Greedy Darwinists want biology courses to be laced throughout with Darwinism
In looking at the biology book the teachers wanted, I noticed that it was laced with Darwinism. I think I listed somewhere between 12 and 15 instances where it talked about Darwin's theory of evolution. It wasn't on every page of the book, but, like, every couple of chapters, there was Darwin, in your face again. And it was to the exclusion of any other theory.
Greg Laden, a ScienceBlogs blogger, says,
These days, evolution tends to be compressed into a single textbook unit, and not discussed very much elsewhere in that text (this depends on the book). My suspicion is that by placing all of the discussion of evolutionary biology into one unit, it makes it easier for teachers to skip that chapter, or gloss it, or at least, deal with it as a very bad thing that is happening to them, work out some strategies to minimize the pain, and then move on.
In other words, when it comes to teaching evolutionary biology in the public school classroom, the creationists have won the battle: They've forced evolution into a corner, surrounded it, eviscerated, driven it into the swamp.
Since evolutionary biology actually relates to every other element of the life sciences, this is a terrible shame. Bowdlerizing every other part of the curriculum of any mention of evolution takes the life out of the life sciences. Details are taught without reference to ultimate explanation. The thread that would tie together a pedagogy to make it truly comprehensible and, in fact, awesome, is yanked out of the fabric of biology. Opportunities to skillfully explain, truly understand, fully appreciate the details of how life works are hidden from the students because evolution is forced into the closet of some specific chapter in the textbook, some specific week during the semester, some specific set of readings and maybe, but probably not even, a single experiment on the lab bench.
This would be like forcing the laws of motion into a single, oft skipped and always shortchanged lesson in an intro physics class, and otherwise never mentioning them.
The textbook that Buckingham described certainly doesn't have evolution "forced into the closet of some specific chapter in the textbook." And that textbook is co-authored by Ken Miller, who testified at the Kitzmiller v. Dover trial that his biology textbooks are used by an estimated 35 percent of high school students in the USA.
As for Laden's analogy of "forcing the laws of motion into a single, oft skipped and always shortchanged lesson in an intro physics class," isn't that the way Newton's laws of motion are taught in intro physics classes? Should, say, the effects of the Newton's laws of motion on the parts of heat engines and electrical machines be discussed in the lessons on thermodynamics and electricity & magnetism, respectively?
Labels: Evolution education (new #1)