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Pedagogical Ideas

Key pedagogical features of the Building Science Concepts series include:

Teaching science concepts in familiar contexts. Students can actively build their understandings when the context(s) of learning are familiar and meaningful. However some contexts are more helpful than others for challenging and building conceptual thinking in different areas of science. Contexts have been chosen to reflect traditional "favourites" as well as to suggest new possibilities for learning in primary science.

Explicit patterning of how to keep a clear science-conceptual focus while exploring a familiar context. Concepts within a context are clearly identified so that it is possible to keep a sharp focus on the planned learning. By indicating possible "foothills" for conceptual learning within a topic, the booklets show how students may build their experiences of the world to accommodate increasingly abstract and/or interconnected ideas.

Signalling possible ideas that students might bring to their science learning. A large body of science education research shows that school learning may have no impact on students' personal theories about the world unless these are acknowledged and used as a starting point on which to build. Activities in the series draw on research to anticipate students' likely personal theories, and a "what you look for" guide assists teachers to draw out and use students' thinking in their teaching.