WALTHAM, MA | April 2, 2014
Two new high school science courses based on EDC’s well-regarded Foundation Science materials have been developed for the Web and will soon be ready for classroom use. EDC, together with Carolina Biological Supply, has created Biology: Concepts & Practices and Chemistry: Concepts & Practices and will preview them at the annual meeting of the National Science Teachers Association (NSTA) in Boston, April 3–7.
Foundation Science, which consists of products and materials in physics, chemistry, biology, and earth science, was developed as a year-long series of learning experiences in each discipline. Each learning experience uses a core story about relevant news or interesting phenomena to provide context for the science concepts. Concepts & Practices for biology and chemistry continues this pedagogical philosophy.
“Narrative nonfiction offers a powerful approach to educating students and a good story can motivate learners to want to understand the science behind the story,” said EDC’s Jackie Miller, primary author of the materials. “Feedback from teachers in our field tests indicated that the stories engaged and retained student interest in learning, and played a significant role in enhancing student understanding of concepts.”
As part of the new courses, students are challenged to gather information and evidence from hands-on inquiry and real-world texts. They discuss observations, develop models, and deliver presentations as they share their evidence-based claims. Both courses support the performance expectations of the Next Generation Science Standards.
Biology: Concepts & Practices and Chemistry: Concepts & Practices are available as e-books that students can access online and download writeable PDF forms on which to submit work. The teacher guide, also accessible online, provides support for facilitating lessons. To view sample learning experiences, go to: http://www.carolina.com/edc.
The curriculum will be available for preview at the NSTA session Inquiry + Nonfiction Readings = Engaged Biology and Chemistry Students which will be held the morning of Friday, April 4. Currently, the courses are available for pilot tests by contacting firstname.lastname@example.org. The full curriculum will be available this fall.
Education Development Center, Inc. (EDC), is a global nonprofit organization that creates learning opportunities for people around the world, empowering them to pursue healthier, more productive lives. EDC manages 250 projects in 30 countries. Visit www.edc.org.