The middle school science classroom is often students’ first contact with a scientific presentation on evolution. This is an expanded version of the author’s article “Evolution and Middle-Level Education: Observations and Recommendations” that was published in the Jan/Feb 2005 issue of NCSE Reports. Note that this article is based primarily on the author’s experience rather than academic research. A list of selected resources follows.
Teaching Evolution to Middle Level Students
By Vince Sperrazza
The 12 year old hand goes up at the first mention of the word evolution, “Is it true we came from monkeys?” It’s the first day of school, and I mention evolution in a list of topics for the year ahead in my 7th grade life science classes.
That’s the nature of middle school students. Impulsive, inquisitive, focused on their peers, yet they can still be excited about learning. As their brains try to catch up with their fast growing bodies, they are “hormones with feet,” as one adolescent psychologist characterized them many years ago. Continue reading Teaching Evolution to Middle Level Students