A Writing Template, for Probing Students' Botanical Sense of Place

J. H. Wandersee, J. H. Wandersee, J. H. Wandersee
2006 The American history teacher  
Because many incoming geoscience students did not acknowledge their previous personal encounters with the earth's geological processes or products, we developed the Geological Sense of Place (GSP) template as a convenient way to assess students' earth science backgrounds through short answer, mini-essay, and induced associative responses. The GSP was administered in introductory earth science courses for elementary education majors (n = 42, n = 56), and in a non-major introductory physical
more » ... ctory physical geology course (n = 148) at a large research university in Louisiana (US). Student opinions about the GSP were gathered as part of anonymous electronic surveys at the end of the semester (earth science courses, n = 45, n = 56; physical geology course, n = 134). Students reported that the GSP integrated their past life experiences with geology, and initiated geological thinking. Our research indicates that the GSP provides teachers with a standard method to ascertain students' personal geological knowledge and experiences before instruction begins, and to incorporate these experiences into the classroom. Teachers can determine the impact of instruction on knowledge integration by comparing initial GSP student responses with responses in the post-instruction section of the GSP. Geological Sense of Place Writing Template Name: ____________________________________________________________ The goal of this learning tool is to help you recall, and connect, the experiences you had with geological products, landforms, and processes as a youth with the concepts you are learning about physical geology this semester. PART I: Write short answers to each of the 17 "memory probes" below. 17. When you hear the word rock, which color do you associate with the word? PART II: Complete two mini-essays using memories that you've "tapped into" during PART ONE. Choose any of these "take-off sentences" to begin each essay you write. Use the two attached blank pages for the actual essay writing.
doi:10.2307/4452030 fatcat:leqymqh66jftdhv2uf3wpanizi