Academic journal article Teaching Science

Staq

Academic journal article Teaching Science

Staq

Article excerpt

As teachers we are often frustrated by the continual change in our profession. "I just wish it would stop for a while." But it doesn't. Coming into the position of STAQ President I have been reflecting on why this is so. I think we need a model to help us and evolution looks like a promising candidate.

That education evolves is almost self-evident and so we can look for a mechanism. At first sight, the continual multiple social pressures for change make it look as though the mechanism is a version of natural selection. But there is also a strong case for an evolution by design approach. The Royal Society in England published a weighty vision for science and mathematics education (1) in the middle of last year. That vision adopts an evolutionary approach that proposes deliberate changes to occur gradually across the next 15 to 20 years. This is a pace of change thaf might be easier to live with in the classroom.

It is interesting to look at a few of the directions that the Royal Society envisages for the process.

Its first vision is of a high professional status for STEM teachers and goes on to partner this with professional learning. This is closely followed by a recommendation to entrust teachers with increased responsibility for assessing student achievement and to place practical work and problem-solving at the heart of good assessment of science and mathematics. …

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