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Queries and Replies

Replies to Query:


What are some of the lasting impacts created by adopting...

Reply 1:

Impacts to our system: Science is the number one responce from kids asked "What is you favorite subject." When you say "traditional science" it usually means science was taught on rainy days or not taught at all, and at best was a book sent home for homework (read the chpater and answer the questions at the end). Our demonstration classrooms have shown that students fully participating in a standards-based science program that is articulated with a sound literacy program achieve at higher and faster rates than those that are not fully participating. On the surface it may be as simple as students turned on by an inquiry based science program who then write about their experiences and read to enrich their learning become motivated learners. This has been especially true for ELD students as well. Our sites find parent participation increasing through math and science nights and festivals and increased interest in science fairs and science olympiad type activities. In addition, teacher reflective journals have shown that the use of programs such as FOSS enable teachers by providing complete coherence and management. Teachers also find out that it takes much less energy to teach the program as designed instead of trying to "create" curriculum like they are taught in most preservice teacher programs at the university. Our standards-based approach has also resulted in the university forming a partnership for the purpose of training future students. These future teachers now work as teacher assistants with fully implementing LSC teachers to support mathematics and science instruction. These future teachers are now getting real time experience with the standard-based math and science programs they will eventually be expected to use when hired by our district. The university has also partnered with us to create new math and science coursework that uses same materials to show content connections for teachers and future teachers. This has resulted in a new grant to support this effort. Do we have others that would rather teach science from a book or mathematics via worksheets? Sure. Except we do not call it teaching nor do we expect learning in each case. By impacting the system from preservice the change over time will become institutionalized.


Jerry David Valadez, 1/15/1999