• iceberg
  • boy with flowers
  • checking water quality
  • planet eclipse
  • solarsystem model
  • rangitoto trees
  • kids with test tubes
  • kids with earth
  • snowy mountains
  • teens in physics class
  • Rainbow Clouds

    Refraction and diffraction of light through ice crystals in the clouds

  • Philippa On The Ice

    Philippa On The Ice Philippa Werry at an Antarctic research camp 2016

New Zealand Science Teacher

Learning in Science

Using Solo Taxonomy to think like a scientist

Book Review

Using Solo Taxonomy to think like a scientist

by Pam Hook & Willem Tolhoek

SOLO Science 

The modern learning environment is rich with information and opportunities for our students, but it is also a bewildering place of misinformation and pseudo-science.  The greatest challenge faced by any science educator today is to provide their students with the scaffolding necessary to unpack and navigate the world of 21st Century information, data and reliable knowledge.

To this end, Pam Hook and Williem Tolhoek have put together a great resource called Using Solo Taxonomy to Think Like a Scientist: How to develop curious minds with science capabilites - Material World.  

This 80 page soft-cover, black and white book is convenient to slip into any teacher’s bag, folder or satchel.  It clearly delineates the efficacy of the SOLO taxonomy approach. Each chapter provides applied Material World examples of the tools you can use to provide your students just such a scaffolding of every topic, or skill, you are teaching them. The most tangible outcome of using these tools is that the students themselves own their own learning, and the transparency of the process puts your students in the hot seat of their own evaluation.  Training students is straight forward and fun, and they quickly become proficient at placing themselves and others within the learning framework maps, hexagons and rubrics: Pre-structural; Uni-structural; Multi-structural; Relational; Extended Abstract.

Being able to understand where their ideas fit into a continuum of knowledge, empowers your students to realise their own contribution to collaboration within their own communities of learning, and their sense of citizenship.  Along the way, your students will develop a clear, logical process of “thinking like a scientist”; developing numerous aspects of the Nature of Science competencies in the NZC. 

This book provides the educator with clear techniques, that have been used in the classroom, which are specific to tackling the skills of gathering and interpreting data.  Techniques that can be applied at any curriculum level and in any given context.  With links to other resources and on-line material, whether you are familiar with SOLO, or not, this book is a valuable source of inspiration and useful material for any science educator.

Published by Essential Resources, Edited by Tanya Tremewan, ISBN: 978-1-77655-392-1.