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Writing in Science Class

Most of the writing people do during the course of life is nonfiction, yet the focus for writing has been on fiction. As the common core is implemented into every school, nonfiction reading and writing is becoming a part of regular writing class. Students need to learn how to write about the things they learn. So writing in science class is becoming an expectation as well as a valuable learning tool. When teachers consider a master’s degree in literacy regardless of the subject they teach, they are ensuring that students can be excellent literacy learners regardless of their area of interest.

Why Science?

Science is integral to everything we do as human beings. It is personal and affects our daily lives. Students can connect to science in different ways so writing in science class helps them share how they look at the world. Science also crosses subject areas. It can be found in history, foreign languages, math, and even cooking. This means that students will encounter science no matter what their interests are. So teachers who learn to teach literacy skills across the science curriculum through a master's degree in literacy can have the ability to affect all areas of student interests and academics.

What Does Writing in Science Class Look Like?

Science writing can often be dry and uninteresting. When students learn to add narrative to their science facts, they create personal stories with factual bases that draw readers in and make the writers’ points understandable. But what does writing in science class look like? When science students want to make themselves understood, they must use language arts skills and strategies to help them get their points across. They need to learn to use figurative language, theme, and story structure (sequencing). With these tools they are more likely to ensure that readers understand their research. Scientists are also likely to write lab reports, which require a higher degree of literacy. In addition, they need to learn how to write about the steps they took in an experiment so that readers will be able to replicate their work. This requires clarity and good word choice. A teacher with a master’s degree in literacy is more likely to feel confident about teaching these writing strategies.

One of the myths that someone with a master’s degree in literacy can help dispel is that writing is innate. Writing take practice and skill. It is equal to if not more important than the subject being learned. When students learn to write across curricular subjects, they connect with what they know and think about these subjects as well. Writing in science class is great way to help students learn and retain information.

Learn more about the UTA online M.Ed. in Curriculum and Instruction — Literacy Studies program.


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