Integrating curriculum: how can a young adult novel be used to implement science-based inquiry circles in an integrated middle school language arts class?





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This capstone focuses on the idea of integrating science topics into a language arts class by using young adult literature. After reading the novel, My Sister's Keeper, a class of seventh grade students formed inquiry circles, which are an offshoot of the constructivist method of teaching, based on questions they had about the scientific and medical information covered in the novel. In their science classes, the students were learning about diseases and genetics, which is how the two classes were integrated in a shared model. Within the inquiry circles the students researched their questions and discussed how the additional information increased their understanding of the literary aspects of the novel. The students researched by using the internet and interviewing a doctor. Each inquiry circle created a wiki, which is an inter-active website. The wikis were used as an assessment of the work the students did in inquiry circles.

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