If you’re an elementary school teacher who teaches grades K-5, the authors and editors of Science for the Next Generation: Preparing for the New Standards invite you to use the book as a resource to become teacher-leaders in the school science reform movement that is being catalyzed by the Next Generation Science Standards.
As elementary school teachers, you have the challenge of helping parents and society launch our children into a future that both requires and provides opportunities for lifelong learning. Today, our knowledge-based, global economy demands a future-focused, interactive education that reconceives the teacher as a catalyst for learner-active, minds-on construction of understanding. Rather than merely asking learners to reproduce past answers and solutions, the 21st-century educator must inspire learners to inquire and innovate.
William Banko, Marshall Grant, Michael Jabot, Alan McCormack, and Thomas O’Brien encourage you to embrace the challenge put forth in A Framework for K-12 Science Education, the Next Generation Science Standards (NGSS). That challenge is to be key contributors to an educational revolution. This revolution arises from ongoing and compelling research on how children and adults learn. The old models of teaching as simply telling and learning as passive sit-and-get listening will not meet the needs of tomorrow’s citizens.
Intended to be used in whatever order works best for you, the chapters in the book are organized around specific concepts.
Section I: Science: A Human Adventure
1. Teaching Science in Elementary School: Turning Today’s Children into Tomorrow’s Leaders
2. What is Science?
Section II: A Framework for K-12 Science Education
1. Science and the Educated Person
2. High Expectations for all: From the Common Core State Standards to the Next Generation Science Standards
3. From Framework to Next Generation Science Standards
Section III: Using the Framework and NGSS to Redesign Science Lessons
1. Science at the Center
2. 5E(z) Guidelines for Designing Research-Informed Science Lessons Sequences
Section IV: The Next Generation Science Standards in the Classroom: Sample 5E Mini-Units for Grades K-5
A. What’s All the Noise About?
B. The Science of Sound
Introduction: The Importance of Teaching Science in Elementary School
C. Zoogle Zoology
D. Animal Behavior in Groups
E. Demystifying Decomposers
Earth and Space Sciences
Introduction: Understanding Our Planet
F. Water Use and Mis-Use
G. Metric Measurement, Models, and Moon Matters
Section V: The New Science of Learning
1. Illuminating Minds
2. How We Model the Complexities of the World: Learning and Memory, Systems and Functions
Section VI: The New Science of Learning in the Classroom
1. Science is Fun
2. What Teachers Do to Engage Their Students in Learning
Section VII: Literacy and Science
1. The Importance of Science in Elementary School
2. Science? Literacy? Synergy!
3. Moving Forward: Science is Elementary!
This book is also available as an e-book.