Science provides the answer to many questions humanity has posed. It also represents one of the best tools we have to face current global challenges. Accordingly, promoting Science (as well as the other STEM subjects) at school is a main goal for European Educational systems, and it is identified as a fundamental element among the Key Competencies for Lifelong Learning.
In light of this, it is unfortunate that the teaching of science is often less innovative in school curricula. Children are often stuck with dry course books, and the theory provided does not link to applications in everyday life.
This course intends to reverse such a picture and inspire primary school teachers to deliver science in a practical and fun way, inspiring experimentation and inquiry.
Participants will acquire new tools and techniques to design exciting activities and engage children in the sciences, using games, role-play, experiments, and interactive group activities.
Every activity of the course is designed to transport students to new and deeper levels of understanding and appreciation, and inspire learners’ inner scientists, whilst meeting their academic needs and curriculum goals.
The course will also highlight healthy lifestyle choices, using the interpretation of food composition and the body’s physical needs, as well as understanding the science behind physical education to equip children to make good decisions.
By the end of this course, participants will feel confident to deliver any subject matter with a scientist’s mindset. They will have become well-equipped and confident to deliver science in a fun and stimulating way, and to awaken the scientific mind in every child, thus creating future change-makers!
*The course is also particularly indicated for those who teach science in English (CLIL) as well as first-language science teachers.
The course will help the participants to:
- Create and use teaching tools to deliver science, adapted to classroom needs;
- Make science visible, useful, and practical through real-life scenarios and case studies;
- Inspire students to use a scientific mindset: critical, logical, and discernment thinking;
- Become independent in developing their scientific interests and goals;
- Increase student motivation and engagement with science.
Day 1 – Introduction to the course and diverse teaching techniques
- Introduction to the course, the school, and the external week activities;
- Icebreaker activities;
- Presentations of the participants’ schools.
- Exploring learning techniques;
- Understanding why diversifying teaching methods is important;
- Introducing the concepts for the rest of the course: creation and life as we know it – science to save the world, science, and healthy choices, and finding science in art;
- Setting a personal project to develop throughout the week.
Day 2 – From the Big Bang to life as we know it
- Planets, stardust, elements, us!
- Museums, exhibitions, and projects – a virtual tour;
- Looking at news stories and connecting the dots.
Day 3 – Science can save the world (from plant biology to the environment, disease and well-being
- Games focused on environmental and health issues, based on problems and solutions;
- The lifecycle: seed banks, germination, compost;
- Disease, medicines, and energy (Prevention, cure)
- Designing activities and spaces within the school that will change the world, one school at a time.
Day 4 – The science of healthy choices
- Understanding the digestive system, and the microbiome;
- Fermentation is fun! Looking at foods and drinks that are based on fermentation, and how to recreate this in the class;
- Making fermented veggies;
- Reading food labels – what are we eating?
- What makes a healthy diet?
Day 5 – The science of art
- Looking at color and mediums through a scientific lens;
- Experimenting in the classroom with natural dies;
- Using art to express science;
- Presentation of a personal project.
Day 6 – Course closure and cultural activities
- Course evaluation: round-up of acquired competencies, feedback, and discussion;
- Awarding of the course Certificate of Attendance;
- Excursion and other external cultural activities.