Cabot Public Schools

Science


" Science is more than a body of knowledge; 

it is a way of looking at the world and ordering one's experiences."

What Should My Student Be Learning?

Information:

2007-2008 Pacing Guides now available!

K-4 Units being added as they are finished!


Federal, State, and District



Why Strengthen Science Education?

Curing cancer, developing alternative energy resources, dealing with global warming -- these are just some of the problems the world is desperately trying to solve.  Because these issues affect everyone, science literacy and associated skills such as critical thinking and problem-solving will become more important than ever.  In order to build a global economy, U.S. businessses and corporation are relying on future employees to be able to lead innovative thinking and science discovery.  Even entry-level jobs in the future will require some kind of basic science literacy.

What Does Science Education Need to Look Like?  

Scientists say students should utilize virtually all of the components encompassed by hands-on, inquiry-based science education --- a teaching and learning approach advocated by science education reformers like the National Science Foundation and the National Science Resources Center, and detailed in work like the National Science Education Standards, Benchmarks for Science Literacy and Science for All Americans.  The National Science Foundation defines an "inquiry-based" approach to learning as:

          . . .learning that involves a process of exploring the natural or material world, and that leads to asking questions, making discoveries, and rigorously testing those discoveries in the search for new understanding.  Inquiry, as it relates to science education, should mirror as closely as possible the enterprise of doing real science.
  

Inquiry often involves hands-on and interactive activities.  However, not all hands-on activities are necessarily "inquiry-based."  An essential element of  inquiry in science education is a focus on the following process skills:

Observing

Questioning

Hypothesizing

Predicting

Investigating

Interpreting

Communicating

Both process and content are critical, and the educators' goal is to find balance, allowing students to learn and practice process in a meaningful manner which develops conceptual understanding and content knowledge.  An overemphasis on either content or process is not beneficial to student achievment.