Apr. 22, 2015

Science Friday Discussion: Negotiating the Challenges of Teaching Evolution

by Ariel Zych

Click to enlarge images
On Tuesday, April 28th, 2015, Science Friday hosted a live online web panel to discuss strategies for addressing resistance to evolution instruction from students, staff, parents, and the community. Inspired by "The Pot-Stirrer," a video by Science Friday's Macroscope, the panel brought together experienced science educators from across the country to answer your questions about evolution in the classroom. Panelists shared their approach to introducing evolution concepts, classroom and community strategies for coping with resistance, and favorite evolution curriculum resources. You can view the entire discussion, evolution instructional resources, and information about supporting organizations below.  
Panel Discussion: Negotiating the Challenges of Teaching Evolution
Evolution Resources:
How You Can Support Evolution Education - National Center for Science Education
Ten Tips for Writing a Letter to the Editor - National Center for Science Education
Explore Evolution - HHMI's Biointeractive
Dismissing Darwin - Slate 
Understanding Evolution - UC Berkeley 
CK-12 Open Textbooks - CK-12 Foundation
Your Inner Fish - PBS Video and Resources
Grandmother Fish - Children's book on evolution
Evolution and Nature of Science Lesson Plans - Evolution and Nature of Science Institutes (ENSI)
Human Origins Program - Smithsonian
About the Panel:
Dr. Amanda Glaze
Amanda L. Glaze holds a PhD in Curriculum & Instruction-Science Education and a second major in Biological Sciences from The University of Alabama. She is presently a science specialist teaching middle grades sciences at Jacksonville Middle Preparatory Academy and is a member of graduate faculty at Texas A&M University-Commerce. Her research centers on the intersections of science and society, specifically the acceptance and rejection of evolution in the Southeastern United States and the broader impact of the conflict between religion and evolution on science literacy and the general public. She has been featured on social media outlets such as and as a guest for Ada Lovelace Day and guest curator for @RealScientists on Twitter. Her research has been published in Science Education, Science & Children, and the International Journal of Science and Math Education, and she is currently co-editor of a volume on evolution research and teaching in and around the Southeastern United States. She presently resides in Alabama with her husband, Greg, the younger two of their three children, Jaymon and Maddox (the eldest, Stephanie, is a doctoral student at University of Kansas), two beagles, a cat, a hedgehog, one carnivorous frog, and whatever other manner of flora and fauna her boys happen to drag in on any given day. 
Ariel Zych
Ariel Zych is a former biology teacher, informal educator, and entomologist. As Science Friday’s Education Manager, Ariel supports STEM teachers with free resources, builds partnerships to share STEM practices, and connects Science Friday audiences with opportunities to try science. Ariel has been an educator in a variety of formal and informal education settings including after-school science programs, outreach events, cruises, zoos, museums, and as a high school science teacher in DC Public Schools. 
Darren Massa is a middle school science teacher & technology coordinator at Chico Country Day School, in Chico, CA. Darren has been teaching for over 15 years, was a Los Angeles County Teacher of the Year nominee and is a Google Certified teacher. Follow @darrenmassa, or visit his website at
John Doty is in his 4th year teaching Biology at LaPorte High School in LaPorte Indiana
Follow Mr. Doty @MrJDoty
Meet the Moderator: "The Pot-Stirrer" Dr. Amanda Glaze:


About Ariel Zych

Ariel is Science Friday's education manager. She is a former teacher and scientist who spends her free time making food, watching arthropods, and being outside. You can follow her @arieloquent

The views expressed are those of the author and are not necessarily those of Science Friday.
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