Teaching nature of science (NOS) is beginning to take root in science education in China. This exploratory study interviewed 24 science teacher educators from economically developed parts of China about their conceptions of teaching NOS to prospective science teachers. Five key dimensions emerged from the data. This paper focuses on the dimension of value of teaching NOS. The values of teaching NOS as perceived by the educators fall into two types. The first type relates to values within the scope of science teaching, which consists of (i) enriching content to be taught in school science, (ii) transforming traditional science teaching methods, (iii) increasing interest in science teaching, and (iv) constituting a foundation of school science teaching. The second type goes beyond classroom teaching, which includes (i) enhancing individual well‐being in daily life and work‐related matter, (ii) enlightening Chinese traditional culture, and (iii) promoting national development. While some of these values share much similarity of those discussed in the Western literature on NOS research, some are distinctively different with a Chinese favor. This paper discusses the social, political, and historical contexts that have contributed to the shaping of such differences. Copyright © 2011 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.