Science: article Fridays/months?

Discussion in 'Secondary Education' started by chemistrynerd, Jul 13, 2013.

  1. chemistrynerd

    chemistrynerd Rookie

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    Jul 13, 2013

    As a science teacher, I also want to incorporate literacy and reading into science. I thought it would be cool to have something called "Article Fridays" (or monthly, and maybe a more creative name) where students read articles and summarize them on different chemistry topics that they find interesting. I'd have a couple students each time share what they found, and they'd all hand them in. I work on a block schedule so I'm not sure exactly how this would work. Does anyone have creative ideas on how to get kids thinking of science that's in the 'real world'? I'd probably do this with my honors or AP classes.
     
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  3. Caesar753

    Caesar753 Multitudinous

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    Jul 13, 2013

    I like the idea, but not for just Honors/AP. I think that all students can work on improving their literacy.

    Besides, this is a good way to connect your content to current events. You'll need to find high-interest articles that grab their attention and keep it.

    I'm not sure that I would devote an entire block to this activity because it might get boring even with high-interest articles.
     
  4. Myrisophilist

    Myrisophilist Habitué

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    Jul 13, 2013

    I'm really into literacy and science as well, so PM me about it anytime! :)
    Do your students have internet access in the classroom? If so, that opens up a world of resources. I put a ton of RSS feeds on my website that relate to each class I teach. The New York Times Learning Blog has so many ideas on incorporating news into every subject. I highly recommend spending some time going through their resources. Here are a few I've bookmarked:
    12 Ways to Learn Vocabulary With The New York Times
    Great Ways to Teach Any Day’s Times
    Teaching Topics
     
  5. chemteach55

    chemteach55 Connoisseur

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    Jul 13, 2013

    I do this once every grading period. I wish I could do it more often but there just is not time in chemistry.
     
  6. Peregrin5

    Peregrin5 Maven

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    Jul 14, 2013

    One of my teachers did this and the way it worked is that students picked one or two weeks out of the semester and only like two or three students presented every Friday. Everyone got a chance to present their article and summary.
     
  7. JustMe

    JustMe Virtuoso

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    Jul 14, 2013

    I think it's a great idea and one that will surely become more common in classrooms as all facets of literacy are increasingly expected in all subjects. It's a wonderful way to develop interest in science, too! I wasn't a good science student, but I LOVE SCIENCE and think I would have appreciated the opportunity.
     
  8. lucybelle

    lucybelle Connoisseur

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    Jul 14, 2013

    I do this occasionally in my biology classes. A lot of really cool developments and controversial things have been happening just in this year. I usually chose the article and have everyone read it together, then we have a class discussion about it. It takes about 45 min, depending on the length of the article. Recently we read about the surrogacy case of Crystal Kelley which was really interesting. We were studying biotechnology and ethics at the time.

    I wouldn't let the kids pick the articles because I remember in high school having to pick articles and I just picked whatever I came across first just to get the assignment done. So for my classes I pick relevant, interesting, in-depth and controversial articles. I think it's more effective that way.
     
  9. physteach

    physteach Companion

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    Jul 16, 2013

    I have the kids pick articles with me and write summaries for presenting. We do this roughly ever other week (on Mondays).
     
  10. mariecurie

    mariecurie Companion

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    Aug 5, 2013

    I'm thinking of doing this as well, because I was told my students have issues with literacy. I remember doing it in 8th grade Science as well, and I loved it. If they are graded on the relevancy of the article, and they understand not to just pick the first thing they see, I think it would be worthwhile. Choose a few students at random to read their articles and that way all students must be prepared each Friday with their synopsis.

    The only problem I see with this is access. Most students will print articles from online, but I could have a few hard copies in the room for students to use as well, to make photocopies.
     
  11. SpiffyScience

    SpiffyScience Rookie

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    Aug 6, 2013

    I just set up a wikispace page on which I used the RSS feed tool to set up feeds from the environmental section of science sites. It's always showing the ten newest articles from five different sites, so students have a lot of titles to browse at one place. (apparently I can't post links, but it's just headings that say "newest articles from national geographic" and then the 10 article titles, which are links, and then the next source).

    The tool is easy to use, if you can find the RSS feed on the page you just copy and paste. If there isn't an RSS button (the little orange squarish icon), google "RSS feed for [site] chemistry news."

    My plan is to have them do a write-up of an article once or twice a quarter for homework.
     
  12. MissCeliaB

    MissCeliaB Aficionado

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    Aug 6, 2013

    Take a look at the Common Core standards and exemplar texts. We have gotten very little training on this, but basically the only thing we've been told is that the focus on research means that students should read two different articles and synthesize the information in them in some way.
     
  13. sue35

    sue35 Habitué

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    Aug 6, 2013

    Be careful with having them write a summary for homework. Some of them will cheat. There are websites that spit out summaries of any article. Also, many will only summarize the first couple of paragraphs because the article is either too hard or too long. Unless you read all the articles you don't know if they have done this. This is the problem I ran into.

    Something I eventually did was a weekly science question(s). I found a great book that had daily research questions (ex/ what is smog) and they had to research it and write a paragraph about the answer.

    My former students said they learned a lot more from the questions than the articles. If you want the name of the book let me know and I can find it:)
     

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