SEARCH

SEARCH BY CITATION

Abstract

An integrative curriculum strategy emphasizing science process skills and hands-on activities expanded the time allocated for in-depth science instruction by replacing a district-adopted basal reading program with science-content reading designed to facilitate applied comprehension skills. This study investigated the combined effect of these curricular components (i.e., in-depth science, science-content-based reading) upon student achievement, attitudes, and self-confidence in both science and reading over the school year. In doing so, teachers in three fourth-grade classrooms each incorporated applied reading (and language arts) objectives into science reading activities as part of a daily, expanded, in-depth science teaching block that encompassed the total instructional time originally allocated to reading and science. Using multivariate covariance analysis, results showed that the students in the experimental group, compared to demographically similar controls, not only displayed significantly greater standardized test achievement as measured by the Iowa Tests of Basic Skills reading subtest and the Metropolitan Achievement Test science subtest, but also displayed a more positive attitude toward science and reading and greater self-confidence in learning science. Implications of the strategy for future curriculum research in science education are discussed.