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Nov 15 2019

Designing for Heterogeneity in 21st Century Science Learning: Towards Critical Socio-Ecological Science Education

November 15, 2019

1:00 PM - 2:30 PM




1240 W. Harrison St., Chicago, IL 60607

Dr. Megan Bang, Professor of Learning Sciences, Northwestern University

The socio-ecological challenges of the 21st century are increasingly demanding attention and response. Adaptations to the changing systems will continue to be central challenges over the coming generations that demand new forms of understandings and decision making about relations between human worlds and the natural world. Given these socio-ecological contexts what forms of science education are needed? In this talk I present research from two contexts that explore developing critical socio-ecological science education with Indigenous and non-Indigenous learners that are based in understanding cultural heterogeneity as fundamental to learning (Rosebery et. al, 2010) and the implications for teaching and learning. First, I share findings with respect to the heterogeneity of human-nature relations and their influences on Indigenous children’s epistemic practices, knowledge, reasoning and activity about, in, and with the natural world. I argue that science learning environments can and should see this heterogeneity as an opportunity to engage learners towards complex socio-ecological systems thinking and share the design of learning environments seeking to do just that. I explore how perspective taking and spatial and temporal framings shaped the kinds of reasoning and opportunities children had to learn and engage in sense making as well as the kinds of identities and social positioning that were inter-twined in these learning moments. I conclude with implications for the design of learning environments particularly those focused on preparing children to reason and engaged in decision making about critical socio-scientific issues.


Enrique Puente

Date posted

Nov 21, 2019

Date updated

Nov 21, 2019