ERIC Number: EJ931350
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2004
Reference Count: 2
Why Do Bees Sting? Reflecting on Talk in Science Lessons
Boctor, Sonia; Rowell, Patricia M.
Primary Science Review, n82 p15-17 Mar-Apr 2004
Learning science in a meaningful way involves more than doing a series of activities directed towards anticipated outcomes. Learning science entails teacher and children talking together as "co-constructors" of knowledge (Barnes, 1976). Karen Gallas (1995) has described her long-term observations of the kinds of talk which contribute to a co-construction of knowledge in primary science classrooms. An essential feature of this talk is that children's ideas are taken seriously by everyone in the classroom. Sonia teaches a year 1 class in an urban bilingual (Arabic) school in the Western Canadian province of Alberta. English is a second language for a majority of the 28 6-year olds in the class. After reading Gallas's book during a graduate class, Sonia kept a journal of the patterns of talk in a short sequence of science lessons. In this way, she was able to "listen" in a different way, exploring the talk for its intentions and ideas, and asking questions such as "I wonder what he/she means here?" In this article, Sonia describes the talk in these lessons, and then offers a reflective commentary.
Descriptors: Concept Formation, Science Instruction, Teaching Methods, Elementary School Science, Grade 1, Discussion (Teaching Technique), Urban Schools, Foreign Countries, Semitic Languages, Inquiry, Bilingual Students, English (Second Language)
Association for Science Education. College Lane Hatfield, Herts, AL10 9AA, UK. Tel: +44-1-707-283000; Fax: +44-1-707-266532; e-mail: email@example.com; Web site: http://www.ase.org.uk
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Descriptive
Education Level: Elementary Education; Grade 1
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: Canada