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Inquiry and Literacy in Science Classrooms

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Jessica Fries-Gaither

on 2 December 2016

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Transcript of Inquiry and Literacy in Science Classrooms

Inquiry and Literacy in Science Classrooms
Primary Grades
Upper Elementary Grades
Session Overview

Inquiry and the learning cycle

Why integrate?

Grade-level examples:
Upper elementary
Middle school

Questions and conclusion
Jessica Fries-Gaither
Lower School Science Specialist
Columbus School for Girls
Author, NSTA Press
Why Integrate?
The Essential Features of Scientific Inquiry
The Learning Cycle: One Approach to Inquiry-Based Instruction
General Characteristics of Scientific Inquiry
Students work to answer a question to which they do not already know the answer

Students collect data

Students use that data as evidence to answer their question

Students connect evidence to existing scientific knowledge
Middle School



Scientifically oriented question
Priority given to evidence
Explanation formulated based on evidence
Evidence is connected to scientific knowledge
Explanations are communicated and justified
Generate a need to know
Elicit prior knowledge
Set the stage for learning
Just-in-time vocabulary
Developing proficiency and mastery
Students have mastered content, vocabulary
Students share what they have learned
Apply knowledge to novel situations
Extend and deepen knowledge
Formative and summative
Authentic opportunities for reading, writing, and conversation
Models scientific enterprise
Time saver in crowded curriculum
Support student achievement
States and Changes of Matter
Engage: Matter scavenger hunt
Is water made of matter?
Is air made of matter?
Explore: Investigate student-generated questions
1. Hang two balloons from the clips of a pants hanger.
2. Balance the hanger on your finger. What do you notice?
3. Remove one balloon. Blow it up and knot it. Put it back on the hanger.
4. Balance the hanger on your finger again. What do you notice?
5. Can you make a claim about whether air is matter or not? What is your evidence?
Read nonfiction and connect to investigations.
Forces and Motion
Engage: Classroom Curling
Explore: Investigations into Forces
How do the different types of paper compare?
What do you notice about the way the slider travels on different surfaces?
How does the texture affect the distance the slider travels?
Use text features to locate and read about friction
"Defining Friction" graphic organizer
Making connections with
Newton and Me
Engage: Differences between modern horses and ancestors
Read about horse migration over time
Discuss differences between modern horses and ancestors
Read that environmental pressures often cause changes in organisms
Explore: Horse Toes & Horse Teeth
Explain: Review sequential text; write a children's book using sequential text
Expand: Compare evolution of whales
Thank you!
Books available at nsta.org/store and on Amazon
Full transcript