By: The editorial team of RPD and Jerrell Gilkeson, Ed.D., Associate Director of Education for the Atlantic Union Conference, South Lancaster, Massachusetts. (Retired)
The Quest for Teachable Moments
“When students begin to question the phenomena that they have observed, much of the task of teaching is complete and the learning begins,” Jarrell Gilkeson, former Associate Director of Education for the Atlantic Union, said. “The ByDesign elementary science textbook series stages the questioning, exploring, and explaining inquiry process to maximize the teachable moments in each student’s science education.”
The “ByDesign” customized inquiry-based science program (grades 1-8) starts students on a quest using inquiry-teaching methodology. In a program built on the foundation of inquiry, students will be encouraged to question, collaborate, and explore a variety of resources to conduct their investigation. Students set out on a quest in the context of the Seventh-day Adventist worldview, all while capitalizing on their science, reading, writing, and interpreting skills.
As science can be challenging for many students, inquiry-based learning takes reading, writing, and science to allow for exploration of the wonder of God’s creation through the lens of the bible, capitalizing on all skills. Teachers sat down and talked with a member of the ByDesign Science review team about their experiences, here are some top reasons to support this new science series.
10 Reasons to Like “ByDesign” Science
1. Scripture and the Adventist worldview are an integrated part of the curriculum. In the early stages of developing this new series, it became apparent that since every science concept impacted our worldview, it would be impossible to have a science text with only a Bible scripture or religious nugget in each chapter. The committee’s discussion determined that the presuppositions were not an add-on, but a part of the rich biblical heritage needed to explain basic science concepts.
2. Questions are the heart of the “ByDesign” curriculum. The level and tracking of questions were intentional in the development of this series. Each question was tabulated, and the pacing of questions that students would encounter was put where it would have the maximum benefit.
3. Inquiry-based instruction saturates the curriculum. All four levels of inquiry are used throughout the curriculum. The use of directed and structured inquiry predominates as students learn the language and processes of science. As students become more proficient, they can begin to ask their own questions and inquire through guided and open inquiry.
4. Multi-grade organization is available. The curriculum features a four-year cycle Grades 1–4 and Grades 5–8 student and teacher multi-grade teacher guide.
5. Science methodology is taught at every level. Science laboratory procedures, equipment, recording of data, and examples of great scientists’ processes of discovery are all included in this series.
6. Lab journaling is central to the learning process. Good science practice meticulously records observations of all activities. The skill is emphasized throughout the Next Generation Science Standards for K-12 science.
7. Delivery is available in print and in digital e-book formats. Print and eBook resources are available for teachers, education associates and students. These are accessible once the series is purchased.
8. Teacher Editions (TEs) offer inquiry, instruction, and assessment in one location. The TE for each grade brings together the tools needed for lesson planning. The Big Ideas, Lesson Goals, and a plethora of tools—including features that address multiple intelligences, English language learners, language arts writing support, differentiated instruction, vocabulary, scaffolding, and assessment—are all included.
9. Health Challenges bring the physiological science concepts under study into students’ daily lives. The science concepts become reality to students as they look through the lens of their own physical health.
10. The books have beauty and appeal to students, and feature clear and up-to-date pictures, tables, and illustrations throughout. Many teachers have said this is one of their favorite aspects of the curriculum and a main reason why this series needs to be in their classrooms. When students see the books, they want to explore, discover, and read them.
These 10 reasons to like the “ByDesign” Science curriculum is just the tip of the iceberg. Educators are always looking for a more robust curriculum and ByDesign Science does just that. Using an inquiry-based curriculum will not only contribute to your student’s growth, but your own.
Teachers have said it, developers strive for it, and you too can LIKE ByDesign Science!