Ravi Sinha and Adithi Muralidhar https://birds.hbcse.tifr.res.in/ Smartphones and other digital devices are ubiquitous now even in rural areas. This easy access to technology everywhere has opened up new and creative ways to design learning experiences beyond the limits of print Read More …
While science need not be the choice of profession for every student, the development of a scientific temper is a must for students to evolve into rationally thinking individuals. But are we able to achieve this objective with the science education we are imparting today? What do parents, teachers and students think of the science they are learning? Is there room for improvement? What can or should be done to make learning science more effective? We find out.
Science pedagogy should involve exploration, experimentation, analysis, observation and questioning. But is this a reality in the classroom? With a vast syllabus to complete and examinations being the end, teachers are either not inclined or don’t have the time to ignite curiosity in children. Learning science has to be an active process and for that the way we teach science must change.
Science curriculum in school concentrates only on the laws, concepts, and discoveries and inventions by scientists. We never get to know the person behind these discoveries. A little knowledge about the human being behind the scientist, the times they grew up in, the challenges they faced will go a long way in our understanding of the science they developed.
By hearting definitions, memorizing facts and remembering formulas is not what science learning is all about. Learning science is a process that involves exploration, experimentation, questioning and discovery. While primary school requires science to be hands-on and in high school, students are already in the exam mode, middle school is where science teaching-learning can actually blossom. This is the stage where activity based learning and inter-disciplinary thematic learning can help spark that scientific temper in children.
The human body is an amazing resource that helps us experience this world and yet it is underutilized in our classrooms. When it comes to education, the mind has always been given prominence over the body. Here are three ways in which a teacher can help her students further their understanding of science through their bodies.
Nature has served as a major source of inspiration to man—in poetry, dance, drama and literature. The field of science and technology too has been influenced by nature. In trying to find solutions to many modern day problems, it is to nature that man has turned. When nature can inspire, influence, teach and encourage, then why not turn nature into a science classroom?
Adithi Mathur and Ratnesh Mathur
Why is it that we insist on teaching children science? Science is to be lived and experienced as it is all around us. When we teach science, we approach it through facts and definitions and kill any curiosity there is in children. Instead let us leave them alone to ask their own questions, find solutions, make their own observations and imbibe science.
Man has always been an inquisitive being. Did asking questions lead to the birth of the first scientists? Why are periods in human history defined by metals? How were the first cities for human habitation planned? How did science evolve? Our understanding of modern science will be greatly strengthened if we have a knowledge of the history of science.
Learning in primary school should be wholesome. It should be exciting, inquisitive and challenging, for only then will children develop the desire to learn. A theme-based model of learning requires a teacher to put in a lot of effort and planning, but it imparts life skills and reveals the seamless connection between different subjects to the child.