Content Area Research



Jo Anne Vasquez

  • Vasquez, Jo Anne. (2008). Tools and Traits for Highly Effective Science Teaching, K-8. Portsmouth, NH: Heinneman.


Jessica Witherow - 4th Grade Math/Science

Barrington Place Elementary

Fort Bend ISD

Sugar Land, TX

  1. How do you keep your ELL students engaged in learning? We participate in a lot of hands on activities. We do a lot of experiments and I think that helps a lot with engagement. Students love to work with their hands. Our ELLs learn a lot more because when they are actively working on something that is tangible, it gives them better understanding of the topic being discussed.
  2. How do you differentiate your instruction? We do exit tickets almost every day, a lot of numbered heads, quick writes, and graffiti walls. Anything to keep them on their toes and actively thinking and learning.
  3. How do you integrate other subjects into Science? There is a lot of vocabulary to learn in Science and we try to get on board with the Reading teachers and Ancillary teachers to support us. They might play games, sing songs, or use an interactive word wall to develop these vocabulary skills.
  4. What types of assessments do you use to measure learning? We do a lot of group projects to see who is contributing and to see how they work together and use critical thinking to solve problems. We also have independent assessments such as vocabulary quizzes and content exams in order to get a better understanding of who is mastering the material and who needs more assistance.
  5. What resources are available for you to use with ELLs? We have a lot of pictures and vocabulary support as well as hands on activities.

Video Viewing

Marcia Ventura – 5th Grade Science – Cubesats

This is a great example of a teacher engaging her students. Every single student was actively engaged and working together. The project was a great anticipatory set to introduce cubesats and give them a better understanding of what they do and how they work.

Social Media

Ariane Huddleston – 5th Grade Science

I love this website because there a ton of resources and ideas for science teachers. I especially enjoy the Science notebooks videos. I think interactive notebooks are a great way to hold students responsible for learning as well as giving them a a hands on approach.