Long-term Sabbatical

Designing and teaching an evolution curriculum for elementary students

PI(s): Joseph Fail (Johnson C Smith University)
Start Date: 1-Sep-2006
End Date: 31-Aug-2007
Keywords: education, ecology, evolutionary theory

Elementary children are quite capable of understanding science concepts usually reserved for college and advanced high school level students. I know this because my biology students and I are in our 10th year of teaching ecology to 3rd through 6th grade students using a one year long curriculum – teaching one day per week. Our curriculum guide is my paper on teaching ecology to elementary students (American Biology Teacher 65:341-346) which outlines the content and methods of instruction for such a curriculum. I propose to write and test a curriculum of the same model for the teaching of evolution to elementary students.
The goal of this project would be to write and publish a year-long curriculum for the teaching of evolution to elementary students, then initiate a trial teaching effort to test its possibilities, and then evaluate the effort.

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