Volume 37 - Number 2 - 1996 | DOI: 10.5032/jae.1996.02001
Efforts to improve teaching and learning in science education are concurrent with endeavors in agricultural education to increase agricultural literacy. Science educators advancing an experiential approach to teaching might be interested in using agriculturally-oriented strategies, especially if such strategies positively impact science process skill development. Science process skills include the ability to observe, communicate, compare, order, relate, and infer. The intent of this study was to explore the impact that two types of agriculturally-oriented experiential instructional strategies had upon science process skill development. The data collection approach was qualitative in nature and included direct researcher observation of written and verbal student responses to a series of activities. Three classrooms were observed during a 10 week period in which one classroom was taught science using short, in-class projects, another was taught using an ongoing gardening project, and the other class taught using a traditional, teacher-oriented expository strategy. Science process skills were observed both prior to the study and after the study. Findings from the study supports that participation in agriculturally-oriented experiential activities positively impacts the development of science process skills.