Sunday, November 15, 2015

Buehl Reading Comments

Buehl makes an interesting point about a student's "match-up" with the author when they are presented with domain-specific texts. Does the student match up with the author's experience, vocabulary, and conceptual knowledge about the topic at hand? As future science teachers, I think that this awareness will be particularly important if we are trying to introduce our students to scientific texts or research; after all, most scientific conceptual knowledge is not necessarily intuitive, and the students are not incredibly likely to come across scientific vocabulary in their everyday life. That being said, how can we help ease our students' transition into scientific literacy? This question might be the basis of Buehl's discussion and inclusion of strategies for frontloading instruction.

Buehl also mentions that students of poverty may have more significant knowledge gaps due to the lack of availability of out-of-school resources. While this isn't too surprising, it does affect how a teacher needs to modify their teaching styles in the classroom. We often think of the American education system as a general "equalizer," where students of any background have the opportunity and resources to succeed. However, according to Buehl, students with greater knowledge gaps can quickly become apathetic or demoralized if they see themselves as falling behind with respect to their peers. How can we make a more equitable school experience for students of all backgrounds?

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