Science is a fun, interactive subject where discovery and amazement combine.
Science is also a subject that may be difficult for some students because of the concepts being taught. At times, science also involves a lot of reading and math which can definitely be a struggle for many students.
How can a parent help their struggling child in this subject area?
Science strategies help set the foundational skills and build on particular essential concepts.
3 Incredible Science Strategies;
Like any subject, there are a LOT of different strategies to help students who struggle with Science. Let’s dive into three strategies I’ve used as both a teacher and a mother;
1. Student Thinking / Science Content Storyline Lenses
One strategy that can be used to help support a student who is struggling in Science is the student thinking and science content storyline lenses.
This strategy allows the student to learn and use the information more effectively. When using this strategy, the student divides his/her paper in half and then labels the left-hand side “Student Thinking” and the right-hand side “Science Content Storyline.”
On the student thinking side, the student will write questions that they may have about a specific concept. The student will also write down questions that the teacher asks that he/she wants them to think about. These questions should probe, elicit, and challenge the student’s thinking and ideas.
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On the content storyline, the student will write down the learning goal and purpose with a focus question. The teacher will then provide activities that are relevant to the learning goal with essential notes.
Once this is completed, the student will write down content models/representations, key takeaways about the lesson, clear links that were formed, and link this concept to others already learned if applicable.
2. Communicating In Scientific Ways Chart
Another strategy that can be used is a “Communicating in Scientific Ways” chart. When utilizing this chart, the student will make three columns.
- The first column is titled “What a scientist does?”.
- The second column is titled “symbol.”
- The third column is titled “What a scientist says?”
When using this strategy, the student will be able to visualize the information in a variety of ways. In the first column, the student will write down what a scientist does. The second column, the student will draw a picture of what he/she wrote in the first column. In the third column, the student will write that information in a scientific way.
Using this strategy, the student will have a variety of ways to remember the material from a picture, to “regular” words, to the scientific meanings.
The third strategy that can be used to help the struggling student are foldables. This strategy is useful for all science concepts. Using a foldable allows the student to grasp the concepts better and summarize the main ideas.
The foldables are designed to encourage the student to communicate the information in a variety of ways including graphs, charts, models, Venn diagrams, and written text.
The student’s motivation, retention, and concept understanding also increase when using these types of kinesthetic representations. Foldables also serve as a study guide because it allows for comparisons of key concepts, develops and highlights connections to prior knowledge, and allows the student to be creative.
Utilizing these strategies allow the student to understand the material in a more meaningful way. The information is broken down into a more manageable and understandable way. Additionally, one-on-one special needs tutoring can help advance your child’s learning faster, especially if all of the strategies you try don’t seem to work.
What are some strategies you have used to help children better understand science? (Please share in the comments below)