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In science education, there has been a sustained focus on supporting the emergence of science practices in K–12 and field-based settings. Recent work has elevated the integral role of emotion in sparking and sustaining such disciplinary practices, deepening the field's understanding of what is entailed in “doing” science. Yet even as we gain this richer understanding of practice, less attention has been given to the places where practice emerges. These places play a critical role in the co-emergence of emotion and practice, and while separate strands of research have elevated emotion and practice or, alternately, place and practice, rarely has their dynamic relationship been considered together. In this article, I explore this interplay of emotion, place, and practice emergent in children's sampling practices within a multiweek curriculum centered around their schoolyard soil ecosystem. Through a comparative case study analysis of two student pairs using video data, student interviews, and classroom artifacts, my analysis reveals how children's emergent emotion was entangled in their relationships with the schoolyard and life within, shaping not only how they engaged in sampling practices but also what dimensions of the ecological system they attended to. I argue that emotion and place should be central to the design, teaching, and analysis of learning contexts, in turn centering the social and emplaced dimensions of science disciplinary practices for children and scientists alike. Implications for science teaching and learning are discussed, with particular consideration of field-based sciences.


Journal Title

Science Education