What is Exemplary Science Teaching and How Can it be Utilized in the Classroom?

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Exemplary science teaching has many components and they can each lead to various ways of being implemented in the classroom. Before taking this class, I had no idea of the importance of exemplary science teaching or teaching in general. It really makes a difference in the students’ lives, as learners.

Exemplary science teaching is teaching students skills by not just making them memorize facts or listen to lectures, but to allow them to “do” and become life-long learners. As the saying goes, “Give a man a fish, you feed him for a day. Teach the man to fish, you feed him for a lifetime.” This saying relates to exemplary science teaching because, in this method, teachers do not just give students the facts, but show them how to maintain, focus on, and learn from the facts.

Science is a class where students must always use their senses and make observations about their surroundings. This is science. It is observing the natural world and learning about it through these observations, and then coming up with conclusions about how and why things work. Below is a list of specific qualities, that I have learned, that make for exemplary science teaching:

  • Student-centered activities
  • More doing and experimenting
  • Less lecturing
  • Teachers being the leader in what children learn, but the learning must be student-centered.
  • Students asking questions
  • Students working out problems and becoming innovators.
  • Students designing the class time and how it is spent.
  • Instead of busy work, students will be active in the classroom
  • Students being in charge of their own learning, while the teacher is there to encourage exploration
  • Students exploring facts on their own and how they work.
  • Students helping other students
  • Teachers accommodating the lesson to fit the needs of the students
  • Flexibility from the teacher.
  • Teachers encouraging students to discover information on their own, while being a guide
  • Many discussions in and out of class.

Teachers who implement the exemplary teaching model, create students that are free-thinkers, can problem solve, are creative, and can not only memorize information, but use it! This leads to happier students and teachers! Which also leads to more productive school systems!

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Below is a link to a video that I would like to share with you! Check it out! It is a video about how STEM classes in schools are working to create a generation of students with critical thinking skills and autonomy over their learning. STEM stands for science, technology, engineering, and mathematics. It is imperative that we use exemplary science teaching to allow students to exercise their critical thinking and problem solving skills.

Here are two examples of Exemplary Science Teaching in Action in the Science Classroom!

  • Make the next unit or activity student-centered. This means that you must allow the students to guide the lesson, while you are there to guide them further. Make the learning and activities be up to them and let them be active and in charge of their learning. Students like having choices, especially adolescents!

Example: If you are teaching a biology class, start the human biology unit with asking the students what they want to know about human biology. Make a list and compare it against the standards you are supposed to teach and modify the lesson to keep the class interested. For example, if they want to learn how long a person can go without food and water and how it effects the body, answer this question, but also stick with the standards. For example, you can talk about how important water and food play in our survival and what they do for each of our individual cells.

  • Make the next lab in a chemistry class a problem-solving lab and work the students’ problem solving skills. Do not give them a specific procedure to follow, but just give them background information on the topic, then let them try different methods to solve the problem. Let it be up to them how the problem is solved and if they do not do it right the first time, let them try again.

Example: A good example that I can think of from my own chemistry class in high school is when the teacher mixed a couple of components into a jar and we had to problem solve and determine how to separate them and measure how much we ended up with. We had poppy seeds, iron fillings, and salt. We each had to mix them together in a jar, then use different methods to remove each component and weigh what we ended up with. The purpose was to show us how chemists separate chemical compounds and how to problem solve.


1 Comment

  1. You have some really good ideas! If I were to give some suggestions, one would be to explain why you put your video in there. I really like the video and I think it has some good ideas, but there is no context as to why you included it in your blog. Also, I like the pictures and quotes that you included, but I would spread them out more so you don’t have a bunch of text all in a row before and after the videos/pictures. Overall it’s a good blog!

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