On Butterflies and Silences: Exploring Teachers' and Students' Experiences in High School Biology Classrooms
This paper is a hermeneutic inquiry into how students and teachers experience the biology classroom and how they navigate between expectations from external factors leading to classrooms that are focused on memorizing facts and the desire to engage students deeply in the discipline of biology. From data collected from semi-structured interviews with teachers and students, and an open-ended questionnaire, the paper explores the experiences and assumptions about teaching biology that is prevalent in the classroom. The inability of teachers or students to be able to point to memorable experiences within the classroom leads to a discussion of students’ experience of biology as a passive transmission of facts that are often considered irrelevant and boring. The paper explores the teachers’ sense of conflict between wanting to instill a love for biology in their students and their perceived role in preparing students to memorize information for tests and prepare students for post-secondary school.
LicenseAuthors who publish with this journal agree to the following terms:
- Authors retain copyright and grant the journal right of first publication with the work simultaneously licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution License that allows others to share the work with an acknowledgement of the work's authorship and initial publication in this journal.
- Authors are able to enter into separate, additional contractual arrangements for the non-exclusive distribution of the journal's published version of the work (e.g., post it to an institutional repository or publish it in a book), with an acknowledgement of its initial publication in this journal.
- Authors are permitted and encouraged to post their work online (e.g., in institutional repositories or on their website) prior to and during the submission process, as it can lead to productive exchanges, as well as earlier and greater citation of published work (See The Effect of Open Access).