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An Enactment of Science

A Dynamic Balance Among Curriculum, Context, and Teacher Beliefs


Robert W. Jr. Blake

An Enactment of Science: A Dynamic Balance Among Curriculum, Context, and Teacher Beliefs examines the specific role of an urban sixth-grade teacher as she engages her students in the learning of science. With a four component model of curriculum enactment (curriculum, context, teacher beliefs, and enactment) as a guiding framework for inquiry, this book addresses an essential question in contemporary science education: Is exemplary science teaching a process of «traditional» practices, «progressive» practices, or, an eclectic combination of both, constituting some notion of a middle ground? Also examined is the teacher’s explicit process of coaching students in the use of social skills as part of the content of science as she guides students toward successful cooperative group work and collective and individual problem solving.
Robert W. Blake, Jr., suggests that pre-service and in-service teachers may want to evaluate how closely their beliefs about the curriculum, context, and teaching match the reality of their classroom situation with the potential of altering one (the curriculum) or the other (their beliefs) to enhance the enactment of science. Also, explicit teacher modeling of social skills may serve useful for students to act independently of the teacher as they engage in science activities. Finally, teachers may consider their practice a balance between traditional and progressive modes of teaching, finding what is most useful are components from both frameworks.