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Core Knowledge and the Science Sequence

Lynn Ingegneri - Wednesday, December 03, 2014

I love the marriage of Core Knowledge® content, and its sequence of units, with the classical pedagogy of understanding the grammar of a subject first, progressing on to using logic, and then culminating in expressing well-reasoned synthesis of a body of knowledge through rhetoric. As a former bioengineer, I really appreciate being able to teach the Core Knowledge sequence in 7th grade which begins with atomic structure and flows into chemistry, macromolecules of life, cells, organisms, genetics, the fossil record, and natural selection and mutation. This is the logical order of teaching science precept on precept. Other Colorado schools get the "cart before the horse" by placing cells and evolution in 7th grade and genetics and chemistry afterward in 8th grade. This suggests a compartmentalization of scientific ideas and deprives students of important foundations of science that are the grammar of the next topic. My students have the benefit of understanding the way life really works, can reason and give evidences for and against historic and present-day theories, and can articulate their ideas while integrating several branches of science in a fluid fashion.

Debbie Esterline
6th and 7th Grade Science