Archive for the ‘Science materials primer’ Category

Primer: ‘Self-Replicating Life’

March 4, 2011

This is Part IV in a series of four posts in which TFN Insider had university scientists analyze problematic changes the State Board of Education made to science curriculum standards for Texas public schools in 2009. This year publishers will submit — and the state board will approve or reject — instructional materials based on these flawed standards. The following entry examines the current version of Texas Essential Knowledge and Skills (9)(D), which reads as follows:

(9)  Science concepts. The student knows the significance of various molecules involved in metabolic processes and energy conversions that occur in living organisms. The student is expected to:

(D)  analyze and evaluate the evidence regarding formation of simple organic molecules and their organization into long complex molecules having information such as the DNA molecule for self-replicating life.

(Other entries in series: TEKS (3)(A) – All Sides of Scientific Evidence; TEKS (7)(B) – Sudden Appearance; TEKS (7)(G) – Complexity of the Cell)

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Primer: ‘Complexity of the Cell’

March 3, 2011

This is Part III in a series of four posts in which TFN Insider had university scientists analyze problematic changes the State Board of Education made to science curriculum standards for Texas public schools in 2009. This year publishers will submit — and the state board will approve or reject — instructional materials based on these flawed standards. The following entry examines the current version of Texas Essential Knowledge and Skills (7)(G), which reads as follows:

(7)  Science concepts. The student knows evolutionary theory is a scientific explanation for the unity and diversity of life. The student is expected to:

(G)  analyze and evaluate scientific explanations concerning the complexity of the cell.

(Other entries in series: TEKS (3)(A) — All Sides of Scientific Evidence; TEKS (7)(B) — Sudden Appearance; TEKS (9)(D) – Self-Replicating Life)

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Primer: ‘Sudden Appearance’

March 2, 2011

This is Part II in a series of four posts in which TFN Insider had university scientists analyze problematic changes the State Board of Education made to science curriculum standards for Texas public schools in 2009. This year publishers will submit — and the state board will approve or reject — instructional materials based on these flawed standards. The following entry examines the current version of Texas Essential Knowledge and Skills (7)(B), which reads as follows

(7)  Science concepts. The student knows evolutionary theory is a scientific explanation for the unity and diversity of life. The student is expected to:

(B)  analyze and evaluate scientific explanations concerning any data of sudden appearance, stasis, and sequential nature of groups in the fossil record;

(Other entries in series: TEKS (3)(A) — All Sides of Scientific Evidence; TEKS (7)(G) — Complexity of the Cell; TEKS (9)(D) — Self-Replicating Life)

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Primer: Texas Science Instructional Materials

March 1, 2011

The science debate is about to heat up again in Texas, as evolution deniers on the State Board of Education attempt to deliver one of the creationist movement’s longstanding goals: getting information questioning the validity of evolution into Texas science classrooms. To get you back up to speed on what to expect in the coming months — and what is at stake in this debate — the Texas Freedom Network asked scientists from two of our state’s world-class universities to prepare a short primer on the topic. Over the course of this week, TFN Insider will publish their analysis of the four most problematic changes the state board made to Texas biology standards in 2009. (See Parts I, II, III and IV here.)

But first, let’s check a short review of where we are and how we got here.

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Primer: ‘All Sides of Scientific Evidence’

March 1, 2011

This is Part I in a series of four posts in which TFN Insider had university scientists analyze problematic changes the State Board of Education made to science curriculum standards for Texas public schools in 2009. This year publishers will submit — and the state board will approve or reject — instructional materials based on these flawed standards. The following entry examines the current version of Texas Essential Knowledge and Skills (3)(A), which reads as follows:

(3)  Scientific processes. The student uses critical thinking, scientific reasoning, and problem solving to make informed decisions within and outside the classroom. The student is expected to:

(A)  in all fields of science, analyze, evaluate, and critique scientific explanations by using empirical evidence, logical reasoning, and experimental and observational testing, including examining all sides of scientific evidence of those scientific explanations, so as to encourage critical thinking by the student;

(Other entries in series: TEKS (7)(B) — Sudden Appearance; TEKS (7)(G) — Complexity of the Cell; TEKS (9)(D) — Self-Replicating Life)

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