Saturday, October 20, 2007

Teaching Science

I have taught science for about 35 years now. I taught science first at middle schools (7th and 8th grade), with the added goal of trying to also teach English as a second language (ESL in the teaching lingo). Then I taught high school biology, and later at private "free schools" and Montessori schools. I have taught at universities, colleges, medical schools, and art institutes. I was the Director of Education Programs for a Natural History Museum with as many as one thousand student contacts per week. I have also been a mentor teacher, and a lecturer on teaching science for high school and elementry school science teachers at the University of California, Irvine Summer Science Institute.

I hope you all will take the minute to read the following from MASSIMO PIGLIUCCI, 2007 "THE EVOLUTION-CREATION WARS: WHY TEACHING MORE SCIENCE JUST IS NOT ENOUGH" MCGILL JOURNAL OF EDUCATION ? VOL. 42 NO 2 285-306;

Finally, there is also - unfortunately - the very real concern that many science teachers are creationists themselves. This seems to me to fall into the same category of teachers' training mentioned above. We must require that teachers know the subject matter they are to present, and that they intend to teach science according to currently accepted knowledge. This is not a matter of respecting individual teachers' religious beliefs: if you believe that the earth is 10,000 years old, then you really do not understand, at a deep level, geology, physics, and biology. Consequently, you simply should not be teaching science. It is up to university-level teaching programs, as well as to the people setting hiring procedures, to make sure that unqualified individuals are not responsible for teaching our children. (emphasis added)

My next post will be about why honestly teaching science matters to Christians.

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