ERIC Number: EJ1131060
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2017
Abstractor: As Provided
The Roles of Teachers' Science Talk in Revealing Language Demands within Diverse Elementary School Classrooms: A Study of Teaching Heat and Temperature in Singapore
Seah, Lay Hoon; Yore, Larry D.
International Journal of Science Education, v39 n2 p135-157 2017
This study of three science teachers' lessons on heat and temperature seeks to characterise classroom talk that highlighted the ways language is used and to examine the nature of the language demands revealed in constructing, negotiating, arguing and communicating science ideas. The transcripts from the entire instructional units for these teachers' four culturally and linguistically diverse Grade 4 classes (10 years old) with English as the language of instruction constitute the data for this investigation. Analysis of these transcripts focused on teachers' talk that made explicit reference to the form or function of the language of science and led to the inductive development of the "Attending to Language Demands in Science" analytical framework. This framework in turn revealed that the major foregrounding purposes of teachers' talk include labelling, explaining, differentiating, selecting and constructing. Further classification of the instances within these categories revealed the extensive and contextualised nature of the language demands. The results challenge the conventional assumption that basic literacy skills dominate over disciplinary literacy skills in primary school science. Potential uses of the analytical framework that could further expand our understanding of the forms, functions and demands of language used in elementary school science are also discussed.
Descriptors: Science Teachers, Science Instruction, Heat, Thermodynamics, Teaching Methods, Language Usage, Grade 4, Communication Strategies, Student Diversity, Language of Instruction, Literacy, Elementary School Students, Elementary School Science, English (Second Language), Video Technology, Coding, Comparative Analysis, Classroom Communication, Foreign Countries
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: Grade 4; Intermediate Grades; Elementary Education
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: Singapore
Grant or Contract Numbers: N/A