I teach in a large city at a Title I school where all of our students receive free breakfast and lunch and most of our students read far below grade level. We have a very small science department with limited supplies that we teachers often buy with our own personal funds. Many of our students often have a difficult time getting to school or staying in school with jobs and family responsibilities on top of their education requirements.
Despite all of these challenges that our students face every day, they come to school full of questions and a desire to learn about the world around them.
They bring enormous amounts of energy to discussing how science relates to their lives and can help their community. It is my job as a science teacher to give my students every support possible to help them learn and succeed no matter what kind of obstacles may stand in their way.
I am teaching a brand new science course for seniors this year that will guide students through an exploration of how science affects their current and future communities. Students will be researching topics of personal relevance and applying their findings to potential solutions for problems faced by their communities. Many students feel that science is not relevant to their lives, and my hope is that this course will help them to see that understanding science concepts can give them the power and agency to make a positive difference in the world around them.
One of the many challenges my students face is a lack of access to current, interesting, and empowering resources.
Our school does not have a library and our class only has access to a laptop cart some of the time. Even when we have a full laptop cart, there are not enough for a full class of students. These books will give my students access to information they need to be successful in their chosen inquiries. I have chosen these books because of their current information, relevance to topics of student interest, and consideration of diverse perspectives. These resources will give my students a necessary foundation for applying science concepts to address real issues that affect their lives everyday.
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