ERIC Number: ED316096
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 1989
Reference Count: N/A
The Children's Lab at Northern State University. Elementary Teachers Moving toward Scientific Literacy.
Knecht, Paul S.
The Children's Lab at Northern State University (South Dakota) is a science concept development laboratory for use by students in a physical science course for preservice elementary teachers. Its function is to develop science content knowledge in preservice elementary teachers, with the ultimate goal of developing science literacy in children. The theoretical and philosophical bases for the laboratory include (1) the idea that science can be understood only by tracing the history of ideas; (2) work on the structure of scientific knowledge; (3) knowledge of the nature of language and verification; (4) research on developing units of instruction; (5) study of the dynamics of learning and teaching; and (6) work on school science education. The British Museum of Natural History's Hall of Evolution, which traces concept development from simplest beginnings to ultimate implications, inspired this approach. The Children's Lab contains a number of units, each consisting of a series of learning stations at which elementary school teachers are trained to micro-teach about the development of a scientific principle. Students learn meaningful ideas and see how they originated, and are interrelated and applied. The program has been found to be effective, and has the potential for further development for special populations and classroom application. Appended are a discussion of the theoretical underpinnings of the Lab and data from a comparative study of two science curricula. 14 references. (MSE)
Publication Type: Reports - Descriptive
Education Level: N/A
Sponsor: Department of Education, Washington, DC.
Authoring Institution: Northern State Univ., Aberdeen, SD.; American Association of State Colleges and Universities, Washington, DC.