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Active and Hands-On Science Instruction (K-6)

With the advent of the new science standards, are you finding it increasingly difficult to make science more interesting and “hands-on?” In order to create student interest and fascination in science, teachers need to design curriculum where students do not simply learn about science, but also “do” science. This online course is designed for K-6 teachers who are interested in learning a variety of ways to enhance their science instruction through active, hands-on experiences, while at the same time being able to “hit” the various standards. Teachers will gain a variety of ideas for conducting hands-on experiments and investigations, establishing science learning stations, integrating science with other content areas, and using technology to enhance science instruction. Time will also be spent on introducing ways to integrate science into other content areas including language arts and math. Teachers will also learn specific strategies for making science motivating so that even their hardest-to-reach student populations (which include English language learners and students with special needs) will be able to make sense of the new science standards in an engaging and fun way. This course is worth 3 ⅓ semester units/5 quarter units from UC San Diego Extension. For detailed information on university credit, click here.

"I thoroughly enjoyed this course and am excited to use the information and insight in my classroom. The material and resources are excellent and useful. The ideas and concepts motivated me to use more hands-on inquiry based science lessons in my classroom." - Judy Compton


Enrollment Options

Register] Course Registration Only $120 with the discount

Register]Course Plus Credit from UC San Diego Extension Only $304


Required Resource Book: This course has a modestly-priced required resource book (available in both new and used versions) that can be purchased through Amazon using the following link. Note that you can begin and participate in your course before the book arrives.

On Teaching Science: Principles and Strategies Every Educator Should Know” by Jeffrey Bennett

If you are registering for multiple courses, use the following link to access the book list for all PDI courses with direct purchase links through Amazon. PDI Course Resource Book List


Topical Outline / Click here to request a copy of the detailed syllabus

PDI Course Number: 98T02

UCSD Course Number: EDUC41446

Unit One

  • Introduction to Science Education
  • Science Standards
  • Beyond the Textbook
  • Assignment #1: Write an autobiography
  • Test #1

Unit Two

  • Science Stations
  • Cool and Easy Science Experiments
  • Science Classroom Management
  • Assignment #2: Article reflection
  • Test #2

Unit Three

  • Integrating Science and Language Arts
  • Integrating Science and Math
  • Integrating Science and Technology
  • Create a Science WebQuest
  • Assignment #3: Respond to a classmate
  • Test #3

Unit Four

  • Beyond the Science Classroom
  • Science Vocabulary
  • Science Assessment
  • Test #4

Unit Five

  • Engaging Students in the Process of Science
  • Strategies for Working with English Language Learners
  • Strategies for Working with Students with Special Needs
  • Test #5

Unit Six

  • Science Trade Books
  • Science Websites
  • Getting Parents Involved
  • Assignment #4: Create three hands-on integrated science lessons
  • Assignment #5: Reading/Learning Log (Based on required resource book)