Physical Science: Session 2
Linsey Newton; Hudson, MA
"The most satisfying thing about teaching is really seeing a light bulb go off in a kid’s head, really seeing them get that 'ah ha' feeling, like 'I’ve got it. I understand. Thank you so much. I’ve been confused, but I really get it now.' And it’s very rewarding to see that."
School at a Glance:
Joseph L. Mulready School,
- Grades: K-5
- Enrollment: 283
- Students per teacher: 18
1% African American
- Percentage of students receiving free or reduced-price lunch: 16% versus a state average of 29%
Linsey Newton teaches third grade at the Joseph L. Mulready School in Hudson, Massachusetts. Located in rural Middlesex County, about 40 miles west of Boston, the Mulready School consists of grades 1 to 5, and “respect and responsibility” are the core values that the school embraces in its mission statement.
The Hudson Public Schools are currently involved in an ambitious systemic, multi-year effort to improve science and mathematics education, the goal of which is to “provide hands-on, inquiry-oriented, and problem-based instruction that encourages mathematical and scientific fluency.”
Linsey says that her science background was enhanced considerably upon coming to this school system: “Dr. Arthur Camins, the elementary math and science director in Hudson, has been a huge influence on me. And the FOSS curriculum has really opened my eyes to see how children can look at science as [more than] factual information fed to them by their teacher, and really explore and learn science through their own experiences and from what they see in the classroom.”
According to Dr. Camins, “In Hudson, we have three overarching goals for science education. One is developing content knowledge. We want students to develop experiences with how the natural world works and an understanding of it. The second is we want them to learn how to conduct experiments to develop the skills and habits of mind to know how to find out answers to their own questions. And the third is to be able to learn to build explanations, to use their engagement with doing science, engagement with materials, and the kinds of thinking that we encourage to be able to develop explanations based on the evidence that they see before them. In that sense, Linsey’s Water Vapor lesson is a good example of that.”
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