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Active Since: May 19, 2020
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Replies Created: 16

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Viewing 16 posts - 1 through 16 (of 16 total)
  • Johanna
    Participant
    jdelwood
    Using a rubric is extremely helpful with grading projects.  A rubric creates a more even approach to assessing projects.  Rubrics clearly communicate to students what will be assessed in the projects so that there are not any "surprises" for them.  I make myself available to students for assistance with their projects to answer questions or to let them bounce ideas off me as they are developing ideas for their project.
  • Johanna
    Participant
    jdelwood
    I have found greatest success in inquiry-based instruction when I give students the opportunity to ask their own questions.  Students begin to have ownership of the project and become the “experts” on their topic when they are researching and developing an experiment on a topic that interests them.  It ceases to be so much an assignment as something that they enjoy doing.  These are the students who show up at the end of the day to have more time in the lab to work on their project or more time with the computers for research.  If I dominate the areas of inquiry, students tend to shut down and approach the project as something that must be completed for the sake of the grade. I have rubrics to be most helpful when assessing student projects.  Rubrics communicate to all students up front the expectations for the projects.  I agreed with the instructor in the reading in that rubrics tend to need adjusting over time.  Just when I think I have worked out all the issues, something else arises during the grading of projects that I did not address in the rubric.  I adjust rubrics as needed to keep them current for the projects.
  • Johanna
    Participant
    jdelwood
    I looked for a project that students could work with on their own outside of school.  Project Budburst has projects that families can do on their own and did not seem to require a fee to use the site.  Since a fee is not required, anyone would be able to use the site.  I work with older high school students which should mean that they would not have difficulties navigating that site.  As with all the sites that I have visited, there are messages and policies in place to protect visitors to that site that are younger than 13. There is a section to upload data.  There is also an extensive database that is easily accessible with information about plants.  The database on Project Budburst would be helpful to students in identifying plants they see in their natural surroundings.
  • Johanna
    Participant
    jdelwood
    I like your idea of answering a question with a question.  I have used this technique in class to generate discussion.
  • Johanna
    Participant
    jdelwood
    I begin by asking questions in class.  I usually have a few students in class who are inquisitive by nature so that they will naturally respond by asking questions.  This will lead to other students asking questions.  This will generate discussion and deeper thought on the subject. I make sure that the questions I am asking are open-ended questions that will lead to further discussion with the students.  I have experienced asking closed-ended questions and know how that brings discussion to an abrupt end.  I must work to get discussion and questions back on track if this happens.
  • Johanna
    Participant
    jdelwood
    I am not reporting to any of the citizen science projects that were discussed in Lesson 1.  I would come closest to participating in FeederWatch.   There is a feeder in our yard that I watch often to see the different species of birds that are coming to the feeder.  I also spend time watching interactions between the birds at the feeder.  I was recently introduced to eBird and am interested in taking part in eBird.  Participating in either of these projects would give students an opportunity to connect more to their natural surroundings.
  • Johanna
    Participant
    jdelwood
    It is important for teachers to establish and nurture a class environment in which all students know that they are valued participants.  This is crucial for students to feel comfortable in sharing their thoughts and questions during activities.  As a teacher, I have always been aware of the questions that I ask when I am trying to generate discussion and bring about deeper thought on the part of my students.  There are occasions where I slip back into the simple, closed-ended questions.  I recognize that these questions are not generating the thought processes in my students that I am trying to achieve.  Sometimes, it helps to think in advance about some of the questions to ask to generate discussion.  Teachers might also write key phrases in advance to help word open-ended questions so that in a moment of quick discovery or an unexpected event, we do not reduce the event to a closed-ended question.
  • Johanna
    Participant
    jdelwood
    IMG_1136I I usually listen to the sounds outside because I am always trying to identify the birds that are near by me.   I have not made a Sound Map before today.  I think this is a great idea to share with students.  It is an easy way to engage students with their natural surroundings.  For students who enjoy drawing and sketching, the Sound Map could lead to activities in art for them.  Even if students don't know the name of the bird that is making the sound, the student will be able to use their imagination to draw what the bird might look like as it is singing.
  • Johanna
    Participant
    jdelwood
    I believe it will be important for me to approach inquiry and citizen science projects with students having ownership of the projects.  It is important for me to respect the questions and answers students are developing as we work through the projects together.  Nothing alienates a student more or destroys their interest faster than for them to feel that their input is not valued.  In students having ownership of the project, it will be important for me to work with students to develop the plan for the project.  It needs to be a project that excites the class or at least holds their interest.
  • Johanna
    Participant
    jdelwood
    The UC Davis article, “Real Science in the Palm of Your Hand”, provided three important practices for teachers to consider as they begin planning citizen science projects for their students.  As I read the article, I thought it was important that this information was included in the article.  Much of what we read in citizen science is focused on the projects and how to engage students in the projects.  I appreciated these paragraphs dedicated to the practice of teachers as they incorporate citizen science projects in their classes. The first practice is for teachers to conduct the projects in a way that students recognize themselves as people who do science.  I thought this was a great practice to encourage in teachers.  I often remind my students that anyone can practice science.  All they need is an inquisitive mind and the initiative to take time to observe what is happening around them.  Citizen science projects will instill these practices in students. In the second practice, we are encouraged as teachers to frame the citizen science project on a local and global scale.  With the variety of databases available to teachers today for citizen science projects this should not be an issue.  When students see that their data is being added into a global database for scientists around the world to use in their research projects, this will make the classroom project a real science project for the students.  Being able to share locally and to have the attention of school and community leaders will give value to the project for the students.  To see their community, act based on the work of the students will give the students encouragement to continue citizen science projects. For the third practice encouraged for teachers, I was reminded of some of my own experiences in field projects with students.  I like the way the authors described this in saying, “attend to the unexpected by paying attention to surprises that emerge.”  I refer to these as teachable moments.  I have had a few of them with my students.  As a teacher, we must always be aware of what is happening around us when we are with our students, this is especially true when we take our students outside the four walls of the classroom.  There is much to be seen and experienced in outdoor projects and we must be ready to answer questions or explain the unexpected to our students. I value all these practices and have varying degrees of experience with incorporating all of them in projects with my students.  I believe the first practice of helping students to recognize themselves as people who do science is the practice that I will focus on for citizen science projects.  If this is a trait that is strongly instilled in students, then it will hopefully stay with them throughout their lives, at least to some degree.  This will be planting a seed of appreciation and care for natural surroundings in young people whose lives will take many different directions.
  • Johanna
    Participant
    jdelwood
    You offer some good advice.  Thank you!
  • Johanna
    Participant
    jdelwood
    I have not participated in a formal citizen science project with my students.  I have encouraged my students to observe their natural surroundings.  My students and I have taken time during class outings to spend time observing and discussing the species that we were seeing around us.  Part of my purpose in doing this was to introduce my students to the idea of stopping to notice what was around them and to begin to appreciate their natural surroundings. As I look at the many different citizen science projects described in this reading, I believe a project like FeederWatch would be best for my students.  I am currently teaching in an urban setting and will take advantage of the fact that birds can be found in most settings.  I hear birds singing each morning as I arrive at school.  Birds are in the communities where my students live.  There might even be an opportunity to install a bird feeder just outside our classroom window for student observations.  Students will not need any special equipment to begin keeping record of the birds they see as they go about their day.  This will be the best way for me to introduce a citizen science project to my students.  Making the project as simple as possible in their day should result in the highest rate of student participation and student enjoyment.
  • Johanna
    Participant
    jdelwood
    I like that your activity engages students in observing their natural surroundings!
  • Johanna
    Participant
    jdelwood
    I began by reviewing the steps of the scientific method in class.  As a class, we conducted an experiment together following the steps of the scientific method.  This worked more as a Structured Inquiry.  I worked with the class to develop ideas for their experiment guiding them through questions.  While I was guiding the class discussions, the group progressed through the steps of the scientific method designing their experiment, carrying out their experiment, collecting data and drawing conclusions.  This did not place any of the responsible on individual students. Following completion of the class experiment, I assigned projects in which students were responsible for completing their own science experiment from developing questions to communicating conclusions.  Some of the students began to struggle at this time in developing their own ideas for experiments.  I wanted this to be student-generated projects, so I encouraged them to observe their natural surrounding and begin asking questions about what they were observing.  We discussed that many scientific discoveries were made from individuals studying their surroundings then asking questions to find answers for why things are as they are. When I assigned students their own science projects to develop based on their own questions, the students were working with the highest level of inquiry, Open Inquiry. Having completed the process together as a class, I believed the students had the tools they needed to conduct their own inquiry.  While working on their own science projects, students were developing skills in observation, developing questions, recording data, and communicating results.  Some of the students took their projects to an area science fair and were able to practice their written and oral communication skills. Some of my students struggled in developing their own ideas for a science projects even though we had worked through this as a class together.   I encouraged many times that they take time to observe the natural world around them or consider things they had questioned in the past. This article has led me to wonder if we would have had a different experience when we arrived at individual experiments if I had spent time with the lower levels of inquiry before jumping into Open Inquiry.  Even taking more time for Guided Inquiry may have given students more confidence when they began working in Open Inquiry.  Taking all classes through introductory activities to reinforce prior learning may be important to prepare students for Open Inquiry activities.
  • Johanna
    Participant
    jdelwood
    I like that you used curiosity in your concept map.  Curiosity is such an important part of inquiry!
    in reply to: Intro to Inquiry #712436
  • Johanna
    Participant
    jdelwood
    J.W. Inquiry Concept Map Inquiry is learning new information through the process of observing and asking questions.  Having an opportunity to collaborate with others to share ideas to bring about understanding enhances inquiry.
    in reply to: Intro to Inquiry #712435
Viewing 16 posts - 1 through 16 (of 16 total)