Showing posts from April, 2022

Assessing on the Blockchain.

This year I am again teaching junior science and one thing that I reflected on last year was the nature of assessment. Most assessment I used last year was in the form of a written test at the end of units, essentially I was seeing how they understood the scientific concepts I had taught them over the unit.  Two things concerned me when I considered these assessments, first, is knowing stuff about science the only thing that is worth measuring when it comes to assessing scientific ability and second, I had a large number of neuro-divergent learners in my classroom and was this the best way to even assess their understanding?  Over the last 20 years, there has been a  marked change in the direction of students learning about science and about how science works (the processes, practices and people of science) as well as learning science content (the products of science). Due to the enormity of the task, I cannot as a science teacher provide all the science knowledge that they will need,

I give up, sir.

This year, I have been given the opportunity to teach a number of senior science lessons. I have also noticed that for these classes, students are struggling with the concepts being taught. One of the fine balancing acts between junior and senior science is the desire for engagement yet also providing those students who move forward in science with sufficient content so they can succeed at these higher levels. Learning is unique in humans as we learn from each other. We have developed complex systems of communication to exchange ideas. So when it comes to senior science lessons. instead of starting from scratch, students can build on what has come before.  Though, I am finding with my present cohort that this is a problem. Looking at my year 12 physics class as an example, complex concepts like projectile motion are already hard enough without the extra problem of not having the sufficient skills in algebra and calculating vectors. So initially, I was having to teach this content expli