Tag Archives: classroom strategies

What is “rigor”?

At the end of the year, my principal mentioned—again—that he wanted Honors Biology to be the “hardest” ninth grade course. I have tried explaining and showing that my Honors students are having different, more thought-provoking assignments, in addition to going into more depth than my general Biology classes. I think he equates rigor with students [...]

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Five Ways to Spend 15 Minutes with The Science Teacher

Americans read more words each day than ever before, but in fewer consecutive minutes. As much as we would love to spend hours reading the award-winning NSTA journal The Science Teacher from cover to cover, it does not always work out that way. Instead, focus on the information most valuable to you. Here are five [...]

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Organizing students for learning

I’m thinking ahead to how I will organize my classroom next year. Could you share some thoughts or resources? For example, should I let students choose where they sit each day or have a seating chart? Should I keep the desks separate or arrange them in groups? As a beginning teacher I want to do [...]

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Learning by thinking

At a professional development workshop several years ago, I heard a teacher say “I do lots of activities. My students are so busy, they don’t have time to think!” Her statement has haunted me to this day. I wondered what students learned by following someone else’s busy, fast-paced agenda of activities. It sounded exhausting, for [...]

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NSTA’s K-College Science Education Journals: April/May 2014 Issues Online

Science for All is the theme of our high school journal this month, but all four of NSTA’s grade-level journals are full of the types of ideas and lessons that promote a quality science education for all. This month’s K–College journals from the National Science Teachers Association have a wealth of articles on how to [...]

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Displaying Student Work

I inherited a classroom-lab from a retired teacher, and I want to replace some of the generic posters with displays of student work. One of my colleagues says this is not a good idea. She didn’t explain her reasons, but now I’m not sure what to do. —Therese, Charlotte, North Carolina I’ve worked on statewide [...]

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Earth Day

“Think globally, act locally” is a phrase we hear, and for younger students, thinking locally is important, too. Earth Day is celebrated on April 22, but the activities and investigations described in this month’s featured articles go beyond a single day and encourage students and teachers to consider what happens in their own lives and [...]

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New teacher “nightmare”

I am looking forward to my first teaching job, but I’m concerned about how parents will react to my being a “newbie” in the science department. Will this be an issue? What can I do to start off the year on a positive note? My nightmare is that all of the parents will request their [...]

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Using new technologies

Watching children and teenagers use computers, tablets, and smartphones, it’s easy to assume that these digital natives are very familiar with all of the new technologies. I’ve found that while they know what relates to their interests, many students are unaware of the full range of capabilities of their technology as learning tools. As the [...]

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It’s Debatable! Using Socioscientific Issues to Develop Scientific Literacy

“Should schools charge more money for ‘unhealthy’ foods?” “Should animals perform in circuses?” Should rare Earth elements be mined in the United States?” “Should prescription drugs be advertised directly to consumers?” In It’s Debatable! Using Socioscientific Issues to Develop Scientific Literacy, authors Dana L. Zeidler and Sami Kahn present a persuasive case for connecting science [...]

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