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Transforming textbooks: AAAS and partners target K-12 science materials for improvement

Transforming K-12 science textbooks--which so often cause student anxiety, parental criticism, and teacher migraines--will be the focus of a new Center for Curriculum Materials in Science, announced today by the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS) and its education reform initiative, Project 2061.

Through the AAAS-led Center--funded by a $9.9 million, five-year grant from the National Science Foundation (NSF)--Project 2061 is now well-positioned to have its recommendations guide science curriculum development and teaching and, as a result, to help all students gain essential science knowledge and skills. The work will be carried out in collaboration with the University of Michigan, Northwestern University, and Michigan State University, along with Chicago Public Schools, Detroit Public Schools, and the Lansing School District.

The Center will draw on the materials development and teacher education expertise of the universities to address some of the serious problems previously identified by AAAS in its series of critical evaluations of middle- and high-school science textbooks. The Center's goal is to improve science curriculum materials, making sure they reflect sound research on student learning and take advantage of the most effective teaching strategies and technologies. Yet another goal is to ensure that science curriculum materials support credible standards for what students should know, such as those in AAAS's landmark report Benchmarks for Science Literacy, and in the National Research Council's National Science Education Standards.

Not confined to ivory towers, the Center collaborators will work closely with their local school-district partners to connect university research and teacher training with the realities of the classroom.

A critical national role for the new Center is the development of a cadre of experts in science curriculum materials R&D. To accomplish this, each of the university pa
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Contact: Eileen Kugler
EKugler@KuglerCom.com
703-644-3039
American Association for the Advancement of Science
21-Oct-2002


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