Table of Contents
Teacher Gift Store
What is Event-Based Science?
Special Needs Students
Skeptic is Won Over
How Do Schools Use EBS
Event-Based Science meets National
Science Education Standards!
Event-Based Science modules
are motivating for students, but they are challenging for
teachers. In the EBS classroom, the teacher must often play
the role of coach or guide. Few among us have been trained
to play such a role. We are also asked to promote equity in
our classrooms. What exactly does that mean, and how does
Event-Based Science fit in?
This page will be the site for
ideas and strategies to help you become a better teacher of
Event-Based Science. Expect the site to grow, and links to
be added. If you have a problem or a solution to share,
please send it to us at: email@example.com
How do you recognize an effective
middle school science classroom when you see one? Whether or
not you use Event-Based Science, there are effective things
you can do now. See
a comparison of what works and what
doesn't. If you are using EBS
and your principal is skeptical, print out this comparison
and show it to your principal.
our on-going attempt to identify problems and propose
Event-Based Science doesn't
tell me what to do each day?
Although the Event-Based Science
instructional model begins with a prescribed sequence--Hook,
discussion, Task, readiness--it doesn't prescribe what to do
after that. What should I do next?
That's up to you to decide. According
to National Science Education Standards Teaching
Standards, "Teachers of science ... select science content
and adapt and design curricula to meet the interests,
knowledge, understanding, abilities, and experiences of
The EBS module is a resource for you
to use as you work to meet National Teaching
- Familiarize yourself with
everything in the Teacher's Guide and Student
- Select the order in which
you plan to conduct the science
- Allow plenty of time after
each activity. Ample discussion is required if deep
understanding is your goal.
- Select appropriate
discovery files and decide who will read each of
- Select other resources
that you will use (readings, demonstrations, labs,
- Let student's questions
guide your selection of what to do
- Finally, when students
have the knowledge and skills they need to accomplish the
task, turn the work over to them. It's their job to apply
what they have learned as they strive to accomplish the
Where do I find
Event-Based Science requires
teachers and students to gather information. Where do I
start? How do I point students in the right
Event-Based Science modules provide
information in Discovery Files and In the
News. These essays and newspaper articles represent the
kinds of information that a teacher might collect and keep
in a vertical file. But they are only examples! You should
begin to establish such a file now. Add to it over time. Let
your students add to it. Update it constantly. Remove old
explanations when new ones appear. After all, that is the
essence of science.
Brainstorming sessions should be used
frequently. If your students are having problems knowing
where to go for information, ask them to brainstorm.
Together, they will probably come up with wonderful
Two for you to throw in, if your students miss them, are the
yellow pages directory, and an "800" number
Have a discussion about finding information immediately after the
the HOOK, or after the task is presented. The hook often leaves unanswered
questions and disagreement. Challenge your students to think of ways to
Event-Based Science creates a
grading challenge. Although scoring rubrics are included
with all activities. How should a teacher actually assign
One of the grading problems is the
lack of rubrics for the tasks. We do not have rubrics for
any of our tasks because teachers who use EBS modules prefer
to develop rubrics with their students. (In the early
development of EBS we tried prescribed rubrics for our
tasks, but abandoned them in favor of the home-grown
Begin to design your home-grown
rubrics as you are about to turn your students loose to work
on the task. Review the task's requirements and ask your
students to tell you what would be the difference between
meeting the goals laid out in the task and not meeting those
goals. A four-point scale (3,2,1,0) is easy to develop.
Three points goes to the best work as defined by you and
your students. One point is for minimal acceptable work, and
two points is somewhere in between. Zero points means that a
student doesn't even try.
To assign individual grades, be sure
to have a different rubric for each role.
More suggestions will be added, but
for now, you might wish to read an article about a unique
way to average student grades. Success
for All: The Median is the Key, by Russell G.
If you envisioned images of
children actively posing
questions, seeking answers to
questions that they care about, demonstrating a strong
interest in outcomes, and discussing their theories and
ideas with others, you've shared in a glimpse of what makes
educators so excited about the possibilities of
inquiry-based learning. At its best, inquiry-based learning
makes excellent educational sense.
Event-Based Science requires teachers
and students to pose better questions.
Event-Based Science promotes
equity in a number of ways. What help does it provide and
how can I take advantage of the help the Event-Based Science
modules and instructional model provide?
The Event-Based Science Web site is
currently adding support for students with special
Needs Page page provides
general adaptation guidelines as well as links to worksheets
and other support.
Sequencing of Event-Based
Event-Based Science modules have
no prescribed sequence. However, when you first introduce
your students to Event-Based Science they will need more
structure and support. Activities will also take longer that
How do I provide that structure?
What kind of support are you talking about?
Event-Based Science modules have
science activities that are inquiry focused. They are more
than hands-on, they ask students to think! This is
frightening to some students. If you have never given your
students an activity that poses a problem then challenges
them to design an experiment to solve it, they may flounder
at first. Although some floundering is to be expected. Too
much floundering will require your intervention. That
intervention may be in the form of helping the class to
design an experiment. A brainstorming session with the whole
class, may result in a number of different experimental
If you choose to provide this kind of help, make sure that
your students know your purpose. You may be helping this
time, but next time you will expect them to design their own
experiment. Help them focus on the kinds of questions you
are asking, and the kinds of thought processes you are
leading them through.
Other answers will be
Event-Based Science requires
students to conduct "inquiry" laboratory activities. What
does that mean? How are they different? Why is it important
to do these activities with little guidance? Why is the
discussion after the activity the most important part of the
Inquiry-based instruction involves
students in the active search for answers to questions. It
has them designing their own experiments and reporting their
findings in the ways they choose. Teaching
Science through Inquiry, by: David L.
provides a more thorough discussion of the topic than you
Other ideas will be added.
Event-Based Science is a
constructivist model. What does that mean? What are its
assumptions? How is a constructivist classroom
A foundational premise of constructivism is that "children
actively construct their knowledge. Rather than simply
absorbing ideas spoken at them by teachers, or somehow
internalizing them through endless, repeated rote practice,
constructivism posits that children actually invent their
ideas. They assimilate new information to simple,
preexisting notions, and modify their understanding in light
of new data. In the process, their ideas gain in complexity
and power, and with appropriate support children develop
critical insight into how they think and what they know
about the world as their understanding increases in depth
and detail. Constructivism emphasizes the careful study of
the processes by which children create and develop their
ideas. Its educational applications lie in creating
curricula that match (but also challenge) children's
understanding, fostering further growth and development of
the mind." Erik F. Strommen, Children's Television Workshop
and Bruce Lincoln, Bank Street College of Education
You can find the full text of this and other helpful
on constructivism and education
by following this link to the site of the Maryland
Collaborative for Teacher Preparation.
Other ideas will be added.
For links to Event-Based Science
books and pages, return to the EBS home page:
Science Home Page
1997-2011 Event-Based Science Project
was first posted on February 6, 1997, at the suggestion of
Myrna Justus and Pat Hagan.