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Eric.ed.gov – Planning Science Instruction for Critical Thinking: Two Urban Elementary Teachers’ Responses to a State Science Assessment

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Science education reform standards have shifted focus from exploration and experimentation to evidence-based explanation and argumentation to prepare students with knowledge for a changing workforce and critical thinking skills to evaluate issues requiring increasing scientific literacy. However, in urban schools serving poor, diverse populations, where the priority is on students’ assessment results in reading and math, students may not receive reform-based science. The rationale for this qualitative study was to examine how two elementary teachers from high-poverty urban schools planned for reform-based science in response to a quality state science assessment in conjunction with their training and resources. Their state assessment included an inquiry task requiring students to construct responses to questions based on their investigation data. From evaluating evidence using Zembal-Saul’s continuum for teaching science as argument, the findings indicated that both teachers adopted an investigation-based and evidence-based approach to science teaching to prepare students for the inquiry task. However, one teacher provided argument-based science teaching from her explicit training in that approach. The results suggested that the teachers’ training and resources informed their interpretation of the focus areas on the science assessment inquiry task and influenced the extent to which they offered students an equitable opportunity to develop higher-order thinking from reform-based science.

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Troels Gannerup Christensen

Jeg er ansat som adjunkt hos Læreruddannelsen i Jelling, hvor jeg underviser i matematik, specialiseringsmodulet teknologiforståelse, praktik m.m. Jeg har tidligere været ansat som pædagogisk konsulent i matematik og tysk hos UCL ved Center for Undervisningsmidler (CFU) i Vejle og lærer i udskolingen (7.-9. klasse) på Lyshøjskolen i Kolding. Jeg er ejer af og driver bl.a. hjemmesiderne www.lærklokken.dk og www.iundervisning.dk, ggbkursus.dk og er tidligere fagredaktør på matematik på emu.dk. Jeg går ind for, at læring skal være let tilgængelig og i størst mulig omfang gratis at benytte.

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