Next Generation Science Standards


Author Post
Annette Ontiveros Annette Ontiveros 360 Points

How can we better have students interact in the science classroom?

Matt Bobrowsky Matt Bobrowsky 6410 Points

Annette, I'll make two points that are relevant to your question: (1) To keep students engaged in learning and excited about science, we should present science not as facts to be memorized but as a process of exploration and discovery. (2) There is now a substantial body of research on how children learn and how they learn science best. The most positive outcomes occur when inquiry-based pedagogical methods are used in the classroom. I'm sure others will suggest various resources for this. I am a strong proponent of the Phenomenon-Based Learning (PBL) approach, which is ideal for eliciting the kind of creative curiosity that makes students want to learn. It builds knowledge of, and interest in, science as a result of observations of real-world phenomena, or perhaps some interesting toys, gadgets, et cetera. The idea is to teach broader concepts and useful thinking and performance skills rather than asking students to simply memorize facts. (Memorizing facts is not science.) What happens is, students, working in groups, will investigate an interesting phenomenon, discuss it with each other, and, motivated by their own curiosity, explore and discover how it works and what sorts of science are involved. So the approach to learning is based on reasoning, curiosity, and creativity.

Katelyn Fabian Katelyn Fabian 465 Points

Increasing interaction in the classroom depends on building motivation and curiosity. Build your students' self-esteem by making them feel like real scientists. Have students gather and analyze real data. When students use real data, they have more incentive to understand what it means. Students explore the natural and physical world through science. We as teachers need to provide feedback to our students to allow them to explore learning and increase engagement. Choice is also another important factor to consider when we want to keep our students engaged during science and in general. Science allows us to tailor and differentiate the lesson according to our student's interests and learning styles.

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