New Text Supplement
Teaching the Nature of Science
Reflecting the ENSI Approach

Science Surprises: Exploring the Nature of Scince is available as an eBook at Smashwords (see below). If you're looking for a unit to effectively teach the nature of science (NOS), with lessons for practicing scientific argumentation, critical and skeptical thinking, this is it. This new text supplement is intended for students in any science class, grades 7-10. It can replace the usual Ch.1 in most secondary science textbooks with an updated and more accurate treatment of how science works, what it can and cannot do, and why it's so effective for increasing our understanding of the natural world. It particularly addresses the many misconceptions about NOS. It also satisfies virtually ALL of the new NOS standards (in NGSS and Common Core).

This student text is designed to be tightly integrated with several of the free NOS lessons on the ENSI site. Teaching strategies are based on research pointing to those that are most effective, e.g., the 5-E Learning Cycle approach, student interactive discussion, and teaching NOS explicitly. There is a Teaching Guide to help do this most effectively. The Guide is currently available at no charge from the author, Larry Flammer, ENSI webmaster. Please pass the word along to your colleagues and science teacher organizations who might be interested in this eBook.

Pre-publication versions of Science Surprises have been peer-reviewed, and field-tested (by 4 middle school and 4 high school science teachers across the country and in urban, suburban and rural schools). Positive results of that testing have been applied to the current published version. Every paragraph of the text proper is adjusted for 8th grade reading level. The Teaching Guide includes worksheets, additional activities and information, suggested unit schedules, and many useful strategies to effectively implement the Science Surprises NOS materials. If you don't have the time to do the complete book in your introductory unit, just do the first 2-3 chapters, and insert the remaining chapters later in your course.

When you have some time to sample Science Surprises, please let me know what you think. In fact, I would very much appreciate it if your would write a brief review of the book (and the unit), and post it as a REVIEW on the Smashwords site. If you have any suggested improvements (corrections, changes or additions), please let the author know directly by email. Nice feature about eBooks is that they can be easily modified and re-uploaded.

The eBook is currently available for $3.99 from Smashwords (see below). I'm especially curious about how you would make this eBook available to your students, in your classroom, and at their homes. I can arrange to provide discount Coupon Code for all of your students so it would only cost them (or your school budget) $0.99 each. I also have a printed version of Science Surprises available. But it could cost about $15-25 each (depending on the total number needed and shipping costs).

You can sample and/or purchase the eBook at
The eBook is available for download in the following formats:
EPUB: to your desktop/laptop computer, iPad, iPhone, iPod Touch.
(You may need to download the free Adobe Digital Editions, for desktop and laptop computers, to read this eBook).

For Android devices, download Aldiko, a free reading app.

(for Kindle). You may need to download Kindle for PC (reads .mobi), Kindle for Mac (reads .mobi) or the popular FBReader (reads .epub, .txt, .mobi and multiple other formats).

and RTF formats should be directly readable on your desktop or laptop computer, or tablet

format can be read via your Web browser on your PC or tablet.
Smashword eBooks are also readable in Barnes & Noble's Nook.

Let me know if you have any problems downloading the entire book, or accessing the sampling of Science Surprises. For the sample, you should be able to read the first chapter and a half.

Click here for review of Douglas Allchin’s book: Teaching the Nature of Science: Perspectives & Resources. These materials nicely extend the Science Surprises NOS focus (or theme) throughout your course. Allchin explains and provides examples and resources for using authentic science historical narratives to effectively engage students. Strategies are easily applicable throughout your course.

All of the ENSI lessons are designed to engage students with active learning. iBiology tutorials (free online) will help you to learn this most effective teaching skill. So, click here for these excellent interactive tutorial video clips for teaching with student-centered interactive materials. For example, the tips and strategies for using Think-Pair-Share (TPS) are helpfully demonstrated.