Preparation for the future….

“Ways you promote college preparedness and career readiness skills in your science classroom.” is the topic for this blog….while we always have those items that we “must” teach in the classroom which are based on curricular decisions or standards, there are always those things that are among the “hidden curriculum” that make their way into the classroom as well.  Admit it, we ALL have that one area that we love to include when possible – whether it be the history and nature of science and particular stories associated with scientists or how the topic impacts society today or even a favorite read that can be integrated into science.  These are often the parts that make science real to students….

One of the additional aspects of teaching today often involves answering the time honored question posed by students “but why do we need to know this?”  While not every aspect of science may seem relevant to students and their future pursuits, the strategies and skills that they employ in DOING the science are applicable to their future. 

The MetLife Survey of the American Teacher: Preparing Students for College and Careers identifies several cross curricular skills that have a natural home in the sciences.

  • Critical-Thinking Skills
  • Ability to Write Clearly and Persuasively
  • Ability to Work Independently
  • Ability to Work in Teams
  • Knowledge of Other Nations, Cultures, and International Issues
  • Knowledge and Ability in Higher-Level Science
  • Knowledge and Ability in Higher-Level Mathematics

One of my favorite “additional” parts of the curriculum has always been to try and incorporate writing -whether it be informative or persuasive.  While teaching high school earth and space science during my career, I would often incorporate writing assignments into my course work.  Examples of assignments would include:  Creating a field observation notebook and incorporating information similar to researchers; being creative in their writing by creating an obituary to describe the properties of a particular mineral; or being shown excerpts of video clips and allowing the students to explain their understanding as it connects to the content in class. Regardless of the product that the student produced, I attempted to show them that writing served a different purpose in science class –that of clearly and accurately communicating information to others. –>which is exactly the skill that is needed whether the student enters the work force or continues on their educational journey to college….

So how do you incorporate these skills into your classroom???

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One Comment

  1. Maria
    Posted August 24, 2011 at 11:13 am | Permalink

    This was a great write-up about a critical topic. There are so many careers and options for students that complete science degrees in college and having them feel prepared and eager for the challenge is important. Thanks to all the hardworking teachers that make this a priority every day!!

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