Titration Variations: Encouraging Authentic Labs
Using baking to get kids more interested in Chemistry last semester seemed almost like cheating at the authenticity game. It was an enormous effort to obtain materials, plan for choice, and design a structure the genuinely incorporated content... but students were...read more
Soil Science Students Save the World!
I've taught "Sucio" (Spanish for dirty) countless times. The 9/10 earth science course focuses on the content of soil while emphasizing skills around the scientific method. The course is divided into 3 units. The first focuses on soil types and properties of soil and...read more
Taking Pride in the Science PBAT
A large portion of the spring semester in my neuroscience class is spent working on the PBAT (Performance Based Assessment Task), which takes the place of the Regents exams at our school. For the science PBAT, students choose an investigative question and design an...read more
Creating an authentic science project that is not based on an experiment or lab report
I’m teaching the same microbiology class as last semester. Last semester, I worked on designing my second unit project in a way that would make it personally authentic for students. This semester, I want to revise my third unit project. In the third unit, students...read more
Cookie Catastrophes & Connecting Content
Chemistry at ESA now has a legitimate, hands-on Baking Unit! Around the time of my first post, I was brainstorming, collecting, and wrangling ideas & resources to determine an authentic anchor phenomenon to drive the unit. My planning started in August and the...read more
My original Problem of Practice was... How might we use the product of a unit on mental health to make contributions within the ESA community? I created a survey for the students of ESA to take. They responded to the following statements with either YES, NO or...read more
Dendrites, Drugs and Disorders!
In my first blog post, I wrote about my desire to form student experts in neuroscience who would be able to create some kind of meaningful product for a wider audience. Instead of completing a project just for me as the teacher, and for their grade, I wanted students...read more
Getting Students Psyched For Soil
In my first blog post I was interested in building personal authenticity for my students this semester and question how I can help students build deeper connections between themselves and their work within their communities. Specifically, I wanted students to research...read more
Meaningful Microbes 2
In my first blog post, I wrote about how students design and carry out controlled experiments during the second unit of my microbiology class. As my problem of practice, I wanted my students to design experiments that they felt personally invested in. I asked- how...read more
Psyched for Soil!
This is my second semester teaching Sucio, an earth science course based on soil. This class is mainly about experimental design with a focus on the complexities of soil. Throughout the semester students work in groups to design, setup, and collect data about their...read more