Science history shows us that interdisciplinarity is a spontaneous process that is intrinsic to, and engendered by, research activity. It is an activity that is done rather than an object to be designed and constructed. We examine three vignettes from the history of science that display the interdisciplinary process at work and consider the implications for education. We consider recent examples of interdisciplinary science education, including where interdisciplinarity involves students in authentic scientific research. We conclude that the reconciliation of research and education is a meaningful role for interdisciplinary practice in science education.