A Letter to Science Teachers

I promise to be gentle. I promise to speak the truth.

Somewhere in between, you may get your feelings hurt.

You often teach science as destination, as product and as disembodied fact.

Devoid of process and personality; absent of struggle and soul.

You teach science as if it were a lifeless corpse.

You delay experience, the Master Teacher, for dry prerequisites ....

Years and years of prerequisites

Four years high school, four years college

You wrongly assume its only for the brightest and the best

Its drama and narrative are lost to meaningless memorization

You imprison its greatest joys by passionless logic

You distrust curiosity and replace it with maddening content

All content all the damn time ......

Then wonder why students don't get it!!!

Its moments of failure are discarded on the chopping floor

As if,

As if there's a straight unwavering line between idea and innovation,

Between observation and progress, between problem and solution

You know there ain't, so why pretend?

Your lectures are presentations of pretense

You have forgotten, if ever you knew,

Two simple truths:

To learn science, we got to do science

and

We don't need no prerequisites or permissions to do science -

We are all natural born scientists. It is our inalienable right.

dhmurray, 5/15/2014