Hello all and welcome to the Get Real! Science show featuring none other than myself, Daniel, as your host for this evening.
EDU487, Integrating Science & Literacy ended last week with each participant, student and teacher alike, walking away having gained a lot from the experience. Then, 4 days later, we assembled back in our classroom to start the next piece of our journey, EDU486, Integrating Science & Technology!
Our class continued with some fairly thorough introductions. With that I’ll give a shout out to our new cohort-mates (Christa & Chelsea). With primary introductions finished, we moved into our lesson beginning with an essential question: What does it mean to plan for and implement a reform-minded science experience?
With that in mind, we discussed the syllabus, and delved into the both daunting and exciting topic of Camp. As many readers of this blog may know, at the end of July, the GRS program hosts a number of students from a nearby school for a week to perform a science investigation in the same vein as those we completed last semester. However, this time, we won’t be the students, we’ll be the knowledge building facilitators (teachers?). Camp, from my understanding, will be the best and most time consuming experience of the summer.
With all of our minds on the assignments and tasks to come, our Technological Teaching Team (Andrea^2) led us in an activity to get our minds ready for the semester to come. They prompted us with a carousel activity whereby we moved from prompt to prompt posted around our room. We were asked to provide our interpretations of 4 key concepts: Ask Questions, Own the Details, Relationships & Reputation, and Have Fun..
Each one of us has something to bring to this course, and the education field in general and this really shines through with some of our responses (as depicted in the picture above).
After our ride on the carousel, we revisited the topic of blogging. With the change in course, we have been prompted to step further outside our comfort circle (always a good practice) and contact, include, or engage an outside professional in our personal blogs. This could be a person with in depth theoretical knowledge in the field, an area science teacher, or an individual with some connection to science practice.
I dont know if you all remember these:
But these inquiry/meta maps consumed our lives for about a week and a half last semester (Last week). And of course, it was time to revisit them, this time with a more critical lens. All of this, to initiate our thinking about Camp later in this summer, and the practices we’d like to engage in with our campers.
On each of our maps we looked at what we’d like our campers to get out of the experience. Pink post it notes were goals we had for them and their investigation (Ex: revisit their investigable question…a couple of times), yellow described specific experiences we might want our campers to have (Ex: going our into the water in waders), and blue depicted the resources we might need to successfully enact camp (Ex: SNACKS! Every scientist needs some food for brain power).
With the inquiry maps behind us, we moved on to Charlotte Danielson’s Framework for teaching within which she elaborates on and describes specific examples of good teaching practices that we may use to evaluate our own teaching, and in doing so further our practice. We participated in a reading jigsaw wherein we split the text into parts and then described what we read to our group members. Unfortunately time only allowed us to go through about half of the document, which was enough to move into our next activity, our first science expedition in EDU486!
Before us all sat a box. We were permitted to look, go close, but not to touch or manipulate the box in any way. On each side visible was a number (a red “4” and “6” are on the other side). What is on the not visible side? In groups of two we came up with some questions: Does the bottom contain a red 2? Can the box be opened? What are the potential purposes of the box? What is inside the box? We then reflected on which of these were answerable based on our limited ability to interact with the box.
Each group got a new small box, on which was a name, two numbers, and a color. Our question: what’s on the non-visible side? Each group investigated using their knowledge of mathematical trends, patterns and English naming, to hypothesize what might be one this hidden side. Then, we were given a tool that would allow us to pick up the box without using our hands. some groups took the tool and continued, others content with their investigation chose to leave their box untouched and see if their hypothesis was right. As our time to investigate came to a close, each group presented their hypothesis with evidence for their reasoning. Afterwards, it was time to reflect on how what we just did was seen in the Danielson text we had just gone through, and how our activity fit into the Next Generation Science Standards (NGSS)
NGSS: Did we plan and investigate? Did we use mathematical reasoning? Did we develop and use models? (um…DUH)
Danielson: Clear expectations, checked for understanding, good resource management, etc.
As class was coming to a close, we were given a small task. Go to Padlet and reflect on the course to come. What are we worried about? What are we wondering? (Check out the hyperlink for some answers)
With that class was over…and SEMINAR began. (Long day)
Again we did some introductions to better get to know our new classmates and acclimate them to the crazy hectic and fun stylings of GRS seminar.
Our fearless leader and her faithful companion led us through an activity designed by a past GRS graduate called squiggle this where we were prompted to select 1 science education practice and 1 cross-cutting concept and represent them on a paper provided. We came up with mathematical models, electron clouds, and molecular energy change graphics. Then we moved into some some history.
We talked about the timeline of national and NY state science standards. From 1996’s NY state learning standards for Math, Science, and Technology to today’s writing of NEW NY state standards derived in part from the NGSS standards.
Then, Mr. Squiggle this! himself came in and described a number of classroom activities he engages in with his students with a great many visuals to give us ideas for our future practice.
Time flew by fast, because we were having fun, but all in all a great first day in the science cohort. I personally look forward to the coming weeks and know it will be filled with excitement!
I hope you enjoyed our show today and that you came out learning a little bit about GRS, science investigation, and even some history!