Science concepts are developed through multiple iterations
Phenomena Revisits Because students develop their concepts over time and after many varied interactions with the content and practices, it is critical that we provide students with as many opportunities to revisit the phenomenon and concepts through hands-on investigation, discourse, modeling, text, and collaborative work. Understand that is is valid within the instructional cycle to keep revisiting the phenomenon and to provide opportunities within the IC for:
Explanation of the phenomenon at different points in the IC
Build in some opportunities to explore related phenomena
If reaching a final explanation earlier than other related pieces in the IC, we need to still make relationship explicit
If explaining later then can intro related ideas in the middle of IC
More iterations are better than not enough. By taking the learning deeper, we can introduce related phenomena. As noted in this article, we can use the 5Es model of curriculum design in a nonlinear fashion to build in multiple iterations and deepen student learning opportunities.
Finally, it is important to note that PEs, can span more than one instructional cycle. Many times, phenomena do not allow a clear cut and dried instructional cycle to easily pair up with a PE, but do address a portion of it. It is ok and actually a good thing, to revisit the PE in another instructional cycle since this allows students more opportunities to consider their understanding and dig deeper building better concepts.
Science Tables Science Tables are like centers or stations, that students can visit during an appropriate time to learn and do science activities. They help increase opportunities for students to build and extend understanding. They become another iteration of the content in a different mode and method.
Multiple Iterations of concepts are critical to students building their scientific understanding of concepts. It isn’t always about going farther, we often need to challenge ourselves and students to go deeper. Each IC should have multiple iterations and almost every unit should have at least 3 ICs. This is usually accomplished by flexing the inquiry cycle stages and completing more loops before the evaluation stage. Science Tables / Centers are also an excellent way to build in more experiences with Science content.