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A History of Ideas in Science Education: Implications for Practice

4.7 out of 5 stars 3 customer reviews
ISBN-13: 978-0807730539
ISBN-10: 080773053X
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 269 pages
  • Publisher: Teachers College Press (February 1, 1991)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 080773053X
  • ISBN-13: 978-0807730539
  • Product Dimensions: 6.2 x 0.7 x 9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 14.4 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (3 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #958,334 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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By Gavin W. Fulmer on February 16, 2006
Format: Paperback
DeBoer presents good detail about the history of key ideas in science education. It primarily focuses on the field as it has evolved in the US, but he does bring in information about early influences from Europe. It's very enlightening to think that many of the "reform" movements of the last 30 years are reincarnations of arguments from almost 100 years ago. That being said, the book isn't great. I think DeBoer's writing style is dry and at times clunky. You'll really want to know this information to get through it all.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
One of the complicated things about science education is that there are so many reasons to do it. Because time in school is limited, focusing on one outcome often means paying less attention to another. We might want children to like science, we might want them to go deep to understand the structure of a specific scientific discipline, we might want them to get a broad understanding across many areas of science so that they are scientifically literate, we might want them to have a good idea of how science works and how it helps figure things out, or we might want them to focus on socially relevant problem such as climate change. Then, even if we agree on a couple of these objectives, there are different ways of getting there.

DeBoer tells the story of how scientists, education theorists, and teachers in the U.S. have negotiated their way between the different goals and different approaches to teaching science over the past 150 years or so. He has distilled a great deal of original source material into a very readable 241 pages. There is great value in being able to survey shifts in science education thinking over such a broad span of time in a relatively short book. The reader comes away with a sense of how this negotiation between scientists and educators works, and of why it sometimes seems that science education revisits the same issues over time.

Like others involved in working with science teachers, I am currently thinking about the Next Generation Science Standards that are being developed from the Framework for K-12 Science Education.
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By Jia Guo on September 12, 2015
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Good!
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