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Tuesday, November 10 • 2:35pm - 3:45pm
Writing to Think: Using Notebook Writing to Guide Inquiry-Based Learning in Science

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The goal of this session is to illustrate how science notebook writing can be used to support K-12 students in thinking like a scientist, mastering science content, and developing strong writing skills. Science notebook writing can guide thinking through the inquiry process as students make predictions, record observations, reason using evidence, and communicate their findings. At another level, it provides a mechanism through which students can articulate their beliefs about the natural world, hold up evidence to reflect on the accuracy of their beliefs, and clarify misconceptions. And by engaging in writing that is purposeful, students will at the same time build skills that address many ELA writing standards. Who will benefit from this workshop? Every K-12 science teacher is charged with guiding student growth in science practices, science content, AND English literacy, so all can benefit. Workshop participants will be introduced to a notebook format used for science inquiry in the Braintree Public Schools, which we believe contributes to the strong performance the district achieves on the science MCAS. We will examine the notebook to identify how each part guides and extends science thinking, while developing writing skills. We'll have fun doing some inquiry science ourselves to practice using the notebooks. We'll examine student work to see how notebooks can be used for both formative and summative assessment. Participants will leave with a generic format that can be adapted to their own curriculum, as well as with an assessment rubric appropriate for upper elementary students. Teachers are encouraged to come with one of their own lessons in mind to see how it might be adapted to the inquiry format and supported with science notebook writing.



Dianne Rees

Director of Science K-12, Braintree Public Schools

Tuesday November 10, 2015 2:35pm - 3:45pm EST
Location TBD
  PM Breakout