Sunday, April 19, 2009

Goals of science education

Read this article here. It is excellent about the goals of science education. The last paragraph has a interesting statement:
I hope these goals are lofty, children deserve no less than our highest expectations.

They do. I am becoming accustomed to the fact that it does not matter what we do, we can always approve and there is someone who does not agree. When I focused on lecture and worksheets, etc., much of the public did not believe we actually taught and deserved respect (were they right?)

If you make a change, it makes others uncomfortable. These goals however are not new. They have been a rallying cry since 1990. I wrote about it here.

An outline of some of the goals that are discussed in the article that are of interest:
  • Student Goal 1) Students will demonstrate critical thinking.
  • Student Goal 2) Students will demonstrate a deep understanding of content and be able to apply this knowledge to problems in and out of the classroom.
  • Student Goal 3) Students will demonstrate creativity and curiosity.
  • Student Goal 5) Students will be responsible and conscientious members of communities.
  • Student Goal 6) Students will exhibit confidence. (I like the willing to try again when they fail. The "failure is not an option" mentality does not serve them for their future.)
  • Student Goal 7) Students will set goals and assess their own learning and progress. (I like this and need to find evidence of this being used.)
  • Student Goal 8 ) Students will be active in their own learning.
  • Student Goal 9) Students will use communication and cooperation skills effectively.
  • Student Goal 10) Students will understand the nature of knowledge.

I am interested in what others think and what it will take to see the need for a focus on the goals and not just the content of science. Content can be easily attained through the focus on these goals. What do you think? How would this change what you know if your science experience were different?

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