Workshop Opening,
Need for Change


To persuade workshop participants that the time and effort necessary to make changes will be well spent, workshops should first convey that students—even many of the nation’s finest—do not understand important and basic science concepts. Participants may vary widely in their appreciation of the need for change and their ideas about what the nature of the change should be. Some may believe other teachers’ students aren’t learning but that their students are. Some may think that high SAT scores or high school grades guarantee a high level of science literacy.

Sample workshop options in this section illustrate alternative ways to establish the fact that this fundamental problem, science illiteracy, is all around us.

Option A: Video on Astronomy Misconceptions

Option B: Interpreting Data in Newspaper Article

Option C: Video on Photosynthesis Misconceptions

Option D: Video on Molecular Misconceptions

Option E: Students’ Misconceptions About Cells

Option F: Participants List Needed Changes