relate their ideas to those of other students and to what scientists already know about evolution.

In the third step, students can propose answers and develop hypotheses. Also in this step, the teacher explains what scientists know about the questions. This is the step when teachers should make the major concepts explicit and clear to the students.

Educators understand that informing students about a concept does not necessarily result in their immediate comprehension and understanding of the idea. These activities therefore provide a step referred to as elaboration in which students have opportunities to apply their ideas in new and slightly different situations.

Finally, how well do students understand the concepts, or how successful are they at applying the desired skills? These are the questions to be answered during the evaluation phase. Ideally, evaluations are more than tests. Students should have opportunities to see if their ideas can be applied in new situations and to compare their understanding with scientific explanations of the same phenomena.



The National Academies | 500 Fifth St. N.W. | Washington, D.C. 20001
Copyright © National Academy of Sciences. All rights reserved.
Terms of Use and Privacy Statement