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From: maureen (
Subject:         Re: Need Science Curr. Suggestions for middle yrs
Date: July 24, 2013 at 10:25 am PST

In Reply to: Re: Need Science Curr. Suggestions for middle yrs posted by RCPasadena on February 27, 2013 at 1:10 pm:

ye gods. photos and art, literature and music? those are great for art class. For science, not so much.

A science curriculum needs to teach METHOD. that is, how science is DONE, not just some random facts about interesting natural phenomena.

for 6th grade, earth science is good. This should include: basics of meterology and how weather and climate are made. Basic geology and seismology. Basic ecology - wildlife, habitats, etc. 7th grade - basics of Earth and the universe's history and cosmology. The Big Bang and current theories about it; what is a galaxy, a star, a nova or supernova, how solar systems form. Basic laws of newtonian physics: gravity, laws of motion, etc., how orbits work. What atoms are, and what subatomic particles are. How physics and astronomy research are done. Could include field trips to your local observatory. 8th grade - the animal and plant kingdoms. what a cell is, what genes and chromosomes are. thh bare bones of botany and zoology. Human anatomy and physiological systems, and health applications. Nutrition, exercise physiology. Human physical development and aging. you might not get all this in, but this gives you an idea.....
But in EACH of these, talk about: what is an experiment, what is naturalistic observation, what are the proper uses of each, what makes an experiment valid or invalid, what is a hypothesis, what is a theory, how do scientists use these to expand knowledge...
I taught my kids horticulture, food growing, canning and cooking too. And we talked about ways in which those are applications of science and math. We use geometry in our carpentry projects, for instance. BUT none of those applications are a substitute for good solid teaching in scientific method.

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