© 2010

Instructional Explanations in the Disciplines

  • Mary Kay Stein
  • Linda Kucan

Table of contents

  1. Front Matter
    Pages i-xiv
  2. Instructional Explanations in the Teaching and Learning of Science

    1. Front Matter
      Pages 7-7
    2. Richard Lehrer, Leona Schauble
      Pages 9-22
    3. Jorge Larreamendy-Joerns, Tatiana Muñoz
      Pages 23-40
    4. David Yaron, Michael Karabinos, Karen Evans, Jodi Davenport, Jordi Cuadros, James Greeno
      Pages 41-50
  3. Instructional Explanations in the Teaching and Learning of Mathematics

    1. Front Matter
      Pages 67-67
    2. Carla van de Sande, James G. Greeno
      Pages 69-82
    3. Magdalene Lampert, Heather Beasley, Hala Ghousseini, Elham Kazemi, Megan Franke
      Pages 129-141
  4. Instructional Explanations in the Teaching and Learning of the Humanities

  5. Back Matter
    Pages 223-237

About this book


In today’s climate of accountability and standards, increasing attention is focused on teacher "quality," with less emphasis on what teachers actually do to interest and engage students in learning. This path-breaking volume addresses this research problem with a clear definition and a content-specific analysis of the most essential teaching moment—the instructional explanation—for vital new perspectives on educational method and process.

Rich in examples from science, mathematics, and the humanities (and touching on areas of course development and pre-service training), Instructional Explanations in the Disciplines explores a variety of interactive contexts for teaching and learning, which may be collaborative between teachers, students, and others, performed in non-classroom settings, or assisted by technology. The book’s subject-matter-specific framework reveals key elements in the process, such as carefully examining the question to be answered, making connections with what is already known, and developing examples conducive to further understanding.

Among the topics covered:

  • The model as a method of explanation in science
  • How—and why—teachers explain things as they do
  • "Let us explain with you": introducing instructional explanations
  • How families talk about art in museum settings, and what we can learn from it
  • Developing writing skills through students’ giving instructional explanations
  • Instructional explanation in the context of learning and identity

Instructional Explanations in the Disciplines is a valuable addition to the education library, giving researchers new methods of unpacking educational process as few books before it.


Framing Inst Gaea Leinhardt Instructional Conversations Instructional Explanation Instructional Explanations in Informal Settings Language in Historical Explanations Learning Chemistry Learning and Identity Lehrer Modeling Teaching and Learning Mathematics Teaching and Learning of Humanities Teaching and Learning of Science attention learning

Editors and affiliations

  • Mary Kay Stein
    • 1
  • Linda Kucan
    • 2
  1. 1.University of PittsburghPittsburghU.S.A.
  2. 2.University of PittsburghPittsburghU.S.A.

Bibliographic information