#ModBio Workshop Day 10


  1. Teacher Talk:
    1. HW
    2. Article
    3. Unit 3 Teacher Notes
  2. CO2 from where? Food or Oxygen
  3. Cellular Respiration Laboratory

We’ve been taking a shorter lunch all week so that we could leave a little earlier today, hence the short agenda.  Our day started with a discussion of an article we read for homework, Engaging Students in Conducting Socratic Dialogues: Suggestions for Science Teachers.  This was a very interesting article.  It began with a brief discussion about why students struggle with the idea of questioning each other.  As teachers we’ve modeled this strategy for their whole lives.  The short answer is because they have not been expected to question and they have not received guidance about what good questioning looks like.  Students are often viewed as passive recipients of information.  But in Modeling Instruction students are expected to become actively involved in constructing knowledge with each other based on careful observation, data collection and analysis, logical reasoning and most importantly questions.  Next the authors discussed the Rhodes’ typology of questions, a very thorough list of questions divided into eight categories.  This list can be very helpful for leading Socratic dialogues.    The categories of questions are: informational, interpretive, explanatory, procedural, relational, verificational, heuristic, and evaluational.  I like the framework, but I would be hesitant to use the entire list.  Geoff Schmit blogged about the use of posters to help with Socratic questioning.  I think that is a great idea.  I can definitely see some posters in my classroom in a few weeks to help guide my students and myself through this process of Socratic questioning.  The article finished with some additional suggestions to keep students comfortable so they will stay engaged in the Socratic dialogue.  Some of the highlights:

  • allow students to present without interruption
  • show respect for student conclusions
  • maintain a positive atmosphere
  • let the students feel that a new idea is theirs

Next we discussed the teacher notes for Unit 3 – Evolution.  Some members had a list topics that were part of their curriculum.  Angela pointed out that the modeling curriculum is really just a starting point.  If you have other aspects of your curriculum, please add them, but keep the storyline in mind.

The rest of the day was spent introducing and conducting our cellular respiration laboratory.  First we discussed different kinds of waste; feces, urine, and CO2.  Next we brainstormed where the CO2 might come from and came up with the air and food.  We conducted an experiment using Vernier CO2 probes.  We had four different experimental groups:

  1. dead yeast exposed to air
  2. dead yeast under a layer of mineral oil
  3. living yeast exposed to air
  4. living yeast under a layer of mineral oil

Data collection was fairly straight forward with the probes.  We collected data every 15 seconds for 4 minutes.  We analyzed the results and created a whiteboard but did not present until Monday morning.

About ryanwoodside

I help students learn science. I teach at Windham High School in Maine.
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