Yesterday we had our first meeting for #ASTBookChat. Over 50 science educators from around the country participated either asynchronously via Twitter or synchronously via Zoom. I enjoyed this experience because we shared our perspectives on and experiences with implementing Ambitious Science Teaching ideas. Although we came from different places and roles, we share similar motivations to move toward the AST vision of equity and rigor in science instruction.
We share a motivation to improve science teaching and learning for all students because it is important work. We recognize shortcomings of the status quo and see the potential for making real change with AST and NGSS ideas. We also see that our motivation is sometimes not widely shared because others are in a different place in their professional development journeys. This relates to a video that was shared during our meeting. In the video, Dan Pink explains motivation as due to three factors: Autonomy, Mastery, and Purpose. The key to motivating teachers is not teaching them the small skills, it is sharing the why. What can happen if we change our practice and how will it impact our students? If teachers buy in to the why, they will be motivated more for learning the tools and skills because they have purpose. Then they can build on their strengths to develop mastery and move closer to the AST vision.