Workshop For Teachers: How Educators Discuss Teaching Evolution

When I was in high school, there was no real conflict about teaching evolution. One of my teachers was an atheist. My history teacher had pictures of the various icons in evolution. My physical science course has some evolution in it. Biology had the most teaching of evolution. And so on. Now they have workshops that are designed to address the issue of teaching evolution.

Sixty public high school teachers from Atlanta gathered at a University like a support group, for the purpose of discussing two things, on is their experiences trying to teach evolution. And the second, discussing solutions for those students who deem evolutionary teaching unacceptable.

I believe one of the most challenging things to a Christian parent is when their child attends a public school. It’s not the worse thing in the world, but it’s not the best either. One of the problems that comes up is the teaching of evolution. Here educators complain about being challenged.

“I’ve seen churches train students to come to school with specific questions to ask to sabotage my lessons,” said Bonnie Pratt, a biology teacher at Northview High in north Fulton County. “We need parents and the community to understand why and how we teach evolution.”  -The Atlanta Journal-Constitution

Generally, evolution is filtered in public schools. Nothing is wrong with students asking questions. I realize Bonnie Pratt is complaining about negative questioning in particular, but skeptical questioning is part of learning as well. Some teachers do try and correct the students…

“Other teachers said they try to fix students’ misconceptions. They explain how humans and apes share a common ancestor that no longer exists, not that humans and apes evolved from one another. They say that while “theory” may describe a hunch in everyday language, in science it is defined as an explanation supported by factual evidence to describe events that occur in our world.”

What the teacher doesn’t tell the students, is evolutionary factual evidence changes, for example in the previous post, scientists thought that Biblical Edom was was not active with industrial-scale metal production in the 10th and 9th centuries. New science has disproved the assumption which has been around since the 1970s.

Adaptation through experience has changed, as there isn’t any connection between reproductive cells and experience. Evolution mainly focuses on random mutations with the guidance of natural selection. But there is no evidence or signature in the genome. Just computer analysis is used for evidence. As we know, mutations work with less information not more and gain information through other organisms.

So what educators are trying to do, is use education to convince skeptics that their position is right, and the Bible is wrong. Nothing new to this idea, which dates back to 1840, when the very first public school in the country started in Boston.

While I don’t agree with outlawing evolution per say as far as teaching it, but I do disagree with it’s current filtered status of teaching it. There are many things that are observed in new discoveries that do not much up with evolutionary thinking. Christian parents should continue to teach their kids the right way, point out where the data doesn’t match with evolution. And teach the child, they don’t have to believe in evolution when learning it.  They can totally reject it’s concepts and still have a full understanding of it.

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2 thoughts on “Workshop For Teachers: How Educators Discuss Teaching Evolution

  1. What the teacher doesn’t tell the students, is evolutionary factual evidence changes

    It’s not uncommon for parts of a theory to change as new data becomes available. In fact, if theories DIDN’T change with new data, then science could rightfully be accused of being dogmatic. The theory of gravity, for example, has changed since Newton’s time as a result of the work of scientists such as Einstein and Hawking.

    Adaptation through experience has changed, as there isn’t any connection between reproductive cells and experience. Evolution mainly focuses on random mutations with the guidance of natural selection. But there is no evidence or signature in the genome. Just computer analysis is used for evidence. As we know, mutations work with less information not more and gain information through other organisms.

    Can you clarify? It’s difficult for me to see where you are going with this. What do you mean by “experience” and no “evidence or signature in the genome”? Evidence of what? What do you mean by mutations “working” with less information? Are you saying that mutations result in a loss of information?

    So what educators are trying to do, is use education to convince skeptics that their position is right, and the Bible is wrong.

    No, educators are trying to educate. If they are science educators, they are trying to teach science. If they are religious educators, they are trying to teach religion. If they are history educators, they are trying to teach history.

    Very few science teachers have any interest in either disproving or proving the bible. Doing so would, and should, result in them being severely reprimanded and/or fired.

    They can totally reject it’s concepts and still have a full understanding of it.

    And they can also totally accept its concepts and retain their faith.

  2. hello airtightnoodle,

    To clarify your confusion, “no evidence or signature in the genome” I was referring to positive selection. As one evolutionist points out, “Poorly conceived statistical methods that fail to show how the genetic changes relate to adaptive benefits to the organism…”

    You state, “no, educators are trying to educate.” When the education goes against a belief of that child’s faith in this case evolution then it’s not just trying to educate. My brother went to a government University to become a teacher and was taught “Urban education” which is somewhat of a new concept. This type of method of education focuses on culture in all subjects…Math books for example would be geared to the child’s race…How could they accomplish that, through pictures, and word problems. It’s very race focused. I call it culture focused.

    You state, “very few science teachers have any interest in either disproving or proving the Bible.” There are more than a “few” on the internet nowadays who do just that, even some do promote their issues about religion right on University blogs with school approval. Public Universities generally protect the right of the teacher to express themselves in such places like blogs. However, sometimes it’s not always the case, back in the 90s Colorado coach wore a team shirt while speaking at what was considered a fundamentalist meeting, and he was removed from coaching because it didn’t reflect the values of the school.

    It’s not a role of a public school teacher to engage in proving or disproving the Bible. So, yes a teacher might get fired if he or she decided to make issues in class about the Bible.

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