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Nurturing Inquiry

Real Science for the Elementary Classroom

By Charles R. Pearce
Foreword by Wendy Saul

Tour a classroom centered on scientific inquiry where students regularly do what they do best: use their own questions, curiosities, and interests to investigate, explore, and discover. This book is full of suggestions for materials, activities, and strategies for creating classroom communities of scientists.

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    [This is] a truly inspiring and creative book that I plan to share with colleagues and students.
    —Science Books & Films

Every day children make astounding scientific discoveries. The playpen, sandbox, backyard, and playground are their laboratories. What, then, can we offer these young scientists who have spent their lifetimes acquiring knowledge through their own investigations? What experiences can we provide to enhance the growth of the scientist within each child? Charles Pearce found the answers and shares his discoveries in Nurturing Inquiry. The book offers a tour of Pearce's inquiry science classroom, where students are given daily opportunities to do what they do best: investigate, explore, and discover, using their own questions, curiosities, and interests.

Nurturing Inquiry provides all the information you need to incorporate inquiry into your curriculum. Part I is a detailed account of how Pearce prepares his classroom, his students, and himself for the introduction of inquiry. In Part II, Pearce explains how to sustain interest throughout the school year by giving students more and more ownership in their investigations both within and beyond the classroom. Part III includes ideas to help you meet the particular challenges of assessing inquiry and offers examples of various assessment instruments, including surveys, checklists, and dialogue journals.

Replete with practical ideas for materials, activities, and strategies, Nurturing Inquiry is the perfect resource for teachers looking to create a community of scientists in their classroom. But it is much more than a how-to manual—it is also an inspiring look at the reflection, choices, and values that shape the practice of a highly successful teacher.

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