Across the K-12 science educator community, from NSTA to regional science conferences, there has been a lot of talk about the shift in science instruction to be driven heavily by anchoring phenomena. Presenting students with anchoring phenomena that they need to work towards understanding and explaining can be a powerful way to focus students on the “big picture” for a particular lesson. I recently got a chance to talk with Dr. Shelley Forsythe, Associate Chair of the Department of Curriculum and Instruction at Texas State University, for an in-depth discussion on Phenomena-based instruction.
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Dr. Shelley Forsythe has over 20 years of experience as a PK-16 science, math, and STEM teacher. She has published numerous articles on teaching and learning in leading national and international journals, including Science & Children and Science Scope. In 2016, Dr. Forsythe joined the faculty of Texas State University as an Associate Professor of STEM Education and currently serves as Associate Chair of the Department of Curriculum and Instruction in the College of Education.
Leone Eickhoff-Gentry taught Pre-K and 9-12 students as a performance and technical theatre teacher, speech coach, Math and Science remediation teacher, and Drop-out Recovery instructor. She was awarded national teacher of the year in 2004 by the VSArts organization at the John F. Kennedy Center in Washington, DC. Now, Leone focuses her time as a K-8 Science Marketing Manager for Savvas Learning Company. Her passion is supporting teachers and students around the world by connecting them to STEM Professionals through the Savvas Learning Virtual STEM Fairs, Professional Learning Webinars, assisting in researching and developing high quality science instructional materials.
Listen to the previous episode in the series: