Showing posts from December, 2020

Science is boring!

Recently, as part of the #edureading group on Twitter, there was a discussion on the choice of text used in classrooms in relation to the cultural relevance to the readers. One idea behind this latter strategy is in giving more 'relevant' texts, this will motivate students more, as they see themselves in the books. We all remember studying the works of Shakespeare —a staple of high school English classes—but remember many of our fellow students struggling to read and understand his works.  The same can be applied to the science classroom. By choosing more relevant contexts for learners like teaching momentum through skateboarding as an example, students will be more engaged in the process. The issue of a disconnect between young scientists and the science they’re learning isn’t new, though. Like previous generations, high school students have continued to spend science class learning about the fundamentals of science from the leaders of scientific thinking from the last 400 yea

Panic in the middle school science classroom?

According to the   Trends in International Mathematics and Science Study (TIMSS) released last week , New Zealand's 9 to 13-year-olds are declining in science and maths.  The assessment focuses on the ability of students to master “factual and procedural” knowledge in science and maths classes.  Mirroring similar international studies, such as PISA, the top-performing nations were east Asian countries Singapore, South Korea, Japan, and Taiwan. New Zealand is well down in the global rankings, trailing our nearest neighbor Australia. Our beginning high school students showed the biggest decline in their knowledge of fundamental scientific and mathematical knowledge – falling 14 points to 499 in science and 11 points to 482 in maths. The midpoint mark in the index is 500. According to  Stuff science columnist Peter Griffin , this is not necessarily a cause for concern. His argument is that the TIMSS assessment is not a valid measure  as it measures the ability of students to retain sc