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CA CCSS Speaking and Listening in Science

Students need to understand and be able to use academic language to speak, listen, and write about their knowledge and experience with scientific concepts.

Productive dialogue supports and improves writing, and it provides scaffolding and reduces the task demands associated with reading (Beauchamp, et al., 2011). Students benefit from talking to a peer, hearing a peer’s thoughts, and making sense of new ideas to understand scientific language and concepts.

Providing hands-on investigations coupled with “accountable talk” increases student understanding and provides a foundation for explaining the phenomena. Reading independently and then talking with a partner and writing about science concepts using evidence from the investigation or the text to share their observations and explanations using academic language solidifies student understanding.

The CA CCSS for ELA/Literacy highlight how speaking and listening can be integrated into science lessons through one or more of the following:

  • Conversation and collaboration;
  • Expression of point of view;
  • Use of evidence and rhetoric to support statements; and,
  • Adaptation of language to a variety of contexts.