Monday, February 15, 2016

Model-Based Science Teaching
in the Science Classroom

Personal attributes qualifying me as a science teacher reflect upon my students’ attitudes toward learning science.  It is a natural cause-and-effect that spontaneously develops from my relationship with students in my classroom.  How learning is modeled in the science classroom is critical to the development of students’ perception of the world that they live in and their place in this world.

Purpose and perseverance in the science classroom stem from a teachers’ effort to provide their students with inquiry-driven learning experiences and effective modeling creating an explanatory framework in sync with human thought processes. My goal, as a science educator, is for students to not only care about what they learn, but to also work to better understand their own learning process that they experience every day of their lives.

Purpose is innate to intrinsic motivation.  It is an out crop of constructed models of learning created by teachers and producing engaged classrooms.  An engaged classroom has high attention, high commitment, an intrinsic driving force for learning and a passion to create!  Some of the most important factors that comprise Model-Based Science Teaching (MBST) are imagery to anchor ideas within a mind-set, scientific inquiry relying on rational and logical thought and the creation of products expressing learning outcomes.

Differentiation of science curriculum create models of learning giving students choice in their own learning and this lends to outcomes that are long-lasting and more meaningful.  Also, creating familiar imagery is crucial to student-developed models of the world.  Imagery including pictures, presentations, graphs and videos have a tremendous cognitive effect upon thinking and learning. Applying this with traditional reading assignments, required vocabulary and mathematical equations in science education produce powerful models by which students learn.

Inquiry in the classroom, including engineering design projects, hands-on inquiry-based science labs and virtual interactive computerized models of inquiry, are critical factors that positively contribute to the success of MBST in the science classroom.  Learning in the classroom is tied to imagery in profound ways.  It provides the means by which learning models can deliver relevancy and rigor that our children need in school as they work to become productive members of our society. A learning environment that lends not only to how people learn, but provide choice as a meaningful part of this learning process, is well-suited to the education needed in the 21st century.

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