What counts as knowing: Constructing a communicative repertoire for student demonstration of knowledge in science

Authors

  • Teresa Crawford

    Corresponding author
    1. Department of Elementary and Bilingual Education, California State University, Fullerton, P.O. Box 6868, Fullerton, California 92834
    • Department of Elementary and Bilingual Education, California State University, Fullerton, P.O. Box 6868, Fullerton, California 92834.
    Search for more papers by this author

Abstract

The purpose of this study was twofold. One purpose was to identify the locally negotiated literate practices that defined ways of communicating information and knowledge across the curriculum in a fourth/fifth grade classroom. Through an ethnographic and sociolinguistic set of analyses, this investigation illustrated how the teacher worked to construct a learning environment that valued the use of multiple discourses as a way of communicating competence as a learner. Another purpose was specifically to address the ways that these practices contributed to student demonstration of knowledge in science. This was accomplished by an analysis of one student's presentation of science knowledge after a study of simple machines. A comparative analysis between his use of two discourses, written and oral, showed that the opportunity to choose between multiple discourses led to his success in demonstrating competence in ways that may have otherwise remained questionable. © 2004 Wiley Periodicals, Inc. J Res Sci Teach 42: 139–165, 2005

Ancillary