Trade books are often used to support science instruction, and are an effective way to connect ideas about how science works to classroom science experiences. In this workshop, we will share a rubric for evaluating trade books for science read-alouds and discuss how the tool can be used to inform instruction (e.g., developing discussion questions). The rubric focuses on four concepts related to humanizing science, and aligned with views of nature of science in the Next Generation Science Standards: Science is done by diverse people, Scientists interpret empirical evidence to support their claims, Scientists use a variety of methods, and Scientists are creative at all stages of their investigations. These four concepts support students’ understanding of how science works, laying the foundation for being an effective consumer of science. Additionally, these four concepts present a more accurate representation of scientists, in contrast with many long-standing stereotypes about scientists. Attendees will have the opportunity to use the rubric to analyze elementary-level science trade books and develop a plan for implementing the read-alouds in class. We will conclude by examining how teachers can layer selected trade books effectively into their existing science curriculum.
Attendees will learn why representing science as a human activity is important for students’ understanding of how science works, and will learn how to select and plan for read-alouds of books that humanize science into their existing science curriculum.
Jeanne Brunner (University of Massachusetts Amherst: Amherst, MA), Kathleen Mahoney (Doctoral Student)