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ERIC Number: EJ937419
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2010
Pages: 6
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: 17
ISSN: ISSN-0021-9266
Exploring Plant and Animal Content in Elementary Science Textbooks
Schussler, Elisabeth E.; Link-Perez, Melanie A.; Weber, Kirk M.; Dollo, Vanessa H.
Journal of Biological Education, v44 n3 p123-128 2010
Student knowledge about plants is typically less than student knowledge about animals. Textbooks are a commonly-used curriculum material in elementary grades and contain embedded cultural ideologies that may impact instruction. This study analyzed two nationally-syndicated elementary science textbook series to explore their presentation of plant and animal content. The results indicated that the amount of animal content was greater than plant content in each series. An even greater difference was found in the number of plant and animal examples used within the textbooks. There were more than twice as many animal examples as plant examples in both textbook series, and the most repeated animal examples were more likely to correspond to scientifically-appropriate classification categories. The study also identified differences in the plant and animal topics covered in the textbooks; the topic of plant parts was the plant topic with the highest coverage in each textbook series, while for animals, the topics of animal needs, adaptations and types had the highest coverage depending on the textbook series. This study suggests there may be an ideology favoring animals within these elementary science textbooks and that teachers need to supplement their instruction with additional plant information to facilitate student learning about plants. (Contains 2 tables, 2 figures and 1 online resource.)
Routledge. Available from: Taylor & Francis, Ltd. 325 Chestnut Street Suite 800, Philadelphia, PA 19106. Tel: 800-354-1420; Fax: 215-625-2940; Web site:
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: Elementary Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A