Sciracy Pauline Roberts

Sciracy: Transformational Student Led Science & Literacy Course Invented by Teacher Pauline Roberts

Pauline Roberts teaches literacy and science together in an award winning new approach her students call sciracy. Using this approach, her 5th and 6th graders organize their own field trips and learning projects as they research sustainability in metro Detroit. In this episode of Every Classroom Matters, Pauline describes the power of sciracy and how her school has chosen to use this method throughout the school with a weekly 2 hour course for fifth and sixth graders.

[button href=”″ primary=”true” centered=”true”]Listen to Pauline Roberts Talk about “Sciracy”[/button]

With the sciracy approach, these fifth and sixth graders are playing the role of researcher, consultant, teacher, and learner. Not only are students learning but they are sharing and helping local businesses become more sustainable.

After seeing Pauline's success, the visionary leadership of her school, intent on scaling up best practices, created a course so every student in fifth and sixth grade would have two hours per week learning through sciracy. Impressively, this Science Literacy course (named “Sciracy” by the students — because it rhymes with piracy) is a student led class. Although Pauline says other teachers were nervous at first, they are sold  on the merits of the course because curiosity drives the learning.

The best twenty first century schools have a student led learning experiences. If you're looking for best practices, sciracy  is a best practice that also meets science and literacy standards.

[endorsement photo=”” cite=”Pauline Roberts” byline=”5th / 6th Grade Teacher, Bloomfield Hills, Michigan”]Teachers were nervous at first because the course is student led. But after they see student engagement and that this is driven by student curiosity, they are sold.[/endorsement]

[button href=”″ primary=”true” centered=”true”]Listen to Pauline Roberts Talk about “Sciracy”[/button]

Show Notes ECM #43: Blended Learning: Teaching Sustainability and Literacy By Exploring Needs and Wants

This winner at the Microsoft Innovative Educator Global Forum 2012 award shares how she and her co-teacher meshed science and literacy together into the award winning “sciracy” approach.  Originally from the United Kingdom, Pauline teaches 5th and 6th grade science in Michigan.

In this episode, Pauline describes the sustainability project which won her the Microsoft award.  As part of the project, her students organized their own field trips into the community, with chaperones and business contacts, during the school day.

She describes “Sciracy” as a blend of science and literacy.  Using this approach, she and teaching partners gained time usually used in preparing students for testing. During the projects, students worked at the higher levels of Bloom’s Taxonomy, creating flyers for distribution and conducting interviews with business owners.

Add Teacher Pauline Roberts To Your PLN

Pauline will be presenting, “Teaching kids to harness technology to solve global problems” at the upcoming ISTE Conference in Atlanta, Georgia on Sunday, June 29, 2014 at 4:15 pm.

[callout]Every Classroom Matters is a bi-weekly podcast by Vicki Davis on BAM Radio network dedicated to excellent education. Listening will help you teach with better results, lead with a positive impact, and live with a greater purpose. Subscribe.

Show notes prepared by Lisa Durff, Production Coordinator for Every Classroom Matters.

Need help listening to the show?

If you’re clicking “Play” on the BAM Radio Site, this often works best in Internet Explorer. Or subscribe in a podcatcher. I have a tutorial to help you.[/callout]

[reminder]Do your students have a student-led learning experience at your school? Please share.[/reminder]

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Vicki Davis

Vicki Davis is a full-time classroom teacher and IT Director in Georgia, USA. She is Mom of three, wife of one, and loves talking about the wise, transformational use of technology for teaching and doing good in the world. She hosts the 10 Minute Teacher Podcast which interviews teachers around the world about remarkable classroom practices to inspire and help teachers. Vicki focuses on what unites us -- a quest for truly remarkable life-changing teaching and learning. The goal of her work is to provide actionable, encouraging, relevant ideas for teachers that are grounded in the truth and shared with love. Vicki has been teaching since 2002 and blogging since 2005. Vicki has spoken around the world to inspire and help teachers reach their students. She is passionate about helping every child find purpose, passion, and meaning in life with a lifelong commitment to the joy and responsibility of learning. If you talk to Vicki for very long, she will encourage you to "Relate to Educate" or "innovate like a turtle" or to be "a remarkable teacher." She loves to talk to teachers who love their students and are trying to do their best. Twitter is her favorite place to share and she loves to make homemade sourdough bread and cinnamon rolls and enjoys running half marathons with her sisters. You can usually find her laughing with her students or digging into a book.

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