369-398 Chapter 10 Facilitating Learning in the Science Classroom
370 How to Read This Chapter • This chapter focuses on the role of the teacher in facilitating learning in the science classroom. You will find four aspects of facilitation and management are presented in the chapter, and you can explore them in any order. These aspects include the facilitative role of the teacher, getting off to good start at the beginning of the year, managing science materials and facilities, and safety in the classroom. One of the key ideas of this chapter is the concept of leadership in the social process of the classroom. To aid in the development of leadership abilities, several inquiry activities have been designed to have you observe and interview teachers and colleague (The Effective Leader Project), establish a classroom management plan, plan classroom activities for an extended period of time, prepare an equipment order, and design a hands-on science tool kit.
370 Invitations to Inquiry • What are effective management behaviors? • What are some effective methods of facilitating laboratory and small group work? • How can teachers facilitate high-level thinking tasks? • What are effective management procedures for the beginning of the school year? • What are the elements of an effective classroom plan? • What principles should guide the management of science materials and facilities? • What considerations should be made to ensure a safe classroom-learning environment? • What do teachers need to know about handling and using living things in the classroom?
369-398 Chapter 10 Map
Case Study: Ecosystem Study • As part of a biology project in which students are studying the ecosystem of a Sandy Creek the teacher wishes to collect tadpoles and put them in a classroom aquarium so that students can observe them before they metamorphose. The teacher then plans to use some of the frogs for the dissection unit that follows. • Problem: You are a member of a school-wide • review board and you are at a meeting convened • by the chair of the committee to review this proposal, • as well as some others. Is the proposal permissible, • in your view? What permission do you think is required? • What are the ethical issues in the proposal? • What other concerns do you and the committee • have about the teacher’s proposal?
370-371 Leadership in the Science Classroom • Leadership is a social influence process. In this book, I’ve based the notion of leadership on the work of Harry and Rosemary Wong, in their book, The First Days of School. • To understand this concept more fully, you should participate in Inquiry 10.1.
370-371 Inquiry 10.1: Effective Teacher Project • This has been a popular project with students in our program. During an internship, or in connection with a graduate course, you can interview a teacher to find out how he or she manages the classroom using the Wong scheme for effective teaching attributes (Table 10.1) • Collect “data” such as interviews, digital pictures, sketches, samples of student work, etc. to help answer the leadership attribute question you are investigating. • Prepare a presentation, accompanied with a multimedia slide show, a web site, or a low tech three-panel board display.
372-375 Effective Management Behaviors • What do you know about the following group management behaviors? Turn to a peer and identify an example of each in the science classroom. • With-it-Ness • Overlapping • Smoothness • Momentum • Group Focus and Accountability
375-377 Facilitating Laboratory and Small Group Work • Five key management behaviors for small group work: • Positive Interdependence • Individual Accountability • Face-to-face Communication • Interpersonal Skills • Processing--shown here • What are some practical ways of integrating positive interdependence into a laboratory/small group lesson? Giving teams time to ask, “What do we do well together in our team?
376-377 Management Plan for Lab and Small Group Activities • The phases shown here and described in the Art of Teaching Science facilitate laboratory and small group activities. • Design a lesson plan for 30-45 minute lab activity that incorporates these phases.
378-380 Facilitating High Level Thinking Tasks • High thinking in Peter’s class? Tell me it isn’t so Peter! • Read the excerpt from Peter’s class in which there is an exchange between Peter (the teacher), and Jeffrey (one of his students). • How could high level thinking be facilitated in this case?
379 Inquiry Activity 10.2: Windows into Science Classrooms • In this activity you will observe teachers in their classrooms, or observe videos of science teaching. You’ll observe and collect data on management behaviors outlined in Figure 10.1 • Summarize your results into a series of findings using the questions in the Minds-On Strategies section of the Inquiry.
379-381 Effective Teaching for the Beginning of the Year • Work with a peer and share with other the management procedures you are currently using, or ones you have seen that think are valid and appropriate. How do you deal with: • Room Arrangements • Establishing Rules • The beginning and end of class • Handling materials and equipment Students in a Russian class at Moscow School 710.
382 Inquiry Activity 10.3: Developing a Classroom Management Plan • In this Inquiry, you’ll develop the details for a classroom management plan that you’ll implement in your class or as an intern. • Present your findings in a manner that you will present them to your students.
382-385 First Day Lessons--2 Models • Using these principles, and after reading the two models of first day lessons, design a First Day Lesson for one of the following: middle school earth science class, high school chemistry. • First Day Principles: • Establish the teacher as the leader of the class • Provide as much opportunity for teacher-student contact. • Present the class rules, consequences and reward system • Involve the students in an interesting activity • Establish appropriate opening and closing lesson routines
386 Inquiry Activity 10.4: Planning for the Three Weeks • In this activity you will make brief plans (on a chart--Figure 10.2) for three weeks of instruction. • If you are in an internship, you should share these with your mentor; if you are an in-service or graduate course, meet with a peer and present your plans for feedback. • How coherent are your plans? After feedback, how would you change them?
387-388 Inquiry Activity 10.5: Preparing a Science Equipment Order • In this activity you will go online and make an equipment order for a $1,000 budget for a middle school team (of 4) or high school science department (of 8). • After you brainstorm and prioritize, visit the online sites (see Inquiry 10.5) and make your order. • Did you have adequate funding for your needs?
389-390 Inquiry Activity 10.6: Designing a Science Tool Kit • In this activity, you’ll develop a science teaching kit, called a “science tool kit.” It will contain a lesson plan and all the equipment needed for a class of 25 students. • Review the two kits that are described in the Inquiry, then select a content area to design your kit. • If possible, field test your kit with students, or review your plan with a peer and present the results to your class.
391-395 Safety in the Science Classroom • What principles would you identify to create a safe science learning environment? • What does the Laboratory Safety Institute contribute to your understanding of safety?
395 Think Piece • What special safety precautions should be taken given each of the following situations? • Middle school life science course • High school physics course • High school chemistry course • Middle school earth science course
396 Science Teachers Talk • "How do you manage your classroom and what is the most important piece of advice you would give a prospective teacher concerning classroom management?" • Carol Myronuk (Canada) reports: Initially, I gather and give out lab equipment, materials and supplies, to demonstrate an efficient distribution system. As soon as possible, students assume the facilitator role to design and take responsibility for organizing lab distribution, collection and cleaning of equipment, recycling and disposal of materials, and general inventory. "Mean what you say and say what you mean.” • What would your response be to the question?