Characteristics of Exemplary Life Science Teaching
In their Teaching Style/Approach, excellent teachers:
1. Build rapport with students; know their individual learning characteristics, prior knowledge,
skills and experiences.
2. Relate the subject matter to students’' lives (especially in terms of social and personal
perspectives) in an enthusiastic, engaging manner.
3. Show sensitivity to cultural and individual differences.
4. Provide challenging, rigorous, learning experiences for students.
5. Make the classroom an equitable environment for learning to occur.
In their Teaching Methodology and Teaching Environment, excellent teachers:
1. Stress practices of science and the role of evolution in investigations, discussion, and
questioning at every opportunity.
2. Maintain current subject matter knowledge and incorporate up-to-date biological theory
in their classrooms.
3. Follow an integrated approach to topics by incorporating other subjects, technology, society
4. Use a variety of research-based teaching methodologies rather than relying on lectures.
5. Incorporate laboratory and outdoor experiences whenever possible.
6. Provide a safe environment at all times in the laboratory and outdoors.
7. Develop precise, measurable, learning outcomes and assess them using a variety of methods.
In their Reflection and Professional Involvement, excellent teachers:
1. Continually analyze, evaluate, and strengthen their practice through reflection.
2. Actively participate in professional science education organizations.
3. Strive to improve themselves and others through professional reading and writing, attendance
and presenting at workshops and conferences, and additional formal education.
4. Contribute to the quality of the teaching practice of their colleagues and to the instructional
program of the school. They are leaders within their schools and participate in the broader
science education community.
In their Family and Community Involvement, excellent teachers:
1. Communicate positively, frequently, and in a variety of ways, with parents and guardians
about the status of their students’ learning and successes, in accordance with applicable laws
and local policies.
2. Involve students in community projects, field trips, investigations, and service endeavors.
Adopted by the NABT Board of Directors, December 2012. Revised 2012 (Original Statement 2004).