgency that barriers be first identified, so that possible solutions can be explored to bring about the improvement of elementary science education. This urgency has been imposed by the scheduled national testing of students in science by 2007, as mandated by the No Child Left Behind Act of 2001. Using qualitative case study methods, the researcher conducted interviews with 8 elementary teachers from two schools within one school district who taught 3rd, 4th, and 5th grade. These interviews were designed to gain insight into barriers these elementary teachers perceived as factors limiting their effectiveness in teaching science and preparing students for high-stakes testing. Barriers in the areas of teacher background, typical teaching day, curriculum, inservices, and legislative influences were explored. This study concluded that the barriers explored do have a substantial negative affect on the teaching and learning of science in the elementary grades. Specifically, the barriers revealed in this study include the limited science background of elementary teachers, inadequate class time devoted to science, non-comprehensive curriculum, ineffective or lack of inservice training, and pressures from legislated mandates. But it is also clear that these barriers are so intertwined that one cannot remove these barriers one at a time. It will take a collective effort from all involved, including legislators, administrators, teachers, parents, and students, to alleviate these barriers and discover effective solutions to improve elementary science education.

  9. A New Approach to Teaching Science to Elementary Education Majors in Response to the NGSS

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brevik, C.; Daniels, L.; McCoy, C.

    2015-12-01

    The Next Generation Science Standards (NGSS) place an equal emphasis on science process skills and science content. The goal is to have K-12 students "doing" science, not just "learning about" science. However, most traditional college science classes for elementary education majors place a much stronger emphasis on science content knowledge with the hands-on portion limited to a once-a-week lab. The two models of instruction are not aligned. The result is that many elementary school teachers are unprepared to offer interactive science with their students. Without additional coaching, many teachers fall back on the format they learned in college - lecture, handouts, homework. If we want teachers to use more hands-on methods in the classroom, these techniques should be taught to elementary education majors when they are in college. Dickinson State University has begun a collaboration between the Teacher Education Department and the Department of Natural Sciences. The physical science course for elementary education majors has been completely redesigned to focus equally on the needed science content and the science process skills emphasized by the NGSS. The format of the course has been adjusted to more closely mirror a traditional K-5 classroom; the course meets for 50 minutes five days a week. A flipped-classroom model has been adopted to ensure no content is lost, and hands-on activities are done almost every day as new concepts are discussed. In order to judge the effectiveness of these changes, a survey tool was administered to determine if there was a shift in the students' perception of science as an active instead of a passive field of study. The survey also measured the students' comfort-level in offering a hands-on learning environment in their future classrooms and their confidence in their ability to effectively teach science concepts to elementary students. Results from the first year of the study will be presented.

  10. Case study of science teaching in an elementary school: Characteristics of an exemplary science teacher

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kao, Huey-Lien

    Improving the quality of science teaching is one of the greatest concerns in recent science education reform efforts. Many science educators suggest that case studies of exemplary science teachers may provide guidance for these reform efforts. For this reason, the characteristics of exemplary science teaching practices have been identified in recent years. However, the literature lacks research exploring exemplary teacher beliefs about the nature of science and science pedagogy, the relationships between their beliefs and practices, or how outstanding teachers overcome difficulties in order to facilitate their students' science learning. In this study, Sam-Yu, an identified exemplary science teacher who teaches in an elementary school in Pintung, Taiwan, was the subject. An interpretative research design (Erickson, 1986) based on principles of naturalistic inquiry (Lincoln & Guba, 1985) was used. Both qualitative and quantitative methods were employed in this case study. The qualitative method involved conducting interviews with the teacher and students, observing classroom activities and analyzing the structure of the learning materials. The quantitative methods involved using the Learning Climate Inventory (LCI) (Lin, 1997) instrument to assess the learning environment of the exemplary science classroom. This study found that Sam-Yu had a blend of views on the nature of science and a varied knowledge about science pedagogy. Personal preferences, past experiences, and the national science curriculum all played important roles in the development and refinement of Sam-Yu's beliefs about science and pedagogy. Regarding his teaching practices, Sam-Yu provided the best learning experiences, as evidenced in both classroom observations and the survey results, for his students by using a variety of strategies. In addition, his classroom behaviors were highly associated with his beliefs about science and pedagogy. However, due to school-based and socio-cultural constraints

  11. National Science Resources Center Project to Improve Science Teaching in Elementary Schools. Appendix C. Elementary Science Information Database

    Science.gov (United States)

    1988-12-01

    individual particles. They mix the powders with water and perform tests with heat, iodine, and vinegar in order to gain additional information about the...illusions ; light ; fermentation ; chromatography ; moon ; astronomy AN SCIENCE - A PROCESS APPROACH, PART G focuses on experimentation, incorporating all...skills ; flowers plants astronomy ; animals ; sensory perception ; vision ; optical illusions ; eyes ; density ; viscosity ; fermentation ; moon

  12. Integrating Felting in Elementary Science Classrooms to Facilitate Understanding of the Polar Auroras

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Brandy Terrill

    2017-10-01

    Full Text Available The Next Generation Science Standards (NGSS emphasize conceptual science instruction that draws on students’ ability to make observations, explain natural phenomena, and examine concept relationships. This paper explores integrating the arts, in the form of felting, in elementary science classrooms as a way for students to model and demonstrate understanding of the complex scientific processes that cause the polar auroras. The steps for creating felting, and using the felting artwork students create for assessing science learning, are described.

  13. A Multi-Year Study of the Impact of the Rice Model Teacher Professional Development on Elementary Science Teachers

    Science.gov (United States)

    Diaconu, Dana Viorica; Radigan, Judy; Suskavcevic, Milijana; Nichol, Carolyn

    2012-01-01

    A teacher professional development program for in-service elementary school science teachers, the Rice Elementary Model Science Lab (REMSL), was developed for urban school districts serving predominately high-poverty, high-minority students. Teachers with diverse skills and science capacities came together in Professional Learning Communities, one…

  14. Elucidating elementary science teachers' conceptions of the nature of science: A view to beliefs about both science and teaching

    Science.gov (United States)

    Keske, Kristina Palmer

    The purpose of this interpretive case study was to elucidate the conceptions of the nature of science held by seven elementary science teachers. The constructivist paradigm provided the philosophical and methodological foundation for the study. Interviews were employed to collect data from the participants about their formal and informal experiences with science. In addition, the participants contributed their perspectives on four aspects of the nature of science: what is science; who is a scientist; what are the methods of science; and how is scientific knowledge constructed. Data analysis not only revealed these teachers' views of science, but also provided insights into how they viewed science teaching. Four themes emerged from the data. The first theme developed around the participants' portrayals of the content of science, with participant views falling on a continuum of limited to universal application of science as procedure. The second theme dealt with the participants' views of the absolute nature of scientific knowledge. Participants' perceptions of the tentative nature of science teaching provided the basis for the third theme concerning the need for absolutes in practice. The fourth theme drew parallels between participants' views of science and science teaching, with two participants demonstrating a consistency in beliefs about knowledge construction across contexts. This study revealed both personal and contextual factors which impacted how the participants saw science and science teaching. Many of the participants' memories of formal science revolved around the memorization of content and were viewed negatively. All the participants had limited formal training in science. Of the seven participants, only two had chosen to be science teachers at the beginning of their careers. The participants' limited formal experiences with science provided little time for exploration into historical, philosophical, and sociological studies of science, a necessary

  15. Developing Practical Knowledge of the Next Generation Science Standards in Elementary Science Teacher Education

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hanuscin, Deborah L.; Zangori, Laura

    2016-12-01

    Just as the Next Generation Science Standards (NGSSs) call for change in what students learn and how they are taught, teacher education programs must reconsider courses and curriculum in order to prepare teacher candidates to understand and implement new standards. In this study, we examine the development of prospective elementary teachers' practical knowledge of the NGSS in the context of a science methods course and innovative field experience. We present three themes related to how prospective teachers viewed and utilized the standards: (a) as a useful guide for planning and designing instruction, (b) as a benchmark for student and self-evaluation, and (c) as an achievable vision for teaching and learning. Our findings emphasize the importance of collaborative opportunities for repeated teaching of the same lessons, but question what is achievable in the context of a semester-long experience.

  16. Impact of Integrated Science and English Language Arts Literacy Supplemental Instructional Intervention on Science Academic Achievement of Elementary Students

    Science.gov (United States)

    Marks, Jamar Terry

    2017-01-01

    The purpose of this quasi-experimental, nonequivalent pretest-posttest control group design study was to determine if any differences existed in upper elementary school students' science academic achievement when instructed using an 8-week integrated science and English language arts literacy supplemental instructional intervention in conjunction…

  17. A Diagnostic-Remediation Teaching System for Enhancing Elementary Students' Science Listening Comprehension

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lin, Sheau-Wen; Liu, Yu

    2017-01-01

    The purpose of this study was to explore elementary students' listening comprehension changes using a Web-based teaching system that can diagnose and remediate students' science listening comprehension problems during scientific inquiry. The 3-component system consisted of a 9-item science listening comprehension test, a 37-item diagnostic test,…

  18. Dispositions Supporting Elementary Interns in the Teaching of Reform-Based Science Materials

    Science.gov (United States)

    Eick, Charles J.; Stewart, Bethany

    2010-01-01

    Dispositions supporting the teaching of science as structured inquiry by four elementary candidates are presented. Candidates were studied during student teaching based on their positive attitudes toward teaching science with reform-based materials in their methods course. Personal learning histories informed their attitudes, values, and beliefs…

  19. Finding Alignment: The Perceptions and Integration of the Next Generation Science Standards Practices by Elementary Teachers

    Science.gov (United States)

    Smith, Janette; Nadelson, Louis

    2017-01-01

    Preparing elementary-level teachers to teach in alignment with the eight Next Generation Science Standards (NGSS) practices could prove to be a daunting endeavor. However, the process may be catalyzed by leveraging elements of teacher science instruction that inherently attend to the practice standards. In this study, we investigated the science…

  20. Elementary Science Education in Classrooms and Outdoors: Stakeholder Views, Gender, Ethnicity, and Testing

    Science.gov (United States)

    Carrier, Sarah J.; Thomson, Margareta M.; Tugurian, Linda P.; Stevenson, Kathryn Tate

    2014-01-01

    In this article, we present a mixed-methods study of 2 schools' elementary science programs including outdoor instruction specific to each school's culture. We explore fifth-grade students in measures of science knowledge, environmental attitudes, and outdoor comfort levels including gender and ethnic differences. We further examine students'…

  1. Adopting Just-in-Time Teaching in the Context of an Elementary Science Education Methodology Course

    Science.gov (United States)

    Osmond, Pamela; Goodnough, Karen

    2011-01-01

    In this self-study, Pamela, a new science teacher educator, adopted Just-in-Time Teaching (JiTT) in the context of an elementary science education methodology course. JiTT is a teaching and learning strategy involving interaction between web-based study assignments and face-to-face class sessions. Students respond electronically to web-based…

  2. Infusing Science, Technology, and Society Into an Elementary Teacher Education Program: The Impact on Preservice Teachers

    Science.gov (United States)

    Henning, Mary Beth; Peterson, Barbara R.; King, Kenneth Paul

    2011-01-01

    In an effort to improve science and social studies instruction, preservice teachers developed original science, technology, and society units to teach in elementary and middle school classrooms during their clinical field experience. Data revealed that the preservice teachers fell into categories of being skeptics, open-minded instructors, or…

  3. Relationships between Prospective Elementary Teachers' Classroom Practice and Their Conceptions of Biology and of Teaching Science.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Meyer, Helen; Tabachnick, B. Robert; Hewson, Peter W.; Lemberger, John; Park, Hyun-Ju

    1999-01-01

    Discusses three prospective elementary teachers' conceptions of teaching science and selected portions of their knowledge base in life science. Explores how these teachers' conceptions, along with their teaching actions, developed during the course of a teacher-education program. Contains 21 references. (Author/WRM)

  4. Prospective Elementary Teachers' Understanding of the Nature of Science and Perceptions of the Classroom Learning Environment

    Science.gov (United States)

    Martin-Dunlop, Catherine S.

    2013-01-01

    This study investigated prospective elementary teachers' understandings of the nature of science and explored associations with their guided-inquiry science learning environment. Over 500 female students completed the Nature of Scientific Knowledge Survey (NSKS), although only four scales were analyzed-Creative, Testable, Amoral, and Unified. The…

  5. Curriculum Package: Elementary Science Lessons. [A Visit to the Louisville, Kentucky Airports: Standiford and Bowman Fields.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Squires, Frances H.

    This science curriculum was written for teachers of children in the elementary grades. It contains science activities for the following lessons: (1) Whirly Birds and the Concept of Lift; (2) Parachutes; (3) Weather Vanes; (4) Paper Airplanes; (5) Flying an Airplane; (6) Jet Engine; (7) Identifying Flying Objects; (8) It's a Bird! It's a Plane; (9)…

  6. A Cross Age Study of Elementary Students' Motivation towards Science Learning

    Science.gov (United States)

    Guvercin, Ozge; Tekkaya, Ceren; Sungur, Semra

    2010-01-01

    The purpose of this study was to investigate the effect of grade level and gender on elementary school students' motivation towards science learning. A total of 2231 sixth and eight grade students participated in the study. Data were collected through Students' Motivation towards Science Learning Questionnaire. Two-way Multivariate Analysis of…

  7. Investigating the Self-Perceived Science Teaching Needs of Local Elementary Educators

    Science.gov (United States)

    Carver, Cynthia G.

    2012-01-01

    Elementary teachers in one school system have expressed low self-efficacy teaching science and desire more support teaching science. However, little research has been conducted on how best to meet these teachers' needs. The theories of perceived self-efficacy, social cognition, and behaviorism make up the conceptual framework of this study. The…

  8. Elementary Students Using a Tablet-Based Note-Taking Application in the Science Classroom

    Science.gov (United States)

    Paek, Seungoh; Fulton, Lori A.

    2016-01-01

    This exploratory study investigates the potential of a tablet-based note-taking application (TbNA) to serve as a digital notebook in support of students' classroom science practices. An elementary teacher (Grades 4-5) from a public charter school integrated a TbNA into her science class for one semester while participating in professional…

  9. Research on historical environments in elementary schools’ social sciences textbooks taught in Northern Cyprus

    OpenAIRE

    Nazım Kaşot; Mete Özsezer

    2015-01-01

    A comprehensive study has yet to be carried out depending on the historical environment particular to the Elementary Schools in Northern Cyprus. The aim of this study is hence to determine whether the coverage of historical environment subjects in elementary school social sciences textbooks is absorbed or not by the 4th and 5th Grades in the context of both content and visuals. The method of study analysed has been organised in accordance with the qualitative research. The population was not ...

  10. Urban school leadership for elementary science education: Meeting the needs of English Language Learners

    Science.gov (United States)

    Alarcon, Maricela H.

    Science education reform and state testing accountability call upon principals to become instructional leaders in science. Specifically, elementary school principals must take an active role in science instruction to effectively improve science education for all students including English Language Learners. As such, the research questioned posed in this study centered on How are elementary school principals addressing the academic needs of Latino Spanish-speaking English language learners within science education? This study employed a qualitative research design to identify the factors contributing to the exemplary performance in science, as measured by the Texas Assessment of Knowledge and Skills (TAKS), for English Language Learner students in three high poverty bilingual elementary schools based on a multiple case study. As part of the data collection process, interviews were conducted with three school principals, three science academic support teachers, and two 5th grade bilingual teachers. Additionally, observations were acquired through school principal shadowing. The findings revealed four attributes necessary for effective instructional leadership in science education. First, Positive School Culture was defined as the core that linked the other three instructional leadership attributes and thus increased their effectiveness. Second, Clear Goals and Expectations were set by making science a priority and ensuring that English language learners were transitioning from Spanish to English instruction by the fifth grade. Third, Critical Resourcing involved hiring a science academic support teacher, securing a science classroom on campus, and purchasing bilingual instructional materials. Fourth, principal led and supported Collaboration in which teachers met to discuss student performance based data in addition to curriculum and instruction. These research findings are vital because by implementing these best practices of elementary school principals, educators

  11. Promoting Prospective Elementary Teachers' Learning to Use Formative Assessment for Life Science Instruction

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sabel, Jaime L.; Forbes, Cory T.; Zangori, Laura

    2015-06-01

    To support elementary students' learning of core, standards-based life science concepts highlighted in the Next Generation Science Standards, prospective elementary teachers should develop an understanding of life science concepts and learn to apply their content knowledge in instructional practice to craft elementary science learning environments grounded in students' thinking. To do so, teachers must learn to use high-leverage instructional practices, such as formative assessment, to engage students in scientific practices and connect instruction to students' ideas. However, teachers may not understand formative assessment or possess sufficient science content knowledge to effectively engage in related instructional practices. To address these needs, we developed and conducted research within an innovative course for preservice elementary teachers built upon two pillars—life science concepts and formative assessment. An embedded mixed methods study was used to evaluate the effect of the intervention on preservice teachers' (n = 49) content knowledge and ability to engage in formative assessment practices for science. Findings showed that increased life content knowledge over the semester helped preservice teachers engage more productively in anticipating and evaluating students' ideas, but not in identifying effective instructional strategies to respond to those ideas.

  12. Science in the Elementary School Classroom: Portraits of Action Research.

    Science.gov (United States)

    McDonald, Jane B., Ed.; Gilmer, Penny J., Ed.

    Teacher knowledge and skills are critical elements in the student learning process. Action research serves as an increasingly popular technique to engage teachers in educational change in classrooms. This document focuses on action research reports of elementary school teachers. Chapters include: (1) "First Graders' Beliefs and Perceptions of…

  13. Voices from inside the elementary classroom: Three teachers' perspectives on the Alabama Reading Initiative and elementary science

    Science.gov (United States)

    Webb, Brenda Hainley

    The influences of mandates, particularly the Alabama Reading Initiative (ARI) as the response to No Child Left Behind (2002), on elementary science education in Alabama were investigated. Teachers' voices provided insights to the status of science education in kindergarten, second grade, and third grade, and all three case participants reported negative influences of ARI on science education in their classrooms. The multiple case study, framed by critical theory and critical pedagogy, indicated that these teachers sometimes accepted marginalized roles in determining curriculum and pedagogy yet at other times made the decisions to empower themselves and negotiate or discard mandates in favor of meeting their children's learning needs or their own professional needs as they perceived them to be. Whether the case participants reached a threshold of resisting mandates or not, they struggled with the view of the political hierarchy that continues to force them into the status of being a technician rather than being a teaching professional. NCLB currently mandates standardized science testing, beginning in the spring of 2008. Historically, standardized testing reduces learning to low-level recall and teaching to rigid, uncreative, uncritical strategies. All of this intersects with science education reform and a national call for more attention to be given to science, technology, and mathematics learning. Research should track the continued influences of intersecting mandates on science education at every level.

  14. Urban school leadership for elementary science instruction: Identifying and activating resources in an undervalued school subject

    Science.gov (United States)

    Spillane, James P.; Diamond, John B.; Walker, Lisa J.; Halverson, Rich; Jita, Loyiso

    2001-10-01

    This article explores school leadership for elementary school science teaching in an urban setting. We examine how school leaders bring resources together to enhance science instruction when there appear to be relatively few resources available for it. From our study of 13 Chicago elementary (K-8) schools' efforts to lead instructional change in mathematics, language arts, and science education, we show how resources for leading instruction are unequally distributed across subject areas. We also explore how over time leaders in one school successfully identified and activated resources for leading change in science education. The result has been a steady, although not always certain, development of science as an instructional area in the school. We argue that leading change in science education involves the identification and activation of material resources, the development of teachers' and school leaders' human capital, and the development and use of social capital.

  15. Elementary science teachers' integration of engineering design into science instruction: results from a randomised controlled trial

    Science.gov (United States)

    Maeng, Jennifer L.; Whitworth, Brooke A.; Gonczi, Amanda L.; Navy, Shannon L.; Wheeler, Lindsay B.

    2017-07-01

    This randomised controlled trial used a mixed-methods approach to investigate the frequency and how elementary teachers integrated engineering design (ED) principles into their science instruction following professional development (PD). The ED components of the PD were aligned with Cunningham and Carlsen's [(2014). Teaching engineering practices. Journal of Science Teacher Education, 25, 197-210] guidelines for ED PD and promoted inclusion of ED within science teaching. The treatment group included 219 teachers from 83 schools. Participants in the control group included 145 teachers from 60 schools in a mid-Atlantic state. Data sources, including lesson overviews and videotaped classroom observations, were analysed quantitatively to determine the frequency of ED integration and qualitatively to describe how teachers incorporated ED into instruction after attending the PD. Results indicated more participants who attended the PD (55%) incorporated ED into instruction compared with the control participants (24%), χ2(1, n = 401) = 33.225, p .05) through ED lessons. In ED lessons, students typically conducted research and created and tested initial designs. The results suggest the PD supported teachers in implementing ED into their science instruction and support the efficacy of using Cunningham and Carlsen's (2014) guidelines to inform ED PD design.

  16. The effect of electronic networking on preservice elementary teachers' science teaching self-efficacy and attitude towards science teaching

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mathew, Nishi Mary

    Preservice elementary teachers' science teaching efficacy and attitude towards science teaching are important determinants of whether and how they will teach science in their classrooms. Preservice teachers' understanding of science and science teaching experiences have an impact on their beliefs about their ability to teach science. This study had a quasi-experimental pretest-posttest control group design (N = 60). Preservice elementary teachers in this study were networked through the Internet (using e-mail, newsgroups, listserv, world wide web access and electronic mentoring) during their science methods class and student practicum. Electronic networking provides a social context in which to learn collaboratively, share and reflect upon science teaching experiences and practices, conduct tele-research effectively, and to meet the demands of student teaching through peer support. It was hoped that the activities over the electronic networks would provide them with positive and helpful science learning and teaching experiences. Self-efficacy was measured using a 23-item Likert scale instrument, the Science Teaching Efficacy Belief Instrument, Form-B (STEBI-B). Attitude towards science teaching was measured using the Revised Science Attitude Scale (RSAS). Analysis of covariance was used to analyze the data, with pretest scores as the covariate. Findings of this study revealed that prospective elementary teachers in the electronically networked group had better science teaching efficacy and personal science teaching efficacy as compared to the non-networked group of preservice elementary teachers. The science teaching outcome expectancy of prospective elementary teachers in the networked group was not greater than that of the prospective teachers in the non-networked group (at p < 0.05). Attitude towards science teaching was not significantly affected by networking. However, this is surmised to be related to the duration of the study. Information about the

  17. Elementary teachers past experiences: A narrative study of the past personal and professional experiences of elementary teachers who use science to teach math and reading

    Science.gov (United States)

    Acre, Andrea M.

    This qualitative study investigated the experiences of four elementary teachers who have elected to use science to teach math and reading/language arts in an attempt to identify what motivates them to do so. Identifying what experiences have motivated these teachers to go against the gain and teach elementary science in this current era of high-stakes tests is of the upmost importance given that science is being eliminated from the elementary curriculum and it is during the elementary years that students' nurture and develop their interest in science. Additionally, the United States is failing to produce enough college graduates in STEM areas to fill the thousands of STEM jobs each year. Through a review of the literature, the past trends and current trends of elementary science education were explored as well as teacher training. Furthermore, the literature reviewed inquiry teaching which is considered to be the most effective teaching method when teaching science at any level. Using John Dewey's Interest and Effort Relationship Theory and the Self-Determination Motivation Theory to guide this study, there were five prominent themes which emerged from the reconstructed stories of the four teachers: positive experiences with science, neutral/negative experiences with science, seeks meaningful professional development, influence and support from others, and regret/wants to do more.

  18. The transfer of learning process: From an elementary science methods course to classroom instruction

    Science.gov (United States)

    Carter, Nina Leann

    The purpose of this qualitative multiple-case study was to explore the transfer of learning process in student teachers. This was carried out by focusing on information learned from an elementary science methods and how it was transferred into classroom instruction during student teaching. Participants were a purposeful sampling of twelve elementary education student teachers attending a public university in north Mississippi. Factors that impacted the transfer of learning during lesson planning and implementation were sought. The process of planning and implementing a ten-day science instructional unit during student teaching was examined through lesson plan documentation, in-depth individual interviews, and two focus group interviews. Narratives were created to describe the participants' experiences as well as how they plan for instruction and consider science pedagogical content knowledge (PCK). Categories and themes were then used to build explanations applying to the research questions. The themes identified were Understanding of Science PCK, Minimalism, Consistency in the Teacher Education Program, and Emphasis on Science Content. The data suggested that the participants lack in their understanding of science PCK, took a minimalistic approach to incorporating science into their ten-day instructional units, experienced inconsistencies in the teacher education program, and encountered a lack of emphasis on science content in their field experience placements. The themes assisted in recognizing areas in the elementary science methods courses, student teaching field placements, and university supervision in need of modification.

  19. International Observe the Moon Night: Eight Years of Engaging Scientists, Educators, and Citizen Enthusiasts in NASA Science

    Science.gov (United States)

    Buxner, Sanlyn; Jones, Andrea; Bleacher, Lora; Wasser, Molly; Day, Brian; Bakerman, Maya; Shaner, Andrew; Joseph, Emily; International Observe the Moon Night Coordinating Committee

    2018-01-01

    International Observe the Moon Night (InOMN) is an annual worldwide event, held in the fall, that celebrates lunar and planetary science and exploration. InOMN is sponsored by NASA’s Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter (LRO) in collaboration with NASA’s Solar System Exploration Research Virtual Institute (SSERVI), the NASA’s Heliophysics Education Consortium, CosmoQuest, Night Sky Network, and Science Festival Alliance. Other key partners include the NASA Museum Alliance, Night Sky Network, and NASA Solar System Ambassadors.In 2017 InOMN will be held on October 28th, and will engage thousands of people across the globe to observe and learn about the Moon and its connection to planetary science. This year, we have partnered with the NASA Science Mission Directorate total solar eclipse team to highlight InOMN as an opportunity to harness and sustain the interest and momentum in space science and observation following the August 21st eclipse. Since 2010, over 3,800 InOMN events have been registered engaging over 550,000 visitors worldwide. Most InOMN events are held in the United States, with strong representation from many other countries. We will present current results from the 2017 InOMN evaluation.Through InOMN, we annually provide resources such as event-specific Moon maps, presentations, advertising materials, and certificates of participation. Additionally, InOMN highlights partner resources such as online interfaces including Moon Trek (https://moontrek.jpl.nasa.gov) and CosmoQuest (https://cosmoquest.org/x/) to provide further opportunities to engage with NASA science.Learn more about InOMN at http://observethemoonnight.org.

  20. The Science Teaching Self-Efficacy of Prospective Elementary Education Majors Enrolled in Introductory Geology Lab Sections

    Science.gov (United States)

    Baldwin, Kathryn A.

    2014-01-01

    This study examined prospective elementary education majors' science teaching self-efficacy while they were enrolled in an introductory geology lab course for elementary education majors. The Science Teaching Efficacy Belief Instrument Form B (STEBI-B) was administered during the first and last lab class sessions. Additionally, students were…

  1. Exploring the Use of Lesson Study to Develop Elementary Preservice Teachers' Pedagogical Content Knowledge for Teaching Nature of Science

    Science.gov (United States)

    Akerson, Valarie L.; Pongsanon, Khemmawadee; Park Rogers, Meredith A.; Carter, Ingrid; Galindo, Enrique

    2017-01-01

    This study explored a modified version of Japanese Lesson Study to determine whether and how it influenced preservice elementary teachers in their abilities to deliver science lessons that included nature of science (NOS) to their own students. We used a case study approach that focused on one subset of a cohort of preservice elementary teachers…

  2. Teaching and Learning Science in Authoritative Classrooms: Teachers' Power and Students' Approval in Korean Elementary Classrooms

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lee, Jeong-A.; Kim, Chan-Jong

    2017-09-01

    This study aims to understand interactions in Korean elementary science classrooms, which are heavily influenced by Confucianism. Ethnographic observations of two elementary science teachers' classrooms in Korea are provided. Their classes are fairly traditional teaching, which mean teacher-centered interactions are dominant. To understand the power and approval in science classroom discourse, we have adopted Critical Discourse Analysis (CDA). Based on CDA, form and function analysis was adopted. After the form and function analysis, all episodes were analyzed in terms of social distance. The results showed that both teachers exercised their power while teaching. However, their classes were quite different in terms of getting approval by students. When a teacher got students' approval, he could conduct the science lesson more effectively. This study highlights the importance of getting approval by students in Korean science classrooms.

  3. Teacher candidates' perceptions regarding the integration of fictional literature into elementary science instruction

    Science.gov (United States)

    Everman, Daphne Jane

    The purpose of this study was to investigate the thoughts, feelings, and beliefs held by teacher candidates (TCs) regarding the integration of fictional literature into elementary science instruction. Data were collected in the forms of a Q sort completed by two sections of TCs as an in-class activity, demographics and background information filled out by each participant, and two focus groups. The data were analyzed through a blend of Q methodology and Yin's five phase analysis approach (2011), and a constructivist framework was used to analyze the potential impact TCs' background had on their perceptions of the use of fictional literature in elementary science. Key findings indicated that while many TCs have limited backgrounds in the use of fictional literature during science and would like more information about how to use it, overall, there was strong support for its use as a science teaching tool because it makes science more approachable, builds excitement, and encourages students to become more engaged.

  4. Writing Like a Scientist: Exploring Elementary Teachers' Understandings and Practices of Writing in Science

    Science.gov (United States)

    Glen, Nicole J.; Dotger, Sharon

    2013-10-01

    This qualitative study examined the connections between elementary teachers’ conceptions of how scientists use writing and how the teachers used writing during science lessons. Data collected included lesson observations, interviews, handouts to students, and curriculum resources. The findings revealed that teachers in this study thought scientists write for several purposes: the presentation of data, observations, experiences, procedures, and facts. The teachers used writing tasks that mirrored this with their students. The teachers also had a limited definition of creativity in writing, and when they had students write creatively in science it was to add in fictional elements. Implications of this study include providing teachers with better models for how and why scientists write, including these models in more inquiry-based science lessons, and directly relating concepts of nature of science to elementary science writing.

  5. Taking an active stance: How urban elementary students connect sociocultural experiences in learning science

    Science.gov (United States)

    Upadhyay, Bhaskar; Maruyama, Geoffrey; Albrecht, Nancy

    2017-12-01

    In this interpretive case study, we draw from sociocultural theory of learning and culturally relevant pedagogy to understand how urban students from nondominant groups leverage their sociocultural experiences. These experiences allow them to gain an empowering voice in influencing science content and activities and to work towards self-determining the sciences that are personally meaningful. Furthermore, tying sociocultural experiences with science learning helps generate sociopolitical awareness among students. We collected interview and observation data in an urban elementary classroom over one academic year to understand the value of urban students' sociocultural experiences in learning science and choosing science activities.

  6. A Case Study Exploring the Identity of an In-Service Elementary Science Teacher: a Language Teacher First

    Science.gov (United States)

    Marco-Bujosa, Lisa; Levy, Abigail Jurist; McNeill, Katherine

    2018-01-01

    Teachers are central to providing high-quality science learning experiences called for in recent reform efforts, as their understanding of science impacts both what they teach and how they teach it. Yet, most elementary teachers do not enter the profession with a particular interest in science or expertise in science teaching. Research also indicates elementary schools present unique barriers that may inhibit science teaching. This case study utilizes the framework of identity to explore how one elementary classroom teacher's understandings of herself as a science specialist were shaped by the bilingual elementary school context as she planned for and provided reform-based science instruction. Utilizing Gee's (2000) sociocultural framework, identity was defined as consisting of four interrelated dimensions that served as analytic frames for examining how this teacher understood her new role through social positioning within her school. Findings describe the ways in which this teacher's identity as a science teacher was influenced by the school context. The case study reveals two important implications for teacher identity. First, collaboration for science teaching is essential for elementary teachers to change their practice. It can be challenging for teachers to form an identity as a science teacher in isolation. In addition, elementary teachers new to science teaching negotiate their emerging science practice with their prior experiences and the school context. For example, in the context of a bilingual school, this teacher adapted the reform-based science curriculum to better meet the unique linguistic needs of her students.

  7. Levels of use of an elementary school inquiry-based instructional innovation among a selected group of teacher participants in the Delaware Elementary Science Initiative

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bouchelle, Henry Ellsworth Wirt, III

    Science education in Delaware's public elementary and middle schools has experienced much change in recent years as a result of the adoption of state standards and, in particular, the adoption by school districts of the Smithsonian/National Science Resources Council-sponsored inquiry-based instruction modules as part of the "Elementary Science Initiative." As part of this adoption process, each participating elementary teacher and middle school science teacher receives extensive training in the use of several discrete science kits. The trainings include reinforcement and development of content knowledge, in addition to the modeling of and practice with complementary pedagogy. One measure of the effectiveness of the science kit training process (and perhaps the Initiative itself) is the teachers' levels of use of the Initiative. The purpose of this study was to determine the participating teachers' use of the science kit innovation through the use of the Concerns-based Adoption Model Levels of Use Questionnaire. Eight K--5 elementary classroom teachers who had completed at least three science kit trainings participated. The results of this study indicate that on the Overall Level of Use Rating Scale, teachers who had completed training in at least three science kits generally scored at the Routine (IVA) level. All of the teachers, regardless of the wide range in the number of years of experience, had achieved the Mechanical Use level in Overall (III) LoU, and 6 of the 8 participants (75%) were operating at no less than the Refinement (IVA) Overall LoU level.

  8. Supporting Academic Language Development in Elementary Science: A Classroom Teaching Experiment

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jung, Karl Gerhard

    Academic language is the language that students must engage in while participating in the teaching and learning that takes place in school (Schleppegrell, 2012) and science as a content area presents specific challenges and opportunities for students to engage with language (Buxton & Lee, 2014; Gee, 2005). In order for students to engage authentically and fully in the science learning that will take place in their classrooms, it is important that they develop their abilities to use science academic language (National Research Council, 2012). For this to occur, teachers must provide support to their students in developing the science academic language they will encounter in their classrooms. Unfortunately, this type of support remains a challenge for many teachers (Baecher, Farnsworth, & Ediger, 2014; Bigelow, 2010; Fisher & Frey, 2010) and teachers must receive professional development that supports their abilities to provide instruction that supports and scaffolds students' science academic language use and development. This study investigates an elementary science teacher's engagement in an instructional coaching partnership to explore how that teacher planned and implemented scaffolds for science academic language. Using a theoretical framework that combines the literature on scaffolding (Bunch, Walqui, & Kibler, 2015; Gibbons, 2015; Sharpe, 2001/2006) and instructional coaching (Knight, 2007/2009), this study sought to understand how an elementary science teacher plans and implements scaffolds for science academic language, and the resources that assisted the teacher in planning those scaffolds. The overarching goal of this work is to understand how elementary science teachers can scaffold language in their classroom, and how they can be supported in that work. Using a classroom teaching experiment methodology (Cobb, 2000) and constructivist grounded theory methods (Charmaz, 2014) for analysis, this study examined coaching conversations and classroom

  9. Fostering Scientific Literacy and Critical Thinking in Elementary Science Education

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vieira, Rui Marques; Tenreiro-Vieira, Celina

    2016-01-01

    Scientific literacy (SL) and critical thinking (CT) are key components of science education aiming to prepare students to think and to function as responsible citizens in a world increasingly affected by science and technology (S&T). Therefore, students should be given opportunities in their science classes to be engaged in learning…

  10. Pre-Service Elementary Teachers’ Scientific Literacy and Self-Efficacy in Teaching Science

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Adam Al Sultan

    2018-02-01

    Full Text Available Many educators and educational institutions worldwide have agreed that the main goal of science education is to produce a scientifically literate community. Science teachers are key to the achievement of scientific literacy at all levels of education because of the essential role they play in preparing scientifically literate individuals. Studies show that pre-service elementary teachers need to build more confidence in teaching science and scientific literacy during their teacher education programs in order for them to successfully teach science knowledge to their students. Therefore, the purpose of this study is threefold. First, pre-service elementary teachers' scientific literacy levels were examined. Second, pre-service teachers' self-efficacy beliefs were measured by distinguishing between their personal and subject-specific self-efficacy beliefs. Third, the extent to which pre-service elementary teachers' scientific literacy levels and self-efficacy levels are related was investigated. Participants were 49 pre-service elementary teachers registered in two science methods courses (introductory and advanced at a mid-sized university in the United States. Quantitative data were collected using the Test of Basic Scientific Literacy, the Science Teaching Efficacy Belief Instrument-Preservice, and Beliefs about Teaching. Results showed that participants had a satisfactory level of scientific literacy. However, pre-service teachers had borderline scores on the Nature of Science scale. Regarding self-efficacy, findings showed that both groups had the highest self-efficacy in teaching biology and the lowest in teaching physics. Participants in the advanced science methods course exhibited a moderate preexisting positive relationship between scientific literacy and subject-specific self-efficacy in teaching science.

  11. Learning from the best: Overcoming barriers to reforms-based elementary science teaching

    Science.gov (United States)

    Banchi, Heather May

    This study explored the characteristics of elementary science teachers who employ reforms-based practices. Particular attention was paid to the consistency of teachers' practices and their beliefs, the impact of professional development experiences on practices, and how teachers mitigated barriers to reforms-based instruction. Understanding how successful elementary science teachers develop fills a gap in the science reforms literature. Participants included 7 upper elementary science teachers from six different schools. All schools were located within two suburban school districts in the south-Atlantic United States and data was collected during the spring of 2008. Data collection included use of the Reformed Teaching Observation Protocol (RTOP) to evaluate the level of reforms-based instruction, as well as 35 hours of classroom observation field notes and 21 hours of audio-taped teacher interviews. The variety of data sources allowed for triangulation of evidence. The RTOP was analyzed using descriptive statistics and classroom observations and interview data were analyzed using Erickson's (1986) guidelines for analytic induction. Findings indicated (a) reforms-based elementary science teaching was attainable, (b) beliefs and practices were consistent and both reflected reforms-based philosophies and practices, (c) formal professional development experiences were limited and did not foster reforms-based practices, (d) informal professional development pursued by teachers had a positive impact on practices, (e) barriers to reforms-based instruction were present but mitigated by strong beliefs and practical strategies like curriculum integration. These findings suggest that there are common, salient characteristics of reforms-based teachers' beliefs, practices, and professional development experiences. These commonalities contribute to an understanding of how reforms-based teachers develop, and inform efforts to move all elementary teachers in the direction of

  12. Engaging the Public in the Citizen Science GLOBE at Night Campaign

    Science.gov (United States)

    Walker, Constance E.; Sparks, R. T.; Pompea, S. M.

    2011-05-01

    The emphasis in the international star-hunting campaign, GLOBE at Night, is in bringing awareness to the public on issues of light pollution. Light pollution threatens not only observatory sites and our "right to starlight", but can affect energy consumption, wildlife and health. GLOBE at Night has successfully reached a few 100,000 citizen-scientists. What steps can be taken to improve it? To promote the campaign via popular social media, GLOBE at Night created Facebook and Twitter pages. To increase participation in the 2011 campaign, children and adults submitted their sky brightness measurements in real time with smart phones or tablets using the web application at www.globeatnight.org/webapp/. With smart phones and tablets, the location, date and time register automatically. For those without smart mobile devices, user-friendly tools on the GLOBE at Night report page were reconfigured to determine latitude and longitude more easily and accurately. To increase the robustness of the data, 2 new approaches were taken. GLOBE at Night prototyped an "Adopt a Street” program in Tucson. The aim was for people to adopt different major or semi-major streets and take measurements every mile or so for the length of the street. The grid of measurements would canvas the town, allowing for comparisons of light levels over time (hours, days, years) or search for dark sky oases or light polluted areas. The increase to 2 campaigns in 2011 re-enforces these studies. The intent is to offer the program year-round for seasonal studies. The data can also be used to compare with datasets on wildlife, health, and energy consumption. Recently, NOAO and the Arizona Game and Fish Department have started a project with GLOBE at Night data and bat telemetry to examine a dark skies corridor in Tucson where the endangered bats fly. In our presentation, results of our efforts are discussed.

  13. How does a Next Generation Science Standard Aligned, Inquiry Based, Science Unit Impact Student Achievement of Science Practices and Student Science Efficacy in an Elementary Classroom?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Whittington, Kayla Lee

    This study examined the impact of an inquiry based Next Generation Science Standard aligned science unit on elementary students' understanding and application of the eight Science and Engineering Practices and their relation in building student problem solving skills. The study involved 44 second grade students and three participating classroom teachers. The treatment consisted of a school district developed Second Grade Earth Science unit: What is happening to our playground? that was taught at the beginning of the school year. Quantitative results from a Likert type scale pre and post survey and from student content knowledge assessments showed growth in student belief of their own abilities in the science classroom. Qualitative data gathered from student observations and interviews performed at the conclusion of the Earth Science unit further show gains in student understanding and attitudes. This study adds to the existing literature on the importance of standard aligned, inquiry based science curriculum that provides time for students to engage in science practices.

  14. Elementary Science Teachers' Integration of Engineering Design into Science Instruction: Results from a Randomised Controlled Trial

    Science.gov (United States)

    Maeng, Jennifer L.; Whitworth, Brooke A.; Gonczi, Amanda L.; Navy, Shannon L.; Wheeler, Lindsay B.

    2017-01-01

    This randomised controlled trial used a mixed-methods approach to investigate the frequency and how elementary teachers integrated engineering design (ED) principles into their science instruction following professional development (PD). The ED components of the PD were aligned with Cunningham and Carlsen's [(2014). "Teaching engineering…

  15. Varying Readability of Science-Based Text in Elementary Readers: Challenges for Teachers

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gallagher, Tiffany L.; Fazio, Xavier; Gunning, Thomas G.

    2012-01-01

    This investigation compared readability formulae to publishers' identified reading levels in science-based elementary readers. Nine well-established readability indices were calculated and comparisons were made with the publishers' identified grade designations and between different genres of text. Results revealed considerable variance among the…

  16. Tracing a Beginning Elementary Teacher’s Development of Identity for Science Teaching

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Avraamidou, Lucy

    2014-01-01

    The purpose of this case study was to examine a beginning elementary teacher’s development of identity for science teaching from her first year at university, her field experience, and through her first year of teaching. Several kinds of data were collected over a period of 5 years through different

  17. The Conceptual Complexity of Vocabulary in Elementary-Grades Core Science Program Textbooks

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fitzgerald, W. Jill; Elmore, Jeff; Kung, Melody; Stenner, A. Jackson

    2017-01-01

    The researchers explored the conceptual complexity of vocabulary in contemporary elementary-grades core science program textbooks to address two research questions: (1) Can a progression of concepts' complexity level be described across grades? (2) Was there gradual developmental growth of the most complex concepts' networks of associated concepts…

  18. From Metacognition to Whole Language: The Spectrum of Literacy in Elementary School Science.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Balajthy, Ernest

    This paper considers the integration of reading and writing into elementary science teaching by way of the implications of two leading theories pertaining to literacy: metacognitive theory and whole language theory. Discussion of the implications of metacognition includes attention to the issue of helping to overcome readers' nonscientific…

  19. The Big Crunch: A Hybrid Solution to Earth and Space Science Instruction for Elementary Education Majors

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cervato, Cinzia; Kerton, Charles; Peer, Andrea; Hassall, Lesya; Schmidt, Allan

    2013-01-01

    We describe the rationale and process for the development of a new hybrid Earth and Space Science course for elementary education majors. A five-step course design model, applicable to both online and traditional courses, is presented. Assessment of the course outcomes after two semesters indicates that the intensive time invested in the…

  20. Understanding of Earth and Space Science Concepts: Strategies for Concept-Building in Elementary Teacher Preparation

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bulunuz, Nermin; Jarrett, Olga S.

    2009-01-01

    This research is concerned with preservice teacher understanding of six earth and space science concepts that are often taught in elementary school: the reason for seasons, phases of the moon, why the wind blows, the rock cycle, soil formation, and earthquakes. Specifically, this study examines the effect of readings, hands-on learning stations,…

  1. A Rural Math, Science, and Technology Elementary School Tangled up in Global Networks of Practice

    Science.gov (United States)

    Carlone, Heidi B.; Kimmel, Sue; Tschida, Christina

    2010-01-01

    This is an ethnographic study of a newly created math, science, and technology elementary magnet school in a rural community fiercely committed to cultural preservation while facing unprecedented economic instability brought on by massive loss of manufacturing jobs. Our goal was to understand global- and community-level contexts that influenced…

  2. Intersections of Life Histories and Science Identities: The Stories of Three Preservice Elementary Teachers

    Science.gov (United States)

    Avraamidou, Lucy

    2016-01-01

    Grounded within Connelly and Clandinin's conceptualization of teachers' professional identity in terms of "stories to live by" and through a life-history lens, this multiple case study aimed to respond to the following questions: (a) How do three preservice elementary teachers view themselves as future science teachers? (b) How have the…

  3. An Analysis of Eye Movement and Cognitive Load about the Editorial Design in Elementary Science Textbook

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kim, Seong-un; Lim, Sung-man; Kim, Eun-ae; Yang, Il-ho

    2016-01-01

    This study is for the implication of editorial design in science textbooks which are designed for student-centered instruction, when the elements of the editorial design are different, we focus on how the students' eye movement and cognitive load change. For this, we produced a new book for 5th grade students in elementary school that is modified…

  4. Embedding Probeware Technology in the Context of Ocean Acidification in Elementary Science Methods Courses

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ensign, Todd I.; Rye, James A.; Luna, Melissa J.

    2017-01-01

    Research indicates that preservice teacher (PT) education programs can positively impact perceptions of scientific probeware use in K-8 environments. Despite the potential of probeware to improve science instruction and student engagement, its use in elementary education has been limited. Sixty-seven PT enrolled across three sections of an…

  5. De-Marginalizing Science in the Elementary Classroom by Coaching Teachers to Address Perceived Dilemmas

    Science.gov (United States)

    Berg, Alissa; Mensah, Felicia Moore

    2014-01-01

    This study identifies and explores the dilemmas experienced by three first-grade teachers in teaching elementary school science. The impact of coaching and teachers' career stages on how teachers reconcile their dilemmas was examined. Results of this comparative case study indicate teachers perceived tensions between focusing instructional…

  6. Use of Creative Drama in Science and Mathematics by Preservice Elementary Teachers

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ozdemir, Pinar; Akkus Cikla, Oylum

    2005-01-01

    The purpose of this study is to analyse science and mathematics lesson plans prepared in the light of drama based instruction by preservice elementary teachers. For this purpose, 12 female participants were chosen volunteerly. They gained basic knowledge and experience about creative drama by involving sample creative drama activities and lesson…

  7. Using a Web Site in an Elementary Science Methods Class: Are We Opening a Pandora's Box?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lewis, Scott P.; O'Brien, George E.

    This paper describes the introduction and use of the World Wide Web (WWW) in an elementary science methods course at Florida International University (FIU). The goals of creating a web site include engaging conversations among educators, providing access to local resources for students, and examining student use of web sites and the Internet. The…

  8. Effect of Robotics on Elementary Preservice Teachers' Self-Efficacy, Science Learning, and Computational Thinking

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jaipal-Jamani, Kamini; Angeli, Charoula

    2017-01-01

    The current impetus for increasing STEM in K-12 education calls for an examination of how preservice teachers are being prepared to teach STEM. This paper reports on a study that examined elementary preservice teachers' (n = 21) self-efficacy, understanding of science concepts, and computational thinking as they engaged with robotics in a science…

  9. FORMATION OF ICT COMPETENCES FUTURE TEACHER OF COMPUTER SCIENCE IN THE ELEMENTARY SCHOOL VIA DELPHI SYSTEM

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Hrihorii Pustovit

    2015-10-01

    Full Text Available In article, authors clarified the concept of "ICT competence of future teachers of computer science in the elementary school"; improved criteria for formation of the ICT competences future teachers of computer science in the elementary school to identify the system ready for use Delphi during process of visual programming in professional activity. We present the model of the formation of the ICT competence future teachers of computer science in the elementary school via visual programming tools, where importance given to the construction of individual learning paths, taking into account individual learning rhythm, because students have different levels of training, they are different in nature perception of information. It is proved that the proposed model will make it possible to carry out training, starting from the result of the educational process at the university, which takes into account the impact of external and internal variables, as well as a feedback mechanism that allows adjustment of the process at different stages. Authors presented developed method of forming ICT competences future teachers of computer science in the elementary school via Delphi tools during learning of visual programming, feature of which is that to present course materials were chosen LMS Moodle platform.

  10. Interacting with a Suite of Educative Features: Elementary Science Teachers' Use of Educative Curriculum Materials

    Science.gov (United States)

    Arias, Anna Maria; Bismack, Amber Schultz; Davis, Elizabeth A.; Palincsar, Annemarie Sullivan

    2016-01-01

    New reform documents underscore the importance of learning both the practices and content of science. This integration of practices and content requires sophisticated teaching that does not often happen in elementary classrooms. Educative curriculum materials--materials explicitly designed to support teacher and student learning--have been posited…

  11. Enhancing Self-Efficacy in Elementary Science Teaching with Professional Learning Communities

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mintzes, Joel J.; Marcum, Bev; Messerschmidt-Yates, Christl; Mark, Andrew

    2013-01-01

    Emerging from Bandura's Social Learning Theory, this study of in-service elementary school teachers examined the effects of sustained Professional Learning Communities (PLCs) on self-efficacy in science teaching. Based on mixed research methods, and a non-equivalent control group experimental design, the investigation explored changes in…

  12. A comparative analysis of Science-Technology-Society standards in elementary, middle and high school state science curriculum frameworks

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tobias, Karen Marie

    An analysis of curriculum frameworks from the fifty states to ascertain the compliance with the National Science Education Standards for integrating Science-Technology-Society (STS) themes is reported within this dissertation. Science standards for all fifty states were analyzed to determine if the STS criteria were integrated at the elementary, middle, and high school levels of education. The analysis determined the compliance level for each state, then compared each educational level to see if the compliance was similar across the levels. Compliance is important because research shows that using STS themes in the science classroom increases the student's understanding of the concepts, increases the student's problem solving skills, increases the student's self-efficacy with respect to science, and students instructed using STS themes score well on science high stakes tests. The two hypotheses for this study are: (1) There is no significant difference in the degree of compliance to Science-Technology-Society themes (derived from National Science Education Standards) between the elementary, middle, and high school levels. (2) There is no significant difference in the degree of compliance to Science-Technology-Society themes (derived from National Science Education Standards) between the elementary, middle, and high school level when examined individually. The Analysis of Variance F ratio was used to determine the variance between and within the three educational levels. This analysis addressed hypothesis one. The Analysis of Variance results refused to reject the null hypothesis, meaning there is significant difference in the compliance to STS themes between the elementary, middle and high school educational levels. The Chi-Square test was the statistical analysis used to compare the educational levels for each individual criterion. This analysis addressed hypothesis two. The Chi-Squared results showed that none of the states were equally compliant with each

  13. Think Scientifically: The NASA Solar Dynamics Observatory's Elementary Science Literacy Program

    Science.gov (United States)

    Van Norden, Wendy M.

    2013-07-01

    The pressure to focus on math and reading at the elementary level has increased in recent years. As a result, science education has taken a back seat in elementary classrooms. The Think Scientifically book series provides a way for science to easily integrate with existing math and reading curriculum. This story-based science literature program integrates a classic storybook format with solar science concepts, to make an educational product that meets state literacy standards. Each story is accompanied by hands-on labs and activities that teachers can easily conduct in their classrooms with minimal training and materials, as well as math and language arts extensions. These books are being distributed through teacher workshops and conferences, and are available free at http://sdo.gsfc.nasa.gov/epo/educators/thinkscientifically.php.

  14. The use of Banyumas traditional art as analog sources of elementary school science materials

    Science.gov (United States)

    Handayani, L.; Nugroho, S. E.; Rohidi, T. R.; Wiyanto

    2018-03-01

    All various traditional arts of Banyumas area support this area to be one famous region located in the periphery of West and Central Java with its unique cultural identity. In science learning, these traditional arts are very important aspect which can be implemented as a source of analog by students thinking a science concept analogically. This paper discusses a kind of Banyumas traditional art: the ebeg, and its cultural characteristics which can play a significant role in supporting elementary school students’ analogical thinking of a science material. The method used were literature and documentary studies. It is concluded that the ebeg provides many cultural characteristics which can be used as analog of elementary school science material, in terms of its music player’s motion, kinds of musical instruments played and its dancer motion.

  15. Assessing the impact of vicarious experiences on preservice elementary science teacher efficacy and preservice elementary teacher efficacy

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wagler, Ronald Robert

    Scope and method of study. The purpose of this study was to investigate the impact of vicarious experiences (preservice teacher field experiences) on perceived preservice science teacher efficacy and perceived preservice teacher efficacy. The participants for the study were 46 preservice elementary education students who were enrolled in CIED 3430 (Early Lab and Clinical Experience in Elementary Education II) at a large Midwestern state university and 20 classroom inservice teachers. A pretest was administered early in the spring 2007 semester, before the preservice teachers did their field experience and consisted of demographic questions and the STEBI-B. A posttest was administered at the end of the spring 2007 semester, after the preservice teachers had completed their field experiences, and consisted of demographic questions, a rating of the teachers they observed during their educational field experience, the STEBI-B and the TES. The field experience classroom inservice teachers provided personal, professional, and classroom data in the middle of the spring 2007 semester. All data were analyzed using analysis of variance (ANOVA) and analysis of covariance (ANCOVA). Findings and conclusions. Factors of gender, ethnicity, socioeconomic status and preservice teacher program placement were found to be significant predictors of preservice teachers' efficacy scores. Even though, in some cases, these factors negatively impacted preservice teacher efficacy, preservice teachers should be placed in these environments when support is most available. The Teacher Efficacy Scale (Gibson & Dembo, 1984) is invalid. Even the construct of a general teacher efficacy is questionable.

  16. Exploring the development of science self-efficacy in preservice elementary school teachers participating in a science education methods course

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gunning, Amanda M.

    The demands of society's increasing dependence on science and technology call for our students to have a solid foundation in science education, starting in the earliest grades. However, elementary school teachers often lack the necessary experiences to deliver that education. This qualitative study seeks to explore the development of six preservice elementary teachers in a semester-long science methods course. The course consisted of many components; one in particular was a microteaching experience, which emerged as especially significant. The participants' experiences throughout the semester were studied primarily through the lens of self-efficacy, but were also examined considering learning theories and mental models. It was found that two participants in particular were self-directed learners and were able to construct for themselves a self-selected cognitive apprenticeship. Other findings include the significance of a microteaching experience on development of self-efficacy in science teaching and the role mental models may or may not play in development of self-efficacy in the science methods course. This study has implications both for preservice elementary education in science and in general.

  17. Construction and Validation of an Instrument to Measure Taiwanese Elementary Students' Attitudes toward Their Science Class

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wang, Tzu-Ling; Berlin, Donna

    2010-12-01

    The main purpose of this study is to develop a valid and reliable instrument for measuring the attitudes toward science class of fourth- and fifth-grade students in an Asian school culture. Specifically, the development focused on three science attitude constructs-science enjoyment, science confidence, and importance of science as related to science class experiences. A total of 265 elementary school students in Taiwan responded to the instrument developed. Data analysis indicated that the instrument exhibited satisfactory validity and reliability with the Taiwan population used. The Cronbach's alpha coefficient was 0.93 for the entire instrument indicating a satisfactory level of internal consistency. However, both principal component analysis and parallel analysis showed that the three attitude scales were not unique and should be combined and used as a general "attitudes toward science class" scale. The analysis also showed that there were no gender or grade-level differences in students' overall attitudes toward science class.

  18. A critical hermeneutic study: Third grade elementary African American students' views of the nature of science

    Science.gov (United States)

    Walls, Leon

    Nature of Science is one of the most fundamental aspects of understanding science. How different cultures, races and ethnicities see and interpret science differently is critical. However, the NOS views specific to African American teachers and learners have gone largely unresearched. The views of a purposeful sample of African American third grade children reported in this study contribute to efforts to make science equitable for all students. Conducted in two Midwest urban settings, within the students' regular classrooms, three instruments were employed: Views of Nature of Science Elementary (an interview protocol), Elementary Draw a Scientist Test (a drawing activity supplemented by an explicating narrative), and Identify a Scientist (a simple select-a-photo technique supported by Likert-measured sureness). The responses provided by twenty-three students were coded using qualitative content analysis. The findings are represented in three main categories: Science - is governed by experimentation, invention and discovery teach us about the natural world, school is not the only setting for learning science; Scientists - intelligent, happy, studious men and women playing multiple roles, with distinct physical traits working in laboratories; Students - capable users and producers of science and who view science as fun. This study advocates for: use of such instruments for constant monitoring of student views, using the knowledge of these views to construct inquiry based science lessons, and increased research about students of color.

  19. Hands-on science methods class for pre-service elementary teachers

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Manner, B.M. [Univ. of Pittsburgh, PA (United States)

    1994-12-31

    If elementary teachers are to be comfortable teaching science, they must have positive pre-service experiences. A science methods class that is activity-based and student-centered, rather than lecture-based and teacher-centered, peaks their interest in science and alleviates their fears. Activities conducted by the students illustrate science concepts or integrate science with children`s literature books such as The Grouchy Ladybug. These activities are conducted by each student with the rest of the class and the professor acting as an elementary class. Each activity is then evaluated as to the science concept, what was done well, and how it could be improved. The students also relate how the activity would be integrated with other subjects such as social studies, art, math, and language arts. Student feedback indicates this method is enjoyable, educational, and valuable in preparing them to teach science. The {open_quotes}oohs{close_quotes} and {open_quotes}I didn`t know that!{close_quotes} during activities are positives, but students have also learned some science, lost most of their science anxiety, and will teach science with the confidence and enthusiasm that was lacking at the beginning of the course.

  20. Teacher collaboration and elementary science teaching: Using action research as a tool for instructional leadership

    Science.gov (United States)

    Roberts, Sara Hayes

    The primary purpose of this action research study was to explore an elementary science program and find ways to support science education as an administrator of an elementary school. The study took place in a large suburban school system in the southeastern United States. Seven teachers at a small rural school volunteered to participate in the study. Each participant became an active member of the research by determining what changes needed to take place and implementing the lessons in science. The study was also focused on teacher collaboration and how it influenced the science instruction. The data collected included two interviews, ten observations of science lessons, the implementation of four science units, and informal notes from planning sessions over a five month period. The questions that guided this study focused on how teachers prepare to teach science through active learning and how instruction shifts due to teacher collaboration. Teachers were interviewed at the beginning of the study to gain the perceptions of the participants in the areas of (a) planning, (b) active learning, (c) collaboration, and (d) teaching science lessons. The teachers and principal then formed a research team that determined the barriers to teaching science according to the Standards, designed units of study using active learning strategies, and worked collaboratively to implement the units of study. The action research project reviewed the National Science Education Standards, the theory of constructivism, active learning and teacher collaboration as they relate to the actions taken by a group of teachers in an elementary school. The evidence from this study showed that by working together collaboratively and overcoming the barriers to teaching science actively, teachers feel more confident and knowledgeable about teaching the concepts.

  1. Elementary Teacher Perceptions of Principal Leadership, Teacher Self-Efficacy in Math and Science, and Their Relationships to Student Academic Achievement

    Science.gov (United States)

    Richard, Bertha Cookie

    2013-01-01

    The purpose of this study was to investigate elementary teacher perceptions of elementary principal instructional leadership and elementary teacher evaluation of self-efficacy at low and high performing low socio-economic elementary schools. These variables were examined to determine whether relationships with math and science academic achievement…

  2. Live Storybook Outcomes of Pilot Multidisciplinary Elementary Earth Science Collaborative Project

    Science.gov (United States)

    Soeffing, C.; Pierson, R.

    2017-12-01

    Live Storybook Outcomes of pilot multidisciplinary elementary earth science collaborative project Anchoring phenomena leading to student led investigations are key to applying the NGSS standards in the classroom. This project employs the GLOBE elementary storybook, Discoveries at Willow Creek, as an inspiration and operational framework for a collaborative pilot project engaging 4th grade students in asking questions, collecting relevant data, and using analytical tools to document and understand natural phenomena. The Institute of Global Environmental Strategies (IGES), a GLOBE Partner, the Outdoor Campus, an informal educational outdoor learning facility managed by South Dakota Game, Fish and Parks, University of Sioux Falls, and All City Elementary, Sioux Falls are collaborating partners in this project. The Discoveries at Willow Creek storyline introduces young students to the scientific process, and models how they can apply science and engineering practices (SEPs) to discover and understand the Earth system in which they live. One innovation associated with this project is the formal engagement of elementary students in a global citizen science program (for all ages), GLOBE Observer, and engaging them in data collection using GLOBE Observer's Cloud and Mosquito Habitat Mapper apps. As modeled by the fictional students from Willow Creek, the 4th grade students will identify their 3 study sites at the Outdoor Campus, keep a journal, and record observations. The students will repeat their investigations at the Outdoor Campus to document and track change over time. Students will be introduced to "big data" in a manageable way, as they see their observations populate GLOBE's map-based data visualization and . Our research design recognizes the comfort and familiarity factor of literacy activities in the elementary classroom for students and teachers alike, and postulates that connecting a science education project to an engaging storybook text will contribute to a

  3. An Exploration of Elementary Teachers' Beliefs and Perceptions About Science Inquiry: A Mixed Methods Study

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hamadeh, Linda

    In order for science-based inquiry instruction to happen on a large scale in elementary classrooms across the country, evidence must be provided that implementing this reform can be realistic and practical, despite the challenges and obstacles teachers may face. This study sought to examine elementary teachers' knowledge and understanding of, attitudes toward, and overall perceptions of inquiry-based science instruction, and how these beliefs influenced their inquiry practice in the classroom. It offered a description and analysis of the approaches elementary science teachers in Islamic schools reported using to promote inquiry within the context of their science classrooms, and addressed the challenges the participating teachers faced when implementing scientific inquiry strategies in their instruction. The research followed a mixed method approach, best described as a sequential two-strand design (Teddlie & Tashakkori, 2006). Sequential mixed designs develop two methodological strands that occur chronologically, and in the case of this research, QUAN→QUAL. Findings from the study supported the notion that the school and/or classroom environment could be a contextual factor that influenced some teachers' classroom beliefs about the feasibility of implementing science inquiry. Moreover, although teacher beliefs are influential, they are malleable and adaptable and influenced primarily by their own personal direct experiences with inquiry instruction or lack of.

  4. 'That's What Scientists Have To Do': Preservice Elementary Teachers' Conceptions of the Nature of Science during a Moon Investigation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Abell, Sandra; Martini, Mariana; George, Melissa

    2001-01-01

    Describes a science methods course for elementary education majors in which students investigated the phases of the moon. Concludes that students did not make direct connections between their science learning activities and the nature of science. Provides a set of recommendations related to the nature of science and moon study. (Contains 27…

  5. Researchers’ Night 2015: exploring science in movies, comics, poetry and games

    CERN Multimedia

    Katarina Anthony

    2015-01-01

    On Friday, 25 September, CERN will be celebrating the European Researchers’ Night with a series of events and activities at the Balexert shopping centre. From celebrity Q&A sessions to author signings, there’s something for everyone!   The fun will kick off prior to the night itself, with a number of pre-events held throughout September. From 8 to 12 September, a mock-up of the LHC tunnel will be installed in the central court of the Balexert shopping centre. Representatives from CERN will be on hand to speak to shoppers, and to encourage them to participate in Researchers’ Night. On 24 September, at “Made of shadow and light”, an event hosted by the University of Geneva, Nobel laureate in Literature Gao Xingjian, will present poems and drawings created specifically for the event. Sergio Bertolucci, CERN Director of Research and Computing, will provide a scientific perspective on the content. Three POPScience poets - Gwyneth Lewis, Deborah D&a...

  6. Multilevel Effects of Student and Classroom Factors on Elementary Science Achievement in Five Countries

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kaya, Sibel; Rice, Diana C.

    2010-07-01

    This study examined the effects of individual student factors and classroom factors on elementary science achievement within and across five countries. The student-level factors included gender, self-confidence in science and home resources. The classroom-level factors included teacher characteristics, instructional variables and classroom composition. Results for the USA and four other countries, Singapore, Japan, Australia and Scotland, were reported. Multilevel effects were examined through Hierarchical Linear Modelling, using the Trends in International Mathematics and Science Study 2003 fourth grade dataset. Overall, the results showed that selected student background characteristics were consistently related to elementary science achievement in countries investigated. At the student level, higher levels of home resources and self-confidence and at the classroom level, higher levels of class mean home resources yielded higher science scores on the TIMSS 2003. In general, teacher and instructional variables were minimally related to science achievement. There was evidence of positive effects of teacher support in the USA and Singapore. The emphasis on science inquiry was positively related to science achievement in Singapore and negatively related in the USA and Australia. Recommendations for practice and policy were discussed.

  7. "Saturday Night Live" Goes to High School: Conducting and Advising a Political Science Fair Project

    Science.gov (United States)

    Allen, Meg; Brewer, Paul R.

    2010-01-01

    This article uses a case study to illustrate how science fair projects--which traditionally focus on "hard science" topics--can contribute to political science education. One of the authors, a high school student, conducted an experimental study of politics for her science fair project. The other author, a faculty member, was asked to advise the…

  8. Exploring the Reasons for Using Electric Books and Technologic Pedagogical and Content Knowledge of Taiwanese Elementary Mathematics and Science Teachers

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chen, Ho-Yuan; Jang, Syh-Jong

    2013-01-01

    This study highlights trends and features of E-books and their versatility of this tool in elementary educational settings. There has been little quantitative research employed to examine teachers' reasons for using or not using E-books. The purpose of this study was to examine elementary school mathematics and science teachers' reasons for using…

  9. Elementary Teachers' Perceptions of Teaching Science to Improve Student Content Knowledge

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stephenson, Robert L.

    The majority of Grade 5 students demonstrate limited science knowledge on state assessments. This trend has been documented since 2010 with no evidence of improvement. Because state accountability formulas include proficiency scores and carry sanctions against districts that fail to meet proficiency thresholds, improved student performance in science is an important issue to school districts. The purpose of this study was to explore elementary teachers' perceptions about their students' science knowledge, the strategies used to teach science, the barriers affecting science teaching, and the self-efficacy beliefs teachers maintain for teaching science. This study, guided by Vygotsky's social constructivist theory and Bandura's concept of self-efficacy, was a bounded instrumental case study in which 15 participants, required to be teaching K-5 elementary science in the county, were interviewed. An analytic technique was used to review the qualitative interview data through open coding, clustering, and analytical coding resulting in identified categorical themes that addressed the research questions. Key findings reflect students' limited content knowledge in earth and physical science. Teachers identified barriers including limited science instructional time, poor curricular resources, few professional learning opportunities, concern about new state standards, and a lack of teaching confidence. To improve student content knowledge, teachers identified the need for professional development. The project is a professional development series provided by a regional education service agency for K-5 teachers to experience science and engineering 3-dimensional learning. Area students will demonstrate deeper science content knowledge and benefit from improved science instructional practice and learning opportunities to become science problem solvers and innovative contributors to society.

  10. Change over a service learning experience in science undergraduates' beliefs expressed about elementary school students' ability to learn science

    Science.gov (United States)

    Goebel, Camille A.

    This longitudinal investigation explores the change in four (3 female, 1 male) science undergraduates' beliefs expressed about low-income elementary school students' ability to learn science. The study sought to identify how the undergraduates in year-long public school science-teaching partnerships perceived the social, cultural, and economic factors affecting student learning. Previous service-learning research infrequently focused on science undergraduates relative to science and society or detailed expressions of their beliefs and field practices over the experience. Qualitative methodology was used to guide the implementation and analysis of this study. A sample of an additional 20 science undergraduates likewise involved in intensive reflection in the service learning in science teaching (SLST) course called Elementary Science Education Partners (ESEP) was used to examine the typicality of the case participants. The findings show two major changes in science undergraduates' belief expressions: (1) a reduction in statements of beliefs from a deficit thinking perspective about the elementary school students' ability to learn science, and (2) a shift in the attribution of students, underlying problems in science learning from individual-oriented to systemic-oriented influences. Additional findings reveal that the science undergraduates perceived they had personally and profoundly changed as a result of the SLST experience. Changes include: (1) the gain of a new understanding of others' situations different from their own; (2) the realization of and appreciation for their relative positions of privilege due to their educational background and family support; (3) the gain in ability to communicate, teach, and work with others; (4) the idea that they were more socially and culturally connected to their community outside the university and their college classrooms; and (5) a broadening of the way they understood or thought about science. Women participants stated

  11. Exploring Gender Differences across Elementary, Middle, and High School Students' Science and Math Attitudes and Interest

    Science.gov (United States)

    LeGrand, Julie

    The issue of female underrespresentation in science, mathematics, engineering, and technology careers and courses has been well researched over the last several decades. However, as gender gaps in achievement close and representation becomes more equitable in certain academic domains, research has turned to social and cultural factors to explain why fewer women persist in STEM studies and careers than men. The purpose of this study was to examine gender differences in science and math attitudes and interests from elementary school, to middle school, to high school. To examine possible gender-specific shifts in students' interest and attitudes in science and math, 136 students from a suburban, public school district were surveyed at the elementary school level (N=31), middle school level (N=54), and high school level (N=51) and various constructs were used to assess the responses in accordance with expectancy-value theory. Utilizing a mixed-methods approach, a random sample of students from each grade level then participated in focus groups, and corollary themes were identified. Results from a logistical regression analysis and Mann-Whitney Test indicated that significant gender differences exist for interest, efficacy, expectancy, and value within science domains (pgender differences in mathematics are present only at the elementary school level.

  12. Pre-service elementary teachers' understanding of scientific inquiry and its role in school science

    Science.gov (United States)

    Macaroglu, Esra

    The purpose of this research was to explore pre-service elementary teachers' developing understanding of scientific inquiry within the context of their elementary science teaching and learning. More specifically, the study examined 24 pre-service elementary teachers' emerging understanding of (1) the nature of science and scientific inquiry; (2) the "place" of scientific inquiry in school science; and (3) the roles and responsibilities of teachers and students within an inquiry-based learning environment. Data sources consisted primarily of student-generated artifacts collected throughout the semester, including pre/post-philosophy statements and text-based materials collected from electronic dialogue journals. Individual data sources were open-coded to identify concepts and categories expressed by students. Cross-comparisons were conducted and patterns were identified. Assertions were formed with these patterns. Findings are hopeful in that they suggest pre-service teachers can develop a more contemporary view of scientific inquiry when immersed in a context that promotes this perspective. Not surprisingly, however, the prospective teachers encountered a number of barriers when attempting to translate their emerging ideas into practice. More research is needed to determine which teacher preparation experiences are most powerful in supporting pre-service teachers as they construct a framework for science teaching and learning that includes scientific inquiry as a central component.

  13. Income-Based Disparities in Early Elementary School Science Achievement

    Science.gov (United States)

    Curran, F. Chris

    2017-01-01

    This study documents gaps in kindergarten and first-grade science achievement by family income and explores the degree to which such gaps can be accounted for by student race/ethnicity, out-of-school activities, parental education, and school fixed effects. In doing so, it expands on prior research that documents disparate rates of science…

  14. Effects of Engineering Design-Based Science on Elementary School Science Students' Engineering Identity Development across Gender and Grade

    Science.gov (United States)

    Capobianco, Brenda M.; Yu, Ji H.; French, Brian F.

    2015-04-01

    The integration of engineering concepts and practices into elementary science education has become an emerging concern for science educators and practitioners, alike. Moreover, how children, specifically preadolescents (grades 1-5), engage in engineering design-based learning activities may help science educators and researchers learn more about children's earliest identification with engineering. The purpose of this study was to examine the extent to which engineering identity differed among preadolescents across gender and grade, when exposing students to engineering design-based science learning activities. Five hundred fifty preadolescent participants completed the Engineering Identity Development Scale (EIDS), a recently developed measure with validity evidence that characterizes children's conceptions of engineering and potential career aspirations. Data analyses of variance among four factors (i.e., gender, grade, and group) indicated that elementary school students who engaged in the engineering design-based science learning activities demonstrated greater improvements on the EIDS subscales compared to those in the comparison group. Specifically, students in the lower grade levels showed substantial increases, while students in the higher grade levels showed decreases. Girls, regardless of grade level and participation in the engineering learning activities, showed higher scores in the academic subscale compared to boys. These findings suggest that the integration of engineering practices in the science classroom as early as grade one shows potential in fostering and sustaining student interest, participation, and self-concept in engineering and science.

  15. Influence of Nature and History of Science Courses on Value Perceptions of Elementary Science Teacher Candidates in Conceptual Dimension in Turkey

    Science.gov (United States)

    Aktamis, Hilal; Higde, Emrah

    2018-01-01

    This study aimed to determine the changes in understanding about the nature of science (NOS) and conceptual values of 28 elementary science teacher candidates who engaged in the instruction of the nature and history of science (NHOS). A values scale was used to determine the values of science teacher candidates in six areas of the conceptual…

  16. Educational models in academic research on the teaching practices in science education in elementary school

    OpenAIRE

    Rebeca Chiacchio Azevedo Fernandes; Jorge Megid Neto

    2013-01-01

    We intended to identify the features and pedagogical trends of the school practices proposed and implemented in thesis and dissertations directed to science education at elementary school level from 1972 to 2005. Thirty studies were analysed regarding the teaching methodology, instructional resources, teacher-student relationships, evaluation, theoretical framework, and educational model (traditional, rediscovery, constructivist, technicist, STS, socio-cultural). We found that the constructiv...

  17. Using a Multicultural Social Justice Framework to Analyze Elementary Teachers' Meanings of Multicultural Science Education

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kye, Hannah Anne

    In response to the persistent gaps in science opportunities and outcomes across lines of race, class, gender, and disability, decades of science reforms have called for "science for all." For elementary teachers, science for all demands that they not only learn to teach science but learn to teach it in ways that promote more equitable science learning opportunities and outcomes. In this qualitative case study, I use a framework of multicultural social justice education to examine three teachers' beliefs and practices of multicultural science education. The teachers, one preservice and two in-service, taught elementary science in a month-long summer program and met weekly with this researcher to discuss connections between their expressed commitments about teaching toward social justice and their work as science teachers. The data sources for this study included audio recordings of weekly meetings, science lessons, and semi-structured individual interviews. These data were transcribed, coded, and analyzed to define the most salient themes and categories among the individual teachers and across cases. I found that the teachers' beliefs and practices aligned with traditional approaches to school and science wherein science was a set of scripted right answers, diversity was only superficially acknowledged, and multiculturalizing the curriculum meant situating science in unfamiliar real world contexts. These meanings of science positioned the teacher as authority and operated outside of a structural analysis of the salience of race, culture, gender, and disability in students' science learning experiences. As they taught and reflected on their teaching in light of their social justice commitments, I found that the teachers negotiated more constructivist and student-centered approaches to science education. These meanings of science required teachers to learn about students and make their experiences more central to their learning. Yet they continued to only acknowledge

  18. Teacher perspectives on specialisation in the elementary classroom: implications for science instruction

    Science.gov (United States)

    Poland, Susan; Colburn, Amanda; Long, David E.

    2017-09-01

    In the current educational climate of testing and accountability, many elementary teachers find they lack adequate time and confidence to enact reform-based science teaching due to pressure to perform in reading and mathematics. With this tension in mind, we explore the phenomenon of elementary teacher specialisation in comparison to the traditional, generalist model of teaching, wherein a teacher is responsible for teaching all subjects to one group of students each year. This mixed-methods study examines teacher perspectives on the practice of specialisation and generalisation through teacher interview data. Our teachers spoke candidly about their attitudes towards specialisation, the perceived impacts of specialization on teachers and students, and the role of accountability, administration, and testing in their decisions to specialise. Additionally, our teachers discussed time dedicated to science in specialist and generalist classrooms. Our findings suggest that specialist roles are sought by those who see specialisation as a means of reducing workload, while allowing for content mastery and improved instruction. Alternatively, generalist roles are sought by those who primarily view the role of elementary teaching as the care and development of children, and who prefer to focus on the classroom as a holistic, fluid space. Implications for science teaching are discussed.

  19. Performance-based classrooms: A case study of two elementary teachers of mathematics and science

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jones, Kenneth W.

    This case study depicts how two elementary teachers develop classrooms devoted to performance-based instruction in mathematics and science. The purpose is to develop empirical evidence of classroom practices that leads to a conceptual framework about the nature of performance-based instruction. Performance-based assessment and instruction are defined from the literature to entail involving students in tasks that are complex and engaging, requiring them to apply knowledge and skills in authentic contexts. In elementary mathematics and science, such an approach emphasizes problem solving, exploration, inquiry, and reasoning. The body of the work examines teacher beliefs, curricular orientations, instructional strategies, assessment approaches, management and organizational skills, and interpersonal relationships. The focus throughout is on those aspects that foster student performance in elementary mathematics and science. The resulting framework describes five characteristics that contribute to performance-based classrooms: a caring classroom community, a connectionist learning theory, a thinking and doing curriculum, diverse opportunities for learning, and ongoing assessment, feedback, and adjustment. The conclusion analyzes factors external to the classroom that support or constrain the development of performance-based classrooms and discusses the implications for educational policy and further research.

  20. Instructional support and implementation structure during elementary teachers' science education simulation use

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gonczi, Amanda L.; Chiu, Jennifer L.; Maeng, Jennifer L.; Bell, Randy L.

    2016-07-01

    This investigation sought to identify patterns in elementary science teachers' computer simulation use, particularly implementation structures and instructional supports commonly employed by teachers. Data included video-recorded science lessons of 96 elementary teachers who used computer simulations in one or more science lessons. Results indicated teachers used a one-to-one student-to-computer ratio most often either during class-wide individual computer use or during a rotating station structure. Worksheets, general support, and peer collaboration were the most common forms of instructional support. The least common instructional support forms included lesson pacing, initial play, and a closure discussion. Students' simulation use was supported in the fewest ways during a rotating station structure. Results suggest that simulation professional development with elementary teachers needs to explicitly focus on implementation structures and instructional support to enhance participants' pedagogical knowledge and improve instructional simulation use. In addition, research is needed to provide theoretical explanations for the observed patterns that should subsequently be addressed in supporting teachers' instructional simulation use during professional development or in teacher preparation programs.

  1. The effect of site-based preservice experiences on elementary science teaching self-efficacy beliefs

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wingfield, Mary E.

    Current reform in science education has focused on the need for improvement of preservice teacher training (National Science Education Standards, 1996). As a situation specific construct (Bandura, 1977), self-efficacy studies have been conducted to investigate factors that impact preservice teachers' sense of confidence as it relates to their ability to become successful science teachers. This descriptive study identified factors in the site based experiences that affected preservice elementary teachers' self-efficacy as measured by the Science Teaching Efficacy Belief Instrument (STEBL-B) (Enochs and Riggs, 1990). The sample consisted of the entire population of undergraduate elementary preservice teachers in the site based teacher education program during the fall semester of 1997 at a large south central urban university. The 131 paired, pretest posttests of the entire STEBL-B and the two constructs were analyzed for significance in mean score gains. Results of the paired t test yielded a t value of 11.52 which was significant at p Bandura identified as sources of information used to determine self-efficacy. These include performance accomplishments through authentic teaching experiences, vicarious experiences through observation of the site based teachers, and verbal persuasion and physiological states from feedback given by the university coordinators. The majority of these preservice teachers started the semester with a negative attitude toward teaching science, but ended the semester with a positive view of themselves as effective science teachers in the future.

  2. Do Inquiring Minds Have Positive Attitudes? The Science Education of Preservice Elementary Teachers

    Science.gov (United States)

    Riegle-Crumb, Catherine; Morton, Karisma; Moore, Chelsea; Chimonidou, Antonia; Labrake, Cynthia; Kopp, Sacha

    2016-01-01

    Due to their potential impact on students' cognitive and non-cognitive outcomes, the negative attitudes towards science held by many elementary teachers are a critical issue that needs to be addressed. This study focuses on the science education of pre-service elementary teachers with the goal of improving their attitudes before they begin their professional lives as classroom teachers. Specifically, this study builds on a small body of research to examine whether exposure to inquiry-based science content courses that actively involve students in the collaborative process of learning and discovery can promote a positive change in attitudes towards science across several different dimensions. To examine this issue, surveys and administrative data were collected from over 200 students enrolled in the Hands on Science (HoS) program for pre-service teachers at the University of Texas at Austin, as well as more than 200 students in a comparison group enrolled in traditional lecture-style classes. Quantitative analyses reveal that after participating in HoS courses, pre-service teachers significantly increased their scores on scales measuring confidence, enjoyment, anxiety, and perceptions of relevance, while those in the comparison group experienced a decline in favorable attitudes to science. These patterns offer empirical support for the attitudinal benefits of inquiry-based instruction and have implications for the future learning opportunities available to students at all education levels. PMID:27667862

  3. Effects of 3D Printing Project-based Learning on Preservice Elementary Teachers' Science Attitudes, Science Content Knowledge, and Anxiety About Teaching Science

    Science.gov (United States)

    Novak, Elena; Wisdom, Sonya

    2018-05-01

    3D printing technology is a powerful educational tool that can promote integrative STEM education by connecting engineering, technology, and applications of science concepts. Yet, research on the integration of 3D printing technology in formal educational contexts is extremely limited. This study engaged preservice elementary teachers (N = 42) in a 3D Printing Science Project that modeled a science experiment in the elementary classroom on why things float or sink using 3D printed boats. The goal was to explore how collaborative 3D printing inquiry-based learning experiences affected preservice teachers' science teaching self-efficacy beliefs, anxiety toward teaching science, interest in science, perceived competence in K-3 technology and engineering science standards, and science content knowledge. The 3D printing project intervention significantly decreased participants' science teaching anxiety and improved their science teaching efficacy, science interest, and perceived competence in K-3 technological and engineering design science standards. Moreover, an analysis of students' project reflections and boat designs provided an insight into their collaborative 3D modeling design experiences. The study makes a contribution to the scarce body of knowledge on how teacher preparation programs can utilize 3D printing technology as a means of preparing prospective teachers to implement the recently adopted engineering and technology standards in K-12 science education.

  4. Embedding Probeware Technology in the Context of Ocean Acidification in Elementary Science Methods Courses

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ensign, Todd I.; Rye, James A.; Luna, Melissa J.

    2017-12-01

    Research indicates that preservice teacher (PT) education programs can positively impact perceptions of scientific probeware use in K-8 environments. Despite the potential of probeware to improve science instruction and student engagement, its use in elementary education has been limited. Sixty-seven PT enrolled across three sections of an elementary science methods course participated in a mixed-methods study through which they utilized probeware in a thematic experience on ocean acidification. One-way repeated measures ANOVA of pre and post survey data measuring subscales of utility, ability, and intent to use probeware demonstrated a statistically significant increase with medium to large effect sizes for all subscales across all sections (p<0.01,{η}_p^2=0.384;p<0.001,{η}_p^2=0.517;p<0.001,{η}_p^2=0.214) . Analysis of reflective journals revealed over 60% felt the multiple capabilities (notably graphing) of probeware make it a useful classroom tool, and almost one-half believed that its use makes science more enjoyable and engaging. Mapping of the unitized data from the journals on the Next Generation Science Standards suggested that probeware use especially engages learners in planning and carrying out investigations and in analyzing and interpreting data. Journals also revealed that despite PT having prior experience with probeware in science courses, its use in their future elementary classroom is conditional on having a positive experience with probeware in a science methods course. Further, embedding a probeware experience in a unit on ocean acidification provides PT with strategies for addressing climate change and engaging in argument from evidence.

  5. Characterizing Elementary Teachers' Enactment of High-Leverage Practices through Engineering Design-Based Science Instruction

    Science.gov (United States)

    Capobianco, Brenda M.; DeLisi, Jacqueline; Radloff, Jeffrey

    2018-01-01

    In an effort to document teachers' enactments of new reform in science teaching, valid and scalable measures of science teaching using engineering design are needed. This study describes the development and testing of an approach for documenting and characterizing elementary science teachers' multiday enactments of engineering design-based science…

  6. The PISCES Project: How Teacher-Scientist Partners can Enhance Elementary Science Instruction

    Science.gov (United States)

    Reif, C.; Oechel, W.

    2003-12-01

    The PISCES Project (Partnerships Involving the Scientific Community in Elementary Schools www.sdsa.org/pisces) is an innovative program that brings high quality standards-based elementary science curriculum and hands-on laboratory materials into San Diego County's classrooms. The project is funded by the NSF Graduate Teaching Fellows in K-12 Education (GK-12) program. The project was designed and is administered through cooperation among faculty at San Diego State University and the Science Department of the San Diego County Office of Education. Undergraduate and graduate students enrolled in science programs in San Diego area universities including San Diego State University, California State University San Marcos, and University of California San Diego partner with elementary school teachers. Through this partnership, the scientist brings scientific expertise to the classroom while the teacher delivers the lesson using current pedagogic methods. This is accomplished during a 3 month partnership in which the scientist joins the teacher in the classroom a few days each week to complete professional kit-based curriculum such as that available from FOSS (Full Option Science System) and STC (Science and Technology for Children). The teachers remain in the program for two years during which they have continuous access to the kit-based curriculum as well as two to three partnership cycles. Teachers receive assistance outside of the classroom as well attending professional development institutes three times a year to establish and maintain effective science teaching methods. The San Diego Science Alliance and other community and industry supporters provide the additionalfunding necessary to provide this teacher professional development Currenty, PISCES is present in over 40 schools and is able to provide partnerships to over 100 classrooms each year. In addition to the work done in San Diego, the project has expanded to Barrow, Alaska with plans to expand to La Paz

  7. Intersections of life histories and science identities: the stories of three preservice elementary teachers

    Science.gov (United States)

    Avraamidou, Lucy

    2016-03-01

    Grounded within Connelly and Clandinin's conceptualization of teachers' professional identity in terms of 'stories to live by' and through a life-history lens, this multiple case study aimed to respond to the following questions: (a) How do three preservice elementary teachers view themselves as future science teachers? (b) How have the participants' life histories shaped their science identity trajectories? In order to characterize the participants' formation of science identities over time, various data regarding their life histories in relation to science were collected: science biographies, self-portraits, interviews, reflective journals, lesson plans, and classroom observations. The analysis of the data illustrated how the three participants' identities have been in formation from the early years of their lives and how various events, experiences, and interactions had shaped their identities through time and across contexts. These findings are discussed alongside implications for theory, specifically, identity and life-history intersections, for teacher preparation, and for research related to explorations of beginning elementary teachers' identity trajectories.

  8. How Elementary Teachers' Beliefs About the Nature of Science Mediate Implementing Prescribed Science Curricula in Their Classrooms

    Science.gov (United States)

    Giglio, Kathleen Rose Fitzgerald

    This is an in depth study of two elementary school teachers, who are generalists because they teach multiple subjects to their classes, in addition to science, respectively in grade 3 and grade 6. The teachers taught and their students learned using a contemporary understanding of the nature of science (NOS), which they learned by actually doing science investigations, rather than being explicitly told about NOS (contrary to what some scholars claim). Neither teacher completed any formal/informal science training/experiences, especially connected to the construct NOS. Even though the teachers did not explicitly reference NOS in the classroom, their teaching about NOS was made possible through their implementation of the FOSS ( Full Option Science System) curriculum. Although their students enthusiastically demonstrated competence in both science process and content, as prescribed by the FOSS curriculum, the teachers' felt undermined by the state mandated assessments and the inclusion of student performance as a criterion for the state teacher evaluation system. This research was designed to answer the following questions: (1) What are elementary teachers' conceptions about NOS? (2) How are the teachers' NOS views manifested in their implementation of the FOSS program and their choices of instructional methods/materials? (3) What factors may have enhanced or hindered how the teachers sustained their NOS conceptions as they implemented the FOSS program? To explicate the relationship between teachers' views of NOS and the extent to which constructivist practices were employed in their science instruction, a multiple research methodology using grounded theory as the foundation and employing both quantitative and qualitative measures, was needed. Sources of quantitative data were written survey results using the Student Understanding of Science and Scientific Inquiry Questionnaire (SUSSI; Liang et al., 2008) Likert scale responses and constructed responses. Face

  9. A case of learning to teach elementary science: Investigating beliefs, experiences, and tensions

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bryan, Lynn Ann

    This study examines how preservice elementary teacher beliefs and experiences within the context of reflective science teacher education influence the development of professional knowledge. From a cognitive constructivist theoretical perspective, I conducted a case analysis to investigate the beliefs about science teaching and learning held by a preservice teacher (Barbara), identify the tensions she encountered in learning to teach elementary science, understand the frames from which she identified problems of practice, and discern how her experiences influenced the process of reflecting on her own science teaching. From an analysis of interviews, observation, and written documents, I constructed a profile of Barbara's beliefs that consisted of three foundational and three dualistic beliefs about science teaching and learning. Her foundational beliefs concerned: (a) the value of science and science teaching, (b) the nature of scientific concepts and goals of science instruction, and (c) control in the science classroom. Barbara held dualistic beliefs about: (a) how children learn science, (b) the science students' role, and (c) the science teacher's role. The dualistic beliefs formed two contradictory nests of beliefs. One nest, grounded in life-long science learner experiences, reflected a didactic teaching orientation and predominantly guided her practice. The second nest, not well-grounded in experience, embraced a hands-on approach and predominantly guided her vision of practice. Barbara encountered tensions in thinking about science teaching and learning as a result of inconsistencies between her vision of science teaching and her actual practice. Confronting these tensions prompted Barbara to rethink the connections between her classroom actions and students' learning, create new perspectives for viewing her practice, and consider alternative practices more resonant with her visionary beliefs. However, the self-reinforcing belief system created by her

  10. Life histories of female elementary teachers and their science/teacher role construction

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ramseur, Aletha Johnson

    The research conducted in this study focuses on life histories of female elementary teachers and their science/teacher role construction. Identity theorists argue that the self consists of a collection of identities founded on occupying a particular role. Who we are depends on the roles we occupy. These roles are often referred to as "role identities". In the case of these participants, many role identities (mother, wife, sibling, and teacher) exist. This study focuses primarily on their (science) teacher role identity. Literature on women's lives, as learners and teachers, suggest that women's experiences, currently and throughout history influenced their teacher role construction. There is however, little knowledge of women's lives as elementary teachers of science and the affect of their experiences, currently and throughout history, on their (science) teacher identity construction. Schools delineated by race, class, and gender relations, are similar to other sectors of society's, social and cultural spheres within which race, class, and gender identities are constructed. Using in-depth-interviews female elementary teachers were encouraged to actively reconstruct their life and work-life experiences focusing on family, school and science interactions. They addressed the intellectual and emotional connections between their life and work experiences by focusing on details of their past and present experiences and examining the meaning of those experiences. It was the scrutiny of these connections between their life and work experiences, the meaning derived from them and historical events, and the constraints imposed on their personal choices by broader power relations, such as those of class, race, and gender that informed why we teach, how we teach, and what we teach.

  11. Development and Implementation of an Integrated Science Course for Elementary Eduation Majors

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gunter, Mickey E.; Gammon, Steven D.; Kearney, Robert J.; Waller, Brenda E.; Oliver, David J.

    1997-02-01

    Currently the scientific community is trying to increase the general populationapos;s knowledge of science. These efforts stem from the fact that the citizenry needs a better understanding of scientific knowledge to make informed decisions on many issues of current concern. The problem of scientific illiteracy begins in grade school and can be traced to inadequate exposure to science and scientific thinking during the preparation of K - 8 teachers. Typically preservice elementary teachers are required to take only one or two disconnected science courses to obtain their teaching certificates. Also, introductory science courses are often large and impersonal, with the result that while students pass the courses, they may learn very little and retain even less.

  12. An exploration of administrators' perceptions of elementary science: A case study of the role of science in two elementary schools based on the interactions of administrators with colleagues, science content and state standards

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brogdon, Lori-Anne Stelmark

    This research is a case study on the perceptions and attitudes of administrators in the area of elementary science and how their responses reflect agreement or dissonance with the perceptions of elementary teachers on the subject of science within the same district. The study used Likert-type surveys and interviews from both administrators and teachers on five key areas: 1) Attitudes towards science and teaching 2) Attitudes towards teaching science 3) Attitudes towards administrators 4) Time teaching science and 5) Attitudes about policy and standards. Survey data was analyzed within and across areas to identify similarity and difference within each group. The medians from the administrative and teacher surveys were then crossed referenced through the use of a Mann Whitney test to identify areas of similarity. Interview data was coded around three major themes: 1) Standards 2) Classroom Instruction and 3) Conversations. The findings show that even though administrators' perceptions favor the inclusion of science in the elementary classroom, both administrators and teachers in this study reported limited involvement from, and conversation with, each other on the topic of science education. Heavy reliance by the administrators was placed on the use of consultants to provide professional development in the area of science instruction and to review the use of state standards, resulting in limited conversation between administrators and teachers about science. Teachers reported a heavy reliance upon their colleagues in the area of science instruction and curriculum planning. In addition, both administrators and teachers reported a greater focus on math and English for classroom instruction. Findings in this research support implications that more focus should be placed on the role of administrators in the implementation of science instruction. Administrators can play a crucial role in the success of science programs at the building, district and state levels

  13. Integrating Service-Learning Pedagogy for Preservice Elementary Teachers' Science Identity Development

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wilson, Rachel E.; Bradbury, Leslie U.; McGlasson, Martha A.

    2015-04-01

    The purpose of this article is to explore how preservice elementary teachers (PSETs) interpreted their service-learning experiences within a pre-methods environmentally focused course and how their interpretations shaped their science teaching identities. Along a continuum of service-learning experiences were events that emphasized science learning, that focused on science teaching, and that were transitional, with elements of both science learning and science teaching. These various service-learning experiences were designed to be "boundary experiences" for professional identity development (Geijsel & Meijers in Educational Studies, 3(4), 419-430, 2005), providing opportunities for PSETs to reflect on meanings in cultural contexts and how they are related to their own personal meanings. We analyzed written reflections and end-of-course oral reflection interviews from 42 PSETs on their various service-learning experiences. PSETs discussed themes related to the meanings they made of the service-learning experiences: (a) experiencing science in relation to their lives as humans and future teachers, (b) interacting with elementary students and other PSETs, and (c) making an impact in the physical environment and in the community. The connections that PSETs were making between the discursive spaces (service-learning contexts) and their own meaning-making of these experiences (as connected to their own interests in relation to their future professions and daily lives) shows evidence of the potential that various types of science service-learning experiences have for PSETs in developing inbound science teaching identity trajectories (Wenger in Communities of practice: Learning, meaning, and identity. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1998). The findings of this study point to positive outcomes for PSETs when they participate in structured service-learning experiences along a learning to teaching continuum (246).

  14. Elementary teachers' perceptions of science inquiry and professional development challenges and opportunities

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jones, Kathleen M.

    Inquiry science, including a focus on evidence-based discourse, is essential to spark interest in science education in the early grades and maintain that interest throughout children's schooling. The researcher was interested in two broad areas: inquiry science in the elementary classroom and the need/desire for professional development opportunities for elementary teachers related to science education, and specifically professional development focused on inquiry science. A cross sectional survey design was prepared and distributed in May 2005 and usable responses were received from 228 elementary teachers from the south-central area of Pennsylvania which was a representative sample of socio-economical and geographical factors. Areas of particular interest in the results section include: (1) The use of Science Kits which is popular, but may not have the desired impact since they are "adjusted" by teachers often removing the opportunity for evidence-based discourse by the students. This may be partly based on the lack of time dedicated to science instruction and, secondly, the teachers' lack of comfort with the science topics. Another issue arising from science kits is the amount of preparation time required to utilize them. (2) Teachers demonstrated understanding of the high qualities of professional development but, when it came to science content professional development, they were more inclined to opt for short-term opportunities as opposed to long-term learning opportunities. Since elementary teachers are generalists and most schools are not focusing on science, the lack of attention to a subject where they are least comfortable is understandable, but disappointing. (3) There is a great need for more training in evidence--based discourse so teachers can implement this needed skill and increase students' understanding of science content so they are more able to compete in the international science and math measurements. (4) Professional development, especially

  15. Elementary Teachers' Perceptions of Their Professional Teaching Competencies: Differences between Teachers of Math/Science Majors and Non-Math/Science Majors in Taiwan

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wu, Li-Chen; Chao, Li-ling; Cheng, Pi-Yun; Tuan, Hsiao-Lin; Guo, Chorng-Jee

    2018-01-01

    The purpose of this study was to probe the differences of perceived professional teaching competence between elementary school math/science teachers in Taiwan who are majored in math/science and those who are not. A researcher-developed Math/Science Teachers' Professional Development Questionnaire was used in a nationwide survey, using a two-stage…

  16. Student involvement in learning: Collaboration in science for PreService elementary teachers

    Science.gov (United States)

    Roychoudhury, Anita; Roth, Wolff-Michael

    1992-03-01

    The present study provided insights regarding the interactions that take place in collaborative science laboratory and regarding the outcome of such interactions. Science laboratory experiences structured by teachers have been criticized for allowing very little, if any, meaningful learning. However, this study showed that even structured laboratory experiments can provide insightful experience for students when conducted in a group setting that demanded interactive participation from all its members. The findings of the present study underscored the synergistic and supportive nature of collaborative groups. Here, students patiently repeated explanations to support the meaning construction on the part of their slower peers and elaborated their own understanding in the process; groups negotiated the meaning of observations and the corresponding theoretical explanations; students developed and practiced a range of social skills necessary in today’s workplace; and off-task behavior was thwarted by the group members motivated to work toward understanding rather than simply generating answers for task completion. The current findings suggest an increased use of collaborative learning environments for the teaching of science to elementary education majors. Some teachers have already made use of such settings in their laboratory teaching. However, collaborative learning should not be limited to the laboratory only, but be extended to more traditionally structured classes. The effects of such a switch in activity structures, increased quality of peer interaction, mastery of subject matter content, and decreased anxiety levels could well lead to better attitudes toward science among preservice elementary school teachers and eventually among their own students.

  17. Growing minds: The effect of school gardening programs on the science achievement of elementary students

    Science.gov (United States)

    Klemmer, Cynthia Davis

    Science literacy refers to a basic knowledge and understanding of science concepts and processes needed to consider issues and make choices on a daily basis in an increasingly technology-driven society. A critical precursor to producing science literate adults is actively involving children in science while they are young. National and state (TX) science standards advocate the use of constructivist methods including hands-on, experiential activities that foster the development of science process skills through real-world investigations. School gardens show promise as a tool for implementing these guidelines by providing living laboratories for active science. Gardens offer opportunities for a variety of hands-on investigations, enabling students to apply and practice science skills. School gardens are increasing in popularity; however, little research data exists attesting to their actual effectiveness in enhancing students' science achievement. The study used a quasi-experimental posttest-only research design to assess the effects of a school gardening program on the science achievement of 3rd, 4th, and 5th grade elementary students. The sample consisted of 647 students from seven elementary schools in Temple, Texas. The experimental group participated in school gardening activities as part of their science curriculum. The control group did not garden and were taught using traditional classroom-based methods. Results showed higher scores for students in the experimental group which were statistically significant. Post-hoc tests using Scheffe's method revealed that these differences were attributed to the 5th grade. No statistical significance was found between girls and boys in the experimental group, indicating that gardening was equally effective for both genders. Within each gender, statistical significance was found between males in the experimental and control groups at all three grade levels, and for females in the 5 th grade. This research indicated that

  18. Writing in elementary school science: Factors that influence teacher beliefs and practices

    Science.gov (United States)

    Glen, Nicole J.

    Recent calls for scientifically literate citizens have prompted science educators to examine the roles that literacy holds in students' science learning processes. Although many studies have investigated the cognitive gains students acquire when they write in science, these writing-to-learn studies have typically been conducted with only middle and secondary school students. Few studies have explored how teachers, particularly elementary teachers, understand the use of writing in science and the factors that influence their science and writing lessons. This was a qualitative case study conducted in one suburban school with four elementary teachers. The purpose of this study was to understand: (a) how teachers' uses of and purposes for writing in science compared to that in English language arts; (b) the factors that drove teachers' pedagogical decisions to use writing in certain ways; (c) teachers' beliefs about science teaching and learning and its relation to how they used writing; (d) teachers' perceptions of students' writing abilities and its relation to how they used writing; and (e) teachers' views about how writing is used by scientists. Seven main findings resulted from this research. In summary, teachers' main uses of and purposes for writing were similar in science and English language arts. For much of the writing done in both subjects, teachers' expectations of students' writing were typically based on their general literacy writing skills. The teachers believed that scientific writing is factual, for the purpose of communicating about science, and is not as creative or "fun" as other types of writing. The teachers' pedagogical practices in science included teaching by experiences, reading, and the transmission of information. These practices were related to their understanding of scientific writing. Finally, additional factors drove the decisions teachers made regarding the use of writing in science, including time, knowledge of curriculum

  19. A rural math, science, and technology elementary school tangled up in global networks of practice

    Science.gov (United States)

    Carlone, Heidi B.; Kimmel, Sue; Tschida, Christina

    2010-06-01

    This is an ethnographic study of a newly created math, science, and technology elementary magnet school in a rural community fiercely committed to cultural preservation while facing unprecedented economic instability brought on by massive loss of manufacturing jobs. Our goal was to understand global- and community-level contexts that influenced the school's science curriculum, the ways the school promoted itself to the community, and the implicit meanings of science held by school staff, parents and community members. Main sources of data were the county's newspaper articles from 2003 to 2006, the school's, town's, and business leaders' promotional materials, and interviews with school staff, parents, and community members. A key finding was the school's dual promotion of science education and character education. We make sense of this "science with character" curriculum by unpacking the school and community's entanglements with historical (cultural preservation), political (conservative politics, concerns for youth depravity), and economic (globalization) networks. We describe the ways those entanglements enabled certain reproductive meanings of school science (as add-on, suspect, and elitist) and other novel meanings of science (empathetic, nurturing, place-based). This study highlights the school as a site of struggle, entangled in multiple networks of practice that influence in positive, negative, and unpredictable ways, the enacted science curriculum.

  20. Construction of teacher knowledge in context: Preparing elementary teachers to teach mathematics and science

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lowery, Maye Norene Vail

    1998-12-01

    The purposes of this study were to further the understanding of how preservice teacher construct teacher knowledge and pedagogical content knowledge of elementary mathematics and science and to determine the extent of that knowledge in a school-based setting. Preservice teachers, university instructors, inservice teachers, and other school personnel were involved in this context-specific study. Evidence of the preservice teachers' knowledge construction (its acquisition, its dimensions, and the social context) was collected through the use of a qualitative methodology. Collected data included individual and group interviews, course documents, artifacts, and preservice teaching portfolios. Innovative aspects of this integrated mathematics and science elementary methods course included standards-based instruction with immediate access to field experiences. Grade-level teams of preservice and inservice teachers planned and implemented lessons in mathematics and science for elementary students. An on-site, portable classroom building served as a mathematics and science teaching and learning laboratory. A four-stage analysis was performed, revealing significant patterns of learning. An ecosystem of learning within a constructivist learning environment was identified to contain three systems: the university system; the school system; and the cohort of learners system. A mega system for the construction of teacher knowledge was revealed in the final analysis. Learning venues were discovered to be the conduits of learning in a situated learning context. Analysis and synthesis of data revealed an extensive acquisition of teacher knowledge and pedagogical content knowledge through identified learning components. Patience, flexibility, and communication were identified as necessities for successful teaching. Learning components included: collaboration with inservice teachers; implementation of discovery learning and hands-on/minds-on learning; small groupwork; lesson planning

  1. The nature of science and the preservice elementary teacher: Changes in understanding and practice

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rivas, Michael Gerald

    This action research project studies preservice elementary teachers in a science methods course. The purpose of this research project was to enhance preservice teachers' understanding of specific nature of science (NOS) tenets so as to promote equity and access within the elementary science classroom. In particular, I chose five NOS tenets that were listed in the first chapter of the AAAS (1989) document titled, "The Nature of Science," and connected them to equitable educational goals and practices. The theoretical framework guiding this study came from bodies of scholarship relating to the NOS, social constructivism, and action research. This study addressed the following three questions: (1) What opportunities were provided the preservice teachers so that they could enhance their understandings of the NOS? (2) What were the changes in preservice teachers' understanding of the NOS as a result? (3) How did the prospective teachers' understandings of the NOS translate into their classroom practice? The analysis revealed that the science methods course's operational curriculum consisted of implicit and explicit teaching of the NOS, as well as intended and untended NOS tenets. The prospective teachers initially held a limited view of the NOS, but by the end of the course their view had been enhanced. In addition, the participants made direct connections between their new understandings of the NOS and equity and access in the science classroom. In their teaching, the preservice teachers as a group implicitly taught all five of the NOS tenets. In fact, a majority taught three of the five intended tenets. Explicitly, only one tenet was taught, but it was taught with a direct connection to making the science classroom more inclusive. The findings of this study indicate that preservice teachers can have their views of the NOS enhanced even though they may have experienced years of deficient science instruction. They pointed out that this enhanced view of the NOS can be

  2. Preservice elementary teachers' actual and designated identities as teachers of science and teachers of students

    Science.gov (United States)

    Canipe, Martha Murray

    Preservice elementary teachers often have concerns about teaching science that may stem from a lack of confidence as teachers or their own negative experiences as learners of science. These concerns may lead preservice teachers to avoid teaching science or to teach it in a way that focuses on facts and vocabulary rather than engaging students in the doing of science. Research on teacher identity has suggested that being able to envision oneself as a teacher of science is an important part of becoming a teacher of science. Elementary teachers are generalists and as such rather than identifying themselves as teachers of particular content areas, they may identify more generally as teachers of students. This study examines three preservice teachers' identities as teachers of science and teachers of students and how these identities are enacted in their student teaching classrooms. Using a narrated identity framework, I explore stories told by preservice teachers, mentor teachers, student teaching supervisors, and science methods course instructors about who preservice teachers are as teachers of science and teachers of students. Identities are the stories that are told about who someone is or will become in relation to a particular context. Identities that are enacted are performances of the stories that are an identity. Stories were collected through interviews with each storyteller and in an unmoderated focus group with the three preservice teachers. In addition to sorting stories as being about teachers of science or students, the stories were categorized as being about preservice teachers in the present (actual identities) or in the future (designated identities). The preservice teachers were also observed teaching science lessons in their student teaching placements. These enactments of identities were analyzed in order to identify which aspects of the identity stories were reflected in the way preservice teachers taught their science lessons. I also analyzed the

  3. The Nature of Science Instrument-Elementary (NOSI-E): the end of the road?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Peoples, Shelagh M; O'Dwyer, Laura M

    2014-01-01

    This research continues prior work published in this journal (Peoples, O'Dwyer, Shields and Wang, 2013). The first paper described the scale development, psychometric analyses and part-validation of a theoretically-grounded Rasch-based instrument, the Nature of Science Instrument-Elementary (NOSI-E). The NOSI-E was designed to measure elementary students' understanding of the Nature of Science (NOS). In the first paper, evidence was provided for three of the six validity aspects (content, substantive and generalizability) needed to support the construct validity of the NOSI-E. The research described in this paper examines two additional validity aspects (structural and external). The purpose of this study was to determine which of three competing internal models provides reliable, interpretable, and responsive measures of students' understanding of NOS. One postulate is that the NOS construct is unidimensional;. alternatively, the NOS construct is composed of five independent unidimensional constructs (the consecutive approach). Lastly, the NOS construct is multidimensional and composed of five inter-related but separate dimensions. The vast body of evidence supported the claim that the NOS construct is multidimensional. Measures from the multidimensional model were positively related to student science achievement and students' perceptions of their classroom environment; this provided supporting evidence for the external validity aspect of the NOS construct. As US science education moves toward students learning science through engaging in authentic scientific practices and building learning progressions (NRC, 2012), it will be important to assess whether this new approach to teaching science is effective, and the NOSI-E may be used as a measure of the impact of this reform.

  4. Profile of elementary school science teacher instruction in disaster risk reduction: case study of volcano disaster

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pujianto; Prabowo; Wasis

    2018-04-01

    This study examined the profile of science' teacher instruction in Disaster Risk Reduction (DRR), as a feature of instructional quality, on students’ learning experiences. A qualitative study was done to observe teacher activities in teaching of disaster preparedness. Science teacher and 14 students at grade 4 of SDN (elementary school) Kiyaran 2 are involved as the subject of this study. Teacher’ instruction was coded with regard to preparation, action, and evaluation using observation sheets and documentation. Data analysis results showed a positive significant effect of the readiness during preparation on learning process of disaster risk reduction and an indirect effect of teacher’ action on students’ learning experiences. There is a lack of teaching materials about volcano disaster in the elementary school. Teacher found difficulties on evaluation of student achievement in disaster preparedness. These findings highlight the importance of DRR in uphold science teachers’ education. Items of teachers’ skill in preparing of DRR may be used to offer model of concrete instruction situation during university workshop for maintain teacher education.

  5. Improving the Science Teaching Self-Efficacy of Preservice Elementary Teachers: A Multiyear Study of A Hybrid Geoscience Course

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cervato, Cinzia; Kerton, Charles

    2017-01-01

    We describe the impact of a hybrid Earth and space science course, taught online and complemented by a 2-hour face-to-face lab, on the science teaching self-efficacy of elementary preservice teachers over a 3-year span. Guided by the two overarching objectives of engaging students in the content and increasing their comfort level with teaching…

  6. A well-started beginning elementary teacher's beliefs and practices in relation to reform recommendations about inquiry-based science

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Avraamidou, Lucy

    2017-01-01

    Given reform recommendations emphasizing scientific inquiry and empirical evidence pointing to the difficulties beginning teachers face in enacting inquiry-based science, this study explores a well-started beginning elementary teacher's (Sofia) beliefs about inquiry-based science and related

  7. The Impact of Video Case Content on Preservice Elementary Teachers' Decision-Making and Conceptions of Effective Science Teaching

    Science.gov (United States)

    Olson, Joanne K.; Bruxvoort, Crystal N.; Vande Haar, Andrea J.

    2016-01-01

    Little is known about how the content of a video case influences what preservice teachers learn about science teaching. This study was designed to determine the impact of two different video cases on preservice elementary teachers' conceptions of multiple aspects of effective science teaching, with one video selected to focus attention on the role…

  8. The Effects of Hands-On Learning Stations on Building American Elementary Teachers' Understanding about Earth and Space Science Concepts

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bulunuz, Nermin; Jarrett, Olga S.

    2010-01-01

    Research on conceptual change indicates that not only children, but also teachers have incomplete understanding or misconceptions on science concepts. This mixed methods study was concerned with in-service teachers' understanding of four earth and space science concepts taught in elementary school: reason for seasons, phases of the moon, rock…

  9. Improving Science Pedagogic Quality in Elementary School Using Process Skill Approach Can Motivate Student to Be Active in Learning

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sukiniarti

    2016-01-01

    On global era todays, as the professional teacher should be improving their pedagogic competency, including to improve their science pedagogy quality. This study is aimed to identify: (1) Process skill approach which has been used by Elementary School Teacher in science learning; (2) Teacher's opinion that process skill can motivate the student to…

  10. Elementary teachers' knowledge and practices in teaching science to English language learners

    Science.gov (United States)

    Santau, Alexandra O.

    Efforts to improve education---more concretely science education---by creating fundamental shifts in standards for students and teachers have been launched by educators and policy makers in recent years. The new standards for science instruction address improvements in student learning, program development, assessment, and professional development for teachers, with the goal to prepare US students for the academic demands of the 21st century. The study examined teachers' knowledge and practices in science instruction with English language learning (ELL) students. It also examined relationships among key domains of science instruction with ELL students, as well as profiles of teaching practices. The four domains included: (1) teachers' knowledge of science content, (2) teaching practices to promote scientific understanding, (3) teaching practices to promote scientific inquiry, and (4) teaching practices to support English language development during science instruction. The study was part of a larger 5-year research and development intervention aimed at promoting science and literacy achievement of ELL students in urban elementary schools. The study involved 32 third grade, 21 fourth grade, and 17 fifth grade teachers participating in the first-year implementation of the intervention. Based on teachers' questionnaire responses, classroom observation ratings, and post-observation interviews, results indicated that (1) teachers' knowledge and practices were within the bounds of the intervention, but short of reform-oriented practices and (2) relationships among the four domains existed, especially at grade 5. These findings can provide insights for professional development and future research, along with accountability policies.

  11. Equity in Elementary Science Education: A Study of Institutional and Policy Factors

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hayes, Kathryn N.

    Despite recognition that the foundation for interest in science is laid down at the elementary level (Tai, et al., 2006), in the last ten years elementary science instruction time has declined in K-6 schooling (Center on Education Policy, 2007). A lack of access to excellent science education is exacerbated for low-income students, prompting significant questions regarding inequities within the science education pipeline (Maulucci, 2010). The critical factors needed to address these inequities include teacher preparation, access to resources, and instructional leadership, as well as a supportive policy and institutional milieu. However, although the former three have been studied extensively, the role of policy and institutions in creating the conditions for equity in science education are little understood despite their likely significant role (Lemke, 2001). This mixed methods study addressed this gap by examining the role the policy and institutional milieu play in constraining or supporting equitable elementary science education. Institutional theory provides the framework for understanding how various institutional logics and regulatory pressures permeate schools and districts across contexts, influencing science education implementation (Scott, 2014). Two distinct approaches were used to first quantitatively examine the predictors of differentiation in elementary science education instructional time and methods, and second qualitatively analyze the nature and process by which these mechanisms exert influence. Data for the first two papers was derived from a case study of a purposively sampled district, including surveys of 200 teachers and embedded case studies of four schools. Analysis consisted of multi-level models of teacher attributes and school and policy factors in predicting differential distribution of science education instructional time and methods (Raudenbush & Bryk, 2002). Data for the third paper arose out of a series of principal, administrator

  12. Providing Elementary Teachers in South Texas with Professional Development to Improve Earth Science Instruction

    Science.gov (United States)

    Borrego, H.; Ellins, K. K.

    2011-12-01

    Through three years of participation in the TeXas Earth and Space Science (TXESS) Revolution, an NSF-sponsored teacher professional development program, my knowledge of earth science, new pedagogical approaches, and confidence has improved dramatically. I have also received instructional materials and learned how to access high quality online resources and use a variety of web-based tools. In this session, I will share my experiences and report on how I used my own learning to help both teachers and students to become more earth science literate individuals. Earth Science test scores at the elementary level throughout South Texas are consistently low in comparison to other regions in the state. The majority of the teachers lack the content-knowledge, confidence, or experience to teach Earth Sciences. My TXESS Revolution experience helped me to understand the needs of these teachers and to identify teaching resources that would be useful to them. Particularly noteworthy are TERC's EarthLabs: Earth System Science and GLOBE activities. Although these Earthlab investigations are designed for high schools students, I demonstrated how they could be adapted for elementary students. As a result, I have provided professional development in the Earth Sciences to about 300 South Texas elementary teachers. TXESS Revolution has also equipped me to empower the students I teach. My students this past year presented their challenge Legacy Cycle Project to the community. The TXESS Revolution teamed up with the Texas Water Development Board to deliver training on the implementation of a new online challenged-based curriculum called the Water Exploration Legacy Cycles. This training gave me the tools to guide my students learning through authentic scientific research. To carry out their challenge, students researched an area of interest, read literature, consulted with experts in the field, consider different prospective, and presented their final products via PowerPoint, poster

  13. Educating elementary-aged English learners in science: Scientists and teachers working together

    Science.gov (United States)

    Banuelos, Gloria Rodriguez

    California's K-12 schools contain 40% of the nation's English learners, the majority of them enrolled at the elementary level. Traditionally, English learners in California have difficulty performing at the same level as their native English speaking counterparts on national achievement tests, such as the National Assessment of Educational Progress. In 1998, California voters passed Proposition 227 mandating that English learners be taught "overwhelmingly" in English, thus making teachers, many without expertise, responsible for teaching multilevel English proficient students subject matter. I studied the use of scientist-teacher partnerships as a resource for teachers of English learners. University scientists (graduate students) partnered with local elementary school teachers designed and implemented integrated science and English lessons for classrooms with at least 30% English learners. The study explored two major foci. First, integrated science and language lessons implemented by six scientist-teacher partnerships were investigated. Second, the responsibilities taken on by the team members during the implementation of integrated science and language lessons were examined. Three data sources were analyzed: (1) six lesson sequences comprised of 28 lessons; (2) 18 lesson worksheet; and (3) 24 participant Retrospective interview transcripts (12 scientists and 12 teachers). Lessons across were examined according to four analytical categories which included the following: (1) nature of the science activities (e.g. hands-on); nature of language activities (e.g. speaking); (2) nature of instructional practices (e.g. student grouping); and (3) responsibilities of teachers and scientists (e.g. classroom). A micro level analysis illustrates how one scientist-teacher team innovatively used a children's story, Goldilocks and the Three Bears, to teach the measurement of length and temperature. A macro level analysis identified three characteristics of science activities

  14. Teacher experiences in the use of the "Zoology Zone" multimedia resource in elementary science

    Science.gov (United States)

    Paradis, Lynne Darlene

    This interpretive research study explored the experiences of teachers with the use of the Zoology Zone multimedia resource in teaching grade three science. Four generalist teachers used the multimedia resource in the teaching of the Animal Life Cycle topic from the Alberta grade three science program. The experiences of the teachers were examined through individual interviews, classroom visits and group interviews. Three dimensions of the study, as they related to elementary science teaching using the Zoology Zone multimedia resource were examined: (a) technology as a teaching resource, (b) science education and constructivist theory, and (c) teacher learning. In the area of planning for instruction, the teachers found that using the multimedia resource demanded more time and effort than using non-computer resources because of the dependence teachers had on others for ensuring access to computer labs and setting up the multimedia resource to run on school computers. The teachers felt there was value in giving students the opportunity to independently explore the multimedia resource because it captured their attention, included appropriate content, and was designed so that students could navigate through the teaming activities easily and make choices about how to proceed with their own learning. Despite the opportunities for student directed learning, the teachers found that it was also necessary to include some teacher directed learning to ensure that students were learning the mandated curriculum. As the study progressed, it became evident that the teachers valued the social dimensions of learning by making it a priority to include lessons that encouraged student to student interaction, student to teacher interaction, small group and whole class discussion, and peer teaching. When students were engaged with the multimedia resource, the teacher facilitated learning by circulating to each student and discussing student findings. Teachers focussed primarily on the

  15. Teaching Science for Social Justice: An Examination of Elementary Preservice Teachers' Beliefs

    Science.gov (United States)

    Eslinger, James C.

    This qualitative study examines the beliefs and belief changes of eleven elementary preservice teachers about teaching science for social justice. Using constructivist grounded theory, it forwards a new theory of belief change about teaching science for social justice. The theory posits that three teaching and learning conditions may facilitate belief change: preservice teachers need to recognize (1) the relationship between science and society; (2) the relationship between individuals and society; and (3) the importance of taking action on socioscientific issues. This research responds to calls by critical scholars of teacher education who contend that beliefs in relation to equity, diversity, and multiculturalism need to be explored. They have found that many preservice teachers hold beliefs that are antithetical to social justice tenets. Since beliefs are generally considered to be precursors to actions, identifying and promoting change in beliefs are important to teaching science for social justice. Such a move may lead to the advancement of curricular and pedagogical efforts to promote the academic participation and success in elementary science of Aboriginal and racialized minority students. The study was undertaken in a year-long science methods course taught by the researcher. It was centered on the preservice teachers -- their beliefs, their belief changes, and the course pedagogies that they identified as crucial to their changes. However, the course was based on the researcher-instructor's review of the scholarly literature on science education, teacher education, and social justice. It utilized a critical -- cultural theoretical framework, and was aligned to the three dimensions of critical nature of science, critical knowledge and pedagogy, and sociopolitical action. Findings indicate that, at the beginning of the year, preservice teachers held two types of beliefs (liberal and critical) and, by the end of the course, they experienced three kinds of

  16. "From the Beginning, I Felt Empowered": Incorporating an Ecological Approach to Learning in Elementary Science Teacher Education

    Science.gov (United States)

    Birmingham, Daniel; Smetana, Lara; Coleman, Elizabeth

    2017-09-01

    While a renewed national dialog promotes the importance of science education for future technological and economic viability, students must find science personally relevant to themselves and their communities if the goals set forth in recent reform movements are to be achieved. In this paper, we investigate how incorporating an ecological perspective to learning in teacher education, including opportunities to participate with science in connection to their everyday lives, influenced the ways in which elementary teacher candidates (TCs) envisioned learning and doing science and its potential role in their future classroom. We draw from data collected across three sections of a field-based elementary methods course focused on learning to teach science and social studies through inquiry. We argue that participating in an authentic interdisciplinary inquiry project impacted the ways in which TCs conceived of science, their identities as science learners and teachers and their commitments to bringing inquiry-based science instruction to their future classrooms. This paper addresses issues regarding access to quality science learning experiences in elementary classrooms through empowering TCs to build identities as science learners and teachers in order to impact conditions in their future classrooms.

  17. Argumentation in elementary science education: addressing methodological issues and conceptual understanding

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kaya, Ebru

    2017-11-01

    In this review essay I respond to issues raised in Mijung Kim and Wolff-Michael Roth's paper titled "Dialogical argumentation in elementary science classrooms", which presents a study dealing with dialogical argumentation in early elementary school classrooms. Since there is very limited research on lower primary school students' argumentation in school science, their paper makes a contribution to research on children's argumentation skills. In this response, I focus on two main issues to extend the discussion in Kim and Roth's paper: (a) methodological issues including conducting a quantitative study on children's argumentation levels and focusing on children's written argumentation in addition to their dialogical argumentation, and (b) investigating children's conceptual understanding along with their argumentation levels. Kim and Roth emphasize the difficulty in determining the level of children's argumentation through the Toulmin's Argument Pattern and lack of high level arguments by children due to their difficulties in writing texts. Regarding these methodological issues, I suggest designing quantitative research on coding children's argument levels because such research could potentially provide important findings on children's argumentation. Furthermore, I discuss alternative written products including posters, figures, or pictures generated by children in order to trace children's arguments, and finally articulating argumentation and conceptual understanding of children.

  18. Developing Elementary Math and Science Process Skills Through Engineering Design Instruction

    Science.gov (United States)

    Strong, Matthew G.

    This paper examines how elementary students can develop math and science process skills through an engineering design approach to instruction. The performance and development of individual process skills overall and by gender were also examined. The study, preceded by a pilot, took place in a grade four extracurricular engineering design program in a public, suburban school district. Students worked in pairs and small groups to design and construct airplane models from styrofoam, paper clips, and toothpicks. The development and performance of process skills were assessed through a student survey of learning gains, an engineering design packet rubric (student work), observation field notes, and focus group notes. The results indicate that students can significantly develop process skills, that female students may develop process skills through engineering design better than male students, and that engineering design is most helpful for developing the measuring, suggesting improvements, and observing process skills. The study suggests that a more regular engineering design program or curriculum could be beneficial for students' math and science abilities both in this school and for the elementary field as a whole.

  19. The implementation of a discovery-oriented science education program in a rural elementary school

    Science.gov (United States)

    Liddell, Martha Sue

    2000-10-01

    This study focused on the implementation of a discovery-oriented science education program at a rural elementary school in Mississippi. The instructional leadership role of the principal was examined in the study through identification and documentation of processes undertaken by the principal to implement a discovery-oriented science education program school. The goal of the study was to develop a suggested approach for implementing a discovery-oriented science education program for principals who wish to become instructional leaders in the area of science education at their schools. Mixed methods were used to collect, analyze, and interpret data. Subjects for the study consisted of teachers, students, and parents. Data were collected through field observation; observations of science education being taught by classroom teachers; examination of the principal's log describing actions taken to implement a discovery-oriented science education program; conducting semi-structured interviews with teachers as the key informants; and examining attitudinal data collected by the Carolina Biological Supply Company for the purpose of measuring attitudes of teachers, students, and parents toward the proposed science education program and the Science and Technology for Children (STC) program piloted at the school. To develop a suggested approach for implementing a discovery-oriented science education program, data collected from field notes, classroom observations, the principal's log of activities, and key informant interviews were analyzed and group into themes pertinent to the study. In addition to descriptive measures, chi-square goodness-of-fit tests were used to determine whether the frequency distribution showed a specific pattern within the attitudinal data collected by the Carolina Biological Supply Company. The pertinent question asked in analyzing data was: Are the differences significant or are they due to chance? An alpha level of .01 was selected to determine

  20. Being a Scientist While Teaching Science: Implementing Undergraduate Research Opportunities for Elementary Educators

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hock, Emily; Sharp, Zoe

    2016-03-01

    Aspiring teachers and current teachers can gain insight about the scientific community through hands-on experience. As America's standards for elementary school and middle school become more advanced, future and current teachers must gain hands-on experience in the scientific community. For a teacher to be fully capable of teaching all subjects, they must be comfortable in the content areas, equipped to answer questions, and able to pass on their knowledge. Hands-on research experiences, like the Summer Astronomy Research Experience at California Polytechnic University, pair liberal studies students with a cooperative group of science students and instructors with the goal of doing research that benefits the scientific community and deepens the team members' perception of the scientific community. Teachers are then able to apply the basic research process in their classrooms, inspire students to do real life science, and understand the processes scientists' undergo in their workplace.

  1. Do Thinking Styles Matter for Science Achievement and Attitudes toward Science Class in Male and Female Elementary School Students in Taiwan?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wang, Tzu-Ling; Tseng, Yi-Kuan

    2015-01-01

    The purposes of this study were to explore the effects of thinking styles on science achievement and attitudes toward science class among Taiwanese elementary school students and to explore the differences between male and female students in their modes of thinking. Participants included 756 sixth-grade students from 28 classes in four elementary…

  2. The Divergent Thinking of Basic Skills of Sciences Process Skills of Life Aspects on Natural Sciences Subject in Indonesian Elementary School Students

    Science.gov (United States)

    Subali, Bambang; Paidi; Mariyam, Siti

    2016-01-01

    This research aims at measuring the divergent thinking of basic skills of science process skills (SPS) of life aspects in Natural Sciences subjects on Elementary School. The test instruments used in this research have been standardized through the development of instruments. In this case, the tests were tried out to 3070 students. The results of…

  3. The influence inquiry-based science has on elementary teachers' perception of instruction and self-efficacy

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lewis, Felecia J.

    The nature and purpose of this study was to examine the self-efficacy of teachers who use an inquiry-based science program to provide authentic experiences within the elementary school setting. It is essential to explore necessary improvements to bring about effective science education. Using a mixed methods study, the researcher conducted interviews with elementary teachers from five elementary schools within the same school district. The interviews focused on the teachers' experiences with inquiry-based science and their perceptions of quality science instruction. The Teachers' Sense of Efficacy Scale was used to collect quantitative data regarding the teachers' perception of instructional practice and student engagement. The study revealed that limited science content knowledge, inadequate professional development, and a low sense of self-efficacy have a substantial effect on teacher outcomes, instructional planning, and ability to motivate students to participate in inquiry-based learning. It will take a collective effort from administrators, teachers, parents, and students to discover ways to improve elementary science education.

  4. Preservice Elementary Teachers' Science Self-Efficacy Beliefs and Science Content Knowledge

    Science.gov (United States)

    Menon, Deepika; Sadler, Troy D.

    2016-10-01

    Self-efficacy beliefs that relate to teachers' motivation and performance have been an important area of concern for preservice teacher education. Research suggests high-quality science coursework has the potential to shape preservice teachers' science self-efficacy beliefs. However, there are few studies examining the relationship between science self-efficacy beliefs and science content knowledge. The purpose of this mixed methods study is to investigate changes in preservice teachers' science self-efficacy beliefs and science content knowledge and the relationship between the two variables as they co-evolve in a specialized science content course. Results from pre- and post-course administrations of the Science Teaching Efficacy Belief Instrument-B (Bleicher, 2004) and a physical science concept test along with semi-structured interviews, classroom observations and artifacts served as data sources for the study. The 18 participants belonged to three groups representing low, medium and high initial levels of self-efficacy beliefs. A repeated measures multivariate analysis of variance design was used to test the significance of differences between the pre- and post-surveys across time. Results indicated statistically significant gains in participants' science self-efficacy beliefs and science conceptual understandings. Additionally, a positive moderate relationship between gains in science conceptual understandings and gains in personal science teaching efficacy beliefs was found. Qualitative analysis of the participants' responses indicated positive shifts in their science teacher self-image and they credited their experiences in the course as sources of new levels of confidence to teach science. The study includes implications for preservice teacher education programs, science teacher education, and research.

  5. A study to define and verify a model of interactive-constructive elementary school science teaching

    Science.gov (United States)

    Henriques, Laura

    This study took place within a four year systemic reform effort collaboratively undertaken by the Science Education Center at the University of Iowa and a local school district. Key features of the inservice project included the use of children's literature as a springboard into inquiry based science investigations, activities to increase parents' involvement in children's science learning and extensive inservice opportunities for elementary teachers to increase content knowledge and content-pedagogical knowledge. The overarching goal of this elementary science teacher enhancement project was to move teachers towards an interactive-constructivist model of teaching and learning. This study had three components. The first was the definition of the prototype teacher indicated by the project's goals and supported by science education research. The second involved the generation of a model to show relationships between teacher-generated products, demographics and their subsequent teaching behaviors. The third involved the verification of the hypothesized model using data collected on 15 original participants. Demographic information, survey responses, interview and written responses to scenarios were among the data collected as source variables. These were scored using a rubric designed to measure constructivist practices in science teaching. Videotapes of science teaching and revised science curricula were collected as downstream variables and scored using an the ESTEEM observational rubric and a rubric developed for the project. Results indicate that newer teachers were more likely to implement features of the project. Those teachers who were philosophically aligned with project goals before project involvement were also more likely to implement features of the project. Other associations between reported beliefs, planning and classroom implementations were not confirmed by these data. Data show that teachers reported higher levels of implementation than their

  6. Facilitating Elementary Science Teachers' Implementation of Inquiry-Based Science Teaching

    Science.gov (United States)

    Qablan, Ahmad M.; DeBaz, Theodora

    2015-01-01

    Preservice science teachers generally feel that the implementation of inquiry-based science teaching is very difficult to manage. This research project aimed at facilitating the implementation of inquiry-based science teaching through the use of several classroom strategies. The evaluation of 15 classroom strategies from 80 preservice elementary…

  7. Using History of Science to Teach Nature of Science to Elementary Students

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fouad, Khadija E.; Masters, Heidi; Akerson, Valarie L.

    2015-01-01

    Science lessons using inquiry only or history of science with inquiry were used for explicit reflective nature of science (NOS) instruction for second-, third-, and fourth-grade students randomly assigned to receive one of the treatments. Students in both groups improved in their understanding of creative NOS, tentative NOS, empirical NOS, and…

  8. Elementary Students' Learning of Materials Science Practices Through Instruction Based on Engineering Design Tasks

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wendell, Kristen Bethke; Lee, Hee-Sun

    2010-12-01

    Materials science, which entails the practices of selecting, testing, and characterizing materials, is an important discipline within the study of matter. This paper examines how third grade students' materials science performance changes over the course of instruction based on an engineering design challenge. We conducted a case study of nine students who participated in engineering design-based science instruction with the goal of constructing a stable, quiet, thermally comfortable model house. The learning outcome of materials science practices was assessed by clinical interviews conducted before and after the instruction, and the learning process was assessed by students' workbooks completed during the instruction. The interviews included two materials selection tasks for designing a sturdy stepstool and an insulated pet habitat. Results indicate that: (1) students significantly improved on both materials selection tasks, (2) their gains were significantly positively associated with the degree of completion of their workbooks, and (3) students who were highly engaged with the workbook's reflective record-keeping tasks showed the greatest improvement on the interviews. These findings suggest the important role workbooks can play in facilitating elementary students' learning of science through authentic activity such as engineering design.

  9. The impact of science methods courses on preservice elementary teachers' science teaching self-efficacy beliefs: Case studies from Turkey and the United States

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bursal, Murat

    Four case studies in two American and two Turkish science methods classrooms were conducted to investigate the changes in preservice elementary teachers' personal science teaching efficacy (PSTE) beliefs during their course periods. The findings indicated that while Turkish preservice elementary teachers (TR sample) started the science methods course semester with higher PSTE than their American peers (US sample), due to a significant increase in the US sample's and an insignificant decline in the TR sample's PSTE scores, both groups completed the science methods course with similar PSTE levels. Consistent with Bandura's social cognitive theory, describing four major sources of self-efficacy, the inclusion of mastery experiences (inquiry activities and elementary school micro-teaching experiences) and vicarious experiences (observation of course instructor and supervisor elementary teacher) into the science methods course, providing positive social persuasion (positive appraisal from the instructor and classmates), and improving physiological states (reduced science anxiety and positive attitudes toward becoming elementary school teachers), were found to contribute to the significant enhancement of the US sample's PSTE beliefs. For the TR sample, although some of the above sources were present, the lack of student teaching experiences and inservice teacher observations, as well as the TR samples' negative attitudes toward becoming elementary school teachers and a lack of positive classroom support were found to make Turkish preservice teachers rely mostly on their mastery in science concepts, and therefore resulted in not benefiting from their science methods course, in terms of enhancing their PSTE beliefs. Calls for reforms in the Turkish education system that will include more mastery experiences in the science methods courses and provide more flexibility for students to choose their high school majors and college programs, and switch between them are made. In

  10. Taking risks with a growth mindset: long-term influence of an elementary pre-service after school science practicum

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cartwright, T. J.; Hallar, B.

    2018-02-01

    In this study, we present the long-term influence of an after school science practicum associated with an elementary science methods course. The practicum or field experience could be considered a community-based service learning programme as it is situated both within and for the community. Study participants included eight third- and fifth-grade teachers who had participated in elementary science methods courses; four of these teachers participated in the after school teaching practicum while four participants experienced a more traditional observation-based elementary science practicum. All of these teachers were in their second or third year teaching which was 3-4 years after taking the methods course. Investigation methods included questionnaires, field observations and semi-structured, individual interviews. Teachers more regularly utilised reform-based teaching strategies and cited the after school teaching practicum as preparing them to use these strategies in their own classrooms. All teachers exhibited a growth mindset to some degree, but the after school practicum participants did demonstrate a wider use of reformed-based teaching strategies and a higher growth mindset. Elementary teachers perceive risk associated with these key aspects of instruction: (1) managing instruction and classroom management, (2) teaching science through guided inquiry, and (3) overcoming adoptions in other 'mandated' curriculum like math and reading.

  11. READINESS Of ELEMENTARY SCHOOL TEACHERS IN IMPLEMENTING CHARACTERS INTEGRATED LEARNING IN THE SCIENCE SUBJECT

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    N. Hindarto

    2015-01-01

    Full Text Available Many problems that arise in today's society are rooted in the issue of morality as a result of the marginalization of the values of character. To solve this problem, need to be enforced the values of good character on every member of the community, and the proper way is through the educational process, including through education in schools ranging from elementary education to higher education. To find out whether the teachers in elementary schools are ready to take this work, the research conducted to determine the readiness of teachers and the problems associated with its implementation. Through a questionnaire calculated in descriptive percentage on a sample of elementary school teachers who are spread in Semarang, Semarang District and Temanggung, it can be concluded that in teachers’ view it is very important to integrate the learning of characters in the lesson. However, they need guidance /examples to develop learning model with its features, which integrate the values of the characters in the science subject.Banyak persoalan yang timbul di masyarakat dewasa ini berakar pada persoalan moralitas sebagai akibat terpinggirkannya nilai-nilai karakter, Untuk mengatasi persoalan ini, perlu ditegakkan lagi nilai nilai karakter yang baik pada setiap anggota masyarakat, dan cara yang tepat adalah melalui proses pendidikan, di antaranya melalui pendidikan di sekolah mulai dari pendidikan dasar sampai pendidikan tinggi. Untuk mengetahui apakah para guru pada Sekolah Dasar siap mengemban tugas ini, maka diadakan penelitian untuk mengetahui kesiapan para guru dan masalah-masalah yang terkait dengan pelaksanaannya. Melalui angket yang kemudian diolah secara deskriptive persentasi pada sampel guru SD yang tersebar di Kota Semarang, Kabupaten Semarang dan Kabupaten Temanggung, dapat diketahui bahwa para guru menganggap sangat penting untuk mengintegrasikan pembelajaran karakter dalam matapelajaran IPA. Namun demikian mereka membutuhkan bimbingan

  12. Implementation of National Science Education Standards in suburban elementary schools: Teachers' perceptions and classroom practices

    Science.gov (United States)

    Khan, Rubina Samer

    2005-07-01

    This was an interpretive qualitative study that focused on how three elementary school science teachers from three different public schools perceived and implemented the National Science Education Standards based on the Reformed Teaching Observation Protocol and individual interviews with the teachers. This study provided an understanding of the standards movement and teacher change in the process. Science teachers who were experienced with the National Science Education Standards were selected as the subjects of the study. Grounded in the theory of teacher change, this study's phenomenological premise was that the extent to which a new reform has an effect on students' learning and achievement on standardized tests depends on the content a teacher teaches as well as the style of teaching. It was therefore necessary to explore how teachers understand and implement the standards in the classrooms. The surveys, interviews and observations provided rich data from teachers' intentions, reflections and actions on the lessons that were observed while also providing the broader contextual framework for the understanding of the teachers' perspectives.

  13. The Sources of Science Teaching Self-efficacy among Elementary School Teachers: A mediational model approach

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wang, Ya-Ling; Tsai, Chin-Chung; Wei, Shih-Hsuan

    2015-09-01

    This study aimed to investigate the factors accounting for science teaching self-efficacy and to examine the relationships among Taiwanese teachers' science teaching self-efficacy, teaching and learning conceptions, technological-pedagogical content knowledge for the Internet (TPACK-I), and attitudes toward Internet-based instruction (Attitudes) using a mediational model approach. A total of 233 science teachers from 41 elementary schools in Taiwan were invited to take part in the study. After ensuring the validity and reliability of each questionnaire, the results indicated that each measure had satisfactory validity and reliability. Furthermore, through mediational models, the results revealed that TPACK-I and Attitudes mediated the relationship between teaching and learning conceptions and science teaching self-efficacy, suggesting that (1) knowledge of and attitudes toward Internet-based instruction (KATII) mediated the positive relationship between constructivist conceptions of teaching and learning and outcome expectancy, and that (2) KATII mediated the negative correlations between traditional conceptions of teaching and learning and teaching efficacy.

  14. Supporting metacognitive development in early science education: Exploring elementary teachers' beliefs and practices in metacognition

    Science.gov (United States)

    Braund, Heather Leigh-Anne

    Metacognition is the understanding and control of cognitive processes. Students with high levels of metacognition achieve greater academic success. The purpose of this mixed-methods study was to examine elementary teachers' beliefs about metacognition and integration of metacognitive practices in science. Forty-four teachers were recruited through professional networks to complete a questionnaire containing open-ended questions (n = 44) and Likert-type items (n = 41). Five respondents were selected to complete semi-structured interviews informed by the questionnaire. The selected interview participants had a minimum of three years teaching experience and demonstrated a conceptual understanding of metacognition. Statistical tests (Pearson correlation, t-tests, and multiple regression) on quantitative data and thematic analysis of qualitative data indicated that teachers largely understood metacognition but had some gaps in their understanding. Participants' reported actions (teaching practices) and beliefs differed according to their years of experience but not gender. Hierarchical multiple regression demonstrated that the first block of gender and experience was not a significant predictor of teachers' metacognitive actions, although experience was a significant predictor by itself. Experience was not a significant predictor once teachers' beliefs were added. The majority of participants indicated that metacognition was indeed appropriate for elementary students. Participants consistently reiterated that students' metacognition developed with practice, but required explicit instruction. A lack of consensus remained around the domain specificity of metacognition. More specifically, the majority of questionnaire respondents indicated that metacognitive strategies could not be used across subject domains, whereas all interviewees indicated that they used strategies across subjects. Metacognition was integrated frequently into Ontario elementary classrooms; however

  15. Fostering solidarity and transforming identities: A collaborative approach to elementary science teacher education

    Science.gov (United States)

    Siry, Christina A.

    This study explores the use of coteaching and cogenerative dialogue in pre-service elementary teacher education, and the ways in which collaborating to share responsibility for learning and teaching can afford the development of solidarity and new teachers' identity transformations. Specifically, the research detailed in this dissertation focuses on learning to teach science in a field-based methods course taught partially on a college campus and partially in an urban elementary school. I used critical ethnography guided by the theoretical frameworks of cultural sociology and the sociology of emotions. The lens of phenomenology provided the contextual aspects of the individual experience, and design experiment was utilized as the research unfolded, affording continual redesign of the work. Issues of identity and group membership are central to this research, and I have explored connections between the emergence of solidarity within a group of teachers and the individual identity transformations supported through a collective sense of belonging. A key component of this study was an analysis of the co-responsibility nurtured through coteaching and cogenerative dialogue, and thus the dialectical relationship between the individual and the collective is critical to this research. At the individual level, I examined identity development, and individual participation in a field-based methods course. At the collective level, I considered the ways that participants form collective identities and group solidarity. Two of the chapters of my dissertation are coauthored with students, as I have sought to dismantle teacher-student hierarchies and replace them with complex relationships supported through polysemic and polyphonic approaches to research. In examining identity and solidarity as they emerged from this approach, I make the following contributions to science teacher education; (1) identify resources and practices in elementary science teaching that surface in a

  16. A Collaborative Diagonal Learning Network: The role of formal and informal professional development in elementary science reform

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cooke-Nieves, Natasha Anika

    Science education research has consistently shown that elementary teachers have a low self-efficacy and background knowledge to teach science. When they teach science, there is a lack of field experiences and inquiry-based instruction at the elementary level due to limited resources, both material and pedagogical. This study focused on an analysis of a professional development (PD) model designed by the author known as the Collaborative Diagonal Learning Network (CDLN). The purpose of this study was to examine elementary school teacher participants pedagogical content knowledge related to their experiences in a CDLN model. The CDLN model taught formal and informal instruction using a science coach and an informal educational institution. Another purpose for this research included a theoretical analysis of the CDLN model to see if its design enabled teachers to expand their resource knowledge of available science education materials. The four-month-long study used qualitative data obtained during an in-service professional development program facilitated by a science coach and educators from a large natural history museum. Using case study as the research design, four elementary school teachers were asked to evaluate the effectiveness of their science coach and museum educator workshop sessions. During the duration of this study, semi-structured individual/group interviews and open-ended pre/post PD questionnaires were used. Other data sources included researcher field notes from lesson observations, museum field trips, audio-recorded workshop sessions, email correspondence, and teacher-created artifacts. The data were analyzed using a constructivist grounded theory approach. Themes that emerged included increased self-efficacy; increased pedagogical content knowledge; increased knowledge of museum education resources and access; creation of a professional learning community; and increased knowledge of science notebooking. Implications for formal and informal

  17. Giving priority to evidence in science teaching: A first-year elementary teacher's specialized practices and knowledge

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Avraamidou, Lucy; Zembal-Saul, Carla

    2005-01-01

    The purpose of this qualitative case study was to examine the nature of a first-year elementary teacher's specialized practices and knowledge for giving priority to evidence in science teaching and to explore the possible sources from which this knowledge was generated. Data included three

  18. Investigating the Quality of Project-Based Science and Technology Learning Environments in Elementary School: A Critical Review of Instruments

    Science.gov (United States)

    Thys, Miranda; Verschaffel, Lieven; Van Dooren, Wim; Laevers, Ferre

    2016-01-01

    This paper provides a systematic review of instruments that have the potential to measure the quality of project-based science and technology (S&T) learning environments in elementary school. To this end, a comprehensive literature search was undertaken for the large field of S&T learning environments. We conducted a horizontal bottom-up…

  19. Preservice Elementary Teachers' Beliefs about Nature of Science and Constructivist Teaching in the Content-Specific Context

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yoon, Hye-Gyoung; Kim, Byoung Sug

    2016-01-01

    The purpose of this study was to explore how Korean preservice elementary teachers' beliefs about nature of science (NOS) and their beliefs about constructivist teaching were structured and related and if any relation was prevalent in the content-specific contexts. As the same format, three versions of questionnaires were developed in three…

  20. Promoting Elementary Students' Epistemology of Science through Computer-Supported Knowledge-Building Discourse and Epistemic Reflection

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lin, Feng; Chan, Carol K. K.

    2018-01-01

    This study examined the role of computer-supported knowledge-building discourse and epistemic reflection in promoting elementary-school students' scientific epistemology and science learning. The participants were 39 Grade 5 students who were collectively pursuing ideas and inquiry for knowledge advance using Knowledge Forum (KF) while studying a…

  1. Prospective Turkish Elementary Science Teachers' Knowledge Level about the Greenhouse Effect and Their Views on Environmental Education in University

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kisoglu, Mustafa; Gürbüz, Hasan; Erkol, Mehmet; Akar, Muhammed Said; Akilli, Mustafa

    2010-01-01

    The fundamental factor of environmental education is teachers who are well-informed about environmental issues. This research aimed to determine prospective Turkish elementary science teachers' knowledge level about causes, consequences and reducing of the greenhouse effect and to investigate the effect of gender, information source and membership…

  2. The Influence of Pintrich's Self-Regulated Learning Model on Elementary Teacher Candidates in a Life Science Course

    Science.gov (United States)

    Çetin, Baris

    2017-01-01

    The purpose of this research was to determine whether the use of activities based on Pintrich's self-regulated learning model effect the self-regulated learning perceptions of elementary teacher candidates within a Life Science course. The research was organized in accordance with the quasi-experimental designs model. This study was conducted…

  3. The Effect of Three Levels of Inquiry on the Improvement of Science Concept Understanding of Elementary School Teacher Candidates

    Science.gov (United States)

    Artayasa, I. Putu; Susilo, Herawati; Lestari, Umie; Indriwati, Sri Endah

    2018-01-01

    This research aims to compare the effect of the implementation of three levels of inquiry: level 2 (structured inquiry), level 3 (guided inquiry), and level 4 (open inquiry) toward science concept understanding of elementary school teacher candidates. This is a quasi experiment research with pre-test post-test nonequivalent control group design.…

  4. Enhancing Self-Efficacy in Elementary Science Teaching With Professional Learning Communities

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mintzes, Joel J.; Marcum, Bev; Messerschmidt-Yates, Christl; Mark, Andrew

    2013-11-01

    Emerging from Bandura's Social Learning Theory, this study of in-service elementary school teachers examined the effects of sustained Professional Learning Communities (PLCs) on self-efficacy in science teaching. Based on mixed research methods, and a non-equivalent control group experimental design, the investigation explored changes in personal self-efficacy and outcome expectancy among teachers engaged in PLCs that featured Demonstration Laboratories, Lesson Study, and annual Summer Institutes. Significant changes favoring the experimental group were found on all quantitative measures of self-efficacy. Structured clinical interviews revealed that observed changes were largely attributable to a wide range of direct (mastery) and vicarious experiences, as well as emotional reinforcement and social persuasion.

  5. A case study of one school system's adoption and implementation of an elementary science program

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kelly, Michael Patrick

    2000-10-01

    The researcher's purpose in this study was to examine the process used by the Minot Public Schools to adopt and implement a new elementary science program from Silver Burdett Ginn called Discovery Works. Using case study methods within a naturalistic design, the researcher investigated teachers' concerns as they adopted and implemented Discovery Works in their classrooms. Data were gathered using the Concerns Based Adoption Model (CBAM) instrument, interviews with adoption committee members, classroom teachers, grade level meetings, and document analysis of field notes related to each phase of the study. Content analysis methods were used to analyze the data. Emergent themes were presented and substantiated in the data, in terms of six research questions that guided this research. The data were analyzed both quantitatively and qualitatively to provide a rich, thick description that and enabled the researcher to confirm and triangulate the concerns of teachers in this study. The quantitative data revealed a general nonuser profile by teachers as they implemented Discovery Works. Three major themes of concerns emerged from a qualitative analysis of the data. The first theme was implementation, including issues related to teacher attitudes and inservice needs. The second theme, management issues, had five concerns subsumed within it. These included concerns related to time, materials, storage, reorder, and cooperative groups. The third theme, effects on students, included issues concerning hands-on methods of teaching science, vocabulary, especially at the upper elementary, and assessment issues. Possible solutions to resolve each of the concerns were presented. Major conclusions are that teacher concerns about Discovery Works were normal for any group experiencing a new innovation. Teachers and students enjoyed using the hands-on materials, and that Minot Public Schools has taken a small, but important step forward on the road to science education reform. Although

  6. The Correlation between Teacher Professional Competence and Natural Science Learning Achievement in Elementary School

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    I Ketut Ngurah Ardiawan

    2017-12-01

    Full Text Available This present study aims at investigating the correlation between teachers’ professional competence and natural science learning achievement in elementary schools in Buleleng regency. The population in this study are all sixth grade teachers, which it is further narrowed down to 30 teachers as the sample. In order to gather the data, the researcher employs questionnaire regarding teacher professional competence and document study toward students’ achievement on national examination in academic year 2016/2017. Further, ex post facto is chosen as the design of the study. Meanwhile, the data are analysed through correlation analysis with assistance of SPSS 16 software. Based on the analysis, it was obtained that the correlation between teacher professional competence and the learning achievement on natural science subject is in the interval of 0.40-0.59 with correlation coefficient at rho=0.506. This means there is a significant correlation between teacher professional competence and students’ learning achievement on natural science in national examination in academic year 2016/2017 (tcount = 3.103 > ttable =2.048 with significance level at α = 0,05 and coefficient of determination at 0.2560 (25.60%

  7. Effect of the challenger experience on elementary children's attitudes to science

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jarvis, Tina; Pell, Anthony

    2002-12-01

    This research explored how the Challenger experience influenced over 655 elementary boys' and girls' general attitudes to science and space during the 5 months after their visit by examining their responses to four different attitude scales. These were administered to the 10- to 11-year-olds immediately before and after the Challenger experience as well as 2 and 5 months later. Knowledge tests were also administered before and after the visit. A sample of children completed an existing measure of anxiety. Although there were mainly positive outcomes immediately after the Challenger experience, there were some negative effects. There were also noticeable differences between boys and girls. Some 24% of pupils were inspired to become scientists. There was also less fear of space travel with a greater appreciation of the use of science to protect the planet after the visit. Most girls improved and maintained their attitudes toward science in society. A sizeable number of pupils were relatively unaffected by the experience and there was a significant negative effect on a small group of anxious girls. There are indications that previsit preparation and careful choice of roles during the simulation are important.

  8. Pathways of professional learning for elementary science teachers using computer learning environments

    Science.gov (United States)

    Williams, Latonya Michelle

    This dissertation reports on a three year study designed to investigate the trajectories of two urban elementary school teachers---a novice and an experienced teacher---learning to teach a science curriculum unit using an inquiry approach supported by the Web-based Inquiry Science Environment (WISE). This research investigated teachers' development in knowledge and practice. Through analyses of video records of classroom instruction and professional development meetings, repeated interviews, and student assessments, I have produced case studies of teachers' journeys as they implement the technological inquiry-based instructional model. This study captures the interplay between the teachers' pedagogical content knowledge, enacted practice, and insights into students' thinking about complex science ideas. I trace the factors that encouraged and supported the teachers' development, in addition to the kinds of struggles they faced and overcame. I discuss the social supports I provided for the teachers, including scaffolding them in reflecting on their practice, assisting them with curriculum customizations, and supporting their learning such as arranging online interactions with scientists. I analyze spontaneous activities such as teachers' own reflections. The results suggest that the novice and experienced teacher's classroom practices became more inquiry oriented across time. For both teachers, use of technology accompanied an increase in science dialogue with small groups in years two and three. The novice teacher began asking inquiry questions in her second year of classroom experience, after a great deal of professional support. Both teachers improved in their pedagogical content knowledge from years one through three as a result of the varied professional development supports. The results suggest that teachers' improvement in instructional strategies and pedagogical content knowledge accompanied students' improvement in understanding of the science content.

  9. Practicing the practice: Learning to guide elementary science discussions in a practice-oriented science methods course

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shah, Ashima Mathur

    University methods courses are often criticized for telling pre-service teachers, or interns, about the theories behind teaching instead of preparing them to actually enact teaching. Shifting teacher education to be more "practice-oriented," or to focus more explicitly on the work of teaching, is a current trend for re-designing the way we prepare teachers. This dissertation addresses the current need for research that unpacks the shift to more practice-oriented approaches by studying the content and pedagogical approaches in a practice-oriented, masters-level elementary science methods course (n=42 interns). The course focused on preparing interns to guide science classroom discussions. Qualitative data, such as video records of course activities and interns' written reflections, were collected across eight course sessions. Codes were applied at the sentence and paragraph level and then grouped into themes. Five content themes were identified: foregrounding student ideas and questions, steering discussion toward intended learning goals, supporting students to do the cognitive work, enacting teacher role of facilitator, and creating a classroom culture for science discussions. Three pedagogical approach themes were identified. First, the teacher educators created images of science discussions by modeling and showing videos of this practice. They also provided focused teaching experiences by helping interns practice the interactive aspects of teaching both in the methods classroom and with smaller groups of elementary students in schools. Finally, they structured the planning and debriefing phases of teaching so interns could learn from their teaching experiences and prepare well for future experiences. The findings were analyzed through the lens of Grossman and colleagues' framework for teaching practice (2009) to reveal how the pedagogical approaches decomposed, represented, and approximated practice throughout course activities. Also, the teacher educators

  10. Analysis of the project synthesis goal cluster orientation and inquiry emphasis of elementary science textbooks

    Science.gov (United States)

    Staver, John R.; Bay, Mary

    The purpose of this descriptive study was to examine selected units of commonly used elementary science texts, using the Project Synthesis goal clusters as a framework for part of the examination. An inquiry classification scheme was used for the remaining segment. Four questions were answered: (1) To what extent do elementary science textbooks focus on each Project Synthesis goal cluster? (2) In which part of the text is such information found? (3) To what extent are the activities and experiments merely verifications of information already introduced in the text? (4) If inquiry is present in an activity, then what is the level of such inquiry?Eleven science textbook series, which comprise approximately 90 percent of the national market, were selected for analysis. Two units, one primary (K-3) and one intermediate (4-6), were selected for analysis by first identifying units common to most series, then randomly selecting one primary and one intermediate unit for analysis.Each randomly selected unit was carefully read, using the sentence as the unit of analysis. Each declarative and interrogative sentence in the body of the text was classified as: (1) academic; (2) personal; (3) career; or (4) societal in its focus. Each illustration, except those used in evaluation items, was similarly classified. Each activity/experiment and each miscellaneous sentence in end-of-chapter segments labelled review, summary, evaluation, etc., were similarly classified. Finally, each activity/experiment, as a whole, was categorized according to a four-category inquiry scheme (confirmation, structured inquiry, guided inquiry, open inquiry).In general, results of the analysis are: (1) most text prose focuses on academic science; (2) most remaining text prose focuses on the personal goal cluster; (3) the career and societal goal clusters receive only minor attention; (4) text illustrations exhibit a pattern similar to text prose; (5) text activities/experiments are academic in orientation

  11. Indigenous Elementary Students' Science Instruction in Taiwan: Indigenous Knowledge and Western Science

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lee, Huei; Yen, Chiung-Fen; Aikenhead, Glen S.

    2012-12-01

    This preliminary ethnographic investigation focused on how Indigenous traditional wisdom can be incorporated into school science and what students learned as a result. Participants included community elders and knowledge keepers, as well as 4th grade (10-year-old) students, all of Amis ancestry, an Indigenous tribe in Taiwan. The students' non-Indigenous teacher played a central role in developing a science module `Measuring Time' that combined Amis knowledge and Western science knowledge. The study identified two cultural worldview perspectives on time; for example, the place-based cyclical time held by the Amis, and the universal rectilinear time presupposed by scientists. Students' pre-instructional fragmented concepts from both knowledge systems became more informed and refined through their engagement in `Measuring Time'. Students' increased interest and pride in their Amis culture were noted.

  12. The Perceptions of Elementary School Teachers Regarding Their Efforts to Help Students Utilize Student-to-Student Discourse in Science

    Science.gov (United States)

    Craddock, Jennifer Lovejoy

    The purpose of this phenomenological study was to examine the perceptions of elementary teachers who teach science as opposed to science teacher specialists regarding their efforts to help students use student-to-student discourse for improving science learning. A growing body of research confirms the importance of a) student-to-student discourse for making meaning of science ideas and b) moving students' conceptual development towards a more scientific understanding of the natural world. Based on those foundations, the three research questions that guided this study examined the value elementary teachers place on student-to-student discourse, the various approaches teachers employ to promote the use of student-to-student discourse for learning science, and the factors and conditions that promote and inhibit the use of student-to-student discourse as an effective pedagogical strategy in elementary science. Data were gathered from 23 elementary teachers in a single district using an on-line survey and follow-up interviews with 8 teachers. All data were analyzed and evolving themes led to the following findings: (1) elementary teachers value student-to-student discourse in science, (2) teachers desire to increase time using student-to-student discourse, (3) teachers use a limited number of student-to-student discourse strategies to increase student learning in science, (4) teachers use student-to-student discourse as formative assessment to determine student learning in science, (5) professional development focusing on approaches to student-to-student discourse develops teachers' capacity for effective implementation, (6) teachers perceive school administrators' knowledge of and support for student-to-student discourse as beneficial, (7) time and scheduling constraints limit the use of student-to-student discourse in science. Implications of this study included the necessity of school districts to focus on student-to-student discourse in science, provide teacher and

  13. Exploring the impact of an industrial volunteer/school science partnership on elementary teaching strategies and attitudes about future science study: A case study

    Science.gov (United States)

    White, Michael Robert

    This study reports the results of research designed to explore the impact of industrial volunteer/school partnerships on elementary science teaching behaviors and students' attitudes about future science study. Since these partnerships involved teachers and students in hands-on or laboratory-type science experiences, the study will add an elementary school component to a series of other studies conducted through the Science Education Program at Temple University that have addressed how to improve the learning outcomes from these experiences. Three suburban elementary schools were randomly selected by a single school district's science supervisor to be involved in this study. Two of the buildings were designated as the experimental schools and teachers worked directly with the researcher as an industrial partner. The third school served as a control with no organized industrial partner. An additional school building in a second suburban school district was selected to serve as a comparison school and a second scientist participated as an industrial volunteer. Unlike the researcher, this scientist had no formal training in science education. Each phase of the study included instruments piloted and reviewed by experienced elementary teachers for appropriateness or by objective experts in the field of education. A student attitude survey and selected tasks from the Inventory of Piagetian Developmental Tasks were administered to all students involved in the study. Empirical data collected through videotaped analysis using the validated Modified-Revised Vickery Science Teacher Behavior Inventory led to the development of a pattern of the most frequently used behaviors during elementary science instruction. A profile of each participating teacher was developed through the use of a validated attitude survey, notes taken during classroom interactions and from information collected during ethnographic interviews. A major conclusion drawn from this study is that neither type

  14. Ocean FEST: Families Exploring Science Together

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bruno, Barbara C.; Wiener, Carlie; Kimura, Arthur; Kimura, Rene

    2011-01-01

    This project engages elementary school students, parents, teachers, and administrators in ocean-themed family science nights based on a proven model. Our key goals are to: (1) educate participants about ocean and earth science issues that are relevant to their communities; and (2) inspire more underrepresented students, including Native Hawaiians,…

  15. Factors Affecting the Implementation of Argument in the Elementary Science Classroom. A Longitudinal Case Study

    Science.gov (United States)

    Martin, Anita M.; Hand, Brian

    2009-01-01

    This longitudinal case study describes the factors that affect an experienced teacher’s attempt to shift her pedagogical practices in order to implement embedded elements of argument into her science classroom. Research data was accumulated over 2 years through video recordings of science classes. The Reformed Teacher Observation Protocol (RTOP) is an instrument designed to quantify changes in classroom environments as related to reform as defined by the National Research Council ( National science education standards. Washington, DC: National Academy Press, 1996b) and the National Research Council ( Fulfilling the promise: Biology education in the nation’s schools, Washington, DC: National Academy Press, 1990) and was used to analyze videotaped science lessons. Analysis of the data shows that there was a significant shift in the areas of teacher questioning, and student voice. Several levels of subsequent analysis were completed related to teacher questioning and student voice. The data suggests a relationship between these areas and the implementation of scientific argument. Results indicate that the teacher moved from a traditional, teacher-centered, didactic teaching style to instructional practices that allowed the focus and direction of the lesson to be affected by student voice. This was accomplished by a change in teacher questioning that included a shift from factual recall to more divergent questioning patterns allowing for increased student voice. As student voice increased, students began to investigate ideas, make statements or claims and to support these claims with strong evidence. Finally, students were observed refuting claims in the form of rebuttals. This study informs professional development related to experienced teachers in that it highlights pedagogical issues involved in implementing embedded elements of argument in the elementary classroom.

  16. Developing Engineering and Science Process Skills Using Design Software in an Elementary Education

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fusco, Christopher

    This paper examines the development of process skills through an engineering design approach to instruction in an elementary lesson that combines Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math (STEM). The study took place with 25 fifth graders in a public, suburban school district. Students worked in groups of five to design and construct model bridges based on research involving bridge building design software. The assessment was framed around individual student success as well as overall group processing skills. These skills were assessed through an engineering design packet rubric (student work), student surveys of learning gains, observation field notes, and pre- and post-assessment data. The results indicate that students can successfully utilize design software to inform constructions of model bridges, develop science process skills through problem based learning, and understand academic concepts through a design project. The final result of this study shows that design engineering is effective for developing cooperative learning skills. The study suggests that an engineering program offered as an elective or as part of the mandatory curriculum could be beneficial for developing students' critical thinking, inter- and intra-personal skills, along with an increased their understanding and awareness for scientific phenomena. In conclusion, combining a design approach to instruction with STEM can increase efficiency in these areas, generate meaningful learning, and influence student attitudes throughout their education.

  17. Research on historical environments in elementary schools’ social sciences textbooks taught in Northern Cyprus

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Nazım Kaşot

    2015-12-01

    Full Text Available A comprehensive study has yet to be carried out depending on the historical environment particular to the Elementary Schools in Northern Cyprus. The aim of this study is hence to determine whether the coverage of historical environment subjects in elementary school social sciences textbooks is absorbed or not by the 4th and 5th Grades in the context of both content and visuals. The method of study analysed has been organised in accordance with the qualitative research. The population was not indicated pursuant to qualitative research and so purposive sampling was implemented. The textbooks used were mainly selected from the afore-mentioned grades and classes. All the data collected were based on the textbooks used during the assessment process. The data was gathered in accordance with the document analysis technique and everything was analysed in detail. The categories used were generated after the authors performed analysis by utilising textbooks. To ensure the validity of the categories, literature scanning was undertaken and expert opinion was taken. The category definitions were written for public access. Moreover, units, titles and sub-titles were chosen as registration units and studied accordingly. Thus, the texts in the textbooks were guaranteed to cover the sufficient coverage and dimension for teaching the subject. The frequency of categories used under the text in historical environment was given and the number of words for the scope was also indicated. The size of visuals used in textbooks was given in accordance with the categories. As a result of the study, while 5th Grade textbooks cover historical environment subjects, there was no indication for the 4th Grade textbooks.

  18. The effects of formative assessment on student self-regulation, motivational beliefs, and achievement in elementary science

    Science.gov (United States)

    King, Melissa Digennaro

    Goals 2000 set forth a bold vision for U.S. students: they would be "first in the world in science and mathematics" by the year 2000. Performance indicators such as the TIMSS-R (1999) and NAEP (2000) reports suggest that U.S. students have not yet reached that goal. This study intended to learn how specific assessment strategies might contribute to improved student performance in science. This quasi-experimental study investigated the effects of formative assessment with reflection on students' motivational beliefs, self-regulatory skills, and achievement in elementary science. The study aimed to find out whether and how classroom applications of formative assessment during science instruction might influence fifth-grade students' attitudes and self-perceptions about science learning, self-regulatory learning behaviors, and achievement. To explore the effects of the assessment intervention, the study utilized a mixed methods approach involving quantitative and qualitative investigations of treatment and control groups during a four-week intervention period. Quantitative measures included student self-report surveys administered pre- and post-treatment and an end-of-unit science test. Qualitative measures included classroom observations, student interviews (post-treatment), and a teacher interview (post-treatment). Findings indicated that the fifth-grade students in this study had positive attitudes toward science and high levels of self-efficacy for science. Results suggested that these elementary students employed a wide variety of cognitive and metacognitive strategies to support science learning. Findings revealed that these fifth graders believed formative assessment with reflection was beneficial for science learning outcomes. Research results did not show that the formative assessment intervention contributed to significant differences between treatment and control groups. However, the data revealed different levels of academic achievement and self

  19. The aurora, Mars, and more! Increasing science content in elementary grades through art and literacy programs in earth and space science

    Science.gov (United States)

    Renfrow, S.; Wood, E. L.

    2011-12-01

    Although reading, writing, and math examinations are often conducted early in elementary school, science is not typically tested until 4th or 5th grade. The result is a refocus on the tested topics at the expense of the untested ones, despite that standards exist for each topic at all grades. On a national level, science instruction is relegated to a matter of a few hours per week. A 2007 Education Policy study states that elementary school students spend an average of 178 minutes a week on science while spending 500 minutes on literacy. A recent NSTA report in July of elementary and middle school teachers confirms that teachers feel pressured to teach math and literacy at the expense of other programs. One unintended result is that teachers in grades where science is tested must play catch-up with students for them to be successful on the assessment. A unique way to combat the lack of science instruction at elementary grades is to combine literacy, social studies, and math into an integrated science program, thereby increasing the number of science contact hours. The Dancing Lights program, developed at the Laboratory for Atmospheric and Space Physics, is a science, art, and literacy program about the aurora designed to easily fit into a typical 3rd-5th grade instructional day. It mirrors other successful literacy programs and will provide a basis for the literacy program being developed for the upcoming MAVEN mission to Mars. We will present early findings, as well as "lessons learned" during our development and implementation of the Dancing Lights program and will highlight our goals for the MAVEN mission literacy program.

  20. Development of activities to promote the interest in science and technology in elementary and middle school students

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sicardi-Segade, A.; Campos-Mejía, A.; Solano, C.

    2016-09-01

    Innovation through science and technology will be essential to solve important challenges humanity will have to face in the years to come, regarding clean energies, food quality, medicine, communications, etc. To deal with these important issues, it is necessary to promote STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics) education in children. In this work, we present the results of the strategies that we have implemented to increase the elementary and middle school students interest in science and technology by means of activities that allow them to use and develop their creativity, team work, critical thinking, and the use of the scientific method and the engineering design process.

  1. Hermeneutic phenomenological multiple case study of the cultural references of elementary teachers and the place of fundamentalist Southern Baptist religion in teaching science

    Science.gov (United States)

    Thomas, Susan Elizabeth Shelton

    It has been said, "The two greatest forces in human history are science and religion" (Schachter-Shalomi & Smith, 1999, p. 220). It is those forces and their influence on science teaching that motivated the focus of this study to explore the cultural referents of elementary teachers and the place of fundamentalist Southern Baptist religious beliefs in teaching elementary science. Through a hermeneutic phenomenological framework, multiple case study method was used to interpret the individual consciousness and classroom lived experiences of three elementary teachers. The particularities surrounding elementary science instruction by devout Southern Baptist teachers was explored through several data sources, which included: personal interactions with the teachers, classroom observations, journaling, and interviews (Stake, 1995; Yin, 2003). Insights gained from this study indicate that the religious component of the culture of elementary teachers affects science teaching and learning. In Alabama, Southern Baptist beliefs influence both the public and private lives of educators. Replicated themes revealed the following themes: (a) a lack of concern for occasionally mentioning God in class due to the conservatively religious nature of Southern culture, (b) the teachers' beliefs affected classroom instruction and student interaction, (c) a commitment to science teaching in the context of the elementary classrooms, and (d) the teachers' as mediators. In addition, the theoretical framework provided an awareness of how the lives of the three educators could yield replicated themes. Indications are for a better understanding of how religion, as part of culture, influences science classroom instruction, including teacher education programs and aspects of science teaching and learning.

  2. A study of elementary teachers' conceptions of nature of science and their beliefs about the developmental appropriateness and importance of nature of science throughout a professional development program

    Science.gov (United States)

    Adibelli, Elif

    This qualitative study aimed to explore the changes in elementary science teachers' conceptions of nature of science (NOS) and their beliefs about the developmental appropriateness and importance of NOS after participating in an academic, year-long professional development program (PDP) as well as the factors facilitating these changes. The PDP consisted of two phases. In the first phase, the participants received NOS training designed with an explicit-reflective instructional approach. In the second phase, the participants implemented several NOS training activities in their classrooms. Four elementary science teachers who volunteered and completed all components of the PDP (i.e., the NOS training and the NOS teaching) comprised the participants of the present study. A multiple-embedded case study design was employed to explore the changes in the elementary science teachers' conceptions of NOS and their beliefs about the developmental appropriateness and importance of NOS. The study data were collected from multiple sources. The primary data sources included (a) Views of Nature of Science Elementary School Version 2 (VNOS-D2) questionnaire (Lederman & Khishfe, 2002), (b) Ideas about Science for Early Elementary (K-4) Students questionnaire (Sweeney, 2010), and (c) follow-up semi-structured interviews. The secondary data sources included videotaping of meetings with teachers, reflective field notes, and artifacts produced by teachers and their students. Data were analyzed using Yin's (1994, 2003) analytic tactics of pattern matching, explanation building, and cross-case synthesis. The findings of the study revealed that the elementary science teachers showed gradual, but substantial changes in their conceptions, and beliefs about the developmental appropriateness and importance of the NOS aspects over the course of participation in the PDP. Moreover, the participants identified nine components in the PDP that facilitated these changes in their conceptions, and

  3. Prospective Turkish elementary science teachers’ knowledge level about the greenhouse effect and their views on environmental education in university

    OpenAIRE

    Mustafa Kışoğlu; Hasan Gürbüz; Mehmet Erkol; Muhammed Said Akar; Mustafa Akıllı

    2010-01-01

    The fundamental factor of environmental education is teachers who are well-informed about environmental issues. This research aimed to determine prospective Turkish elementary science teachers’ knowledge level about causes, consequences and reducing of the greenhouse effect and to investigate the effect of gender, information source and membership in the environmental foundations on their knowledge. We also aimed to learn their views on environmental education given in universi...

  4. Making Earth Science Relevant in the K-8 Classroom. The Development of an Instructional Soils Module for Pre-Service Elementary Teachers Using the Next Generation Science Standards

    Science.gov (United States)

    Baldwin, K. A.; Hauge, R.; Dechaine, J. M.; Varrella, G.; Egger, A. E.

    2013-12-01

    The development and adoption of the Next Generation Science Standards (NGSS) raises a challenge in teacher preparation: few current teacher preparation programs prepare students to teach science the way it is presented in the NGSS, which emphasize systems thinking, interdisciplinary science, and deep engagement in the scientific process. In addition, the NGSS include more geoscience concepts and methods than previous standards, yet this is a topic area in which most college students are traditionally underprepared. Although nationwide, programmatic reform is needed, there are a few targets where relatively small, course-level changes can have a large effect. One of these targets is the 'science methods' course for pre-service elementary teachers, a requirement in virtually all teacher preparation programs. Since many elementary schools, both locally and across the country, have adopted a kit based science curriculum, examining kits is often a part of a science methods course. Unfortunately, solely relying on a kit based curriculum may leave gaps in science content curriculum as one prepares teachers to meet the NGSS. Moreover, kits developed at the national level often fall short in connecting geoscientific content to the locally relevant societal issues that engage students. This highlights the need to train pre-service elementary teachers to supplement kit curriculum with inquiry based geoscience investigations that consider relevant societal issues, promote systems thinking and incorporate connections between earth, life, and physical systems. We are developing a module that teaches geoscience concepts in the context of locally relevant societal issues while modeling effective pedagogy for pre-service elementary teachers. Specifically, we focus on soils, an interdisciplinary topic relevant to multiple geoscience-related societal grand challenges (e.g., water, food) that is difficult to engage students in. Module development is funded through InTeGrate, NSF

  5. An investigation of factors affecting elementary female student teachers' choice of science as a major at college level in Zimbabwe

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mlenga, Francis Howard

    The purpose of the study was to determine factors affecting elementary female student teachers' choice of science as a major at college level in Zimbabwe. The study was conducted at one of the Primary School Teachers' Colleges in Zimbabwe. A sample of two hundred and thirty-eight female student teachers was used in the study. Of these one hundred and forty-two were non-science majors who had been randomly selected, forty-one were science majors and forty-five were math majors. Both science and math majors were a convenient sample because the total enrollment of the two groups was small. All the subjects completed a survey questionnaire that had sixty-eight items. Ten students from the non-science majors were selected for individual interviews and the same was done for the science majors. A further eighteen were selected from the non-science majors and divided into three groups of six each for focus group interviews. The same was done for the science majors. The interviews were audio taped and transcribed. Data from the survey questionnaires were analyzed using Binary Logistic Regression which predicted factors that affected students' choice of science as a major. The transcribed interview data were analyzed used using domain, taxonomic and componential analyses. Results of the study indicated that elementary female students' choice of science as a major at college level is affected by students' attitudes toward science, teacher behavior, out-of-school experiences, role models, gender stereotyping, parental influence, peer influence, in-school experiences, and societal expectations, namely cultural and social expectations.

  6. Educational models in academic research on the teaching practices in science education in elementary school

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Rebeca Chiacchio Azevedo Fernandes

    2013-02-01

    Full Text Available We intended to identify the features and pedagogical trends of the school practices proposed and implemented in thesis and dissertations directed to science education at elementary school level from 1972 to 2005. Thirty studies were analysed regarding the teaching methodology, instructional resources, teacher-student relationships, evaluation, theoretical framework, and educational model (traditional, rediscovery, constructivist, technicist, STS, socio-cultural. We found that the constructivist model was dominant (63%, followed by the socio-cultural (20% and the rediscovery one (10%, and that the pedagogical practices were elaborated by researchers, applied by teachers and performed by students, showing a vertical hierarchy between university and school. However, the implemented practices (actual level usually were quite distant from the researchers discourse (proposed level. We also observed that the researchers didn’t find many difficulties in designing and applying a pedagogical proposal with innovative features, but to make changes in the school and social relations, as well as in the evaluation practices, is a barrier difficult to overcome.

  7. Elementary Science Instruction: Examining a Virtual Environment for Evidence of Learning, Engagement, and 21st Century Competencies

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Terry K. Smith

    2014-03-01

    Full Text Available This mixed methods study examined the effectiveness of a virtual world curriculum for teaching elementary students complex science concepts and skills. Data were collected using pre- and post-content tests and a student survey of engaged learning, An additional survey collected teacher observations of 21st century competencies conducive to learning. The study involved a five-day intervention of fifteen 4th grade students in a small Midwestern school using a virtual science computer game from Arizona State University. Thirty elementary teachers from Australia, England, and the United States were surveyed on classroom observations of their elementary students working in the virtual world environment. Research questions guiding the virtual learning study were: (1 do pre- and post-content tests show significant learning in the virtual environment; (2 are students academically engaged during the learning process; and (3 are students actively demonstrating relevant 21st century competencies. The study supports prior research in game-based learning showing measureable learning results, highly engaged, motivated students, and observations of student behaviors conducive to learning science in school, namely collaboration, problem solving, critical thinking/inquiry, global awareness, and technology use.

  8. Examining elementary teachers' knowledge and instruction of scientific explanations for fostering children's explanations in science

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wiebke, Heidi Lynn

    This study employed an embedded mixed methods multi-case study design (Creswell, 2014) with six early childhood (grades K-2) teachers to examine a) what changes occurred to their subject matter knowledge (SMK) and pedagogical content knowledge (PCK) for teaching scientific explanations while participating in a professional development program, b) how they planned for and implemented scientific explanation instruction within a teacher developed unit on properties of matter, and c) what affordances their instruction of scientific explanations had on fostering their students' abilities to generate explanations in science. Several quantitative and qualitative measures were collected and analyzed in accordance to this studies conceptual framework, which consisted of ten instructional practices teachers should consider assimilating or accommodating into their knowledge base (i.e., SMK & PCK) for teaching scientific explanations. Results of this study indicate there was little to no positive change in the teachers' substantive and syntactic SMK. However, all six teachers did make significant changes to all five components of their PCK for teaching explanations in science. While planning for scientific explanation instruction, all six teachers' contributed some ideas for how to incorporate seven of the ten instructional practices for scientific explanations within the properties of matter unit they co-developed. When enacting the unit, the six teachers' employed seven to nine of the instructional practices to varying levels of effectiveness, as measured by researcher developed rubrics. Given the six teachers' scientific explanation instruction, many students did show improvement in their ability to formulate a scientific explanation, particularly their ability to provide multiple pieces of evidence. Implications for professional developers, teacher educators, researchers, policy makers, and elementary teachers regarding how to prepare teachers for and support students

  9. Stories we live, identities we build: how are elementary teachers' science identities shaped by their lived experiences?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Avraamidou, Lucy

    2018-02-01

    The aim of this multiple case study was to uncover a series of critical events and experiences related to the formation of the science identities of four beginning elementary female teachers, through a life-history approach and a conceptualization of teacher identity as lived experience. Grounded within the theoretical framework of Figured Worlds, the study used qualitative, interpretive methods for data collection (interviews, biographies, teaching philosophies) and analysis. The analysis shed light on the ways in which various experiences situated within different Figured Worlds (science, family and childhood, schooling, out-of-school, university, professional) impacted the participants' identity trajectories. The findings provided three main insights that contribute to science identity research and have implications for elementary teacher preparation: (a) science teacher identity is multidimensional and extends beyond cognitive domains of becoming to include affective dimensions; (b) science teacher identity is relational, linked and shaped by various other constructs or sub-identities; (c) place and time, defined as a space with meaning created by experiences, and science teacher identity are inextricably bound to one another.

  10. International Observe the Moon Night: A Worldwide Public Observing Event that Annually Engages Scientists, Educators, and Citizen Enthusiasts in NASA Science

    Science.gov (United States)

    Buxner, S.; Jones, A. P.; Bleacher, L.; Wasser, M. L.; Day, B. H.; Shaner, A. J.; Bakerman, M. N.; Joseph, E.

    2017-12-01

    International Observe the Moon Night (InOMN) is an annual worldwide event, held in the fall, that celebrates lunar and planetary science and exploration. InOMN is sponsored by NASA's Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter (LRO) in collaboration with NASA's Solar System Exploration Research Virtual Institute (SSERVI), the NASA's Heliophysics Education Consortium, CosmoQuest, Night Sky Network, and Science Festival Alliance. Other key partners include the NASA Museum Alliance, Night Sky Network, and NASA Solar System Ambassadors. In 2017, InOMN will bring together thousands of people across the globe to observe and learn about the Moon and its connection to planetary science. We are partnering with the NASA Science Mission Directorate total solar eclipse team to highlight InOMN as an opportunity to harness and sustain the interest and momentum in space science and observation following the August 21st eclipse. This is part of a new partnership with the Sun-Earth Day team, through the Heliophysics Education Consortium, to better connect the two largest NASA-sponsored public engagement events, increase participation in both events, and share best practices in implementation and evaluation between the teams. Over 3,800 InOMN events have been registered between 2010 and 2016, engaging over 550,000 visitors worldwide. Most InOMN events are held in the United States, with strong representation from many other countries. InOMN events are evaluated to determine the value of the events and to allow us to improve the experience for event hosts and visitors. Our results show that InOMN events are hosted by scientists, educators, and citizen enthusiasts around the world who leverage InOMN to bring communities together, get visitors excited and learn about the Moon - and beyond, and share resources to extend engagement in lunar and planetary science and observation. Through InOMN, we annually provide resources such as event-specific Moon maps, presentations, advertising materials, and

  11. Efficacy development in science: Investigating the effects of the Teacher-to-Teacher (T2T) professional development model in Hilo elementary schools

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pinner, Pascale Creek

    Conderman and Sheldon Woods (2008) suggest that although science plays a central role in our world today, science instruction seems to be minimized particularly at the elementary grade levels. Research has investigated the construct of efficacy (Bandura, 1977, 2006a; Riggs & Enochs, 1990; Ramey-Gassert, Shroyer & Staver, 1996; Tschannen-Moran, Hoy & Hoy, 1998, 2001). Professional and conceptual development in teachers has also been explored (Gordon, 1990; Sheerer, 1997; Skaalvik & Skaalvik, 2007). The purpose of this research was to describe the changes in efficacy elementary teachers experience as they participated in science professional development. Data from a Math/Science Partnership (MSP) grant sample suggested significant changes in science self-efficacy and improved pedagogy. Mixed methods revealed connections resulting in a multi-faceted Progression of Efficacy Growth flowchart. The results suggest that utilizing the Teacher-to-Teacher (T2T) professional development model has created a pathway for more science teaching across the Hilo elementary schools.

  12. Elementary school science teachers' reflection for nature of science: Workshop of NOS explicit and reflective on force and motion learning activity

    Science.gov (United States)

    Patho, Khanittha; Yuenyong, Chokchai; Chamrat, Suthida

    2018-01-01

    The nature of science has been part of Thailand's science education curriculum since 2008. However, teachers lack of understanding about the nature of science (NOS) and its teaching, particularly element school science teachers. In 2012, the Science Institute of Thailand MOE, started a project of Elementary Science Teacher Professional Development to enhance their thinking about the Nature of Science. The project aimed to enhance teachers' understanding of NOS, science teaching for explicit and reflective NOS, with the aim of extending their understanding of NOS to other teachers. This project selected 366 educational persons. The group was made up of a teacher and a teacher supervisor from 183 educational areas in 74 provinces all Thailand. The project provided a one week workshop and a year's follow up. The week-long workshop consisted of 11 activities of science teaching for explicit reflection on 8 aspects of NOS. Workshop of NOS explicit and reflective on force and motion learning activity is one of eight activities. This activity provided participants to learn force and motion and NOS from the traditional toy "Bang-Poh". The activity tried to enhance participants to explicit NOS for 5 aspects including empirical basis, subjectivity, creativity, observation and inference, and sociocultural embeddedness. The explicit NOS worksheet provided questions to ask participants to reflect their existing ideas about NOS. The paper examines elementary school science teachers' understanding of NOS from the force and motion learning activity which provided explicit reflection on 5 NOS aspects. An interpretive paradigm was used to analyse the teachers' reflections in a NOS worksheet. The findings indicated that majority of them could reflect about the empirical basis of science and creativity but few reflected on observation and inference, or sociocultural embeddedness. The paper will explain the teachers' NOS thinking and discuss the further enhancing of their understanding

  13. The effectiveness of a popular science promotion program on nanotechnology for elementary school students in I-Lan City

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lin, Show-Yu; Wu, Ming-Ta; Cho, Ya-I.; Chen, Hui-Huang

    2015-01-01

    Background:Nanotechnology education has become an urgent priority to nurture skilled human resources for the rapidly developing nanotechnology-related industries. The promotion of popular science education focusing on nanotechnology is an ideal approach to bridge the gaps in formal curricula, and to stimulate curiosity about and interest in nanotechnology among schoolchildren. Purpose:The objective of this study was to evaluate the effectiveness of the Nanotechnology-based Popular Science Education Promotion and Teaching (NPSEPT) program through camp activity that was implemented in elementary schools in I-Lan City, Taiwan. Program description:To create a competitive advantage, a human resources development program was implemented as one of the nanotechnology incubation projects in Taiwan and focused on developing an appropriately-skilled professional workforce as well as promoting popular science education. Sample:The volunteer research participants were 323 sixth grade students in four elementary schools in I-Lan City, Taiwan, who were evaluated at the beginning and the end of the nanotechnology-based popular science promotion camp activity. Design and methods:A research tool called the 'NPSEPT test' was designed specifically for this study and was approved by experts who evaluated its content and face validity. The questionnaire was divided into three aspects: 'Nanophenomena in the natural world'; 'Nanomaterials and their scaling effects'; and 'Definition, characteristics, and applications of nanotechnology.' The effectiveness of learning among the students was analyzed using descriptive statistics, a paired sample t-test, analysis of variance (ANOVA) and a post hoc comparison. Results:The results of the three-part 'NPSEPT test' revealed that NPSEPT significantly advanced nanotechnology learning performance and outcomes among students in the four participating elementary schools. Of the 15 questions included in the NPSEPT test, positive change for more than 30

  14. A Trial of PBL Education with Emphasis on Improving Practical Competence of Engineering Students-A Trial Connected with the Support for Science Education in Elementary School

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tsutsumi, Hirotaka; Nikkuni, Hiroyuki; Kitakoshi, Daisuke; Yasuda, Toshitaka; Kikuchi, Akira; Mitani, Tomoyo

    Recently Colleges of technology as well as universities have some experience-oriented classes in sciences for elementary school students. These have proved to be successful as good motivation for students in the primary education to be engineers. This research has tried the PBL education, which combined the Support of Science Education in Elementary School and the improvement of students‧ practical competence in their careers. The support of science education in elementary school was carried out by using LEGO blocks, widely utilized in the educational researches of robots, and was conducted in the practical class with the autonomous robots. Finally, the method for the class was evaluated by the elementary school students on the basis of the questionnaire.

  15. The Effect of School Culture on Science Education at an Ideologically Innovative Elementary Magnet School: An Ethnographic Case Study

    Science.gov (United States)

    Meier, Lori T.

    2012-11-01

    This ethnographic case study investigated the science practices of teachers at one public elementary magnet school in light of how school culture influenced science curriculum design and instruction. The purpose of the study was to address how school culture impacted the school's overall treatment of science as a viable content area. Key informant teachers were interviewed to explore their personal beliefs and values, teaching, access to materials, and views of the adopted integrated thematic curriculum model and magnet structure. The resulting data, triangulated with informal observation and artifact collection, were analyzed using a theoretical framework that emphasized five interdependent school culture indicators (values, beliefs, practices, materials, and problems). Findings suggest that the school's culture adversely influenced the treatment of science.

  16. Discover POPSCIENCE on Researchers' Night

    CERN Multimedia

    The POPSCIENCE Team

    2014-01-01

    On Friday 26 September 2014, CERN will be celebrating European Researchers' Night at three venues in Geneva and St. Genis-Pouilly. Inspired by Andy Warhol, this year's theme is “Pop science is for everyone”.     Every year, on the last Friday of September, the European Researchers’ Night takes place in about 300 cities all over Europe, with funding from the EU, to promote research and highlight researchers in engaging and fun ways for the general public. Andy Warhol said, “Pop art is for everyone”. This year, “Pop science is for everyone” is the motto of the Researchers’ Night event organised by CERN and its partners*. The night will offer everyone the opportunity to learn about the latest discoveries in physics and cosmology through poetry, theatre and music. This will be in addition to the event's traditional activities for the general public. To attract new audiences,...

  17. Exploring elementary school teachers' perception of their role in teaching content literacy in the elementary science and social studies classrooms: A mixed methods study

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jones-Moore, Lisa Michelle

    2011-12-01

    This mixed-methods study explored third, fourth, and fifth grade teachers' perceptions of their role in teaching content literacy in the elementary science and social studies classroom. The rationale for this study was the growing number of studies questioning the reliance on the inoculation theory for content area literacy comprehension. The study was a mixed methods study so as to provide insight into the participants' thought processes in decision making and instructional planning. Data sources included timed instructional observations, tiered checklist to identify strategy instruction, and prompted critical reflections. The three-tiered observation instrument categorized strategies used by teachers in tiers according to the focus of the strategy. Tier I strategies were those identified as strategies good readers use, typically taught with narrative text. The inoculation theory posits these skills transfer to reading informational and expository text. Tier II strategies were those identified as strategies appropriate for informational or expository text. Use of these strategies acknowledged that narrative and informational/expository text require different strategies, but does not differentiate between expository text drawn from particular content area. Tier III strategies were those identified as strategies particularly suited to informational or expository text drawn from specific content areas. These strategies embody cognitive processes used to comprehend text drawn from specific content areas. The findings showed the participating teachers used a preferential Tier of strategy instruction. Some participants felt that reading comprehension was more important than content. They viewed reading as a subject instead of an integral part of science and social studies instruction.

  18. Geological field study for science education on Elementary and Junior high school student, in Shimane prefecture, Japan

    Science.gov (United States)

    Matsumoto, I.

    2011-12-01

    The importance of learning at field has been increasing in the elementary and the junior high school in Japan. And, an environmental education is one of the important subjects even in the school education, too. It was important, as for science education, understanding with actual feeling and learning were specified as for the Teaching outlines (the Japanese Ministry of Education, Culture, Sports, Science and Technology) of the new science textbook of the elementary and the junior high school as well. However, It is a little actual situation that there is in an opportunity for the field learning enforced in the school lesson by the investigation of JST (Japan Science and Tecnology Agency). This tendency is strong as much as school of the city and that circumference. I have this cause think that there are a few suitable places for learning to observe geological and biological field near school. In addition, below two is pointed out as a big problem to obstruct the execution of field learning. 1) A natural experience isn't being done sufficient as much as a teacher can teach to the student. 2) It doesn't have the confidence that a teacher teaches a student geology and biology at the field. I introduce the practical example of geological field learning at the public elementary school of the Shimane prefecture by this research. Though it is the place where nature is comparatively rich even in Japan, it can't be said that field learning is popular in Shimane prefecture. A school teacher has to learning experience at field, and he must settle confidence to guide a student at the field. A specialist in the university and the museum must support continuous learning for that to the school teacher.

  19. Mars Atmosphere and Volatile EvolutioN (MAVEN) mission's Red Planet program: Bridging the gap in elementary school science through climate studies of Mars

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wood, E. L.

    2012-12-01

    Although reading, writing, and math examinations are often conducted early in elementary school, science is not typically tested until 4th or 5th grade. The result is a refocus on the tested topics at the expense of the untested ones, despite that standards exist for each topic at all grades. On a national level, science instruction is relegated to a matter of a few hours per week. A 2007 Education Policy study states that elementary school students spend an average of 178 minutes a week on science while spending 500 minutes on literacy. A recent NSTA report in July of 2011 of elementary and middle school teachers confirms that teachers feel pressured to teach math and literacy at the expense of other programs. In our interaction with elementary teachers, it is also apparent that many are uncomfortable with science concepts. In order for us to successfully address the Next Generation Science Standards, teachers must be able to reconcile all of the different requirements placed on them in a given school day and in a given school environment. A unique way to combat the lack of science instruction at elementary grades is to combine literacy into an integrated science program, thereby increasing the number of science contact hours. The Red Planet: Read, Write, Explore program, developed for the MAVEN mission, is a science, art, and literacy program designed to easily fit into a typical 3rd-5th grade instructional day. Red Planet tackles climate change through Mars' geologic history and makes Mars-Earth comparisons, while encouraging students to reflect on the environmental requirements needed to keep a biological organisms (including humans) happy, healthy, and alive. The Red Planet program is currently being pilot tested at Acres Green Elementary School in Colorado.

  20. Exploring How Second Grade Elementary Teachers Translate Their Nature of Science Views into Classroom Practice After a Graduate Level Nature of Science Course

    Science.gov (United States)

    Deniz, Hasan; Adibelli, Elif

    2015-12-01

    The main purpose of this study was to explore the factors mediating the translation of second grade teachers' nature of science (NOS) views into classroom practice after completing a graduate level NOS course. Four second grade in-service elementary teachers comprised the sample of this study. Data were collected from several sources during the course of this study. The primary data sources were (a) assessment of the elementary teachers' NOS views before and after the graduate level NOS course using the Views of Nature of Science Questionnaire Version B (VNOS-B) (Lederman et al., 2002) coupled with interviews, and (b) a classroom observation and videotaped recording of the elementary teachers' best NOS lessons coupled with interview. We identified three distinct but related factors that mediated the translation of NOS views into classroom practice: the teachers' perspectives about the developmental appropriateness of the NOS aspect, the teachers' selection of target NOS aspects, and the relative importance placed by teachers on each NOS aspect.

  1. The effects of student-level and classroom-level factors on elementary students' science achievement in five countries

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kaya, Sibel

    The interest in raising levels of achievement in math and science has led to a focus on investigating the factors that shape achievement in these subjects (Lamb & Fullarton, 2002) as well as understanding how these factors operate across countries (Baker, Fabrega, Galindo, & Mishook, 2004). The current study examined the individual student factors and classroom factors on fourth grade science achievement within and across five countries. Guided by the previous school learning models, the elements of students' science learning were categorized as student-level and classroom-level factors. The student-level factors included gender, self-confidence in science, and home resources. The classroom-level factors included teacher characteristics, instructional variables and classroom composition. Results for the United States and four other countries, Singapore, Japan, Australia, and Scotland were reported. Multilevel effects of student and classroom variables were examined through Hierarchical Linear Modeling (HLM) using the Trends in International Mathematics and Science Study (TIMSS) 2003 fourth grade dataset. The outcome variable was the TIMSS 2003 science score. Overall, the results of this study showed that selected student background characteristics were consistently related to elementary science achievement in countries investigated. At the student-level, higher levels of home resources and self-confidence and at the classroom-level, higher levels of class mean home resources yielded higher science scores on the TIMSS 2003. In general, teacher and instructional variables were minimally related to science achievement. There was evidence of positive effects of teacher support in the U.S. and Singapore. The emphasis on science inquiry was positively related to science achievement in Singapore and negatively related in the U.S. and Australia. Experimental studies that investigate the impacts of teacher and instructional factors on elementary science achievement are

  2. Introducing Engineering Design to a Science Teaching Methods Course through Educational Robotics and Exploring Changes in Views of Preservice Elementary Teachers

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kaya, Erdogan; Newley, Anna; Deniz, Hasan; Yesilyurt, Ezgi; Newley, Patrick

    2017-01-01

    Engineering has become an important subject in the Next Generation Science Standards (NGSS), which have raised engineering design to the same level as scientific inquiry when teaching science disciplines at all levels. Therefore, preservice elementary teachers (PSTs) need to know how to integrate the engineering design process (EDP) into their…

  3. Efficacy Development in Science: Investigating the Effects of the Teacher-to-Teacher (T2T) Professional Development Model in Hilo Elementary Schools

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pinner, Pascale Creek

    2012-01-01

    Conderman and Sheldon Woods (2008) suggest that although science plays a central role in our world today, science instruction seems to be minimized particularly at the elementary grade levels. Research has investigated the construct of efficacy (Bandura, 1977, 2006a; Riggs & Enochs, 1990; Ramey-Gassert, Shroyer & Staver, 1996;…

  4. A night with good vibrations

    CERN Multimedia

    2002-01-01

    Next week-end, the Geneva Science History Museum invites you to a Science Night under the banner of waves and vibrations. Scientists, artists and storytellers from more than forty institutes and local or regional associations will show that waves and vibrations form an integral part of our environment. You will be able to get in contact with the nature of waves through interactive exhibitions on sound and light and through hands-on demonstrations arranged in the Park of the Perle du Lac. On the CERN stand, you will be able to measure the speed of light with a bar of chocolate, and understand the scattering of waves with plastic ducks. Amazing, no? In addition to the stands, the Night will offer many other activities: reconstructions of experiments, a play, a concert of crystal glasses, an illuminated fountain, a house of spirits. More information Science Night, 6 and 7 July, Park of the Perle du Lac, Geneva

  5. Integrating the Teaching of Space Science, Planetary Exploration And Robotics In Elementary And Middle School with Mars Rover Models

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bering, E. A.; Ramsey, J.; Smith, H.; Boyko, B. S.; Peck, S.; Arcenaux, W. H.

    2005-05-01

    The present aerospace engineering and science workforce is ageing. It is not clear that the US education system will produce enough qualified replacements to meet the need in the near future. Unfortunately, by the time many students get to high school, it is often too late to get them pointed toward an engineering or science career. Since some college programs require 6 units of high school mathematics for admission, students need to begin consciously preparing for a science or engineering curriculum as early as 6th or 7th grade. The challenge for educators is to convince elementary school students that science and engineering are both exciting, relevant and accessible career paths. This paper describes a program designed to help provide some excitement and relevance. It is based on the task of developing a mobile robot or "Rover" to explore the surface of Mars. There are two components to the program, a curriculum unit and a contest. The curriculum unit is structured as a 6-week planetary science unit for elementary school (grades 3-5). It can also be used as a curriculum unit, enrichment program or extracurricular activity in grades 6-8 by increasing the expected level of scientific sophistication in the mission design. The second component is a citywide competition to select the most outstanding models that is held annually at a local college or University. Primary (Grades 3-5) and middle school (Grades 6-8) students interested in science and engineering will design and build of a model of a Mars Rover to carry out a specific science mission on the surface of Mars. The students will build the models as part of a 6-week Fall semester classroom-learning or homework project on Mars. The students will be given design criteria for a rover, and be required to do basic research on Mars that will determine the operational objectives and structural features of their rover. This module may be used as part of a class studying general science, earth science, solar system

  6. Preservice elementary teachers' use of a discursive model of meaning making in the co-construction of science understanding

    Science.gov (United States)

    Boyer, Elisebeth C.

    This research investigates how three preservice elementary teachers were prepared to teach science using a Discursive Model of Meaning Making. The research is divided into two parts. The first consists of the nature of the participants’ learning experiences in a science methods course within a school-university Professional Development School partnership. This part of the investigation used Constant Comparative Analysis of field notes gathered through participant observation of the methods course. The analysis investigated how the methods instructors employed productive questioning, talk moves, and a coherent research based Teaching Science as Argument Framework. The second part of the study consisted of an investigation into how the participants applied what they experienced during the methods course in their initial science teaching experiences, as well as how the participants made sense of their initial science teaching. Data consisted of teaching videos of the participants during their initial science teaching experiences and self-analysis videos created by the participants. This part of the research used Discourse Analysis of the teaching and self-analysis videos. These inquiries provide insight into what aspects of the methods course were taken up by the participants and how they made sense of their practices. Findings are: 1) Throughout the methods course, instructors modeled how the Teaching Science as Argument Framework can be used to negotiate scientific understanding by employing a Discursive Model of Meaning Making. 2) During lesson plan conferences the Discursive Model was emphasized as participants planned classroom discussion and explored possible student responses enabling them to anticipate how they could attempt to increase student understanding. 3) Participants displayed three distinct patterns of adoption of the Teaching Science as Argument Framework (TSAF), involving different discursive practices. They were, • Detached Discursive Approach

  7. An exploration of elementary science teachers' expertise, creativity skills, and motivation in relation to the use of an innovation and the delivery of high-quality science instruction

    Science.gov (United States)

    Falkenberg, Karen L.

    This two-year study sought to uncover characteristic differences among a purposive sample of 23 elementary teachers who were using an elementary science innovation with various levels of proficiency. Two theoretical frameworks supported the development of the research, the Concerns Based Adoption Model Level of Use (LoU) (Hord, Rutherford, Huling-Austin & Hall, 1987) and Amabile's (1996) Componential Model of Creativity. Both qualitative and quantitative methodologies were employed to gather data on participants' science content knowledge, pedagogical skill, creativity relevant process skills, motivation orientation, self-efficacy, outcome expectancy and workplace environment. Results dispute the common conception among educators that "mechanical use" teachers do not provide high quality lessons. A new method for categorizing teachers' proficiency with an innovation is suggested by this study that incorporates both qualitative data from the LoU interview and classroom observation. Additionally, results show that the quality of the observed science lessons was associated with a teacher's creativity. The data suggest that a teacher's creativity relevant process skills and expertise are indicators of lesson quality. There were important differences among teachers' conceptions of creativity, how they involved students in the reported lessons and in the type of adaptations they made to the innovation. The more creative teachers tended to provide lessons that were more complex, of longer duration, had ties to student home life, and used multiple resources. Following an analysis of these results is a set of suggested professional development strategies and workplace changes to support less proficient teachers in their ability to provide higher quality elementary science lessons.

  8. International Observe the Moon Night - An Opportunity to Participate in the Year of the Solar System While Sharing the Excitement of Lunar Science and Exploration with the Public

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bleacher, L.; Daou, D.; Day, B. H.; Hsu, B. C.; Jones, A. P.; Mitchell, B.; Shaner, A. J.; Shipp, S. S.

    2010-12-01

    International Observe the Moon Night (InOMN) is a multi-nation effort to share the excitement of recent lunar missions and new science results with education communities, amateur astronomers, space enthusiasts, and the general public. It is also intended to encourage the world to experience the thrill of observing Earth’s closest neighbor. The inaugural InOMN took place on September 18, 2010. People in over 26 countries gathered together in groups big and small to learn about the Moon through presentations by scientists, astronomers, and engineers; participate in hands-on activities; and observe the Moon through telescopes, binoculars, and the naked eye. Next year’s InOMN will take place on October 8, 2011 during the Year of the Solar System (YSS). The October 2011 YSS theme will be “Moons/Rings Across the Solar System.” InOMN is perfectly suited as an event that any museum, science center, planetarium, university, school, or other group can implement to celebrate YSS. The InOMN Coordinating Committee has developed a variety of resources and materials to make it easy to host an InOMN event of any size. Interested groups are encouraged to utilize the InOMN website (observethemoonnight.org) in planning their InOMN event for 2011/YSS. The website contains links to Moon resources, educational activities, suggestions for hosting an event, free downloads of logos and flyers for advertising an event, and contests. New for 2011 will be a discussion forum for event hosts to share their plans, tips, and experiences. Together, YSS and InOMN will enable the public to maintain its curiosity about the Moon and to gain a better understanding of the Moon’s formation, evolution, and place in the night sky.

  9. Digital fabrication as an instructional technology for supporting upper elementary and middle school science and mathematics education

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tillman, Daniel

    The purpose of this three-paper manuscript dissertation was to study digital fabrication as an instructional technology for supporting elementary and middle school science and mathematics education. Article one analyzed the effects of digital fabrication activities that were designed to contextualize mathematics education at a summer mathematics enrichment program for upper elementary and middle school students. The primary dependent variables studied were the participants' knowledge of mathematics and science content, attitudes towards STEM (science, technology, engineering, and mathematics) and STEM-related careers. Based upon the data collected, three results were presented as having justifiable supporting empirical evidence: (1) The digital fabrication activities, combined with the other mathematics activities at the enrichment program, resulted in non-significant overall gains in students' mathematics test scores and attitudes towards STEM. (2) The digital fabrication activities, combined with the other mathematics activities at the enrichment program, resulted in noteworthy gains on the "Probability & Statistics" questions. (3) Some students who did poorly on the scored paper test on mathematics and science content were nonetheless nominated by their teachers as demonstrating meritorious distinction during the digital fabrication activities (termed "Great Thinkers" by the 5th-grade teachers). Article two focused on how an instructional technology course featuring digital fabrication activities impacted (1) preservice elementary teachers' efficacy beliefs about teaching science, and (2) their attitudes and understanding of how to include instructional technology and digital fabrication activities into teaching science. The research design compared two sections of a teaching with technology course featuring digital fabrication activities to another section of the same course that utilized a media cycle framework (Bull & Bell, 2005) that did not feature digital

  10. Effectiveness of a Mobile Plant Learning System in a Science Curriculum in Taiwanese Elementary Education

    Science.gov (United States)

    Huang, Yueh-Min; Lin, Yen-Ting; Cheng, Shu-Chen

    2010-01-01

    This study developed a Mobile Plant Learning System (MPLS) that provides instructors with the ways and means to facilitate student learning in an elementary-school-level botany course. The MPLS represented in this study was implemented to address problems that arise with the use of a didactic approach to teaching and learning botany, as is…

  11. Intersections of life histories and science identities : the stories of three preservice elementary teachers

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Avraamidou, Lucy

    Grounded within Connelly and Clandinin's conceptualization of teachers' professional identity in terms of stories to live by' and through a life-history lens, this multiple case study aimed to respond to the following questions: (a) How do three preservice elementary teachers view themselves as

  12. Prospective Elementary Teacher Understandings of Pest-Related Science and Agricultural Education Benchmarks.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Trexler, Cary J.; Heinze, Kirk L.

    2001-01-01

    Clinical interviews with eight preservice elementary teachers elicited their understanding of pest-related benchmarks. Those with out-of-school experience were better able to articulate their understanding. Many were unable to make connections between scientific, societal and technological concepts. (Contains 39 references.) (SK)

  13. Teaching of science and language by elementary teachers who emphasize the integrated language approach: A descriptive study

    Science.gov (United States)

    Blouch, Kathleen Kennedy

    This research involved investigating the nature of science and language instruction in 13 elementary classrooms where teachers have restructured their language programs to reflect an integrated or holistic view of language instruction. The teachers were identified by school administrators and other professionals as teachers who have implemented instructional reforms described in the Pennsylvania Framework for Reading, Writing and Speaking Across the Curriculum (PCRPII), (Lytle & Botel, 1900). The instruction utilized by these teachers was described as atypical when compared to that of teachers utilizing the more traditional didactic skills oriented approach to language literacy. The research involved observing, recording and categorizing teaching behaviors during both science and language instruction. Videotaped observations were followed by analyses and descriptions of these behaviors. Interviews were also conducted to ascertain the basis for selection of the various instructional approaches. The instruction was compared on four dimensions: participation patterns, time the behaviors were practiced, type of tasks and levels of questioning. The instruction was then described in light of constructivist teaching practices: student collaboration, student autonomy, integration and higher order thinking. Constructivist practices differed among teachers for science and language instruction. During science instruction teachers spent more time involved in teacher-whole group participation patterns with more direct questioning as compared to language instruction in which children participated alone or in groups and had opportunity to initiate conversations and questions. Student inquiry was evidenced during language instruction more so than during science. The 13 teachers asked a variety of levels and types of questions both in science and language instruction. More hands-on science experiences were observed when science was taught separately compared to when integrated with

  14. An examination of key experiences which contribute to a positive change in attitude toward science in two elementary education teacher candidates at the University of Wyoming

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cason, Maggie A.

    This investigation utilized life history methodology (Armstrong, 1987; Bogdan & Biklen, 1998; Lawrence-Lightfoot, 1977; Marshall & Rossman, 1995; Patton, 1987; Taylor & Bogdan; 1984) to examine lifelong science experiences of two elementary education teacher candidates at a land grant institution with a large, undergraduate teacher education program. Purposive sampling techniques (Bogdan & Biklen, 1998) led to the selection of two teacher candidates who reported high science anxiety when they began university coursework. The investigation focused on five broad questions: (a) What were key experiences in the elementary teacher education program which contributed to a positive change in attitude toward science? (b) What science experiences, in and out of school, did the teacher candidates encounter while they were in elementary school, junior high school, high school, and college? (c) How did the elementary education program's science course structure, professors, and field experiences contribute to the change in attitude toward science? (d) How much time was involved in the change in attitude toward science? and (e) What were the effects of the change in attitude on the teaching of science in the elementary classroom? Each candidate completed approximately twenty hours of interviews yielding rich descriptions of their lifelong science experiences. Data also included interviews with science and science education professors, journaling, and observations of student teaching experiences. Data analysis revealed four over-arching themes with implications for teacher educators. First, data showed the importance of relationship building between professors and teacher candidates. Professors must know and work with teacher candidates, and provide a structure that encourages question asking. Second, course structure including hands-on teaching strategies and students working in small groups over an extended period of time was vital. Third, integrating language arts with

  15. A night with good vibrations

    CERN Multimedia

    2002-01-01

    For its third edition, the Museum d'histoire des sciences invites you to a Science Night under the banner of waves and undulations. Scientists, artists and storytellers from more than forty institutes and local or regional associations will show in only one weekend that waves and undulations form an integral part of our daily environment. Telephones, televisions, radios, irons, lighting, music, sun rays, stars, rainbows, earthquakes and other natural phenomena - all produce, emit or receive waves or undulations. The visitors attending the Night will be able to get in contact with the nature of waves through interactive exhibitions on sound and light and through hands-on demonstrations arranged around the Bartholoni villa and in the Park of the Perle du lac. An amusing and distracting way to familiarize yourself with the concepts of wavelength, frequency and interference lengths... In addition to the stands, the Night will offer many other activities: reconstructions of critical experiments, scientific consu...

  16. The Role of Content in Inquiry-Based Elementary Science Lessons: An Analysis of Teacher Beliefs and Enactment

    Science.gov (United States)

    Furtak, Erin Marie; Alonzo, Alicia C.

    2010-05-01

    The Trends in International Mathematics and Science Study (TIMSS) Video Study explored instructional practices in the United States (US) in comparison with other countries that ranked higher on the 1999 TIMSS assessment, and revealed that 8th grade science teachers in the US emphasize activities over content during lessons (Roth et al. 2006). This study applies the content framework from the TIMSS Video Study to a sample of 28 3rd grade teachers enacting an inquiry-based unit on floating and sinking, and seeks a deeper understanding of teachers’ practices through analysis of interviews with those teachers. Transcripts of observed lessons were coded according to the TIMSS framework for types of content, and transcripts of teacher interviews were coded to capture the ways in which teachers described their role in and purposes for teaching science, particularly with respect to the floating and sinking unit. Results indicate that teachers focused more on canonical, procedural and experimental knowledge during lessons than on real-world connections and the nature of science; however, none of the types of content received major emphasis in a majority of the classrooms in the sample. During interviews, teachers described their practice in ways that prioritized helping students to like science over specific content outcomes. The study suggests that elementary school teachers’ emphasis on doing and feeling during inquiry-based lessons may interfere with teaching of content.

  17. Dead of night.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Balter, Leon

    2010-07-01

    Dead of Night, the first psychoanalytic horror film, was produced in England in 1945, immediately after the end of World War II--that is, after the English population had suffered systematic Nazi terror from imminent invasion, incessant aerial bombing, and rocket-bombs. This film continued the prewar format of horror films based on themes of the supernatural and the hubris and excesses of science. However, it introduced psychoanalysis as the science in question. The film is structured on two levels: a genteel English country weekend to which witty and urbane guests have been invited; and five horror stories told by the guests. Psychoanalytic insights into this film structure are used here to explain how the film induces horror in the audience.

  18. Science teacher development and the lens of social media: An investigation into the identity and influences upon the development of elementary pre-service science teachers

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wall, Steven D.

    Pre-service teacher education is committed to the cultivation of different forms of competency that include, but are not limited to, content knowledge and pedagogical skill (Levin, Hammer, & Coffey, 2009; Yerrick, 2005). While advances in practice have been made, pre-service elementary teachers (PS-ESTs) continue to exhibit anxiety and doubt about self-efficacy in science teaching. Teacher education is designed to encourage PS-ESTs to formulate useful practices, but PS-ESTs must first overcome limitations and anxiety generated by past, personal experiences and an acknowledged discomfort with science. While this goal is accomplished through contexts designed with that intent (e.g. methods courses, field experiences), challenges remain. Twenty-first century elementary teacher education research needs to examine influences associated with individual identities within specific roles (Gee, 2000), teaching and learning contexts and their inherent influences, and interactions that are enhanced by the increasing presence and influence of social networks. To examine and better understand identity, contexts, and interactional influences, blogs from two cohorts of PS-ESTs were examined to better understand how teacher education practices influenced PS-ESTs and to determine PS-ESTs beliefs about the teacher's role. The study was designed to answer the following research questions: "What is learned about the identity of PS-ESTs authored through social media, what contextual influences are acknowledged by PS-ESTs, and what interactions are occurring and what roles are they playing in the development of PS-ESTs?" This study used grounded theory and perceptual control theory (PCT) to analyze and reduce data to make assertions about PS-ESTs' development as teachers and influences upon their practices. Findings illuminated components of PS-EST teaching identities and suggested multiple implications within different domains, including the role of PST understandings of science

  19. Cognitive dissonance of science and religion in pre-service elementary school teachers

    Science.gov (United States)

    Malloy, Robert Earl, Sr.

    Throughout history science and religion have been in conflict. Many of the theories of science do not agree with the religious beliefs of pre-service teachers. Those teachers who will be teaching in the science classroom, must be able to present science without prejudice of personal religious beliefs. Are pre-service teachers prepared for science/religion conflicts? How much conflict do pre-service teachers have between science and religion? This study suggests that pre-service teachers may have a high degree of conflict between science and religion, and that they have received no educational experience on how to deal with this conflict. Such conflict poses a potential problem when presenting science in the classroom, in that non-science information may not be separated from the science presented.

  20. Elementary metallography

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kazem, Sayyed M.

    1992-01-01

    Materials and Processes 1 (MET 141) is offered to freshmen by the Mechanical Engineering Department at Purdue University. The goal of MET 141 is to broaden the technical background of students who have not had any college science courses. Hence, applied physics, chemistry, and mathematics are included and quantitative problem solving is involved. In the elementary metallography experiment of this course, the objectives are: (1) introduce the vocabulary and establish outlook; (2) make qualitative observations and quantitative measurements; (3) demonstrate the proper use of equipment; and (4) review basic mathematics and science.

  1. Opening Pandora's Box: Texas Elementary Campus Administrators use of Educational Policy And Highly Qualified Classroom Teachers Professional Development through Data-informed Decisions for Science Education

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brown, Linda Lou

    Federal educational policy, No Child Left Behind Act of 2001, focused attention on America's education with conspicuous results. One aspect, highly qualified classroom teacher and principal (HQ), was taxing since states established individual accountability structures. The HQ impact and use of data-informed decision-making (DIDM) for Texas elementary science education monitoring by campus administrators, Campus Instruction Leader (CILs), provides crucial relationships to 5th grade students' learning and achievement. Forty years research determined improved student results when sustained, supported, and focused professional development (PD) for teachers is available. Using mixed methods research, this study applied quantitative and qualitative analysis from two, electronic, on-line surveys: Texas Elementary, Intermediate or Middle School Teacher Survey(c) and the Texas Elementary Campus Administrator Survey(c) with results from 22.3% Texas school districts representing 487 elementary campuses surveyed. Participants selected in random, stratified sampling of 5th grade teachers who attended local Texas Regional Collaboratives science professional development (PD) programs between 2003-2008. Survey information compared statistically to campus-level average passing rate scores on the 5th grade science TAKS using Statistical Process Software (SPSS). Written comments from both surveys analyzed with Qualitative Survey Research (NVivo) software. Due to the level of uncertainty of variables within a large statewide study, Mauchly's Test of Sphericity statistical test used to validate repeated measures factor ANOVAs. Although few individual results were statistically significant, when jointly analyzed, striking constructs were revealed regarding the impact of HQ policy applications and elementary CILs use of data-informed decisions on improving 5th grade students' achievement and teachers' PD learning science content. Some constructs included the use of data

  2. The attitudinal and cognitive effects of interdisciplinary collaboration on elementary pre-service teachers development of biological science related lesson plans

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mills, Jada Jamerson

    There is a need for STEM (science, technology, engineering, and mathematics) education to be taught effectively in elementary schools. In order to achieve this, teacher preparation programs should graduate confident, content strong teachers to convey knowledge to elementary students. This study used interdisciplinary collaboration between the School of Education and the College of Liberal Arts through a Learning-by-Teaching method (LdL): Lernen durch Lernen in German. Pre-service teacher (PST) achievement levels of understanding science concepts based on pretest and posttest data, quality of lesson plans developed, and enjoyment of the class based on the collaboration with science students. The PSTs enrolled in two treatment sections of EDEL 404: Science in the Elementary Classroom collaborated with science students enrolled in BISC 327: Introductory Neuroscience to enhance their science skills and create case-based lesson plans on neurothology topics: echolocation, electrosensory reception, steroid hormones, and vocal learning. The PSTs enrolled in the single control section of EDEL 404 collaborated with fellow elementary education majors to develop lesson plans also based on the same selected topics. Qualitative interviews of education faculty, science faculty, and PSTs provided depth to the quantitative findings. Upon lesson plan completion, in-service teachers also graded the two best and two worst plans for the treatment and control sections and a science reviewer graded the plans for scientific accuracy. Statistical analyses were conducted for hypotheses, and one significant hypothesis found that PSTs who collaborated with science students had more positive science lesson plan writing attitudes than those who did not. Despite overall insignificant statistical analyses, all PSTs responded as more confident after collaboration. Additionally, interviews provided meaning and understanding to the insignificant statistical results as well as scientific accuracy of

  3. Inspiring Instructional Change in Elementary School Science: The Relationship Between Enhanced Self-efficacy and Teacher Practices

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sandholtz, Judith Haymore; Ringstaff, Cathy

    2014-10-01

    This longitudinal study examined the extent to which teachers' participation in a 3-year professional development program enhanced their self-efficacy and prompted changes in science instruction in the early elementary grades. The study used a mixed-methods design, and included 39 teachers who taught in kindergarten, first grade, or second grade classrooms in rural school districts. Data sources, administered pre-program and at the end of each year, included a self-efficacy assessment and teacher survey. Interviews and classroom observations provided corroborating data about teachers' beliefs and science instruction. Results showed significant increases in teachers' overall self-efficacy in teaching science, personal efficacy, and outcome expectancy efficacy during the 3 years. Gains in self-efficacy were correlated with changes in reported instructional practices, particularly student participation activities. However, changes in self-efficacy tended not to be correlated with changes in instructional time. Contextual factors beyond teachers' direct control, such as curricular and testing requirements in mathematics and language arts influenced time allotted to science instruction.

  4. A well-started beginning elementary teacher's beliefs and practices in relation to reform recommendations about inquiry-based science

    Science.gov (United States)

    Avraamidou, Lucy

    2017-06-01

    Given reform recommendations emphasizing scientific inquiry and empirical evidence pointing to the difficulties beginning teachers face in enacting inquiry-based science, this study explores a well-started beginning elementary teacher's (Sofia) beliefs about inquiry-based science and related instructional practices. In order to explore Sofia's beliefs and instructional practices, several kinds of data were collected in a period of 9 months: a self-portrait and an accompanying narrative, a personal philosophy assignment, three interviews, three journal entries, ten lesson plans, and ten videotaped classroom observations. The analysis of these data showed that Sofia's beliefs and instructional practices were reform-minded. She articulated contemporary beliefs about scientific inquiry and how children learn science and was able to translate these beliefs into practice. Central to Sofia's beliefs about science teaching were scientific inquiry and engaging students in investigations with authentic data, with a prevalent emphasis on the role of evidence in the construction of scientific claims. These findings are important to research aiming at supporting teachers, especially beginning ones, to embrace reform recommendations.

  5. National Science Resources Center Project to Improve Science Teaching in Elementary Schools with Special Emphasis on Department of Defense Dependents Schools and Other Schools Serving Children of Military Personnel

    Science.gov (United States)

    1992-10-01

    2555. NCTM to Publish Resource Directory ANNOUNCEMENTS The National Council of Teachers of Mathematics ’ ( NCTM ) Committee for a Coin- Coalition Launches...science and mathematics education: • DOD Apprenticeship Programs * DOD Teacher Internship Programs * DOD Partnership Programs * DOD Dependents Schools...elementary school teachers . The units also link science with other curriculum areas, including mathematics , language arts, social studies, and art. In

  6. Active Learning in Language Study and Science: Transforming Teacher Practice in North Sumatra’s Elementary Schools

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ely Djulia

    2011-12-01

    Full Text Available AbstractAn action research project to investigate the implementation of active learning strategies to improve the quality of teaching and learning was conducted in three government elementary schools (Sekolah Dasar in North Sumatra that had received training in teaching for active learning under the auspices of the USAID-sponsored project, Decentralized Basic Education 2. Three cycles of data collection utilizing classroom observations, focus group discussions, and participant observation were conducted in each school. Data were analyzed both holistically and categorily to develop a better understanding of teachers’ successes and challenges in teaching for active learning. Finally, an intervention strategy involving modeling of teaching for active learning strategies was designed and implemented by members of the research team in each school. Our results suggest that language and science teachers developed more confidence in utilizing active learning strategies in their classrooms as a result of the intervention. Students also appeared to respond positively to the new active learning teaching strategies employed by their teachers. We conclude that the DBE-2 training provided to these schools can be considered successful; however, more attention needs to be paid to concrete factors that facilitate or impede teaching for active learning in Indonesian elementary schools in order to continue improving the quality of instruction for Indonesian children. Key Words: Islamic Education, Active Learning, Religious Studies, Indonesia

  7. The kids at Hamilton Elementary School: Purposes and practices for co-opting science

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ortiz, Loaiza

    The purpose of this study was to explore youth's purposes and motivations for engaging in science through the lens of science practices. The construct of science practices allowed me to see science in youths' lives in a holistic way, shaped by social, political, historical, economic and cultural forces. The framework for understanding urban youths' science practices is grounded in the intersections of critical and feminist theory, sociocultural learning theories, especially as applied in research in urban science education, and recent work in critical literacy studies. As I explored the answers to my research questions---(1) When 5th grade youth, living in predominantly Latino communities struggling with urban poverty, engage in science how and why do they co-opt science in ways that result in changes in participation in science? (2) What are the science practices that facilitate youths' coopting of science? And how are those practices framed by context (school, out-of-school), content (LiFE curriculum), and funds of knowledge? (3) In what ways are science practices expressions of youths' scientific literacy? And (4) In what ways do youth use science practices as tools for expressing identities and agency?---I engaged in feminist ethnography with embedded case studies. Data were collected in 2004 in school and in out of school settings. I recorded numerous informal conversations, interviews, and observations both during after-school and students' regular science and non-science classes. Findings describe how and why students co-opted science for purposes that make sense for their lives. These purposes included gaining and activating resources, building and maintaining social relationships, bridging home and school knowledge, positioning themselves with authority, and constructing science identities. Findings also explored what practices facilitated youth's co-opting of science. I highlighted three practices: making ideas public, storytelling and prioritizing and

  8. Preservice Teachers and Their Preconceptions of the NGSS Science and Engineering Practice of Developing and Using Models in Elementary Science Education

    Science.gov (United States)

    Burks, Lizette A.

    The science and engineering practice of developing and using models is a new science practice identified to achieve the vision of three-dimensional teaching and learning and as such should be an important new component of teacher preparation programs (NRC, 2012). Developing and using models is a high-leverage practice in teacher preparation because of the use of discourse in its implementation that is also used in other practices utilized within the NGSS (NGSS Lead States, 2013) science classroom. Additionally, the overlap between the other seven identified NGSS (NGSS Lead States, 2013) practices and the development and use of models along with the use of models represented in two of the overall three dimensions of the new vision for science education (NRC, 2012) contribute to its high leverage nature. The intent of this study was to examine elementary science preservice teachers' understandings and preconceptions about the practice of developing and using models. This study provides important information for teacher preparation to use this high-leverage practice. The study examined preservice teachers' preconceptions about the practice of developing and using models including discourse patterns the preservice teachers identified as being critical to the success of this practice in the classroom. Data were gathered through a written survey in which preservice teachers described their initial understanding about different components of modeling instruction. A video was used to elicit their initial understandings about certain components of modeling instruction. A sample of the preservice teachers were interviewed to elaborate on their responses to the survey. The results of the study indicated that when preservice teachers initially described how this practice might look in the classroom, only two of the six categories described in A Science Framework for K-12 Science Education (NRC, 2012) for this practice were described by most participants. Of those two

  9. Exploring impacts of the EED 420 science methods course on pre-service elementary teachers’ views regarding the nature of science

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    EunJin Bang

    2013-07-01

    Full Text Available This study explores the impact of a semester-long science methods course examining pre-service elementary teachers’ views on the nature of science (NOS. Also examined were NOS characteristics that pre-service teachers incorporated into their science lesson plans and peer teachings, during the course. Data used for this study were obtained from 21 pre-service teachers who participated in the pre/post card exchange game, pre/post VNOS interviews, 5E lesson plans, and peer teaching performances. The results of the study showed that some changes were made as a result of EED 420— such as starting to view science as a data-gathering experimental endeavor, rather than just a theorydriven endeavor. None of the groups explicitly designed or taught their lesson’s NOS aspects. The study posits that a mere one semester-long science method’s course is insufficient to adequately improve understanding of the NOS, and to establish a sufficiently robust desire in pre-service teachers for them to implement NOS into their lessons.

  10. Exploring Impacts of the EED 420 Science Methods Course on Pre-service Elementary Teachers’ Views Regarding the Nature of Science

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    EunJin BANG

    2013-07-01

    Full Text Available This study explores the impact of a semester-long science methods course examining pre-service elementary teachers’ views on the nature of science(NOS. Also examined were NOS characteristics that pre-service teachers incorporated into their science lesson plans and peer teachings, during the course. Data used for this study were obtained from 21 pre-service teachers who participated in the pre/post card exchange game, pre/post VNOS interviews, 5E lesson plans, and peer teaching performances. The results of the study showed that some changes were made as a result of EED 420—such as starting to view science as a data-gathering experimental endeavor, rather than just a theory-driven endeavor. None of the groups explicitly designed or taught their lesson’s NOS aspects. Thestudy posits that a mere one semester-long science method’s course is insufficient to adequately improve understanding of the NOS, and to establish a sufficiently robust desire in pre-service teachersfor them to implement NOS into their lessons.

  11. An analysis of the relationship between K--5 elementary school teachers' perceptions of principal instructional leadership and their science teaching efficacy

    Science.gov (United States)

    Clark, Ian

    The purpose of this study is to analyze the relationship between K-5 elementary school teachers' perceptions of principal instructional leadership and their science teaching efficacy. The influence of background variables on both leadership and efficacy is also analyzed. A sequential mixed methods approach was used in this study. The survey sample was comprised of teachers in the elementary divisions of schools from the nine international school regional associations. Teacher participation was obtained through an email containing an online survey link. Following the analysis of survey responses (N=356), in-depth interviews (N=17) were conducted. Reliability for the instructional leadership scale was found to be .94 (coefficient alpha) and .69 for the personal science teaching efficacy (PSTE) scale. The results show a significant correlation between elementary school teachers' perceptions of principal instructional leadership and their PSTE levels, with the most significant correlation that between the study of a science-related major or minor at college and higher PSTE scores. Strong correlations were also found between PSTE levels and having principals who discussed goals at faculty meetings, participated in science curricular review, supported recognition of student progress, encouraged new skills and concepts, discussed student progress with faculty, and used assessments to see science progress towards easily understood goals. PSTE levels were also higher in schools where principals had grade or school level science coordinators in place and where they supported the use of science kits.

  12. Elementary Environmental Activities.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Larson, Robert J.

    This guide presents suggestions for field trips, out-of-doors activities, material for centers, and individualized activities in the teaching of elementary school science and particularly environmental education at the elementary level. The guide includes a section on preparation and procedures for conducting field trips, including sample…

  13. Departmentalize Elementary Schools

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chan, Tak Cheung; Jarman, Delbert

    2004-01-01

    In elementary schools today, most students receive their education in a single classroom from one teacher who is responsible for teaching language arts, social studies, math, and science. The self-contained classroom organization is predicated on the assumption that an elementary school teacher is a Jack (or Jill)-of-all-trades who is equally…

  14. The Effect of Design Modifications to the Typographical Layout of the New York State Elementary Science Learning Standards on User Preference and Process Time

    Science.gov (United States)

    Arnold, Jeffery E.

    2010-01-01

    The purpose of this study was to determine the effect of four different design layouts of the New York State elementary science learning standards on user processing time and preference. Three newly developed layouts contained the same information as the standards core curriculum. In this study, the layout of the core guide is referred to as Book.…

  15. Prospective Turkish elementary science teachers’ knowledge level about the greenhouse effect and their views on environmental education in university

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mustafa KIŞOĞLU

    2010-03-01

    Full Text Available The fundamental factor of environmental education is teachers who are well-informed about environmental issues. This research aimed to determine prospective Turkish elementary science teachers’ knowledge level about causes, consequences and reducing of the greenhouse effect and to investigate the effect of gender, information source and membership in the environmental foundations on their knowledge. We also aimed to learn their views on environmental education given in university. Twenty-six Likert-scale items developed by Cin (2006 were used for data collection. The scale was applied to 215prospective teachers from two universities in eastern Turkey. Results indicated that the majority of prospective teachers had misunderstandings about causes, consequences and reducing of the greenhouse effect. According to the analysis of demographic variables, there were significant differences in participants’ mean scores based on gender and information sources. Additionally, prospective teachers found environmental education inadequate fordifferent reasons.

  16. The use of Gowin’s “V” in elementary school science teacher’s education

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Henri Araujo Leboeuf

    2013-12-01

    Full Text Available This work investigates the use of the heuristic instrument, known as Gowin’s “V” Diagram, in elementary school teachers pre-service education. It is part of a research that aimed to investigate possible contributions of a potentially meaningful teaching approach that integrates conceptual and methodological issues in teacher’s education. The didactic approach was based on the Theory of Meaningful Learning, and integrated conceptual, historical and experimental contents of the topic Optics of Vision in a course on science teaching embedded in a pedagogy course. The "V" diagram was used during the process as a learning facilitator, assessment tool, and data collection. We analyzed the diagrams built by students from the first contact with this instrument until its use during the course activities. Considerations are made on the potential use of this instrument in teacher education.

  17. Prospective Turkish elementary science teachers’ knowledge level about the greenhouse effect and their views on environmental education in university

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mustafa Kışoğlu

    2010-03-01

    Full Text Available The fundamental factor of environmental education is teachers who are well-informed about environmental issues. This research aimed to determine prospective Turkish elementary science teachers’ knowledge level about causes, consequences and reducing of the greenhouse effect and to investigate the effect of gender, information source and membership in the environmental foundations on their knowledge. We also aimed to learn their views on environmental education given in university. Twenty-six Likert-scale items developed by Cin (2006 were used for data collection. The scale was applied to 215 prospective teachers from two universities in eastern Turkey. Results indicated that the majority of prospective teachers had misunderstandings about causes, consequences and reducing of the greenhouse effect. According to the analysis of demographic variables, there were significant differences in participants’ mean scores based on gender and information sources. Additionally, prospective teachers found environmental education inadequate for different reasons.

  18. Model program for the recruitment and preparation of high ability elementary mathematics/science teachers: A collaborative project among scientists, teacher educators and classroom teachers

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    1993-12-01

    This teacher education program will provide a model for recruiting, educating and retaining high ability students to become mathematics and science lead teachers in elementary schools. The quality experiences and support provided these students will help them develop the knowledge and attitudes necessary to provide leadership for elementary mathematics and science programs. Students will have research experiences at the Ames Laboratory, high quality field experiences with nationally recognized mathematics and science teachers in local schools and opportunities to meaningfully connect these two experiences. This program, collaboratively designed and implemented by scientists, teacher educators and classroom teachers, should provide a replicatable model for other teacher education institutions. In addition, materials developed for the project should help other laboratories interface more effectively with K-8 schools and help other teacher education programs incorporate real science and mathematics experience into their curriculum.

  19. Attracting students and professionals into math, science, and technology education at the elementary and middle grades: Annual report, September 1, 1992--August 31, 1993

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Flick, L.B.

    1995-12-31

    This report describes the progress of a project to encourage students and professionals to participate in math, science, and technology education at the elementary and middle grades. The topics of the report include developing a model laboratory/classroom for teacher education, providing financial incentives for students with technical majors to complete the program, and emphasizing issues of equity and minority participation in mathematics, science and technology education through recruitment procedures and in course content.

  20. Promoting elementary students' epistemology of science through computer-supported knowledge-building discourse and epistemic reflection

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lin, Feng; Chan, Carol K. K.

    2018-04-01

    This study examined the role of computer-supported knowledge-building discourse and epistemic reflection in promoting elementary-school students' scientific epistemology and science learning. The participants were 39 Grade 5 students who were collectively pursuing ideas and inquiry for knowledge advance using Knowledge Forum (KF) while studying a unit on electricity; they also reflected on the epistemic nature of their discourse. A comparison class of 22 students, taught by the same teacher, studied the same unit using the school's established scientific investigation method. We hypothesised that engaging students in idea-driven and theory-building discourse, as well as scaffolding them to reflect on the epistemic nature of their discourse, would help them understand their own scientific collaborative discourse as a theory-building process, and therefore understand scientific inquiry as an idea-driven and theory-building process. As hypothesised, we found that students engaged in knowledge-building discourse and reflection outperformed comparison students in scientific epistemology and science learning, and that students' understanding of collaborative discourse predicted their post-test scientific epistemology and science learning. To further understand the epistemic change process among knowledge-building students, we analysed their KF discourse to understand whether and how their epistemic practice had changed after epistemic reflection. The implications on ways of promoting epistemic change are discussed.

  1. Possibilities and Limits of Integrating Science and Diversity Education in Preservice Elementary Teacher Preparation

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bravo, Marco A.; Mosqueda, Eduardo; Solís, Jorge L.; Stoddart, Trish

    2014-08-01

    In this paper we present findings from a project that documented the development of preservice teachers' beliefs and practices in delivering science instruction that considers issues of language and culture. Teacher candidates in the intervention group ( n = 65) received a science methods course and teaching practicum experience that provided guidance in teaching science in culturally and linguistically responsive ways. Comparisons between a control group of preservice teachers ( n = 45) and those involved in the intervention yielded stronger beliefs about the efficacy in promoting collaboration in science teaching than the intervention group. Observations of these preservice teachers during their teaching practicum revealed differences in favor of the intervention group in: (a) implementing science instruction that addressed the language and literacy involved in science; (b) using questions that elicited higher order thinking and; (c) providing scaffolds (e.g., purposeful feedback, probing student background knowledge) when confronting abstract scientific concepts. Implications for preservice teacher education are addressed.

  2. Nightly Test system migration

    CERN Document Server

    Win-Lime, Kevin

    2013-01-01

    The summer student program allows students to participate to the Cern adventure. They can follow several interesting lectures about particle science and participate to the experiment work. As a summer student, I had worked for LHCb experiment. LHCb uses a lot of software to analyze its data. All this software is organized in packages and projects. They are built and tested during the night using an automated system and the results are displayed on a web interface. Actually, LHCb is changing this system. It is looking for a replacement candidate. So I was charged to unify some internal interfaces to permit a swift migration. In this document, I will describe shortly the system used by LHCb, then I will explain what I have done in detail.

  3. Fostering nature of science teaching in elementary pre-service teachers through developing reflection on teaching and learning

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pongsanon, Khemmawadee

    Although teacher educators have successfully helped K-12 teachers' develop adequate views of NOS, their views have not been transferred to their students. It is evident that K-12 students' understanding of NOS still does not align with the recommendation of the reforms document, indicating that holding an adequate view of NOS is insufficient for teaching NOS effectively. Instead, to teach NOS, teachers must develop the knowledge for translating their understanding of NOS into the forms accessible to students. The current study investigated the influence of four contexts of reflective practice on prospective elementary teachers' learning of how and intention to teach NOS. The participants were 18 pre-service teachers enrolled in a science methods course that was tied to a field experience course. To understand the development of the participants' intentions, knowledge of instructional strategies, and knowledge of assessment for teaching NOS, multiple data were collected throughout the science methods course and the field experience. Data sources included different versions of participants' lesson plans, video recordings of their teaching and teaching debriefings, online weekly teaching reflections, final semester reflection and other artifacts from the methods course. Content analysis was conducted with all data. The data revealed that the participants' knowledge of how and intentions to teach NOS were developed throughout the science methods course. Toward the conclusion of the semester, the participants showed intention to include NOS in their science instruction. With regard to strategies, participants planned to apply explicit reflective NOS instruction in the context of inquiry-based activities and stories from children's literature. They also planned to use age-appropriate language to refer to the targeted NOS aspects. In terms of assessment, by the conclusion of the semester the participants tended to use more formal assessment strategies. They reported

  4. Nightmares and Night Terrors

    Science.gov (United States)

    ... able to tell you what happened in the dream and why it was scary. Your child may have trouble going back to sleep. Your child might have the same dream again on other nights. What are night terrors? ...

  5. Possibilities and Limits of Integrating Science and Diversity Education in Preservice Elementary Teacher Preparation

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bravo, Marco A.; Mosqueda, Eduardo; Solís, Jorge L.; Stoddart, Trish

    2014-01-01

    In this paper we present findings from a project that documented the development of preservice teachers' beliefs and practices in delivering science instruction that considers issues of language and culture. Teacher candidates in the intervention group (n = 65) received a science methods course and teaching practicum experience that provided…

  6. Pre-Service Elementary Teachers' Scientific Literacy and Self-Efficacy in Teaching Science

    Science.gov (United States)

    Al Sultan, Adam; Henson, Harvey, Jr.; Fadde, Peter J.

    2018-01-01

    Many educators and educational institutions worldwide have agreed that the main goal of science education is to produce a scientifically literate community. Science teachers are key to the achievement of scientific literacy at all levels of education because of the essential role they play in preparing scientifically literate individuals. Studies…

  7. Eliciting the Views of Prospective Elementary and Preschool Teachers about the Nature of Science

    Science.gov (United States)

    Karaman, Ayhan

    2018-01-01

    Recent science education standards emphasize the importance of the instruction of nature of science (NOS) concepts at all levels of schooling from pre-K to K-12. Delivering a proper NOS education to students is excessively dependent on their teachers with an adequate understanding of NOS concepts. The present study investigated the science…

  8. Planning for Reform-Based Science: Case Studies of Two Urban Elementary Teachers

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mangiante, Elaine Silva

    2018-01-01

    The intent of national efforts to frame science education standards is to promote students' development of scientific practices and conceptual understanding for their future role as scientifically literate citizens (NRC 2012). A guiding principle of science education reform is that all students receive equitable opportunities to engage in rigorous…

  9. Investigating Coherence among Turkish Elementary Science Teachers' Teaching Belief Systems, Pedagogical Content Knowledge and Practice

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bahcivan, Eralp; Cobern, William W.

    2016-01-01

    This study investigated comprehensive science teaching belief systems and their relation to science teachers' pedagogical content knowledge and teaching practices. Rokeach's (1968) belief system was used as a framework for representing the hierarchy among in-service teachers' teaching beliefs. This study employed a multiple case study design with…

  10. Investigating Elementary Teachers' Thinking about and Learning to Notice Students' Science Ideas

    Science.gov (United States)

    Luna, Melissa Jo

    2013-01-01

    Children naturally use observations and everyday thinking to construct explanations as to why phenomena happen in the world. Science instruction can benefit by starting with these ideas to help children build coherent scientific understandings of how the physical world works. To do so, science teaching must involve attending to students'…

  11. Planning for Reform-Based Science: Case Studies of Two Urban Elementary Teachers

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mangiante, Elaine Silva

    2018-02-01

    The intent of national efforts to frame science education standards is to promote students' development of scientific practices and conceptual understanding for their future role as scientifically literate citizens (NRC 2012). A guiding principle of science education reform is that all students receive equitable opportunities to engage in rigorous science learning. Yet, implementation of science education reform depends on teachers' instructional decisions. In urban schools serving students primarily from poor, diverse communities, teachers typically face obstacles in providing reform-based science due to limited resources and accountability pressures, as well as a culture of teacher-directed pedagogy, and deficit views of students. The purpose of this qualitative research was to study two white, fourth grade teachers from high-poverty urban schools, who were identified as transforming their science teaching and to investigate how their beliefs, knowledge bases, and resources shaped their planning for reform-based science. Using the Shavelson and Stern's decision model for teacher planning to analyze evidence gathered from interviews, documents, planning meetings, and lesson observations, the findings indicated their planning for scientific practices was influenced by the type and extent of professional development each received, each teacher's beliefs about their students and their background, and the mission and learning environment each teacher envisioned for the reform to serve their students. The results provided specific insights into factors that impacted their planning in high-poverty urban schools and indicated considerations for those in similar contexts to promote teachers' planning for equitable science learning opportunities by all students.

  12. Learning to Teach Elementary Science through Iterative Cycles of Enactment in Culturally and Linguistically Diverse Contexts

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bottoms, SueAnn I.; Ciechanowski, Kathryn M.; Hartman, Brian

    2015-01-01

    Iterative cycles of enactment embedded in culturally and linguistically diverse contexts provide rich opportunities for preservice teachers (PSTs) to enact core practices of science. This study is situated in the larger Families Involved in Sociocultural Teaching and Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (FIESTAS) project, which weaves…

  13. Elementary Students' Learning of Materials Science Practices through Instruction Based on Engineering Design Tasks

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wendell, Kristen Bethke; Lee, Hee-Sun

    2010-01-01

    Materials science, which entails the practices of selecting, testing, and characterizing materials, is an important discipline within the study of matter. This paper examines how third grade students' materials science performance changes over the course of instruction based on an engineering design challenge. We conducted a case study of nine…

  14. Shadow Puppet Plays in Elementary Science Methods Class Help Preservice Teachers Learn about Minority Scientists

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gray, Phyllis; Rule, Audrey C.; Gentzsch, Anneliese; Tallakson, Denise A.

    2016-01-01

    This practical article describes an arts-integrated project with engineering design and science concepts from the Next Generation Science Standards, art principles from the National Arts Standards, as well as ideas under the theme of "Culture" from the National Council for the Social Studies Standards. Preservice teachers in an…

  15. Effect of Engineering Education by Science Classroom for High School, Junior High School and Elementary School Students

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yukita, Kazuto; Goto, Tokimasa; Mizuno, Katsunori; Nakano, Hiroyuki; Ichiyanagi, Katsuhiro; Goto, Yasuyuki; Mori, Tsuyoshi

    Recently the importance of Monozukuri (manufacturing) has been watched with keen interest as a social; problem, which has a relation with schoolchildren's decline of their academic standards, pointed out by the reports of PISA of OECD and TIMSS, etc., and their “losing interest in science” and “dislike of science”, some people worry about, which will lead to the decline of technology in the home industry, the top-class personnel shortage, and the decrease of economical power in this country in the future. In order to solve such a problem, science pavilions, universities, and academic societies of science and engineering etc. in various places hold “Monozukuiri Classrooms” or “Science Classrooms”. We can say that various activities which try to hold off “losing interest in science” and “dislike of science.” in the whole society. Under such a situation, Aichi Institute of Technology (AIT) to which we belong, also tries to contribute to the activity of solving the problem, and holds various engineering education lectures which intend for elementary, junior high school and senior high school students. AIT has held “The Whole Experience World” which tries to bring up a talented person who has a dream and hope towards science and technology, grows his/her originality, intellectual curiosity and spirit of inquiry, and supports the nation based on science and technology in the summer vacation since 2001. This paper reports the result of a questionnaire about what kind of the long-term learning effect on the children who participated in “The Whole Experience World” and “Boys and Girls Robot Lectures”. As the conclusion of the study, we can say that the lectures could give the participants who were interested in science and technology more interest. And we could give them the idea of what the study of science and technology is. As a result, we could contribute to the participants' decision of the courses' selection in life.

  16. Children's books and the nature of science: A multisite naturalistic case study of three elementary teachers in the rural southeast

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bricker, Patricia Lynn

    This naturalistic case study describes the efforts of three elementary teachers in a rural southeastern school to use children's books in support of inquiry-based science and specifically addresses issues related to the nature of science. Data were collected through 26 classroom and meeting observations, 16 semi-structured and informal interviews, 35 documents and 76 children's books used by the teachers. Three themes were identified related to the nature of science and the selection and use of children's books in the teachers' second, fourth, and fifth grade classrooms. (1) Science was portrayed as a human endeavor that connects to the lives of people and that involves fascination, passion, and interest; imagination and creativity; values; and diverse views. The collection of books was analyzed to look specifically at race, culture, and gender issues. While women, people of color, and different cultures were represented in the book collection, they were not represented well when considering the collection as a whole. (2) Books and the teachers' use of them supported firsthand investigation of the natural world and the idea that empirical evidence underlies scientific understanding. This theme involved observation and journaling, identification of questions to investigate and procedures to use, reasonable interpretations of results, and inferential thinking. (3) Books helped teach about the durable body of scientific knowledge we have discovered over time. They were used to broaden background knowledge and as references after firsthand investigations. The complexity of science education is revealed in these cases. The teachers were able to artfully balance multiple aspects of the nature of science in their book selection and presentation. Particularly promising aspects include their work to use fiction and poetry to promote connections between imagination, creativity and science and their innovative use of books to help students interpret data and infer. Important

  17. Adnyamathanha Night Skies

    Science.gov (United States)

    Curnow, Paul

    2009-06-01

    Aboriginal Australians have been viewing the night skies of Australia for some 45,000 years and possibly much longer. During this time they have been able to develop a complex knowledge of the night sky, the terrestrial environment in addition to seasonal changes. However, few of us in contemporary society have an in-depth knowledge of the nightly waltz of stars above.

  18. Transforming beliefs and practices: Elementary teacher candidates' development through shared authentic teaching and reflection experiences within an innovative science methods course

    Science.gov (United States)

    Naidoo, Kara

    Elementary teachers are criticized for failing to incorporate meaningful science instruction in their classrooms or avoiding science instruction altogether. The lack of adequate science instruction in elementary schools is partially attributed to teacher candidates' anxiety, poor content and pedagogical preparation, and low science teaching self-efficacy. The central premise of this study was that many of these issues could be alleviated through course modifications designed to address these issues. The design tested and presented here provided prospective elementary educators' authentic science teaching experiences with elementary students in a low-stakes environment with the collaboration of peers and science teacher educators. The process of comprehensive reflection was developed for and tested in this study. Comprehensive reflection is individual and collective, written and set in dialogic discourse, focused on past and future behavior, and utilizes video recordings from shared teaching experiences. To test the central premise, an innovative science methods course was designed, implemented and evaluated using a one-group mixed-method design. The focus of the analysis was on changes in self-efficacy, identity and teaching practices as a function of authentic science teaching experiences and comprehensive reflection. The quantitative tools for analysis were t-tests and repeated-measures ANOVA on the Science Teaching Efficacy Belief Instrument-B (STEBI-B) and weekly self-rating on confidence as a learner and a teacher of science, respectively. The tools used to analyze qualitative data included thematic analysis and interpretative phenomenological analysis. In addition, theoretically grounded tools were developed and used in a case study to determine the ways one prospective educator's science teaching identity was influenced by experiences in the course. The innovative course structure led the development of teacher candidates' science teaching identity

  19. What goal is of most worth? The effects of the implementation of the Texas Assessment of Knowledge and Skills on elementary science teaching

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rodgers, Pamela England

    This qualitative, narrative study centered on the effects of the implementation of the science portion of the fifth grade Texas Assessment of Knowledge and Skills (TAKS) on the instruction of science at the elementary level, grades one through five. Fourteen teachers and five administrators were interviewed at two elementary schools (kindergarten through grade four) and one middle school (grades five and six). Classroom observations of each of the teachers were also conducted. The study focused on the effect of the implementation of the science TAKS on the amount of time spent on science as well as the instructional methods utilized in the elementary science classroom. Lower grade levels were found to have changed little in these areas unless strong administrative leadership---emphasizing curriculum alignment, providing adequate materials and facilities, and encouraging sustained, content-based professional development in science---was present in the school. At the fifth grade level, however, the amount of time spent on science had increased significantly, although the instructional methods utilized by the teachers were focused more often upon increasing ratings on the test rather than providing the research-based best practice methods of hands-on, inquiry-based science instruction. In addition, the study also explored the teachers' and administrators' perceptions of the state and local mandates concerning science instruction and preparation for the TAKS. Other topics that came to light during the course of the study included the teachers' views on accountability and the effects of the state assessments on children in their classrooms. It was found that most teachers readily accept accountability for themselves, but are opposed to one-shot high-stakes tests which they feel are damaging for their students emotionally and academically---adversely affecting their love of learning science.

  20. Science Scores in Title I Elementary Schools in North Georgia: A Project Study

    Science.gov (United States)

    Frias, Ramon

    The No Child Left Behind Act (NCLB)'s emphasis of reading, language arts, and mathematics (RLA&M) and its de-emphasis of science has been a source of great concern among educators. Through an objectivist and constructionist framework, this study explored the unforeseen effects of the NCLB on public science education among Title I (TI) and non-Title I (NTI) students. The research questions focused on the effects of NCLB on Criterion Referenced Competency Test (CRCT) scores in the high-stakes subjects of reading, language arts, mathematics and the low stakes subject of science among TI and NTI 3rd, 4th, and 5th grade students in a north Georgia County during the 2010/2011 school year. This study also compared instructional time TI and NTI teachers dedicated to science. A causal-comparative quantitative methodology was used to analyze Georgia's public domain CRCT scores. Three independent-samples t tests showed that TI schools exhibited significantly lower Science CRCT scores than did NTI students at all grade levels (p need students with strong science foundations. Further study is recommended to analyze the factors associated with this science gap between TI and NTI students.

  1. Re-designing an Earth Sciences outreach program for Rhode Island public elementary schools to address new curricular standards and logistical realities in the community

    Science.gov (United States)

    Richter, N.; Vachula, R. S.; Pascuzzo, A.; Prilipko Huber, O.

    2017-12-01

    In contrast to middle and high school students, elementary school students in Rhode Island (RI) have no access to dedicated science teachers, resulting in uneven quality and scope of science teaching across the state. In an attempt to improve science education in local public elementary schools, the Department of Earth, Environmental, and Planetary Sciences (DEEPS) at Brown University initiated a student-driven science-teaching program that was supported by a NSF K-12 grant from 2007 to 2014. The program led to the development of an extensive in-house lesson plan database and supported student-led outreach and teaching in several elementary and middle school classrooms. After funding was terminated, the program continued on a volunteer basis, providing year-round science teaching for several second-grade classrooms. During the 2016-2017 academic year, New Generation Science Standards (NGSS) were introduced in RI public schools, and it became apparent that our outreach efforts required adaptation to be more efficient and relevant for both elementary school students and teachers. To meet these new needs, DEEPS, in collaboration with the Providence Public School District, created an intensive summer re-design program involving both graduate and undergraduate students. Three multi-lesson units were developed in collaboration with volunteer public school teachers to specifically address NGSS goals for earth science teaching in 2nd, 3rd and 4th grades. In the 2017-2018 academic year DEEPS students will co-teach the science lessons with the public school teachers in two local elementary schools. At the end of the next academic year all lesson plans and activities will be made publically available through a newly designed DEEPS outreach website. We herein detail our efforts to create and implement new educational modules with the goals of: (1) empowering teachers to instruct science, (2) engaging students and fostering lasting STEM interest and competency, (3) optimizing

  2. Humor in elementary science: Development and evaluation of comic strips about sound

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ertuğrul Özdemir

    2017-06-01

    Full Text Available Comic strips on newspapers, magazines and Internet are one of the most accessible materials that may be used in science classroom as instructional tool. However, it is sometimes difficult to find and adapt appropriate comic strips useful for instructional purposes, because most of them are irrelevant. The purpose of this study is to develop and evaluate instructional comic strips aiming to contribute learning about sound related concepts. In this study, a series of instructional comic strips were created and implemented to a group of seventh grade students. Students’ responses to a number of open-ended questions were evaluated through qualitative content analysis. According to results, most of the students believed that comic strips help learning through simplifying science concepts and making retention of them easier. In addition, comic strips seemed to contribute students’ enjoyment toward science and perception of success in science.

  3. Mars Rover Model Celebration: Developing Inquiry Based Lesson Plans to Teach Planetary Science In Elementary And Middle School

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bering, E. A.; Slagle, E.; Nieser, K.; Carlson, C.; Kapral, A.; Dominey, W.; Ramsey, J.; Konstantinidis, I.; James, J.; Sweaney, S.; Mendez, R.

    2012-12-01

    The recent NASA Mars Rover missions capture the imagination of children, as NASA missions have done for decades. The University of Houston is in the process of developing a prototype of a flexible program that offers children an in-depth educational experience culminating in the design and construction of their own model rover. The existing prototype program is called the Mars Rover Model Celebration. It focuses on students, teachers and parents in grades 3-8. Students will design and build a model of a Mars rover to carry out a student selected science mission on the surface of Mars. The model will be a mock-up, constructed at a minimal cost from art supplies. The students will build the models as part of a project on Mars. The students will be given design criteria for a rover and will do basic research on Mars that will determine the objectives and features of their rover. This project may be used either informally as an after school club or youth group activity or formally as part of a class studying general science, earth science, solar system astronomy or robotics, or as a multi-disciplinary unit for a gifted and talented program. The project's unique strength lies in engaging students in the process of spacecraft design and interesting them in aerospace engineering careers. The project is aimed at elementary and secondary education. Not only will these students learn about scientific fields relevant to the mission (space science, physics, geology, robotics, and more), they will gain an appreciation for how this knowledge is used to tackle complex problems. The low cost of the event makes it an ideal enrichment vehicle for low income schools. It provides activities that provide professional development to educators, curricular support resources using NASA Science Mission Directorate (SMD) content, and provides family opportunities for involvement in K-12 student learning. This paper will describe the development of a detailed set of new 5E lesson plans to

  4. Elementary General Education Teachers' Knowledge of and Experience Teaching Students with Disabilities in Science and Social Studies

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rice, Diane

    In Grades 3 to 5 at a suburban southeastern elementary school, the percentage of students with disabilities (SWDs) who do not meet state standards in science and social studies is greater than that of their nondisabled peers. To address this disparity, district administrators required that proficiency ratings increase for SWDs without providing general education (GE) teachers with training. A qualitative bounded case study was used to understand how GE teachers constructed their knowledge of and met SWDs instructional needs and to understand GE teachers' needs as they worked toward meeting the district goals. Piaget's constructivist learning theory served as the conceptual framework for this study. A purposeful sample of 6 GE teachers, 2 each from Grades 3-5 whose classrooms included SWDs, volunteered to participate in open-ended interviews. Qualitative data were analyzed using provisional coding and pattern coding. A primary finding was that the participants identified teacher collaboration and professional development necessary to accommodate SWDs in the GE setting. This finding led to a recommendation that school leaders provide ongoing professional development for GE teachers as well as ongoing opportunities for collaboration between GE and special education teachers. These endeavors may contribute to positive social change by providing GE teachers instructional strategies and accommodations for meeting the learning needs of SWDs to increase the number and percentage of SWDs who meet the state standards and district goals in science and social studies.

  5. With hiccups and bumps: the development of a Rasch-based instrument to measure elementary students' understanding of the nature of science.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Peoples, Shelagh M; O'Dwyer, Laura M; Shields, Katherine A; Wang, Yang

    2013-01-01

    This research describes the development process, psychometric analyses and part validation study of a theoretically-grounded Rasch-based instrument, the Nature of Science Instrument-Elementary (NOSI-E). The NOSI-E was designed to measure elementary students' understanding of the Nature of Science (NOS). Evidence is provided for three of the six validity aspects (content, substantive and generalizability) needed to support the construct validity of the NOSI-E. A future article will examine the structural and external validity aspects. Rasch modeling proved especially productive in scale improvement efforts. The instrument, designed for large-scale assessment use, is conceptualized using five construct domains. Data from 741 elementary students were used to pilot the Rasch scale, with continuous improvements made over three successive administrations. The psychometric properties of the NOSI-E instrument are consistent with the basic assumptions of Rasch measurement, namely that the items are well-fitting and invariant. Items from each of the five domains (Empirical, Theory-Laden, Certainty, Inventive, and Socially and Culturally Embedded) are spread along the scale's continuum and appear to overlap well. Most importantly, the scale seems appropriately calibrated and responsive for elementary school-aged children, the target age group. As a result, the NOSI-E should prove beneficial for science education research. As the United States' science education reform efforts move toward students' learning science through engaging in authentic scientific practices (NRC, 2011), it will be important to assess whether this new approach to teaching science is effective. The NOSI-E can be used as one measure of whether this reform effort has an impact.

  6. Knowledge, language and subjectivities in a discourse community: Ideas we can learn from elementary children about science

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kurth, Lori Ann

    2000-10-01

    In light of continuing poor performance by American students in school science, feminists and sociocultural researchers have demonstrated that we need to look beyond content to address the science needs of all school children. In this study I examined issues of discourse norms, knowledge, language and subjectivities (meaning personal and social observations and characteristics) in elementary science. Over a two-year period, I used an interpretive methodological approach to investigate science experiences in two first-second and second grade classrooms. I first established some of the norms and characteristics of the discourse communities through case studies of new students attempting to gain entry to whole class conversations. I then examined knowledge, a central focus of science education addressed by a variety of theoretical approaches. In these classrooms students co-constructed and built knowledge in their whole class science conversations sometimes following convergent (similar knowledge) and, at other times, divergent (differing knowledge) paths allowing for broader discourse. In both paths, there was gendered construction of knowledge in which same gender students elaborated the reasoning of previous speakers. In conjunction with these analyses, I examined what knowledge sources the students used in their science conversations. Students drew on a variety of informal and formal knowledge sources including personal experiences, other students, abstract logic and thought experiments, all of which were considered valid. In using sources from both in and out of school, students' knowledge bases were broader than traditional scientific content giving greater access and richness to their conversations. The next analysis focused on students' use of narrative and paradigmatic language forms in the whole class science conversations. Traditionally, only paradigmatic language forms have been used in science classrooms. The students in this study used both narrative and

  7. The Longitudinal Analysis of Elementary School Pupils’ Science Competition Experience, Intrinsic Motivation and Creativity Growth

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Chia-Chun Hsiao

    2014-12-01

    Full Text Available Comparing students who have participated in Taiwan International Science Fair and those who have not, this study aims to understand the creativity development between the ones with creativity trainings for participating in the Fair and the ones who did not participate in science fair and did not receive any related trainings. Furthermore, this study intends to investigate the effects of intrinsic motivation on the development of creativity between the two groups. From National Taiwan Science Education Center, 208 student participants of the 41st-50th Fair and 871 non-participants were sampled through their teachers who voluntarily participated in this study. With growth model analysis in Hierarchical Linear Modeling, individual differences in scientific creativity between science fair participants and non-participants were found and its growth was developed distinctively. Students who participated in Taiwan International Science Fair presented downward development in scientific creativity and then upward, while the non-participants revealed upward then downward development. In regard to intrinsic motivation, science fair participants showed positive effects of Self-efficacy and Internal value on creativity, while their intrinsic motivation presents moderating effects on the rapid growth of creativity. Contrarily, intrinsic motivation did not appear to have any effects on non-participants. Based on the research outcomes, relevant suggestions are further proposed.

  8. Science Lab Restructuring of a Public School Elementary and High School

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Elisiane da Costa Moro

    2016-02-01

    Full Text Available This paper presents the process of restructuring the science lab of a state school in Caxias do Sul, whose main objective was to create a space where teachers could develop practical and experimental activities with their students. The restructuring of the science lab this school, was only possible through the project "More and Better Students and Teachers in Science, Mathematics, Engineering and Technologies" Initiation Program in Science and Mathematics, Engineering, Creative Technologies and Letters - PICMEL sponsored jointly by the University of Caxias do Sul, the SEDUC-RS, FAPERGS and CAPES. The project was developed at school by a teacher of physics and three high school students. Through the restructuring of the science lab, practical activities were developed and workshops where students had the opportunity to be more active in the process of teaching and learning. With the development of such activities was observed that the students were more willing to learn Science and Mathematics and could relate scientific knowledge to their daily lives, giving greater meaning to their learning.

  9. Investigating Elementary Teachers' Thinking About and Learning to Notice Students' Science Ideas

    Science.gov (United States)

    Luna, Melissa Jo

    Children naturally use observations and everyday thinking to construct explanations as to why phenomena happen in the world. Science instruction can benefit by starting with these ideas to help children build coherent scientific understandings of how the physical world works. To do so, science teaching must involve attending to students' ideas so that those ideas become the basis for learning. Yet while science education reform requires teachers to pay close attention to their students' ideas, we know little about what teachers think this means in practice. To examine this issue, my dissertation research is two-fold. First, I examine teacher thinking by investigating how teachers understand what it means to pay attention to students' science ideas. Specifically, using new digital technology, three participating teachers captured moments of student thinking in the midst of instruction. Analysis of these moments reveals that teachers capture many different kinds of moments containing students' ideas and think about students' science ideas in different ways at different times. In particular, these three teachers most often think about students' ideas as being (a) from authority, (b) from experience, and (c) under construction. Second, I examine teacher learning through the development of an innovative science teaching video club model. The model differs from previous research on video clubs in several key ways in an attempt to focus teachers on student thinking in a sustained way. I investigate the ways in which this model was effective for engaging teachers in noticing and making sense of their students' science ideas during one implementation. Results indicate that teachers talked about student thinking early, often, and in meaningful ways. Science education leaders have recognized the potential of science teaching video clubs as a form of professional development, and the model presented in this work promotes the conditions for successful teacher learning. This

  10. An analysis of the concept of teaching in elementary school science education

    Science.gov (United States)

    Seatter, Carol Eunice Scarff

    The problem for this thesis arises directly from several years of observation of science classrooms in British Columbia. The troubling phenomenon seen within numerous classrooms, taught by teachers claiming to be constructivist teachers, involved teachers fostering the idea that children can think about science in terms of their own ideas, that is, that children can think about science in common-sense terms. In the many cases I have observed, teachers justify this practice on the grounds of constructivist theory. However, this kind of "constructivist teaching" does not, in my opinion, lead to scientific reasoning. My argument begins with the premise that the development of scientific reasoning in children is necessary for science education. I will argue that the currently popular "constructivist" movement has significant potential to fail in producing scientific reasoning in children, as did its predecessor, the "discovery learning" movement of the 1960s. The incommensurable differences between scientific and common-sense reasoning are presented and discussed. This thesis examines constructivist theory in terms of its potential to hinder the development of scientific reasoning in children. Two features of the constructivist writings are examined: those which pertain to the nature of science, and those relating to the concept of teaching. A chapter on the logic of scientific inquiry is central to the thesis, as it describes and explains the concepts, forms of explanation and truth criteria unique to the discipline of science. The epistemological foundations of science education are discussed in terms of the realist/instrumentalist debate. The thesis argues in favor of a sophisticated realist view of knowledge, such as those offered by Hacking and Matthews who take into account Hanson's "theory-laden" observation without falling prey to a naive realist view. Reasoning in science is compared with children's common-sense reasoning in an attempt to further understand

  11. Pre-service elementary science teaching self-efficacy and teaching practices: A mixed-methods, dual-phase, embedded case study

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sangueza, Cheryl Ramirez

    This mixed-method, dual-phase, embedded-case study employed the Social Cognitive Theory and the construct of self-efficacy to examine the contributors to science teaching self-efficacy and science teaching practices across different levels of efficacy in six pre-service elementary teachers during their science methods course and student teaching experiences. Data sources included the Science Teaching Efficacy Belief Instrument (STEBI-B) for pre-service teachers, questionnaires, journals, reflections, student teaching lesson observations, and lesson debriefing notes. Results from the STEBI-B show that all participants measured an increase in efficacy throughout the study. The ANOVA analysis of the STEBI-B revealed a statistically significant increase in level of efficacy during methods course, student teaching, and from the beginning of the study to the end. Of interest in this study was the examination of the participants' science teaching practices across different levels of efficacy. Results of this analysis revealed how the pre-service elementary teachers in this study contextualized their experiences in learning to teach science and its influences on their science teaching practices. Key implications involves the value in exploring how pre-service teachers interpret their learning to teach experiences and how their interpretations influence the development of their science teaching practices.

  12. 3D animation model with augmented reality for natural science learning in elementary school

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hendajani, F.; Hakim, A.; Lusita, M. D.; Saputra, G. E.; Ramadhana, A. P.

    2018-05-01

    Many opinions from primary school students' on Natural Science are a difficult lesson. Many subjects are not easily understood by students, especially on materials that teach some theories about natural processes. Such as rain process, condensation and many other processes. The difficulty that students experience in understanding it is that students cannot imagine the things that have been taught in the material. Although there is material to practice some theories but is actually quite limited. There is also a video or simulation material in the form of 2D animated images. Understanding concepts in natural science lessons are also poorly understood by students. Natural Science learning media uses 3-dimensional animation models (3D) with augmented reality technology, which offers some visualization of science lessons. This application was created to visualize a process in Natural Science subject matter. The hope of making this application is to improve student's concept. This app is made to run on a personal computer that comes with a webcam with augmented reality. The app will display a 3D animation if the camera can recognize the marker.

  13. Making the Invisible Visible: Engaging Elementary Preservice Teachers in Science and Literacy Connections

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gwekwerere, Yovita; Buley, Jan

    2011-01-01

    Picture books can be used to teach children to infer, hypothesise, question, identify, explain and compare. By making the "invisible visible" preservice teachers in Canada explored ways to enhance the development of critical science and literacy skills through the creation of picture books in collaboration with students in Grades 5 and…

  14. Guided Instruction Improves Elementary Student Learning and Self-Efficacy in Science

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hushman, Carolyn J.; Marley, Scott C.

    2015-01-01

    The authors investigated whether the amount of instructional guidance affects science learning and self-efficacy. Sixty 9- and 10-year-old children were randomly assigned to one of the following three instructional conditions: (a) guided instruction consisting of examples and student-generated explanations, (b) direct instruction consisting of a…

  15. Effect of Robotics-Enhanced Inquiry-Based Learning in Elementary Science Education in South Korea

    Science.gov (United States)

    Park, Jungho

    2015-01-01

    Much research has been conducted in educational robotics, a new instructional technology, for K-12 education. However, there are arguments on the effect of robotics and limited empirical evidence to investigate the impact of robotics in science learning. Also most robotics studies were carried in an informal educational setting. This study…

  16. Curriculum Design for Inquiry: Preservice Elementary Teachers' Mobilization and Adaptation of Science Curriculum Materials

    Science.gov (United States)

    Forbes, Cory T.; Davis, Elizabeth A.

    2010-01-01

    Curriculum materials are crucial tools with which teachers engage students in science as inquiry. In order to use curriculum materials effectively, however, teachers must develop a robust capacity for pedagogical design, or the ability to mobilize a variety of personal and curricular resources to promote student learning. The purpose of this study…

  17. A Comparison of Readability in Science-Based Texts: Implications for Elementary Teachers

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gallagher, Tiffany; Fazio, Xavier; Ciampa, Katia

    2017-01-01

    Science curriculum standards were mapped onto various texts (literacy readers, trade books, online articles). Statistical analyses highlighted the inconsistencies among readability formulae for Grades 2-6 levels of the standards. There was a lack of correlation among the readability measures, and also when comparing different text sources. Online…

  18. Literacy and Arts-Integrated Science Lessons Engage Urban Elementary Students in Exploring Environmental Issues

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gray, P.; Elser, C. F.; Klein, J. L.; Rule, A. C.

    2016-01-01

    This descriptive case study examined student attitudes, writing skills and content knowledge of urban fourth and fifth graders (6 males, 9 female) during a six-week literacy, thinking skill, and art-integrated environmental science unit. Pre- and post-test questions were used to address knowledge of environmental problems and student environmental…

  19. Urban Elementary Students' Conceptions of Learning Goals for Agricultural Science and Technology

    Science.gov (United States)

    Trexler, Cary J.; Hess, Alexander J.; Hayes, Kathryn N.

    2013-01-01

    Nationally, both science and agricultural education professional organizations have identified agriculture as a fundamental technology to be studied by students, with the goal of achieving an understanding of the agri-food system necessary for democratic participation. Benchmarks representing the content that K-12 children need to understand about…

  20. Modeling Augmented Reality Games with Preservice Elementary and Secondary Science Teachers

    Science.gov (United States)

    Burton, Erin Peters; Frazier, Wendy; Annetta, Leonard; Lamb, Richard; Cheng, Rebecca; Chmiel, Margaret

    2011-01-01

    Cell phones are ever-present in daily life, yet vastly underused in the formal science classroom. The purpose of this study was to implement a novel learning tool on cell phones, Augmented Reality Games, and determine how the interaction influenced preservice teachers' content knowledge and self-efficacy of cell phone use in schools. Results show…

  1. An Instructional Design Using the Virtual Ecological Pond for Science Education in Elementary Schools

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tarng, Wernhuar; Ou, Kuo-Liang; Tsai, Wen-Shin; Lin, Yu-Si; Hsu, Chen-Kai

    2010-01-01

    Ecological ponds can be a good teaching tool for science teachers, but they must be built and maintained properly to provide students with a safe and suitable learning environment. However, many schools do not have the ability to build and maintain an ecological pond. This study used virtual reality technology to develop a web-based virtual…

  2. Elementary Teachers' Use of Content Knowledge to Evaluate Students' Thinking in the Life Sciences

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sabel, Jaime L.; Forbes, Cory T.; Flynn, Leslie

    2016-01-01

    Science learning environments should provide opportunities for students to make sense of and enhance their understanding of disciplinary concepts. Teachers can support students' sense-making by engaging and responding to their ideas through high-leverage instructional practices such as formative assessment (FA). However, past research has shown…

  3. How the Montessori Upper Elementary and Adolescent Environment Naturally Integrates Science, Mathematics, Technology, and the Environment

    Science.gov (United States)

    McNamara, John

    2016-01-01

    John McNamara shares his wisdom and humbly credits Camillo Grazzini, Jenny Höglund, and David Kahn for his growth in Montessori. Recognizing more than what he has learned from his mentors, he shares the lessons he has learned from his students themselves. Math, science, history, and language are so integrated in the curriculum that students…

  4. Multilevel Models for Estimating the Effect of Implementing Argumentation-Based Elementary Science Instruction

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shelley, Mack; Gonwa-Reeves, Christopher; Baenziger, Joan; Seefeld, Ashley; Hand, Brian; Therrien, William; Villanueva, Mary Grace; Taylor, Jonte

    2012-01-01

    The purpose of this paper is to examine the impact of implementation of the Science Writing Heuristic (SWH) approach at 5th grade level in the public school system in Iowa as measured by Cornell Critical Thinking student test scores. This is part of a project that overall tests the efficacy of the SWH inquiry-based approach to build students'…

  5. Computer Science Lesson Study: Building Computing Skills among Elementary School Teachers

    Science.gov (United States)

    Newman, Thomas R.

    2017-01-01

    The lack of diversity in the technology workforce in the United States has proven to be a stubborn problem, resisting even the most well-funded reform efforts. With the absence of computer science education in the mainstream K-12 curriculum, only a narrow band of students in public schools go on to careers in technology. The problem persists…

  6. Taking an Active Stance: How Urban Elementary Students Connect Sociocultural Experiences in Learning Science

    Science.gov (United States)

    Upadhyay, Bhaskar; Maruyama, Geoffrey; Albrecht, Nancy

    2017-01-01

    In this interpretive case study, we draw from sociocultural theory of learning and culturally relevant pedagogy to understand how urban students from nondominant groups leverage their sociocultural experiences. These experiences allow them to gain an empowering voice in influencing science content and activities and to work towards…

  7. Humor in Elementary Science: Development and Evaluation of Comic Strips about Sound

    Science.gov (United States)

    Özdemir, Ertugrul

    2017-01-01

    Comic strips on newspapers, magazines and Internet are one of the most accessible materials that may be used in science classroom as instructional tool. However, it is sometimes difficult to find and adapt appropriate comic strips useful for instructional purposes, because most of them are irrelevant. The purpose of this study is to develop and…

  8. Increasing the Interest of Elementary Age Students in Computer Science though Day Camps

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cliburn, Dan; Weisheit, Tracey; Griffith, Jason; Jones, Matt; Rackley, Hunter; Richey, Eric; Stormer, Kevin

    2004-01-01

    Computer Science and related majors have seen a decrease in enrollment across the country in recent years. While there are several theories behind why this may be the case, as educators in many areas of computing and information technology, this is a trend we should attempt to reverse. While it is true that many children are "computer literate",…

  9. Utilizing Multifaceted Rasch Measurement through Facets to Evaluate Science Education Data Sets Composed of Judges, Respondents, and Rating Scale Items: An Exemplar Utilizing the Elementary Science Teaching Analysis Matrix Instrument

    Science.gov (United States)

    Boone, William J.; Townsend, J. Scott; Staver, John R.

    2016-01-01

    When collecting data, science education researchers frequently have multiple respondents evaluate multiple artifacts using multiple criteria. Herein, the authors introduce Multifaceted Rasch Measurement (MFRM) analysis and explain why MFRM must be used when "judges'" data are collected. The authors use data from elementary science…

  10. A mixed-age science collaborative between elementary and high school physics students: A study of attitude toward school science and inquiry skill

    Science.gov (United States)

    Blain, Mary Perron

    Grade three students had significant improvements in inquiry ability and attitude toward school science as a function of their participation in mixed-age dyads completing inquiry-based science experiments with a high school physics partner. The social interaction between the 'more capable other' (Vygotsky, 1978) with the grade three student in the mixed-age problem solving team indicates a contributing factor in this improvement. This study employed a quasi-experimental design with intact groups of non-random assignment. The non-parametric Wilcoxon test (p = 0.025) was used to analyze scores for each academic achievement group for significant differences pre- and post-collaborative in "Inquiry" skill and "Attitude" toward school science scores. Three grade three classrooms from one elementary school and one high school physics class from the same school district were involved in the study. The high school physics class teamed with one intact grade three class as the mixed-age dyad performing the "hands-on" experiments (treatment). The two grade three classes teamed as same-age peer dyads (comparison group) to perform the same experiments on the same day. Using methods patterned after the way scientists investigate their world, the dyads performed experiments considered for future grade three national assessments (NAEP, 1994), i.e. "Which paper towel holds the most water?"; "Which magnet is stronger?"; "Which type of sugar, cubed or loose, dissolves best in warm water?" Trained raters scored the written lab reports using standardized scoring guides and characteristic benchmark responses to determine the "Inquiry" skill score for each subject. The "Attitude" toward school science score for each subject was determined from the Likert scale survey, Individual and Group Attitudes Toward Science and the open-ended Sentence Completion Test (SCT) (Piburn & Sidlick, 1992). Three raters scored the SCT survey for each subject. This study showed that for a grade three student

  11. Diagnosing night sweats.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Viera, Anthon J; Bond, Michael M; Yates, Scott W

    2003-03-01

    Night sweats are a common outpatient complaint, yet literature on the subject is scarce. Tuberculosis and lymphoma are diseases in which night sweats are a dominant symptom, but these are infrequently found to be the cause of night sweats in modern practice. While these diseases remain important diagnostic considerations in patients with night sweats, other diagnoses to consider include human immunodeficiency virus, gastroesophageal reflux disease, obstructive sleep apnea, hyperthyroidism, hypoglycemia, and several less common diseases. Antihypertensives, antipyretics, other medications, and drugs of abuse such as alcohol and heroin may cause night sweats. Serious causes of night sweats can be excluded with a thorough history, physical examination, and directed laboratory and radiographic studies. If a history and physical do not reveal a possible diagnosis, physicians should consider a purified protein derivative, complete blood count, human immunodeficiency virus test, thyroid-stimulating hormone test, erythrocyte sedimentation rate evaluation, chest radiograph, and possibly chest and abdominal computed tomographic scans and bone marrow biopsy.

  12. Night Terrors in Children

    OpenAIRE

    Feferman, Irv

    1988-01-01

    Night terrors are a bizarre sleep disorder that affects young children. The child partially awakes during the night agitated, afraid and terrified, and cannot be consoled. These events, which may be related to emotional turmoil, are self-limiting. Psychiatric evaluation is indicated in certain cases, and drug therapy is almost never necessary. Parents should be reassured that night terrors are not dangerous and do not reflect any serious pathology.

  13. popscience - European Researchers Night 2014

    CERN Multimedia

    Jeanneret, Guillaume

    2014-01-01

    Vendredi 26 septembre 2014, le CERN célèbrera la Nuit européenne des chercheurs à Genève et à St-Genis-Pouilly. Le thème de l’édition 2014 est inspiré d’Andy Warhol : « Pop science is for everyone ». On Friday 26 September 2014, CERN will be celebrating European Researchers' Night at three venues in Geneva and St. Genis-Pouilly. Inspired by Andy Warhol, this year's theme is “Pop science is for everyone”.

  14. Content, format, gender and grade level differences in elementary students' ability to read science materials as measured by the cloze procedure

    Science.gov (United States)

    Williams, Richard L.; Yore, Larry D.

    Present instructional trends in science indicate a need to reexamine a traditional concern in science education: the readability of science textbooks. An area of reading research not well documented is the effect of color, visuals, and page layout on readability of science materials. Using the cloze readability method, the present study explored the relationships between page format, grade level, sex, content, and elementary school students ability to read science material. Significant relationships were found between cloze scores and both grade level and content, and there was a significant interaction effect between grade and sex in favor of older males. No significant relationships could be attributed to page format and sex. In the area of science content, biological materials were most difficult in terms of readability followed by earth science and physical science. Grade level data indicated that grade five materials were more difficult for that level than either grade four or grade six materials were for students at each respective level. In eight of nine cases, the science text materials would be classified at or near the frustration level of readability. The implications for textbook writers and publishers are that science reading materials need to be produced with greater attention to readability and known design principles regarding visual supplements. The implication for teachers is that students need direct instruction in using visual materials to increase their learning from text material. Present visual materials appear to neither help nor hinder the student to gain information from text material.

  15. The development and validation of the Self-Efficacy Beliefs about Equitable Science Teaching and learning instrument for prospective elementary teachers

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ritter, Jennifer M.

    1999-12-01

    The purpose of this study was to develop, validate and establish the reliability of an instrument to assess the self-efficacy beliefs of prospective elementary teachers with regards to science teaching and learning for diverse learners. The study used Bandura's theoretical framework, in that the instrument would use the self-efficacy construct to explore the beliefs of prospective elementary science teachers with regards to science teaching and learning to diverse learners: specifically the two dimensions of self-efficacy beliefs defined by Bandura (1977): personal self-efficacy and outcome expectancy. A seven step plan was designed and followed in the process of developing the instrument, which was titled the Self-Efficacy Beliefs about Equitable Science Teaching or SEBEST. Diverse learners as recognized by Science for All Americans (1989) are "those who in the past who have largely been bypassed in science and mathematics education: ethnic and language minorities and girls" (p. xviii). That definition was extended by this researcher to include children from low socioeconomic backgrounds based on the research by Gomez and Tabachnick (1992). The SEBEST was administered to 226 prospective elementary teachers at The Pennsylvania State University. Using the results from factor analyses, Coefficient Alpha, and Chi-Square a 34 item instrument was found to achieve the greatest balance across the construct validity, reliability and item balance with the content matrix. The 34 item SEBEST was found to load purely on four factors across the content matrix thus providing evidence construct validity. The Coefficient Alpha reliability for the 34 item SEBEST was .90 and .82 for the PSE sub-scale and .78 for the OE sub-scale. A Chi-Square test (X2 = 2.7 1, df = 7, p > .05) was used to confirm that the 34 items were balanced across the Personal Self-Efficacy/Outcome Expectancy and Ethnicity/LanguageMinority/Gender Socioeconomic Status/dimensions of the content matrix. Based on

  16. Inquiry Science Learning and Teaching: a Comparison Between the Conceptions and Attitudes of Pre-service Elementary Teachers in Hong Kong and the United States

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lee, Yeung Chung; Lee, Carole Kwan-Ping; Lam, Irene Chung-Man; Kwok, Ping Wai; So, Winnie Wing-Mui

    2018-01-01

    International studies of science education, such as the Trends in Mathematics and Science Study (TIMSS), have revealed considerable national disparities in students' achievements in science education. The results have prompted many nations to compare their science education systems and practices to those of others, to gain insights for improvement. Teacher training and professional development are key educational components that have not attracted as much attention as they deserve in international comparative studies. This study compares the conceptions and attitudes of pre-service elementary teachers (PSETs) in Hong Kong and the United States with respect to inquiry science learning and teaching at the beginning of the semester before the start of the science methods course. PSETs' conceptions and attitudes in the two countries were compared by means of a questionnaire with both Likert-type and open-ended questions. Quantitative data were analyzed using exploratory factor analysis and inferential statistics, while qualitative data were analyzed through the systematic categorization of PSETs' responses into broad themes and subthemes to reflect patterns in their conceptions of and attitudes toward inquiry science learning and teaching. The results revealed a complex interplay between PSETs' conceptions of and attitudes toward inquiry science learning and teaching. The results shed light on the effects of sociocultural contexts and have important implications for the design of science methods courses.

  17. Making the case for STEM integration at the upper elementary level: A mixed methods exploration of opportunity to learn math and science, teachers' efficacy and students' attitudes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Miller, Brianna M.

    Student achievement in science and math has been linked to per capita gross domestic product (GDP) growth propagating the belief that science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM) education is an important factor in economic prosperity. However, The No Child Left Behind Act of 2001 (NCLB), favors math over science, positioning the subjects as competitors rather than collaborators. Additionally, NCLB focuses almost exclusively on the cognitive outcome of students' achievement with the affective outcome of students' attitudes being nearly ignored. Positive attitudes toward science and math early on are essential for subsequent and cumulative decisions students make in taking courses, choosing majors, and pursuing careers. Positioning students' attitudes as a desirable educational outcome comparable to students' achievement is an emerging goal in the literature. Using the case of one school district in south-central Pennsylvania with three elementary schools, 15 upper elementary teachers, and 361 students, the purpose of this study was to better understand influences on upper elementary students' attitudes toward STEM (SA) subjects and careers. The study aimed to explore two influences on SA, opportunity to learn (OTL) and teacher's efficacy (TE), in the comparative contexts of math and science. The studied employed a mixed methods convergent design in which five data sets from four sources were collected over three phases to triangulate three constructs: OTL, TE, and SA. The goal of the study was to offer recommendations to the case school district for enhancing OTL, TE, and thus SA. Findings regarding OTL revealed that the opportunity to learn science was lower than math. Finding regarding TE revealed that outcome expectancy was lower than personal teaching efficacy in both science and math; and, teachers had low STEM career awareness, STEM integration, and technology use. Findings regarding SA revealed a lower perceived usefulness of science compared to math

  18. Elementary operators - still not elementary?

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Martin Mathieu

    2016-01-01

    Full Text Available Properties of elementary operators, that is, finite sums of two-sided multiplications on a Banach algebra, have been studied under a vast variety of aspects by numerous authors. In this paper we review recent advances in a new direction that seems not to have been explored before: the question when an elementary operator is spectrally bounded or spectrally isometric. As with other investigations, a number of subtleties occur which show that elementary operators are still not elementary to handle.

  19. Night Terrors (For Parents)

    Science.gov (United States)

    ... you tried. A night terror is a sleep disruption that seems similar to a nightmare , but is ... to: reduce your child's stress create a bedtime routine that's simple and relaxing make sure your child ...

  20. Night Rover Challenge

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Aeronautics and Space Administration — The objective of the Night Rover Challenge was to foster innovations in energy storage technology. Specifically, this challenge asked competitors to create an energy...

  1. Night Eating Disorders

    OpenAIRE

    Deniz Tuncel; Fatma Özlem Orhan

    2009-01-01

    Hunger is an awakening related biological impulse. The relationship between hunger and sleep is moderated by the control of homeostatic and circadian rhytms of the body. Abnormal eating behavior during sleep period could result from different causes. Abnormal eating during the main sleep period has been categorized as either night eating syndrome or sleep related eating disorder. Night eating syndrome (NES) is an eating disorder characterised by the clinical features of morning anorexia, even...

  2. History of the Night

    CERN Multimedia

    CERN. Geneva

    2016-01-01

    The definition of the night, as the period between sunset and sunrise, is consistent and unalterable, regardless of culture and time. However the perception of the night and its economic, social, and cultural roles are subject to change. Which parameters determine these changes? What can we learn by studying them about the specific character of a culture? Why do people experience the night in different ways in different historical periods and how did this affect their lives? How do references to nocturnal activities in historical sources (works of art, narratives) reveal what the artists/authors wish to communicate to their audiences? Can the night be a meaningful subject of historical and archaeological enquiry? A study of the source material in the Greek world (ca. 400 BC-ca. AD 400) shows a continuous effort to colonize the night with activities of the day, to make the night safer, more productive, more rational, more efficient. The main motors for this change were social developments and religion, no...

  3. Beliefs and Attitudes about Science and Mathematics in Pre-Service Elementary Teachers, STEM, and Non-STEM Majors in Undergraduate Physics Courses

    Science.gov (United States)

    Michaluk, Lynnette; Stoiko, Rachel; Stewart, Gay; Stewart, John

    2018-04-01

    Elementary teachers often hold inaccurate beliefs about the Nature of Science (NoS) and have negative attitudes toward science and mathematics. Using a pre-post design, the current study examined beliefs about the NoS, attitudes toward science and mathematics, and beliefs about the teaching of mathematics and science in a large sample study ( N = 343) of pre-service teachers receiving a curriculum-wide intervention to improve these factors in comparison with Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics (STEM) and non-STEM majors in other physics courses ( N = 6697) who did not receive the intervention, over a 10-year period. Pre-service teachers evidenced initially more negative attitudes about mathematics and science than STEM majors and slightly more positive attitudes than non-STEM majors. Their attitudes toward mathematics and science and beliefs about the NoS were more similar to non-STEM than STEM majors. Pre-service teachers initially evidenced more positive beliefs about the teaching of mathematics and science, and their beliefs even increased slightly over the course of the semester, while these beliefs in other groups remained the same. Beliefs about the NoS and the teaching of mathematics and science were significantly negatively correlated for STEM and non-STEM majors, but were not significantly correlated for pre-service teachers. Beliefs about the NoS and attitudes toward mathematics and science were significantly positively correlated for both pre-service teachers and STEM students pursing the most mathematically demanding STEM majors. Attitudes toward science and mathematics were significantly positively correlated with accurate beliefs about the teaching of mathematics and science for all student groups.

  4. A Study of the Impact of Transformative Professional Development on Hispanic Student Performance on State Mandated Assessments of Science in Elementary School

    Science.gov (United States)

    Johnson, Carla C.; Fargo, Jamison D.

    2014-11-01

    This paper reports the findings of a study of the impact of the transformative professional development (TPD) model on student achievement on state-mandated assessments of science in elementary school. Two schools (one intervention and one control) participated in the case study where teachers from one school received the TPD intervention across a 2-year period while teachers at the other school received no program and continued business as usual. The TPD program includes a focus on the core conceptual framework for effective professional development (Desimone in Educ Res 38:181-199, 2009) as well as an emphasis on culturally relevant pedagogy (CRP) and other effective science instructional strategies. Findings revealed that participation in TPD had a significant impact on student achievement for Burns Elementary with the percentage of proficient students growing from 25 % at baseline to 67 % at the end of the 2-year program, while the comparison school did not experience similar growth. Implications for future research and implementation of professional development programs to meet the needs of teachers in the realm of CRP in science are discussed.

  5. Project watching the sky: a playful and constructivist approach in the practice of night sky observations for 2nd grade elementary school students in the city of Santo André

    Science.gov (United States)

    Voelzke, M. R.; Faria, R. Z.; Pedroso, M.; Jacinto, C.; Silva, L. C. P.

    2017-07-01

    The Johannes Kepler planetary, located at the SABINA Parque do Conhecimento in the City of Santo André, Brazil, has equipments that allow the teaching and diffusion of Astronomy. The attendances take place during the week for schools and at weekends for the public. The attending focus is on elementary students from Santo André’s municipal schools, kids between 6 and 10 years old. The pedagogical team created attendance models with specific matters for each age. The model is only incorporated into the planetary agenda after the municipal teacheŕs approval. This paper reports the establishment and approval of an attending project for 2nd grade students between September and November 2014. The workshops "My first spyglass" and "Creating my constellations" and the planetary session "Watching the Sky" were created. The Municipal Education Office received the project and passed it to the schools. From the 51 municipal schools, 13 took part sending 21 classes, totaling 521 students. The project included activities for the students, such as the construction of spyglasses out of cardboard which made them learn about constellations of yeaŕs seasons and enabled them to create their own constellations. During the schools permanency in the planetary, the teachers received a survey to evaluate the pilot project. The evaluation of the researched items allowed to classify them into satisfactory, partially satisfactory or unsatisfactory. The results were 95% satisfactory, considering the following aspects: used script, applied workshops, participation, concern and content uptake by the students; and a satisfactory rate of 100% about the used resources. Upon the approval, the pedagogical team included definitively this attendance into their agenda.

  6. The roles of teachers' science talk in revealing language demands within diverse elementary school classrooms: a study of teaching heat and temperature in Singapore

    Science.gov (United States)

    Seah, Lay Hoon; Yore, Larry D.

    2017-01-01

    This study of three science teachers' lessons on heat and temperature seeks to characterise classroom talk that highlighted the ways language is used and to examine the nature of the language demands revealed in constructing, negotiating, arguing and communicating science ideas. The transcripts from the entire instructional units for these teachers' four culturally and linguistically diverse Grade 4 classes (10 years old) with English as the language of instruction constitute the data for this investigation. Analysis of these transcripts focused on teachers' talk that made explicit reference to the form or function of the language of science and led to the inductive development of the 'Attending to Language Demands in Science' analytical framework. This framework in turn revealed that the major foregrounding purposes of teachers' talk include labelling, explaining, differentiating, selecting and constructing. Further classification of the instances within these categories revealed the extensive and contextualised nature of the language demands. The results challenge the conventional assumption that basic literacy skills dominate over disciplinary literacy skills in primary school science. Potential uses of the analytical framework that could further expand our understanding of the forms, functions and demands of language used in elementary school science are also discussed.

  7. A Qualitative Study of Prospective Elementary Teachers' Grasp of Agricultural and Science Educational Benchmarks for Agricultural Technology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Trexler, Cary J.; Meischen, Deanna

    2002-01-01

    Interviews with eight preservice elementary teachers regarding benchmarks related to agricultural technology for food and fiber showed that those from rural areas had more complex understanding of the trade-offs in technology use; urban residents were more concerned with ethical dilemmas. Pesticide pollution was most understood, genetic…

  8. Impact through Images: Exploring Student Understanding of Environmental Science through Integrated Place-Based Lessons in the Elementary Classroom

    Science.gov (United States)

    Muthersbaugh, Debbie; Kern, Anne L.; Charvoz, Rebecca

    2014-01-01

    In the early 1800s, the U.S. President Thomas Jefferson assembled a team of explorers led by Meriwether Lewis and William Clark to forge a waterway connecting the Missouri River to the Pacific Ocean. How has this environment changed in 200 years and how do elementary students make sense of those changes? This study looks at the impact of…

  9. Generalized elementary functions

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Monteiro, Giselle Antunes; Slavík, A.

    2014-01-01

    Roč. 411, č. 2 (2014), s. 838-852 ISSN 0022-247X Institutional support: RVO:67985840 Keywords : elementary functions * Kurzweil-Stieltjes integral * generalized linear ordinary differential equations * time scale calculus Subject RIV: BA - General Mathematics Impact factor: 1.120, year: 2014 http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0022247X13009141

  10. Increasing Bellevue School District's elementary teachers' capacity for teaching inquiry-based science: Using ideas from contemporary learning theory to inform professional development

    Science.gov (United States)

    Maury, Tracy Anne

    This Capstone project examined how leaders in the Bellevue School District can increase elementary teachers' capacity for teaching inquiry-based science through the use of professional learning activities that are grounded in ideas from human learning theory. A framework for professional development was constructed and from that framework, a set of professional learning activities were developed as a means to support teacher learning while project participants piloted new curriculum called the Isopod Habitat Challenge. Teachers in the project increased their understanding of the learning theory principles of preconceptions and metacognition. Teachers did not increase their understanding of the principle of learning with understanding, although they did articulate the significance of engaging children in student-led inquiry cycles. Data from the curriculum revision and professional development project coupled with ideas from learning theory, cognition and policy implementation, and learning community literatures suggest Bellevue's leaders can encourage peer-to-peer interaction, link professional development to teachers' daily practice, and capitalize on technology as ways to increase elementary teachers' capacity for teaching inquiry-based science. These lessons also have significance for supporting teacher learning and efficacy in other subject areas and at other levels in the system.

  11. Teaching and investigating the use of Concept Maps as educational resource facilitator of meaningful learning for natural sciences in elementary education.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Felipa Pacífico Ribeiro de Assis Silveira

    2014-12-01

    Full Text Available The study tried to answer questions pertinent to the use of concept maps (CM as a teaching resource facilitator of meaningful learning of scientific concepts of Natural Sciences, in the classroom of elementary school. To answer the questions and insert the MC in the classroom every day, we adopted the interdependence between the process of learning, teaching and investigation. To ensure a triadic relationship, outline an intervention / investigation with theoretical and methodological support in quantitative and qualitative approach. The teaching and learning were secured from a teaching strategy, able to share and negotiate concepts relevant to the field of education, enabling students move beyond their existing knowledge, ensuring the data of research about the effects of MC in learning of the groups investigated. The MC was defined as a teaching resource potential for this level of education and principles of the Theory of Meaningful Learning that supports it. It was evident the recursive procedural character inherent in meaningful learning as using the MC as a teaching resource in the construction of scientific knowledge of Natural Sciences, the occurrence of learning of the groups using the MC and its validation in the presence of students of final grades of elementary school.

  12. Night Eating Disorders

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Deniz Tuncel

    2009-08-01

    Full Text Available Hunger is an awakening related biological impulse. The relationship between hunger and sleep is moderated by the control of homeostatic and circadian rhytms of the body. Abnormal eating behavior during sleep period could result from different causes. Abnormal eating during the main sleep period has been categorized as either night eating syndrome or sleep related eating disorder. Night eating syndrome (NES is an eating disorder characterised by the clinical features of morning anorexia, evening hyperphagia, and insomnia with awakenings followed by nocturnal food ingestion. Recently night eating syndrome, conceptualized as a delayed circadian intake of food. Sleep-related eating disorder, thought to represent a parasomnia and as such included within the revised International Classification of Sleep Disorders (ICSD-2, and characterized by nocturnal partial arousals associated with recurrent episodes of involuntary food consumption and altered levels of consciousness. Whether, however, sleep-related eating disorder and night eating syndrome represent different diseases or are part of a continuum is still debated. This review summarizes their characteristics, treatment outcomes and differences between them.

  13. "Twelfth Night" for Kids.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Burdett, Lois; Coburn, Christine

    Aimed at primary-age children, this book brings William Shakespeare's "Twelfth Night" to them, recognizing that children, properly guided, will take to Shakespeare's characters and stories like "ducks to water"; in the process they find their inner voices, they collaborate, they improvise, and they communicate. Illustrated with…

  14. A night sky model.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Erpylev, N. P.; Smirnov, M. A.; Bagrov, A. V.

    A night sky model is proposed. It includes different components of light polution, such as solar twilight, moon scattered light, zodiacal light, Milky Way, air glow and artificial light pollution. The model is designed for calculating the efficiency of astronomical installations.

  15. Melas Chasma, Day and Night.

    Science.gov (United States)

    2002-01-01

    This image is a mosaic of day and night infrared images of Melas Chasma taken by the camera system on NASA's Mars Odyssey spacecraft. The daytime temperature images are shown in black and white, superimposed on the martian topography. A single nighttime temperature image is superimposed in color. The daytime temperatures range from approximately -35 degrees Celsius (-31 degrees Fahrenheit) in black to -5 degrees Celsius (23 degrees Fahrenheit) in white. Overlapping landslides and individual layers in the walls of Melas Chasma can be seen in this image. The landslides flowed over 100 kilometers (62 miles) across the floor of Melas Chasma, producing deposits with ridges and grooves of alternating warm and cold materials that can still be seen. The temperature differences in the daytime images are due primarily to lighting effects, where sunlit slopes are warm (bright) and shadowed slopes are cool (dark). The nighttime temperature differences are due to differences in the abundance of rocky materials that retain their heat at night and stay relatively warm (red). Fine grained dust and sand (blue) cools off more rapidly at night. These images were acquired using the thermal infrared imaging system infrared Band 9, centered at 12.6 micrometers.Jet Propulsion Laboratory, a division of the California Institute of Technology in Pasadena, manages the 2001 Mars Odyssey mission for NASA's Office of Space Science in Washington, D.C. Investigators at Arizona State University in Tempe, the University of Arizona in Tucson and NASA's Johnson Space Center, Houston, operate the science instruments. Additional science partners are located at the Russian Aviation and Space Agency and at Los Alamos National Laboratories, New Mexico. Lockheed Martin Astronautics, Denver, is the prime contractor for the project, and developed and built the orbiter. Mission operations are conducted jointly from Lockheed Martin and from JPL. Aviation and Space Agency and at Los Alamos National Laboratories

  16. The Inwood Astronomy Project: 100 Nights in Manhattan---An Outreach Initiative to Underserved Communities

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kendall, J. S.

    2008-11-01

    Observing the night sky in New York City is a challenge. However, there is a popular, and even club-going, interest in science in New York City. On the edges of that interest, most people that live in New York City have never had the opportunity to look through a telescope, particularly in underserved areas such as Northern Manhattan. The presenter discusses plans for frequent observing sessions utilizing the parks in New York City combined with public classes at the New York Public Library. Both observing sessions and classes will be held in the ethnically, racially and economically diverse Bronx and Manhattan neighborhoods of Washington Heights, Marble Hill and Inwood. Integration with area middle, elementary and high schools is also discussed. Particular issues surrounding publicity and the need for showmanship in an image-driven community with numerous entertainment opportunities are also discussed.

  17. Leveraging Current Initiatives to Bring Earth and Space Science into Elementary and Early Childhood Classrooms: NGSS in the Context of the Classroom Technology Push

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pacheco-Guffrey, H. A.

    2016-12-01

    Classroom teachers face many challenges today such as new standards, the moving targets of high stakes tests and teacher evaluations, inconsistent/insufficient access to resources and evolving education policies. Science education in the K-5 context is even more complex. NGSS can be intimidating, especially to K-5 educators with little science background. High stakes science tests are slow to catch up with newly drafted state level science standards, leaving teachers unsure about what to change and when to implement updated standards. Amid all this change, many schools are also piloting new technology programs. Though exciting, tech initiatives can also be overwhelming to teachers who are already overburdened. A practical way to support teachers in science while remaining mindful of these stressors is to design and share resources that leverage other K-5 school initiatives. This is often done by integrating writing or math into science learning to meet Common Core requirements. This presentation will suggest a method for bringing Earth and space science learning into elementary / early childhood classrooms by utilizing the current push for tablet technology. The goal is to make science integration reasonable by linking it to technology programs that are in their early stages. The roles and uses of K-5 Earth and space science apps will be examined in this presentation. These apps will be linked to NGSS standards as well as to the science and engineering practices. To complement the app resources, two support frameworks will also be shared. They are designed to help educators consider new technologies in the context of their own classrooms and lessons. The SAMR Model (Puentadura, 2012) is a conceptual framework that helps teachers think critically about the means and purposes of integrating technology into existing lessons. A practical framework created by the author will also be shared. It is designed to help teachers identify and address the important logistical

  18. Jupiter Night and Day

    Science.gov (United States)

    2001-01-01

    Day and night side narrow angle images taken on January 1, 2001 illustrating storms visible on the day side which are the sources of visible lightning when viewed on the night side. The images have been enhanced in contrast. Note the two day-side occurrences of high clouds, in the upper and lower parts of the image, are coincident with lightning storms seen on the darkside. The storms occur at 34.5 degrees and 23.5 degrees North latitude, within one degree of the latitudes at which similar lightning features were detected by the Galileo spacecraft. The images were taken at different times. The storms' longitudinal separation changes from one image to the next because the winds carrying them blow at different speeds at the two latitudes.

  19. Travelers In The Night

    Science.gov (United States)

    Grauer, Albert D.

    2014-11-01

    Travelers In The Night is an engaging and informative series of two minute radio programs about asteroids, comets, spacecraft, and other objects in space. The pieces are evergreen in that they are current but not dated. They are published on the Public Radio Exchange and carried by a number of radio stations. For teachers, students, and kids of all ages, the script for each piece and the start of a path for further inquiry can be found on the website travelersinthenight.org . The Travelers InThe Night Pieces are written and produced by an observing member of the Catalina Sky Survey Team at the University of Arizona. DPS members are encouraged to submit program ideas which can be developed to feature their research efforts.

  20. 'Sometimes They Are Fun and Sometimes They Are Not': Concept Mapping with English Language Acquisition (ELA) and Gifted/Talented (GT) Elementary Students Learning Science and Sustainability

    Science.gov (United States)

    Marzetta, Katrina; Mason, Hillary; Wee, Bryan

    2018-01-01

    This study presents an 'education for sustainability' curricular model which promotes science learning in an elementary classroom through equity pedagogy. A total of 25 fourth-grade students from an urban, public school in Denver, Colorado participated in this mixed-methods study where concept maps were used as a tool for describing and assessing…

  1. The good field trip: How elementary students from diverse socio-economic backgrounds learn science, art, and technology at a museum

    Science.gov (United States)

    Martell, Sandra Toro

    The Good Field Trip is a study that uses an ethnographic approach to answer the question of what learning looks like during a field trip to a museum. The study uses the Contextual Model of Learning (Falk & Dierking, 2000) to investigate elementary students' personal, physical, and sociocultural contexts of learning as well as how time affects students' thoughts and feelings about the experience. The author accompanied a group of eight students on a three and a half day camp-like experience to a museum that promotes environmental stewardship and the integration of art, science, and technology use and learning. The author videotaped the students' conversations and experiences and interviewed students before, during, and after the trip. Analyses of the videotapes were supplemented with student documents, including comic books, journal notes, and reflective essays about the trip. Findings include that not all experiences are marked as science, art, and technology; technology use does not occur; art is presented in a more formalized manner than science, which is composed of observation and the acquisition of knowledge about plants and animals; and conversations and activities resemble traditional modes of learning in school settings.

  2. Elementary number theory with programming

    CERN Document Server

    Lewinter, Marty

    2015-01-01

    A successful presentation of the fundamental concepts of number theory and computer programming Bridging an existing gap between mathematics and programming, Elementary Number Theory with Programming provides a unique introduction to elementary number theory with fundamental coverage of computer programming. Written by highly-qualified experts in the fields of computer science and mathematics, the book features accessible coverage for readers with various levels of experience and explores number theory in the context of programming without relying on advanced prerequisite knowledge and con

  3. Thanks to CERN's team of surveyors, the Organization's stand at the Night of Science attracted a large number of visitors : the technology and tools used by the surveyors, such as the Terrameter shown here, attracted many visitors to the CERN stand

    CERN Multimedia

    2004-01-01

    Thanks to CERN's team of surveyors, the Organization's stand at the Night of Science attracted a large number of visitors : the technology and tools used by the surveyors, such as the Terrameter shown here, attracted many visitors to the CERN stand

  4. Channel by Day and Night

    Science.gov (United States)

    2004-01-01

    [figure removed for brevity, see original site] Released 17 June 2004 This pair of images shows part of a small channel. Day/Night Infrared Pairs The image pairs presented focus on a single surface feature as seen in both the daytime and nighttime by the infrared THEMIS camera. The nighttime image (right) has been rotated 180 degrees to place north at the top. Infrared image interpretation Daytime: Infrared images taken during the daytime exhibit both the morphological and thermophysical properties of the surface of Mars. Morphologic details are visible due to the effect of sun-facing slopes receiving more energy than antisun-facing slopes. This creates a warm (bright) slope and cool (dark) slope appearance that mimics the light and shadows of a visible wavelength image. Thermophysical properties are seen in that dust heats up more quickly than rocks. Thus dusty areas are bright and rocky areas are dark. Nighttime: Infrared images taken during the nighttime exhibit only the thermophysical properties of the surface of Mars. The effect of sun-facing versus non-sun-facing energy dissipates quickly at night. Thermophysical effects dominate as different surfaces cool at different rates through the nighttime hours. Rocks cool slowly, and are therefore relatively bright at night (remember that rocks are dark during the day). Dust and other fine grained materials cool very quickly and are dark in nighttime infrared images. Image information: IR instrument. Latitude 19.8, Longitude 141.5 East (218.5 West). 100 meter/pixel resolution. Note: this THEMIS visual image has not been radiometrically nor geometrically calibrated for this preliminary release. An empirical correction has been performed to remove instrumental effects. A linear shift has been applied in the cross-track and down-track direction to approximate spacecraft and planetary motion. Fully calibrated and geometrically projected images will be released through the Planetary Data System in accordance with Project

  5. Lomonosov Crater, Day and Night

    Science.gov (United States)

    2004-01-01

    [figure removed for brevity, see original site] Released 16 June 2004 This pair of images shows part of Lomonosov Crater. Day/Night Infrared Pairs The image pairs presented focus on a single surface feature as seen in both the daytime and nighttime by the infrared THEMIS camera. The nighttime image (right) has been rotated 180 degrees to place north at the top. Infrared image interpretation Daytime: Infrared images taken during the daytime exhibit both the morphological and thermophysical properties of the surface of Mars. Morphologic details are visible due to the effect of sun-facing slopes receiving more energy than antisun-facing slopes. This creates a warm (bright) slope and cool (dark) slope appearance that mimics the light and shadows of a visible wavelength image. Thermophysical properties are seen in that dust heats up more quickly than rocks. Thus dusty areas are bright and rocky areas are dark. Nighttime: Infrared images taken during the nighttime exhibit only the thermophysical properties of the surface of Mars. The effect of sun-facing versus non-sun-facing energy dissipates quickly at night. Thermophysical effects dominate as different surfaces cool at different rates through the nighttime hours. Rocks cool slowly, and are therefore relatively bright at night (remember that rocks are dark during the day). Dust and other fine grained materials cool very quickly and are dark in nighttime infrared images. Image information: IR instrument. Latitude 64.9, Longitude 350.7 East (9.3 West). 100 meter/pixel resolution. Note: this THEMIS visual image has not been radiometrically nor geometrically calibrated for this preliminary release. An empirical correction has been performed to remove instrumental effects. A linear shift has been applied in the cross-track and down-track direction to approximate spacecraft and planetary motion. Fully calibrated and geometrically projected images will be released through the Planetary Data System in accordance with Project

  6. CMS Virtual Visit - Researchers Night in Portugal

    CERN Multimedia

    Abreu, Pedro

    2016-01-01

    Researchers Night at Planetarium Calouste Gulbenkian - Ciência Viva Centre in Lisbon. Organised by researchers from LIP (Laboratório de Instrumentação e Física Experimental de Partículas) and including CMS Virtual Visit during which André David Tinoco Mendes and José Rasteiro da Silva, based at Cessy, France, "virtually" discussed science and technology behind the CMS detector with the audience in Lisbon.

  7. The Interdisciplinarity in the Students' Questions in Science Classes of the Elementary School: Contributions of Discursive Textual Analysis

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Maurivan Güntzel Ramos

    2017-12-01

    Full Text Available The article presents the analysis of 342 questions on the theme "Water", proposed by 114 students from three elementary schools in the South region of Brazil, in order to identify interdisciplinary articulations associated with complex thinking present in these questions. The research sought to answer the following question: What revelations can emerge from the analysis of student's questions about a specific topic of study, such as "Water", in relation to interdisciplinarity and complex thinking? From the discursive textual analysis of the questions, two categories emerged: disciplinary questions; and interdisciplinary questions. The examination of the content of the categories enabled the writing of metatexts that reveal that in the text of most of the students' questions, is present a complex mode of thinking and interdisciplinary relationships, since 77.8% of the questions belong to second category. This can be an indication to teachers of how to initiate pedagogical actions, whose focus is interdisciplinarity.

  8. Science Achievement Gaps by Gender and Race/Ethnicity in Elementary and Middle School: Trends and Predictors

    Science.gov (United States)

    Quinn, David M.; Cooc, North

    2015-01-01

    Research on science achievement disparities by gender and race/ethnicity often neglects the beginning of the pipeline in the early grades. We address this limitation using nationally representative data following students from Grades 3 to 8. We find that the Black-White science test score gap (-1.07 SD in Grade 3) remains stable over these years,…

  9. The Interactional Accomplishment of Not Knowing in Elementary School Science and Mathematics: Implications for Classroom Performance Assessment Practices

    Science.gov (United States)

    Reis, Giuliano; Barwell, Richard

    2013-01-01

    The day-to-day business of being a science or mathematics teacher involves the continuous assessment of students. This, in turn, is an inherently discursive process. The aim of the present study is to examine some of the specific discursive practices through which science and mathematics knowing is jointly produced through classroom interaction.…

  10. Impact of STS Issue Oriented Instruction on Pre-Service Elementary Teachers' Views and Perceptions of Science, Technology, and Society

    Science.gov (United States)

    Amirshokoohi, Aidin

    2016-01-01

    The purpose of the study was to investigate the impact of Science, Technology, Society (STS) issue oriented science methods course on pre-service teachers' views and perceptions toward STS issues and instruction as well as their levels of environmental literacy. The STS issue oriented curriculum was designed to help pre-service teachers improve…

  11. Becoming (Less) Scientific: A Longitudinal Study of Students' Identity Work from Elementary to Middle School Science

    Science.gov (United States)

    Carlone, Heidi B.; Scott, Catherine M.; Lowder, Cassi

    2014-01-01

    Students' declining science interest in middle school is often attributed to psychological factors like shifts of motivational values, decrease in self-efficacy, or doubts about the utility of schooling in general. This paper adds to accounts of the middle school science problem through an ethnographic, longitudinal case study of three…

  12. Toward Understanding the Nature of a Partnership between an Elementary Classroom Teacher and an Informal Science Educator

    Science.gov (United States)

    Weiland, Ingrid S.; Akerson, Valarie L.

    2013-01-01

    This study explored the nature of the relationship between a fifth-grade teacher and an informal science educator as they planned and implemented a life science unit in the classroom, and sought to define this relationship in order to gain insight into the roles of each educator. In addition, student learning as a result of instruction was…

  13. Astronomy and Space Science On The School - An Outreach Project for Elementary and High School Students of Brasilia

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ferreira, Jose Leonardo

    2016-07-01

    This project aims to develop interdisciplinary actions, articulated and convergence in the field of education, dissemination and popularization of science and technology in Brasilia-DF, the Federal District of Brazil. These actions are also been carried out at DF surroundings areas. Since 2015 linked convergent actions are focused on the development of space science and astronomy teaching with hands on experimental activities. Workshops, short basic astronomy courses, expositions and planetarium show are been carried out by a team of professors, graduate and under graduate students from University of Brasilia- UnB. At the same time upgrade actions are been done in order to modernize The Luiz Cruls Astronomical Observatory located at the far campus of UnB, named Fazenda Água Limpa. It is now a Center for research and space science dissemination and popularization not only for students but also for the whole community of Brasilia. Working toghether with the Physics Institute of UnB we have the recently created Museum of Science and Technology of Brasilia, also located at the UnB campus. The Museum is responsible for contac with schools and Brasilia community and for the organization of the activities of the Science on the School Project. Science on the School is an educational, scientific and cultural proposal approved and financed by the brazillian national research council (CNPq) and by the Science and Technology Reseach Foundation of Brasilia. Besides science dissemination for the brazillian society the project is also developing theoretical and experimental research in the area of Space Science and Astronomy. The project also aim to transform the Museum in a strong Science Education Center for the Brazil central region population, It is going to be a cultural environment and leisure for the Federal District and surrounding areas of Brasilia. In this work we will describe the coordinate actions of The Luiz Cruls Astronomical Observatory the Physics Institute of

  14. The Sky at Night

    CERN Document Server

    Moore, Patrick

    2010-01-01

    For more than 50 years now Sir Patrick Moore has presented the BBC Television series Sky at Night; not a month has been missed – a record for any television series, and a record which may never be broken. Every three years or so a book is published covering the main events in both astronomy and space research. This is the 13th volume, not only a record of the programmes but also of the great advances and discoveries during the period covered - eclipses, comets, and the strange chemical lakes of Titan, for instance, but also anniversaries such as the fifteenth “birthday” of the Hubble Space Telescope, and not forgetting the programme celebrating the Sky at Night’s 50th year, attended by astronaut Piers Sellars and many others who appeared on the programme over the years. All the chapters are self-contained, and fully illustrated. In this new Sky at Night book you will find much to entertain you. It will appeal to amateurs and professionals alike.

  15. Perceived teacher affective support in relation to emotional and motivational variables in elementary school science classrooms in Turkey

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sakiz, Gonul

    2017-01-01

    Background: In recent research, affective learning environments and affective support have been receiving increasing attention for their roles in stimulating students' learning outcomes. Despite its raising importance, little is known about affective support in educational contexts in developing countries. Moreover, international student assessment programmes (e.g. PISA and TIMSS) reveal poor science proficiency of students in most of those countries, which provokes the question of how to make positive changes in students' perspectives and attitudes in science.

  16. Paul Graham, American Night

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Catherine Bernard

    2006-12-01

    Full Text Available Le photographe britannique Paul Graham (1956- ne jouit pas encore en France de la notoriété de son compatriote Martin Parr et on ne peut, par conséquent, que se féliciter de voir l’une de ses plus puissantes séries — American Night — représentée à la Galerie Les Filles du Calvaire.Connu, avec Parr, pour avoir profondément influencé la photo documentaire anglaise en la faisant passer à la couleur avec virulence, Graham a été révélé il y a une vingtaine d’années par une série d’images prises à...

  17. Credibility and persuasion: A sociopsychological approach to changing the attitudes toward energy conservation of preservice elementary school science teachers

    Science.gov (United States)

    Koballa, Thomas R., Jr.; Shrigley, Robert L.

    Tested was the effect of two persuasive messages presented by a credible communicator on the attitudes toward energy conservation of 180 preservice elementary teachers. The study asked the following questions: (1) Can attitudes toward energy conservation be positively changed with a brief, belief-laden communication? (2) Do positive attitude gains between pre- and post-tests, if any, dissipate within three weeks following the treatment? (3) Do the integrated and the nonintegrated communications affect energy attitudes of three subgroups (abstract, concrete differentiator and concrete thinkers) of the sample differently? The important finding was that both experimental treatments, integrated and nonintegrated, were equally effective and significantly more effective in attitude change than the control. Secondly, the finding that neither experimental treatment dissipated in effect, at least for three weeks, suggests some duration of brief treatment periods. And finally, the attitude changes are as likely to occur when concrete differentiators are presented with a nonintegrated as an integrated treatment, but abstract thinkers exposed to the integrated treatment and concrete thinkers exposed to the nonintegrated treatment sustain a changed attitude to a greater degree than other combinations of treatment and cognitive processing styles.

  18. Capturing the Transformation and Dynamic Nature of an Elementary Teacher Candidate's Identity Development as a Teacher of Science

    Science.gov (United States)

    Naidoo, Kara

    2017-12-01

    This study examines the transformation and dynamic nature of one teacher candidate's (Susan) identity as a learner and teacher of science throughout an innovative science methods course. The goal of this paper is to use theoretically derived themes grounded in cultural-historical activity theory (CHAT) and situated learning theory to determine the ways in which Susan's identity as a learner and teacher of science was influenced by her experiences in the course, and to describe how she made meaning of her transformative process. The following are the three theoretical themes: (1) learning contributes to identity development, (2) identity development is a dialogical process that occurs between individuals, not within individuals, and (3) social practice leads to transformations and transformations lead to the creation of new social practices. Within each theme, specific experiences in the science methods course are identified that influenced Susan's identity development as a teacher of science. Knowing how context and experiences influence identity development can inform design decisions concerning teacher education programs, courses, and experiences for candidates.

  19. Goals for the Correlation of Elementary Science and Mathematics; The Report of the Cambridge Conference on the Correlation of Science and Mathematics in Schools.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cambridge Conference on School Mathematics, Newton, MA.

    This is The Report of the 1967 Cambridge Conference on the Correlation of Science and Mathematics in the Schools. It is addressed to professionals in education, and is designed to stimulate dialogue among them concerning the mathematics-science curriculum. The report is organized in five chapters, each dealing respectively with (1) educational…

  20. The Effects of Classroom Instructional Strategies on Science Achievement of Elementary-School Students in Japan: Findings from the Third International Mathematics and Science Study (TIMSS)

    Science.gov (United States)

    House, J. Daniel

    2006-01-01

    This article deals with the Third International Mathematics and Science Study (TIMSS). TIMSS has provided a comprehensive assessment of educational contexts and mathematics and science achievement (National Research Council, 1999). The initial TIMSS assessment was conducted in 1995 (TIMSS 1995) and several studies have examined factors related to…

  1. A phenomenological study on the impacts of embedding disciplinary literacy during science instruction on elementary teachers' metacognition of instructional techniques

    Science.gov (United States)

    Weiss, Kelley

    The educational community has been increasing its focus on literacy for several years. The modern definition of literacy requires students to be an informed and integrated thinker, synthesizing new information beyond the mere ability to read and write (Guzzetti & Bang, 2011). This qualitative phenomenological study focused on how teachers of science view literacy and how that view changes when they implement the concept of disciplinary literacy into science instruction. This phenomenological study examined how teachers became more metacognitive of their instructional methods after implementation of the Question-Answer Relationship strategy (QAR) and direct vocabulary instruction into their science instruction. Teachers utilized schema theory and social cognitive theory to integrate the two strategies into their science lessons throughout the study. This phenomenological study collected data during a six-week implementation period through interviews, observations, teacher journals and collection of artifacts from 12 teachers who taught students in grades one through five and three literacy specialists in a rural central Maine school. These data sources were analyzed using Moustakas' (1994) seven steps to discover themes that were identified from the data. Findings from this study, as viewed through the pragmatic lens, suggested that teachers benefit from systematic reflection of their teaching to develop literacy rich content area lessons that address all of the students' learning needs.

  2. Impact of Culturally Relevant Contextualized Activities on Elementary and Middle School Students' Perceptions of Science: An Exploratory Study

    Science.gov (United States)

    González-Espada, Wilson; Llerandi-Román, Pablo; Fortis-Santiago, Yaihara; Guerrero-Medina, Giovanna; Ortiz-Vega, Nicole; Feliú-Mójer, Mónica; Colón-Ramos, Daniel

    2015-01-01

    Although researchers have argued that textbooks should be customized to local cultures and experiences, they rarely are. Ciencia Puerto Rico, a non-profit group interested in promoting science literacy and education among Latino(a)s/Hispanics, identified a need to provide schools with culturally relevant materials. The result was the publication…

  3. Building Model NASA Satellites: Elementary Students Studying Science Using a NASA-Themed Transmedia Book Featuring Digital Fabrication Activities

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tillman, Daniel; An, Song; Boren, Rachel; Slykhuis, David

    2014-01-01

    This study assessed the impact of nine lessons incorporating a NASA-themed transmedia book featuring digital fabrication activities on 5th-grade students (n = 29) recognized as advanced in mathematics based on their academic record. Data collected included a pretest and posttest of science content questions taken from released Virginia Standards…

  4. Gender differences in an elementary school learning environment: A study on how girls learn science in collaborative learning groups

    Science.gov (United States)

    Greenspan, Yvette Frank

    Girls are marked by low self-confidence manifested through gender discrimination during the early years of socialization and culturalization (AAUW, 1998). The nature of gender bias affects all girls in their studies of science and mathematics, particularly in minority groups, during their school years. It has been found that girls generally do not aspire in either mathematical or science-oriented careers because of such issues as overt and subtle stereotyping, inadequate confidence in ability, and discouragement in scientific competence. Grounded on constructivism, a theoretical framework, this inquiry employs fourth generation evaluation, a twelve-step evaluative process (Guba & Lincoln, 1989). The focus is to discover through qualitative research how fifth grade girls learn science in a co-sexual collaborative learning group, as they engage in hands-on, minds-on experiments. The emphasis is centered on one Hispanic girl in an effort to understand her beliefs, attitudes, and behavior as she becomes a stakeholder with other members of her six person collaborative learning group. The intent is to determine if cultural and social factors impact the learning of scientific concepts based on observations from videotapes, interviews, and student opinion questionnaires. QSR NUD*IST 4, a computer software program is utilized to help categorize and index data. Among the findings, there is evidence that clearly indicates girls' attitudes toward science are altered as they interact with other girls and boys in a collaborative learning group. Observations also indicate that cultural and social factors affect girls' performance as they explore and discover scientific concepts with other girls and boys. Based upon what I have uncovered utilizing qualitative research and confirmed according to current literature, there seems to be an appreciable impact on the way girls appear to learn science. Rooted in the data, the results mirror the conclusions of previous studies, which

  5. A case study of an experienced teacher's beliefs and practice during implementation of an inquiry-based approach in her elementary science classroom

    Science.gov (United States)

    Martin, Anita Marie Benna

    The purpose of this study was to examine the relationship between one teacher's beliefs and her practices. This study examined this relationship during the implementation of reform by the teacher in the area of science as recommended by the National Science Education Standards (NRC, 1996). This study was a single case study of one experienced elementary teacher who was implementing the Science Writing Heuristic (SWH) approach in her science classroom. The study's focus was on the relationship between the teacher's beliefs and her practice during this innovation, as well as the factors that influenced that relationship. Data were collected from multiple sources such as routinely scheduled interviews, classroom observations, researcher's fieldnotes, teacher's written reflections, professional development liaison reflections, student responses, video-tape analysis, think-aloud protocol, audio-tapes of student discourse, metaphor analysis, and Reformed Teacher Observation Protocol (RTOP) scores. Data analysis was conducted using two different approaches: constant comparative method and RTOP scores. Results indicate that a central belief of this teacher was her beliefs about how students learn. This belief was entangled with other more peripheral beliefs such as beliefs about the focus of instruction and beliefs about student voice. As the teacher shifted her central belief from a traditional view of learning to one that is more closely aligned with a constructivist' view, these peripheral beliefs also shifted. This study also shows that the teacher's beliefs and her practice were consistent and entwined throughout the study. As her beliefs shifted, so did her practice and it supports Thompson's (1992) notion of a dialectic relationship between teacher beliefs and practice. Additionally, this study provides implications for teacher education and professional development. As teachers implement reform efforts related to inquiry in their science classrooms, professional

  6. Introducing Technology Education at the Elementary Level

    Science.gov (United States)

    McKnight, Sean

    2012-01-01

    Many school districts are seeing a need to introduce technology education to students at the elementary level. Pennsylvania's Penn Manor School District is one of them. Pennsylvania has updated science and technology standards for grades 3-8, and after several conversations the author had with elementary principals and the assistant superintendent…

  7. Using seismology to raise science awareness in kindergarten and elementary levels, with the help of high school students

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rocha, F. L.; Silveira, G. M.; Moreira, G.; Afonso, I. P.; Maciel, B. A. P. C.; Melo, M. O.; Neto, R. P.; Gonçalves, M.; Marques, G.; Hartmann, R. P.

    2014-12-01

    Teaching students, aged from 4 up to 18 years old, is a challenging task. It continuously implies new strategies and new subjects adapted to all of them. This is even more evident, when we have to teach natural-hazards scientific aspects and safe attitudes toward risk. We often see that most of the high-school students (16 -18 years old) are not motivated for extra-curricular activities implying science and/or behaviours changes. But, they have a very positive response when we give them some responsibility. On top of that, we also realised that young children are quite receptive to the involvement of older students in the school environment Taking this into consideration, our project use the k12 students to prepare scientific activities and subjects, based in questions, which they need to answer themselves. The students need to answer those questions and, only then, adapt and teach the right answers to the different school-levels. With this approach, we challenged the students to solve three questions: How to use a SEP seismometer at school, and its data? How to set up a shaking table? How to introduce waves and vibrations contents to all ages of students? During the project they developed many science skills, and worked in straight cooperation with teachers, the parents association and the seismology research group at Instituto Dom Luíz. As a result, it was possible to reach all school students with the help of the k-12 ones. This is an outcome of the project W-Shake, a Parents-in-Science Initiative to promote the study of seismology and related subjects. This project, supported by the Portuguese "Ciência Viva" program, results from a direct cooperation between the parents association, science school-teachers and the seismology research group at Instituto Dom Luíz.

  8. Elementary particles

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Prasad, R.

    1984-01-01

    Two previous monographs report on investigations into the extent to which a unified field theory can satisfactorily describe physical reality. The first, Unified field Theory, showed that the paths within a non-Riemannian space are governed by eigenvalue equations. The second, Fundamental Constants, show that the field tensors satisfy sets of differential equations with solutions which represent the evolution of the fields along the paths of the space. The results from the first two monographs are used in this one to make progress on the theory of elementary particles. The five chapters are as follows - Quantum mechanics, gravitation and electromagnetism are aspects of the Unified theory; the fields inside the particle; the quadratic and linear theories; the calculation of the eigenvalues and elementary particles as stable configurations of interacting fields. It is shown that it is possible to construct an internal structure theory for elementary particles. The theory lies within the framework of Einstein's programme-to identify physical reality with a specified geometrical structure. (U.K.)

  9. Can the implementation of aerospace science in elementary school help girls maintain their confidence and engagement in science as they transition to middle school?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Solberg, Margot

    2018-06-01

    There is a global crisis due to a lack of qualified applicants entering STEM careers, especially in science. Add the fact that women are greatly underrepresented in science, and the solution becomes obvious. Go to the source, and find out why girls as young as 12 years old are losing an interest in scientific endeavors that they once found to be captivating. This action research project sought to find out if the implementation of aerospace science, embedded both in the classroom and in an after school Space Club, could assist girls in maintaining their confidence and engagement in science overall as they transition to middle school. Furthermore, girls in fifth through seventh grade, who had previously been the teacher researcher's students, were included in the study in order to discover if their previous participation in a variety of authentic and ongoing aerospace activities had any impact upon their engagement in science as they entered the notable years of declined interest. The research took place at an international American school, Academia Cotopaxi, in Quito, Ecuador from September 2015 through April 2016. Data was collected through both qualitative and quantitative sources, and included attitude surveys, parent questionnaires, a writing prompt, photos, video, interviews and observations. Additionally, a control group was utilized in grades five to seven for purposes of comparison. Innovative activities included engaging and first-hand experiences with the Ecuadorian Civilian Space Agency (EXA), the National Aeronautics Space Administration (NASA), Space X and the Canadian Space Agency (CSA). Inquiry-based activities included, but were not limited to, experiences with: speaking live with both astronauts and cosmonauts on the International Space Station, robotics, rocketry, Skype chats with aerospace professionals, utilizing the Design Process, online resources and more. Findings suggested that embedding aerospace science in grade four, both during and after

  10. An exploratory examination of the relationships among emotional intelligence, elementary school science teacher self-efficacy, length of teaching experience, race/ethnicity, gender, and age

    Science.gov (United States)

    Okech, Allan P.

    The purpose of the study was to examine the relationships among emotional intelligence, teacher self-efficacy, length of teaching experience, and age in a sample of south Texas public school teachers. Additionally, the study examined differences in emotional intelligence between male teachers and female teachers, and among African American, Hispanics, and White teachers. Participants were 180 elementary science teachers from south Texas public schools. The sample was made up of 14 (7.8%) males and 166 (92.2%) females. Regarding race/ethnicity, the study sample consisted of 31 (17.2%) African Americans (3 males and 28 females), 49 (27.2) Hispanics (7 males and 42 females), 98 (54.4%) Whites (3 males and 95 females), and 2 (1.1%) "Other" (1 male and 1 female). Participants ranged in age from 23 years to 65 years. Five hypotheses were proposed and tested to address the relationships under investigation. The study employed a mixed methods---correlational and causal-comparative---research design approach. Three instruments, the Multifactor Emotional Intelligence Scale (Mayer, Caruso, & Salovey, 1999), the Science Teaching Efficacy Beliefs Instrument (Riggs & Enochs, 1990), and a demographics questionnaire were utilized to collect the data. An independent-measures t test, the Pearson r, and the one-way MANOVA were used to analyze the data. A Significant positive relationship was found between "emotional intelligence" and "teacher self-efficacy." Data analyses, however, failed to support hypothesized relationships between "emotional intelligence" and "length of teaching experience," and between "emotional intelligence" and "age". Additionally, statistical analyses of the data collected for this study supported predicted statistically significant differences in "emotional intelligence" between male and female teachers, and among the three race/ethnicity groupings. Based on these findings, recommendations for the application of the construct of "emotional intelligence" in

  11. Comparing Self-Regulatory and Early Academic Skills as Predictors of Later Math, Reading, and Science Elementary School Achievement

    Science.gov (United States)

    Murrah, William M., III

    The achievement score gaps between advantaged and disadvantaged children at school entry is a major problem in education today. Identifying the skills critical for school readiness is an important step in developing interventions aimed at addressing these score gaps. The purpose of this study is to compare a number of school readiness skills with an eye toward finding out which are the best predictors of later academic achievement in math, reading, and science. The predictors were early reading, math, general knowledge, socioemotional skills, and motor skills. Data were obtained from the Early Childhood Longitudinal Study of 1998 (NCES, 1998) database. While controlling for an extensive set of family characteristics, predictions were made across five years - from the end of kindergarten to the end of fifth grade. Consistent with current findings, reading and math skills predicted later achievement. Interestingly, general knowledge, attention, and fine motor skills also proved to be important predictors of later academic achievement, but socioemotional skills were not. The findings were interpreted from a neurobiological perspective involving the development of self-regulation. These school entry skills are used to predict later achievement in reading, math, and science. I argued that in addition to acquiring early academic knowledge, children need to regulate the use of this knowledge to meet academic goals.

  12. Traffic Light Detection at Night

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Jensen, Morten Bornø; Philipsen, Mark Philip; Bahnsen, Chris

    2015-01-01

    Traffic light recognition (TLR) is an integral part of any in- telligent vehicle, it must function both at day and at night. However, the majority of TLR research is focused on day-time scenarios. In this paper we will focus on detection of traffic lights at night and evalu- ate the performance...... of three detectors based on heuristic models and one learning-based detector. Evaluation is done on night-time data from the public LISA Traffic Light Dataset. The learning-based detector out- performs the model-based detectors in both precision and recall. The learning-based detector achieves an average...

  13. AHP 47: A NIGHT DATE

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Phun tshogs dbang rgyal ཕུན་ཚོགས་དབང་རྒྱལ།

    2017-04-01

    Full Text Available The author was born in 1993 in Ska chung (Gaqun Village, Nyin mtha' (Ningmute Township, Rma lho (Henan Mongolian Autonomous County, Rma lho (Huangnan Tibetan Autonomous Prefecture, Mtsho sngon (Qinghai Province, PR China. Night dating was popular for teenage boys some years ago. They rode horses and yaks when they went night dating. They generally rode yaks, because horses were important for their families and used for such important tasks as pursuing bandits and going to the county town for grain and supplies. An early experience with night dating is described.

  14. Setting the question for inquiry: The effects of whole class vs small group on student achievement in elementary science

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cavagnetto, Andy Roy

    This study was conducted to determine the effects of two different student-centered approaches to setting the question for inquiry. The first approach (whole class) consisted of students setting a single question for inquiry after which students worked in small groups during an investigation phase of the activity with all groups exploring the same question. The second approach (small group) consisted of each group of students setting a question resulting in numerous questions being explored per class. A mixed method quasi-experimental design was utilized. Two grade five teachers from a small rural school district in the Midwestern United States participated, each teaching two sections of science (approximately 25 students per section). Results indicate three major findings. Instructional approach (whole class vs. small group) did not effect student achievement in science or language arts. Observational data indicated the actions and skills teachers utilized to implement the approaches were similar. Specifically, the pedagogical skills of dialogical interaction (which was found to be influenced by teacher level of control of learning and teacher content knowledge) and effective rather than efficient use of time were identified as key factors in teachers' progression toward a student-centered, teacher-managed instructional approach. Unit exams along with qualitative and quantitative teacher observation data indicated that these factors do have an impact on student achievement. Specifically increased dialogical interaction in the forms of greater student voice, and increased cognitive demands placed on students by embedding and emphasizing science argument within the student inquiry corresponded to positive gains in student achievement. Additionally, teacher's perception of student abilities was also found to influence professional growth. Finally, allowing students to set the questions for inquiry and design the experiments impact the classroom environment as teacher

  15. The Nature of Elementary Science Teachers' Experiences with Synchronous Online, Asynchronous Online and Face-to-Face Coaching

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gilbert, Amanda M.

    This study investigated the nature of instructional coaching interactions in three formats: online synchronous, online asynchronous, and face-to-face. Knight's (2007) Seven Partnership Principles of Instructional Coaching were used as a framework to analyze and compare the coaching interactions between coach and teacher to determine whether online coaching may be a viable option to provide support for the teachers unprepared to teach the new science standards. Some previous research has suggested that online communication can result in deeper personal interactions (Walther, 1996), while other studies suggest that interactions are more natural and easier in formats that are more similar to face-to-face interactions (Kock, 2005). The findings of this study support the media naturalness theory (Kock, 2005) and suggest that collaboration may be especially difficult in asynchronous online communication. Although differences were noted in the actual interactions, teacher perception remained fairly consistently positive across the three formats. Research beyond this exploratory study is needed to make findings generalizable.

  16. STUDENT'S SCIENCE MISCONCEPTIONS CONCERNING THE STATE CHANGES OF WATER AND THEIR REMEDIATION USING THREE DIFFERENT LEARNING MODELS IN ELEMENTARY SCHOOL

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    M. Taufiq

    2012-01-01

    Full Text Available Secara umum, kesalahpahaman yang dialami oleh mahasiswa dapat menyebabkan kesulitan dalam penelitian, sementara anakanakmemiliki kesadaran mereka sendiri. Tingkat kesalahpahaman yang dialami oleh siswa juga tidak sama, dalam kasus inisesuatu mengalami kesalahpahaman pengalaman tingkat tinggi, menengah, dan rendah. Untuk alasan itu, siswa memerlukanmodel pembelajaran yang tepat untuk masing-masing tingkat kesalahpahaman yang dialami untuk membuat studi menjadibermakna. Dalam makalah ini, peneliti mengeksplorasi informasi tentang; (1 tingkat kesalahpahaman ilmu siswa tentangperubahan wujud dari air, dan (2 model pembelajaran yang paling efektif untuk mengatasi kesalahpahaman siswa mengenaiperubahan wujud air. Model pembelajaran tiga dalam penelitian ini adalah: siklus belajar, penyelidikan dipandu, dan model konseppemetaan. Metode yang diterapkan dalam penelitian ini adalah wawancara klinis dan pretest-posttest. Informasi yangdikumpulkan dianalisis secara kuantitatif dengan percobaan uji ANOVA dan keuntungan rata-rata normal dihitung untuk setiapkelompok percobaan. In general, misconceptions experienced by student could cause difficulties in study, meanwhile children have their own sense.Level of misconceptions experienced by student also unequal, in this case something experiences high level misconceptions,medium, and low. For that reason, student requires correct learning model for each level of misconception experienced to make thestudy become meaningful. In this paper, the researcher explored information about; (1 the level of science misconceptions of thestudent concerning the state changes of water, and (2 the most effective learning model to remedy student's misconceptionsconcerning the state changes of water. The three learning models in this research are: learning cycle, guided inquiry, and conceptmapping model. The method applied in this research is the clinical interview and pretest-posttest. The information collected wasanalyzed in

  17. Elementary particles. 2

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Ranft, G.; Ranft, J.

    1977-01-01

    In this part the subject is covered under the following headings, methods for producing high-energy particles; interaction of high-energy particles with matter; methods for the detection of high-energy particles; symmetry properties and conservation laws; quantum number and selection rules; theorem of scattering behaviour at asymptotically high energies; statistical methods in elementary particle physics; interaction of high-energy particles with nuclei; relations of high-energy physics to other branches of science and its response to engineering. Intended as information on high-energy physics for graduate students and research workers familiar with the fundamentals of classical and quantum physics

  18. Elementary vectors

    CERN Document Server

    Wolstenholme, E Œ

    1978-01-01

    Elementary Vectors, Third Edition serves as an introductory course in vector analysis and is intended to present the theoretical and application aspects of vectors. The book covers topics that rigorously explain and provide definitions, principles, equations, and methods in vector analysis. Applications of vector methods to simple kinematical and dynamical problems; central forces and orbits; and solutions to geometrical problems are discussed as well. This edition of the text also provides an appendix, intended for students, which the author hopes to bridge the gap between theory and appl

  19. Elementary analysis

    CERN Document Server

    Snell, K S; Langford, W J; Maxwell, E A

    1966-01-01

    Elementary Analysis, Volume 2 introduces several of the ideas of modern mathematics in a casual manner and provides the practical experience in algebraic and analytic operations that lays a sound foundation of basic skills. This book focuses on the nature of number, algebraic and logical structure, groups, rings, fields, vector spaces, matrices, sequences, limits, functions and inverse functions, complex numbers, and probability. The logical structure of analysis given through the treatment of differentiation and integration, with applications to the trigonometric and logarithmic functions, is

  20. The development and validation of a three-tier diagnostic test measuring pre-service elementary education and secondary science teachers' understanding of the water cycle

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schaffer, Dannah Lynn

    The main goal of this research study was to develop and validate a three-tier diagnostic test to determine pre-service teachers' (PSTs) conceptual knowledge of the water cycle. For a three-tier diagnostic test, the first tier assesses content knowledge; in the second tier, a reason is selected for the content answer; and the third tier allows test-takers to select how confident they are in their answers for the first two tiers. The second goal of this study was to diagnose any alternative conceptions PSTs might have about the water cycle. The Water Cycle Diagnostic Test (WCDT) was developed using the theoretical framework by Treagust (1986, 1988, and 1995), and in similar studies that developed diagnostic tests (e.g., Calean & Subramaniam, 2010a; Odom & Barrow, 2007; Pesman & Eryilmaz, 2010). The final instrument consisted of 15 items along with a demographic survey that examined PSTs' weather-related experiences that may or may not have affected the PSTs' understanding of the water cycle. The WCDT was administered to 77 PSTs enrolled in science methods courses during the fall of 2012. Among the 77 participants, 37 of the PSTs were enrolled in elementary education (EPST) and 40 in secondary science (SPST). Using exploratory factor analysis, five categories were factored out for the WCDT: Phase Change of Water; Condensation and Storage; Clouds; Global Climate Change; and Movement through the Water Cycle. Analysis of the PSTs' responses demonstrated acceptable reliability (alpha = 0.62) for the instrument, and acceptable difficulty indices and discrimination indices for 12 of the items. Analysis indicated that the majority of the PSTs had a limited understanding of the water cycle. Of the PSTs sampled, SPSTs were significantly more confident in their answers' on the WCDT than the EPSTs. Completion of an undergraduate atmospheric science and/or meteorology course, as well as a higher interest in listening and/or viewing weather-related programs, resulted in PSTs

  1. An approach to improving science knowledge about energy balance and nutrition among elementary- and middle-school students.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Moreno, Nancy P; Denk, James P; Roberts, J Kyle; Tharp, Barbara Z; Bost, Michelle; Thomson, William A

    2004-01-01

    Unhealthy diets, lack of fitness, and obesity are serious problems in the United States. The Centers for Disease Control, Surgeon General, and Department of Health and Human Services are calling for action to address these problems. Scientists and educators at Baylor College of Medicine and the National Space Biomedical Research Institute teamed to produce an instructional unit, "Food and Fitness," and evaluated it with students in grades 3-7 in Houston, Texas. A field-test group (447 students) completed all unit activities under the guidance of their teachers. This group and a comparison group (343 students) completed pre and postassessments measuring knowledge of concepts covered in the unit. Outcomes indicate that the unit significantly increased students' knowledge and awareness of science concepts related to energy in living systems, metabolism, nutrients, and diet. Pre-assessment results suggest that most students understand concepts related to calories in food, exercise and energy use, and matching food intake to energy use. Students' prior knowledge was found to be much lower on topics related to healthy portion sizes, foods that supply the most energy, essential nutrients, what "diet" actually means, and the relationship between body size and basal metabolic rate.

  2. A new protocol in La Spezia for elementary and secondary school students for monitoring Perception towards Science and Performance in Science Classrooms

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stroobant, Mascha; Mori, Anna; Merlino, Silvia; Bianucci, Marco; Delfanti, Roberta; Furia, Stefania; Carmisciano, Cosmo; Locritani, Marina; Muccini, Filippo; La Tassa, Hebert; Talamoni, Roberta; Nacini, Francesca; Benedetti, Alessandro; Nardi, Elisabetta; Parodi, Alice; Giacomazzi, Fabio; Mioni, Erika; Associazione Festival della Scienza

    2014-05-01

    Technological and scientific research in La Spezia (an Italian town with a population of 95.378) is, unfortunately, unknown to most people and often the existence of excellent research Centres (such as CNR-ISMAR, CNR-IENI, ENEA-UTMAR, INGV, CMRE, CSSN and University) is barely known, even just outside the La Spezia area. The current economic crisis has played a major role in determining the decline in maritime business (affecting all companies in the area and particularly SMEs). Therefore it is important to re-establish the relationship with the traditional maritime culture of the city. This objective can be achieved by enhancing research visibility (national and european) by dissemination of the activities carried out by research institutions, university and local enterprises. La Spezia has a long maritime tradition and it is vital for these customs to be kept alive and cultivated within the community. The cultural scene is positive: in fact, in the last decade the general public's perception on the importance of science in the context of human activities has been considerably strengthened. In La Spezia, especially since 2007, an increasing number of disseminating activities (carried out by CNR-ISMAR, CNR-IENI, ENEA-UTMAR, INGV, CMRE, CSSN, LABTER - the La Spezia association for environmental education- ASSOCIAZIONE FESTIVAL DELLA SCIENZA - the association that organizes the Genoa Science Festival- Genoa University and ISA 2 - "2 GIUGNO" - a local primary and secondary public school that has started a pilot project for marine biology), has revealed an educational and cultural path which now requires a monitoring protocol to be carried out for at least two years. In this paper we will present a new test that will be administered to the entire student population (aged 6 to 18 years) with the aim to fully understand the effectiveness of initiatives for popularizing science and the impact that they are having on new generations (professional choices, scientific

  3. Starting a learning progression for agricultural literacy: A qualitative study of urban elementary student understandings of agricultural and science education benchmarks

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hess, Alexander Jay

    Science and agriculture professional organizations have argued for agricultural literacy as a goal for K-12 public education. Due to the complexity of our modern agri-food system, with social, economic, and environmental concerns embedded, an agriculturally literate society is needed for informed decision making, democratic participation, and system reform. While grade-span specific benchmarks for gauging agri-food system literacy have been developed, little attention has been paid to existing ideas individuals hold about the agri-food system, how these existing ideas relate to benchmarks, how experience shapes such ideas, or how ideas change overtime. Developing a body of knowledge on students' agri-food system understandings as they develop across K-12 grades can ground efforts seeking to promote a learning progression toward agricultural literacy. This study compares existing perceptions held by 18 upper elementary students from a large urban center in California to agri-food system literacy benchmarks and examines the perceptions against student background and experiences. Data were collected via semi-structured interviews and analyzed using the constant comparative method. Constructivist theoretical perspectives framed the study. No student had ever grown their own food, raised a plant, or cared for an animal. Participation in school fieldtrips to farms or visits to a relative's garden were agricultural experiences most frequently mentioned. Students were able to identify common food items, but could not elaborate on their origins, especially those that were highly processed. Students' understanding of post-production activities (i.e. food processing, manufacturing, or food marketing) was not apparent. Students' understanding of farms reflected a 1900's subsistence farming operation commonly found in a literature written for the primary grades. Students were unaware that plants and animals were selected for production based on desired genetic traits. Obtaining

  4. Night airglow in RGB mode

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mikhalev А.V.

    2016-09-01

    Full Text Available To study dynamics of the upper atmosphere, we consider results of the night sky photometry, using a color CCD camera and taking into account the night airglow and features of its spectral composition. We use night airglow observations for 2010–2015, which have been obtained at the ISTP SB RAS Geophysical Observatory (52° N, 103° E by the camera with KODAK KAI-11002 CCD sensor. We estimate average brightness of the night sky in R, G, B channels of the color camera for eastern Siberia with typical values ranging from ~0.008 to 0.01 erg·cm–2·s–1. Besides, we determine seasonal variations in the night sky luminosities in R, G, B channels of the color camera. In these channels, luminosities decrease in spring, increase in autumn, and have a pronounced summer maximum, which can be explained by scattered light and is associated with the location of the Geophysical Observatory. We consider geophysical phenomena with their optical effects in R, G, B channels of the color camera. For some geophysical phenomena (geomagnetic storms, sudden stratospheric warmings, we demonstrate the possibility of quantitative relationship between enhanced signals in R and G channels and increases in intensities of discrete 557.7 and 630 nm emissions, which are predominant in the airglow spectrum

  5. CMS Virtual Visits @ European Researchers Night, 30 September 2016

    CERN Multimedia

    Lapka, Marzena

    2016-01-01

    CMS hosted four virtual visits during European Researchers Night. Audience from Greece (NCRS Demokritos, Athens), Poland (University of Science and Technology in Krakow), Italy (Psiquadro in Perugia & INFN in Pisa) and Portugal (Planetarium Calouste Gulbenkian, organised by LIP) had an occasion to converse with CMS researchers and "virtually" visit CMS Control Room and underground facilities.

  6. Can Elementary Students Gather Information from Concept Maps?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Marulcu, Ismail; Karakuyu, Yunus; Dogan, Mevlut

    2013-01-01

    In this study, we investigated whether concept maps were used as often and as effectively in elementary science and technology classrooms as recommended by the National Ministry of Education (MEB) in the new curricula in Turkey. In the new elementary science and technology curricula, the MEB provides a general concept map for each unit. We used…

  7. Science Outreach for the Thousands: Coe College's Playground of Science

    Science.gov (United States)

    Watson, D. E.; Franke, M.; Affatigato, M.; Feller, S.

    2011-12-01

    Coe College is a private liberal arts college nestled in the northeast quadrant of Cedar Rapids, IA. Coe takes pride in the outreach it does in the local community. The sciences at Coe find enjoyment in educating the children and families of this community through a diverse set of venues; from performing science demonstrations for children at Cedar Rapids' Fourth of July Freedom Festival to hosting summer forums and talks to invigorate the minds of its more mature audiences. Among these events, the signature event of the year is the Coe Playground of Science. On the last Thursday of October, before Halloween, the science departments at Coe invite nearly two thousand children from pre elementary to high school ages, along with their parents to participate in a night filled with science demos, haunted halls, and trick-or-treating for more than just candy. The demonstrations are performed by professors and students alike from a raft of cooperative departments including physics, chemistry, biology, math, computer science, nursing, ROTC, and psychology. This event greatly strengthens the relationships between institution members and community members. The sciences at Coe understand the importance of imparting the thrill and hunger for exploration and discovery into the future generations. More importantly they recognize that this cannot start and end at the collegiate level, but the American public must be reached at younger ages and continue to be encouraged beyond the college experience. The Playground of Science unites these two groups under the common goal of elevating scientific interest in the American people.

  8. Teaching Planetary Sciences in Bilingual Classrooms

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lebofsky, L. A.; Lebofsky, N. R.

    1993-05-01

    Planetary sciences can be used to introduce students to the natural world which is a part of their lives. Even children in an urban environment are aware of such phenomena as day and night, shadows, and the seasons. It is a science that transcends cultures, has been prominent in the news in recent years, and can generate excitement in young minds as no other science can. It also provides a useful tool for understanding other sciences and mathematics, and for developing problem solving skills which are important in our technological world. However, only 15 percent of elementary school teachers feel very well qualified to teach earth/space science, while better than 80% feel well qualified to teach reading; many teachers avoid teaching science; very little time is actually spent teaching science in the elementary school: 19 minutes per day in K--3 and 38 minutes per day in 4--6. While very little science is taught in elementary and middle school, earth/space science is taught at the elementary level in less than half of the states. Therefore in order to teach earth/space science to our youth, we must empower our teachers, making them familiar and comfortable with existing materials. Tucson has another, but not unique, problem. The largest public school district, the Tucson Unified School District (TUSD), provides a neighborhood school system enhanced with magnet, bilingual and special needs schools for a school population of 57,000 students that is 4.1% Native American, 6.0% Black, and 36.0% Hispanic (1991). This makes TUSD and the other school districts in and around Tucson ideal for a program that reaches students of diverse ethnic backgrounds. However, few space sciences materials exist in Spanish; most materials could not be used effectively in the classroom. To address this issue, we have translated NASA materials into Spanish and are conducting a series of workshops for bilingual classroom teachers. We will discuss in detail our bilingual classroom workshops

  9. As formas elementares da vida religiosa e as ciências sociais contemporâneas The elementary forms of the religious life and the contemporary social sciences

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Renato Ortiz

    2012-01-01

    Full Text Available A partir da questão "como abordar a problemática das ciências sociais contemporâneas tendo como referência a obra específica de um autor?", o artigo examina As formas elementares da vida religiosa de Émile Durkheim. Recusa a alternativa de recuperar sua influência junto a uma série de intelectuais relevantes na área e segue outra direção - a saber, a de indagar o que o leitor contemporâneo pode retirar desse texto - na qual privilegia um olhar retrospectivo imerso no presente, pois, em relação ao momento da escritura daquela obra, a compreensão do funcionamento das sociedades humanas avançou. Mostra que a discussão sobre o sagrado não se confina à temática da religião, ao lembrar que, na conclusão do livro sob exame, Durkheim faz uma série de digressões acerca da problemática do simbólico. Esses símbolos, indispensáveis à criação e recriação das sociedades, são retomados no desenvolvimento deste texto.Beginning from the question "how to address the problems of the contemporary social sciences taking a specific work of an author as reference?", this article examines The elementary forms of religious life by Émile Durkheim. It refuses the alternative of regain his influence on relevant intellectuals in the area, and goes in another direction - namely, to inquire what the contemporary reader can obtain from that work - in which a retrospective look, immersed in the present, is privileged, because, in relation to the time in which this book was written, progressed the comprehension of how work the human societies. It shows that the discussion about the sacred is not confined to the topic of religion, to remember that, at the conclusion of the book under review, Durkheim makes a series of digressions about the problematic of symbolic. These symbols, which are necessary for the social creation and recreation, are incorporated on the development of this article.

  10. Progress in color night vision

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Toet, A.; Hogervorst, M.A.

    2012-01-01

    We present an overview of our recent progress and the current state-of-the-art techniques of color image fusion for night vision applications. Inspired by previously developed color opponent fusing schemes, we initially developed a simple pixel-based false color-mapping scheme that yielded fused

  11. Volunteers for Researchers’ Night wanted

    CERN Multimedia

    Katarina Anthony

    2015-01-01

    Every year, on the last Friday of September, the European Researchers’ Night (see here) takes place in about 300 cities all over Europe - promoting research in engaging and fun ways for the general public. This year, CERN will be participating once again, hosting dozens of events across the Balexert shopping centre – and we’ll need YOUR help to make the celebration a success.   From film screenings and celebrity Q&A sessions to “Ask a Researcher” and build-your-own LEGO LHC events, this year’s Researchers’ Night is going to be jam-packed! The fun will kick off prior to the night itself with a mock-up of the LHC tunnel installed in the central court of the Balexert shopping centre, 8-12 September*. CERN people will be on hand to speak to shoppers about the LHC, and to encourage them to participate in Researchers’ Night! The CERN organisers are recruiting volunteers and support staff for Researchers’ ...

  12. Balancing Teacher and Student Roles in Elementary Classrooms: Preservice Elementary Teachers' Learning about the Inquiry Continuum

    Science.gov (United States)

    Biggers, Mandy; Forbes, Cory T.

    2012-01-01

    Using the National Research Council's inquiry continuum framework, we use a multiple-case study research design to investigate the teacher- and student-directedness of elementary preservice teachers' planned and enacted science lessons and their pedagogical reasoning about science instruction during a semester-long science methods course. Our…

  13. Fellowship | Indian Academy of Sciences

    Indian Academy of Sciences (India)

    Address: Department of Electrical Engineering, Indian Institute of Technology, Powai, Mumbai ..... Specialization: Elementary Particle Physics ..... Sciences, National Institute of Science Education & Research, Jatni, Khordha 752 050, Orissa

  14. Community-Based Service-Learning as a Source of Personal Self-Efficacy: Preparing Preservice Elementary Teachers to Teach Science for Diversity

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cone, Neporcha

    2009-01-01

    Bandura (1997) contends that when compared to other sources of efficacy, mastery experiences, when presented appropriately, have the most powerful influence on self-efficacy. The purpose of this study was to investigate the effects of community-based service learning (CBSL) experiences on preservice elementary teachers' personal self-efficacy…

  15. Parent Involvement and Science Achievement during Students' Transition Years from Elementary School to Middle School: A Cross-Lagged Panel Analysis Using ECLS-K

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sun, Letao

    2015-01-01

    Transitioning from elementary school to middle school can be a difficult time for many adolescents. It is a period often correlated with a decline in students' academic achievement, perceptions of performance, potential, and value in schooling. Research has shown evidence that parents' involvement in their children's education significantly…

  16. Which Elementary School Subjects Are the Most Likeable, Most Important, and the Easiest? Why?: A Study of Science and Technology, Mathematics, Social Studies, and Turkish

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dündar, Sahin; Güvendir, Meltem Acar; Kocabiyik, Oya Onat; Papatga, Erdal

    2014-01-01

    The present study was conducted first to identify which school subjects were most liked, most important, and most difficult, as well as least liked, least important and easiest as perceived by elementary school students and second to explore the reasons why students most/least liked, considered as most/least important, and considered as most…

  17. Transforming a Traditional Inquiry-Based Science Unit into a STEM Unit for Elementary Pre-Service Teachers: A View from the Trenches

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schmidt, Matthew; Fulton, Lori

    2016-01-01

    The need to prepare students with twenty-first-century skills through STEM-related teaching is strong, especially at the elementary level. However, most teacher education preparation programs do not focus on STEM education. In an attempt to provide an exemplary model of a STEM unit, we used a rapid prototyping approach to transform an…

  18. Global Night-Time Lights for Observing Human Activity

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hipskind, Stephen R.; Elvidge, Chris; Gurney, K.; Imhoff, Mark; Bounoua, Lahouari; Sheffner, Edwin; Nemani, Ramakrishna R.; Pettit, Donald R.; Fischer, Marc

    2011-01-01

    We present a concept for a small satellite mission to make systematic, global observations of night-time lights with spatial resolution suitable for discerning the extent, type and density of human settlements. The observations will also allow better understanding of fine scale fossil fuel CO2 emission distribution. The NASA Earth Science Decadal Survey recommends more focus on direct observations of human influence on the Earth system. The most dramatic and compelling observations of human presence on the Earth are the night light observations taken by the Defence Meteorological System Program (DMSP) Operational Linescan System (OLS). Beyond delineating the footprint of human presence, night light data, when assembled and evaluated with complementary data sets, can determine the fine scale spatial distribution of global fossil fuel CO2 emissions. Understanding fossil fuel carbon emissions is critical to understanding the entire carbon cycle, and especially the carbon exchange between terrestrial and oceanic systems.

  19. Seeing Stars: A GLOBE at Night Campaign Update

    Science.gov (United States)

    Walker, Constance E.; Pompea, S. M.; Sparks, R. T.; Newhouse, M.

    2012-01-01

    The emphasis in the international citizen-science, star-hunting campaign, GLOBE at Night, is in bringing awareness to the public on issues of light pollution. Light pollution threatens not only observatory sites and our "right to starlight", but can affect energy consumption, wildlife and health. GLOBE at Night has successfully reached a few 100,000 citizen-scientists. What has done in the last year to contribute to its success? • To promote the campaign via popular social media, GLOBE at Night created Facebook and Twitter pages. • Videos have been created for 4 out of 8 Dark Skies Rangers activities. • Sky brightness measurements can be submitted in real time with smart phones or tablets using the new Web application at www.globeatnight.org/webapp/. The location, date and time register automatically. • As a proto-type, an adopt-a-street program had people in Tucson take measurements every mile for the length of the street. Grid measurements canvassed the town, allowing for comparisons of light levels over time. • The increase to 2 campaigns in 2011 re-enforces these studies. In 2012, the campaign will be offered 4 times for 10 days a month: January 14-23, February 12-21, March 13-22 and April 11-20. • A new Web application (www.globeatnight.org/mapapp/) allows for mapping GLOBE at Night data points within a specified distance around a city or area of choice. The resulting maps are bookmarkable and shareable. • NOAO and Arizona Game and Fish Department started a project with GLOBE at Night data and bat telemetry to examine a dark skies corridor in Tucson where endangered bats fly. While providing these updates to the GLOBE at Night program, the presentation will highlight the education and outreach value of the program's resources and outcomes, lessons learned, successes and pitfalls in communicating awareness with the public and attracting young people to study science.

  20. Hot Flashes amd Night Sweats (PDQ)

    Science.gov (United States)

    ... Professionals Questions to Ask about Your Treatment Research Hot Flashes and Night Sweats (PDQ®)–Patient Version Overview ... quality of life in many patients with cancer. Hot flashes and night sweats may be side effects ...