Last week I had the distinct pleasure of meeting with Marialice Curran’s Elementary Education prepratory course “Science and Social Studies as Continuous Inquiry” at Saint Joseph College in Connecticut. Marialice asked that I share my thoughts on the importance of elementary teachers teaching their science curriculum in their classroom with the same rigor they do their reading and math curricula.
With my only collegiate education experience coming on the receiving side of the grades, I was all too familiar with the “listen politely, take notes” style of learning my classmates and I often approached our education with in younger years. Determined to avoid extolling the virtues of a scientifically literate society via soapbox to a nodding (off) group of pre-professionals, I asked Marialice to make sure her students had cellphone access during the session. Marialice also supported me with a well-wired classroom, equipped with two projectors and a camera eye to help me better connect with the class by seeing them.
I started class by asking students to think for themselves what kinds of coming challenges our world, nation, and communities would face in the coming century. The question was posed verbally, but also posted on one of the projector screens with specific instructions for students to text their responses. The results, collected and posted via wiffiti.com varied but were easily postable for students to view and connect to science education.