Online, in-class, at home

The Issue of the Week is a current and topical Science teaching and learning resource. With a focus on socio-scientific issues we engage and enthuse students. Through discussion, reading, video clips and writing, we build science capabilities alongside literacy skills. We are passionate about nurturing interest in issues that matter. Providing opportunities for young people to work with complex situations, enables them to identify what is important in their own lives and the world around them.

How to use The Issue of the Week in the classroom

You are the expert in your classroom, You can interpret and use The Issue of the Week however it best suits you and your learners. It is totally flexible. You can spend 20 minutes to two hours, or more, on each issue. Most of the hard work is done for you so that you will have time to add your own flavour.

“Good literacy floats on a sea of talk”

James Britton

When using The Issue of the Week, teachers can encourage kōrero, discussion and engagement as a first and fundamental step. In order to engage in socio-scientific issues, young people first need to be aware of what is happening in the world around them. They require time and space with low stakes learning tasks in order to learn more about current issues and then ideally discuss, debate and form their own opinions.

Teaching and Learning Resources

The Issue of the Week allows students of Science to dip their toes in messy, complex issues, teachers can meet each student where they are, celebrate each kite of knowledge and perhaps nudge them to examine views different to their own. We can encourage evidence based dialogues and arguments regardless of individual points of view leading into the literacy and writing tasks. It is likely to be the discussion, debate and thinking time that builds confidence and best helps students to engage, take risks and enjoy The Issue of the Week.

Founder of The Issue of the Week

About Kim Beaton  

As a Secondary School, Science and Chemistry teacher for the last fifteen years, innovation and junior science are passions of mine. Always keen to contribute to the science learning community, I have presented at SciCON and Biolive/ChemEd conferences and have completed a Master of Education with first class honours with a Professional Learning specialty.

Seeking challenges led me to the Royal Society, Te Apārangi, Science Teaching Leadership Programme. While based at the University of Waikato’s Coastal Marine Field Station in Tauranga, I was involved with many multidisciplinary research and educational projects. I attended lectures at the University of Waikato, gaining knowledge and understanding of sustainability, along with the importance of clearly communicating the science related to environmental issues. I am extremely grateful for this opportunity to work with many inspirational people while on the Science Teaching Leadership Programme.

Having facilitated staff and student literacy learning over many years, I have developed a strong understanding and practical experience of oral language – kōrero, writing – tuhituhi and reading – pānui. Personalising science teaching and learning to build science capabilities, engage students and teachers, to help them to think, to build intrinsic motivation, and to find success is our mission with The Issue Of The Week. We provide teaching and learning opportunities that value individuality, curiosity and creativity.

Given the everyday challenges and rewards of teaching and learning, The Issue of the Week is designed to help busy teachers provide a present day and future focused science programme that is educational and relevant to young people in our rapidly changing world.