Focus: Writing, Science & Math
The written word, a means of communication throughout much of the world, needs to be an integral part of elementary and middle school science and math. Students who write about their own investigations and problem solving make the experience personal and increase their abilities to communicate - at all ages. This issue of Connect explores a wide variety of interdisciplinary approaches.
Online articles from this issue:
- Writing in the Math Classroom
- Writing is a vital aspect of the math curriculum. Though often neglected in the rush to "cover" all of the computation algorithms presented in a typical textbook, it is important that we include student writing as a major component of our math work. Aside from the obvious benefit of improving writing skills, frequent use of writing will improve students' understanding of the mathematical concepts being studied.
- "S'MAW" Learning
- "S'MAW is New York-ese for "some more," but for nearly a hundred junior high schoolers in recent months it also means an integrated learning experience wherein students develop an environmental consciousness while learning Science, plus Math, Art and Writing.
- Students and Nature Communicate
- As "Naturalist-in-Residence," I had an opportunity to bring into all the classrooms at Gill what I had done on my own, years before. Though many of the teachers were already involved in different aspects of environmental study and values clarification, this was the year the entire school had decided to devote their energy to this focus, with the goal of a usable nature study area
- Books to Motivate Science, Language and Writing
- Though I'd chosen this book because I wanted to study whales, dolphins and ocean ecology with my class, I knew we now had a book to teach us the power of imagery. Here was language that painted pictures and moods which would lead us into our own writing, both prose and poetry.
- Writing, Science & Math: An Inseperable Bond
- Every child has explored some aspect of science before coming to school and has both accurate perceptions and some remarkable confusions to bring to class. From the very beginning, writing and dictating can help students to form ideas and questions that can lead to further investigations.
- "Now, Write a Report!"
- Here is a simple method that can give students the skills they need to sort through information and produce a research document that is meaningful for them and in their "own words."
- Water, Water Everywhere
- Teaching about water at the Oatland Island Environmental Education Center in Savannah, Georgia, means mucking in the mud and sifting through detritus at the edge of a pond, investigating the forces of waves on a beach and the organisms that live in the intertidal zone, or testing the chemistry of the waters of a tidal creek.
- Writing (and Solving) a Real World Math Problem
- Real world math problems link student experience to the math concepts under study. Writing about the problem and its solutions helps students to understand the process and gives teachers a new view of student abilities.