NEW TOOL: Why you should stop pre-teaching science vocabulary and focus on students developing conceptual meaning first

Posted on March 18, 2020

It can make intuitive sense to pre-teach scientific terms before you would expect students to be in situations where those terms might be used. But, research shows that it is more productive to engage students in articulating and refining rich meanings around the details of an investigation or phenomena—and then meaningfully introduce technical terms to them. When done without replacing students’ primary forms of talking, including technical terms expands the ways they can talk about and understand the natural world. Importantly, this also serves to open up more inclusive spaces where all of student's language resources are welcome during sense-making. Check out this new STEM Teaching Tool to explore these ideas.