I would have to disagree with my colleague because I feel it is important and relevant to teach the nature of science. A quote taken from Appendix H said, “Humans have a need to know and understand the world around them. And they have the need to change their environment using technology in order to accommodate what they understand or desire.” To a teaching colleague who might say, “Why do my students and I need to know about the nature of science?” I would first explain to them what the nature of science means and what the role of the teacher and the student would be. I believe they would be more accepting of teaching the nature of science in this manner. “Science is a way of explaining the natural word,” as stated in Appendix H. I want to engage my students in their learning and have them activity participating in their learning. I can do this through the questions students ask and the topics that are of interest to them and that they are curious about. Students are engaged when it’s something they have an interest in. By presenting students with phenomena that gets them excited, talking, and questioning is one way we can get students learning about the nature of science. If students have initiated the questions themselves, develop a theory to test, setup different snares, they will take away so much more and be better able to reflect on their learning. This process stimulates creative thinking and promotes higher order thinking on the part of the student instead of reading a textbook or listening to a lecture.
Thank you for your post, I agree with you. It makes me think about a student-focused classroom versus a teacher-focused classroom. We want our students to take the lead in their learning as they deepen their understanding of a topic. It makes me think about how my classroom is set up and designed and if the structures I have in place support scientific inquiry. It also made me think about how we need to establish a classroom culture in support of students asking questions, exploring, and being confused. Are we allowing students to push themselves even when things get challenging? Is there enough direct instruction being taught so that student can apply their content? I have always felt there needs to be a balance of both, especially at the elementary level. We are developing those primary skills and setting them up for success in the future.