Physical Science: Session 3
Rosinda Almeida, Cambridge, MA
"When students are into their experiments with hands and minds, they will always come up with questions that challenge the extent of my understanding. That's what teaching is all about."
School at a Glance:
Benjamin L. Banneker Charter School
- Grades: K-8
- Enrollment: 345
- Students per teacher: 15
91% African American
- Percentage of students receiving free or reduced-price lunch: 69% versus a state average of 30%
The Benjamin L. Banneker Charter School is in the third year of implementation of a laboratory-based experimental science curriculum called Hands-on Science. The Science and Technology for Children (STC) series of science units forms the instructional basis for the curriculum in grades 1-6, where each science teacher is free to implement the curriculum as developed and/or to supplement and expand with additional hands-on science content as needed.
Rosinda Almeida teaches second grade at the Banneker. This is Rosinda’s fifth year of teaching and second year at Banneker.
Rosinda: “I like using laboratory science instruction because it explores a science concept over a number of weeks, and is a more effective method for bringing about an understanding than using one-time experiments or simply talking, reading, and writing about science concepts.
“ My thoughts about what's important about teaching science is that it gives students the opportunity to think critically. I try to set an example of how we all learn by having a discussion at the beginning of every lesson. In this way I seek their prior understanding by asking them questions. I find that one useful strategy of science teaching is using analogies and models that are based on students’ prior experiences.”
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