Ambitious Science Teaching by Mark Windschitl
Ambitious Science Teaching outlines a powerful framework for science teaching to ensure that instruction is rigorous and equitable for students from all backgrounds. The practices presented in the book are being used in schools and districts that seek to improve science teaching at scale, and a wide range of science subjects and grade levels are represented.
The book is organized around four sets of core teaching practices: planning for engagement with big ideas; eliciting student thinking; supporting changes in students’ thinking; and drawing together evidence-based explanations. Discussion of each practice includes tools and routines that teachers can use to support students’ participation, transcripts of actual student-teacher dialogue and descriptions of teachers’ thinking as it unfolds, and examples of student work. The book also provides explicit guidance for “opportunity to learn” strategies that can help scaffold the participation of diverse students.
Since the success of these practices depends so heavily on discourse among students, Ambitious Science Teaching includes chapters on productive classroom talk. Science-specific skills such as modeling and scientific argument are also covered.
Drawing on the emerging research on core teaching practices and their extensive work with preservice and in-service teachers, Ambitious Science Teaching presents a coherent and aligned set of resources for educators striving to meet the considerable challenges that have been set for them.