Teachers of science need to have a significant role in the process by which decisions are made concerning the allocation of time and resources to various subject areas. However, to assume this responsibility, schools and districts must provide teachers with the opportunity to be leaders.

[See Professional Development Standard D]

PARTICIPATE FULLY IN PLANNING AND IMPLEMENTING PROFESSIONAL GROWTH AND DEVELOPMENT STRATEGIES FOR THEMSELVES AND THEIR COLLEAGUES. Working as colleagues, teachers are responsible for designing and implementing the ongoing professional development opportunities they need to enhance their skills in teaching science, as well as their abilities to improve the science programs in their schools. Often they employ the services of specialists in science, children, learning, curriculum, assessment, or other areas of interest. In doing so, they must have the support of their school districts.

Changing Emphases

The National Science Education Standards envision change throughout the system. The teaching standards encompass the following changes in emphases:

LESS EMPHASIS ON

MORE EMPHASIS ON

Treating all students alike and responding to the group as a whole

Understanding and responding to individual student's interests, strengths, experiences, and needs

Rigidly following curriculum

Selecting and adapting curriculum

Focusing on student acquisition of information

Focusing on student understanding and use of scientific knowledge, ideas, and inquiry processes

Presenting scientific knowledge through lecture, text, and demonstration

Guiding students in active and extended scientific inquiry

Asking for recitation of acquired knowledge

Providing opportunities for scientific discussion and debate among students

Testing students for factual information at the end of the unit or chapter

Continuously assessing student understanding

Maintaining responsibility and authority  

Sharing responsibility for learning with students

Supporting competition

Supporting a classroom community with cooperation, shared responsibility, and respect

Working alone

Working with other teachers to enhance the science program



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