ERIC Number: ED381356
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1993-Apr
Two Cases of Implementing STS Activities in the Context of a Traditional Middle School Life Science Curriculum: Same Rules, Different Games.
Jackson, David F.
Two classroom case studies are used to investigate common concerns about the use and value of Science-Technology-Society (STS) themes as curriculum organizers. The author discusses the fear that a focus on STS may de-emphasize science concept learning in the overall curriculum, and suggests that this may be appropriate at the middle school level. The efforts and commentary of two teachers of seventh grade life science at different middle schools in the same large suburban district are compared and contrasted. Each teacher is constrained by conservative curriculum guidelines. One teacher chooses to adhere to the guidelines and implement STS activities in an ad hoc manner, while the other conducts a student-centered interactive STS activity. Excerpts from class discussions are provided. It is concluded that the STS activity did not result in open and critical thinking on the part of the students but rather gave students a low-level factual expertise. The author suggests that teachers should be conscious of making value judgments about their curriculum, rather than uncritically accepting broader claims for the value of STS organizers in addressing a wide variety of science learning objectives. (LZ)
Publication Type: Reports - Research; Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Grant or Contract Numbers: N/A
Note: Paper presented at the Annual Meeting of the National Association for Research in Science Teaching (66th, Atlanta, GA, April 1993).