Reviewed by Diana Wiig
Professor of Science/Mathematics Methods
If you’re a teacher looking for a resource to help you in your science teaching, look no further than NSTA Pathways to the Science Standards. This book is a gem. In one little book, you will learn how to implement all the Standards: teaching, assessment, professional development, content, program, and system.
The book is organized to take the reader through the standards and the underlying concepts. This elementary edition looks at the content standards for grade K-4, but because some elementary schools still include 5th and 6th grade, the book also includes middle school tandards that apply to those levels.
Constructivism is emphasized throuoghout the book, with the teacher’s role defined and modeled. Examples of classrooms that facilitate student learning are used to demonstrate the Standards in practice. Each example includes a preparation for science, assessment, and a written scenario from a real classroom. Another section features programs for elementary science that complement the standard. Some of the featured programs are FOSS (Full Option Science System), BSCS (Biological Science Curriculum Study), and GEMS (Great Explorations in Math and Science). At the end of each section is a resource list available on the CD-ROM that comes with the book. Complete texts for most of the resources can be found on the CD. My favorite part of the book is the content standards section. In addition, there are sciLINKS to URLs selected by science educators to enhance and support the vision presented in the book.
The appendices are just as informative as the body of the book. Here you will find the history of the Standards, the complete listing of the Standards, how to design school science facilities, addresses for the programs mentioned earlier, and further reading to help the teacher set goals on the road to professional development. Each time I read this book I find something new to think about. Do yourself a favor--treat yourself to this book!
Review posted on 2/5/2001