Techniques for Teaching Laboratory Activities in the Secondary Science Classroom

Dara J. Dorsey
Buffalo State College


This course provides science education majors with the opportunity to learn science laboratory teaching techniques; emphasis will be placed on the requirements for New York State classrooms. Topics will include the design of lab activities for each of the four science cognates, the development of a supply budget (including both equipment and on-going maintenance), an examination of chemical storage and safety issues, exploration of lab setup, and a review of measurement techniques.

Course Size:

Course Format:
Lecture only

Course Context:

Science education majors learn selected laboratory techniques necessary to teach New York State Regents secondary science classes. Topics include designing cognate science area lab activities, ordering and maintaining supplies/equipment, storage, safety, preparation of materials, lab set-up, and measurement techniques. Exploration of external influences and pressures in education. A field component of 30 science laboratory contact hours is required for each student enrolled.

Course Goals:

The focus of this course is on how to design, implement, evaluate and assess laboratory experiences for middle and high school students. To that end, the course work, including the development and implementation of inquiry laboratories in each of the content areas, field preparation, and additional course assignments, is designed to provide students with the time to rehearse the recognition, application and integration of these skills.

Course Features:

Teaching the Process of Science



Teaching Materials:

References and Notes:

  1. Teaching Secondary School Science, Trowbridge, Bybee and Powell, 8th edition.
  2. The National Science Education Standards, National Research Council
  3. The NYSMST Standards, edited by S. Siegel

These are the same texts used in our other methods course though I have since dropped the book. I was unsatisfied with what it provides for helping students teach lab.

America's Lab Report. Resources are related to lab safety.