Making it Real: Case Stories for Secondary Teachers

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Buy eBook. FAQ Policy. About this book This book provides no answer key. Show all. Standard 1 Pages Gorlewski, Julie A. Standard 2 Pages Gorlewski, Julie A. Standard 3 Pages Gorlewski, Julie A. Standard 4 Pages Gorlewski, Julie A. Standard 5 Pages Gorlewski, Julie A. Standard 6 Pages Gorlewski, Julie A. One depicts a standing young student looking intently into the eyes of a seated female teacher.

The other is of Admiral Sun-shin Yi, the heroic sixteenth-century warrior who designed and built a fleet of iron-plated "turtle boats" that were instrumental in the defeat of a Japanese invasion. In the principal's office, one wall has photographs and statements noting the qualifications of the staff. The entrance to the school is lined with pictures of past principals and a large inscription, "Teachers create the future.

Elementary schools put more emphasis on art, music, and physical education than secondary schools do. In addition, at this level more time—roughly the same amount that a Korean high school student spends preparing for college entrance tests—is devoted to extracurricular activities. Social studies education begins in the first and second grades with a course combined with science and titled "Intelligent Life.

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Third- and fourth-grade students receive hours of social studies instruction and fifth- and sixth-graders are given hours per year. At the middle school level, seventh-grade students have hours, and eighth- and ninth-graders receive hours of social studies instruction. In high school, first-year students take a program of required courses. By their second year, students can select from among three tracks: humanities and social studies, a natural science track, and a vocational track.

However, this is likely to change. The social studies track includes courses in Korean history, politics, economics, society, and culture as well as world history, world geography, and social studies. Korea has a national curriculum developed and monitored by the Ministry of Education. It is revised every five to ten years; implementation of the seventh national curriculum began in This curriculum seeks to develop democratic citizens who have strong moral and civic convictions.

There have been proposals to change the nature of the educational process—from focusing on preparation for college and entrance into schools that will ensure economic success and intellectual development, over the cultivation of attitudes and abilities needed to become responsible citizens. Toward this end a practice-based approach to humanity education has been implemented, with the goals of instilling values of etiquette, public order, and democratic citizenship through experiential activities.

Elements of this curriculum are introduced throughout the school program. From kindergarten through third grade, the focus is on etiquette, the observing of social rules, and the development of a sense of community. Fourth through ninth grade emphasizes democratic citizenship, including rules, processes, and reasonable decision-making. At the high school level, attention is given to global citizenship, including understanding other cultures and peace education. Accordingly, there should be greater emphasis on tolerant and open-minded attitudes toward diversity and differences. Along with their strong belief in the family and cultural traditions, Koreans value education and are willing to make significant personal sacrifices to ensure that their children are afforded the best available learning opportunities.

No nation has a higher degree of enthusiasm for education than Korea, and nowhere are children more pressured to study. In Moo-Sub Kang, director general of the Korean Educational Development Institute, noted that education administration was gradually moving from the national Ministry of Education to individual schools. In a Presidential Commission for a New Education Community was established to encourage further reform.

More recent educational policy encourages a modest degree of curriculum decentralization. Local boards of education, similar to those in the United States but covering larger geographic areas, now have the requisite degree of autonomy to interpret the national curriculum in terms of local needs. For example, some schools now offer more computer, art, music, and writing courses, eliminating the need for their extracurricular study. Principals now can work with social studies teachers in developing aspects of the curriculum that reflect local needs, such as character education and community service programs.

However, the issue that continues to receive the most attention is the need to reform the school system.

Many Koreans believe that the mass education of the industrial era is not appropriate to an era of high technology and globalization. In practical terms, large lecture classes of 50 or 60 students with an emphasis on rote learning will not produce creative or morally sensitive graduates.

In response to a changing society, the Korean government established a new vision for education. Unveiled by the Presidential Commission on Educational Reform in May , this vision projected open, lifelong education that would provide individuals with equal and easy access to education at any time and place. Further, the Commission felt that education suitable for the twenty-first century would be achieved through technology. The long-range goal was to raise the quality of education to a world-standard level of excellence.

Critics point out that in the ensuing five years most classroom practices have remained unchanged. In addition, policy is still set through a four-tiered hierarchical model that is heavily weighted against parental and teacher input, despite locally elected boards of education.

Education has contributed to the growth of Korea's democratic government. It has produced hardworking, skilled employees who have brought about an economic miracle within a single generation. It has reaffirmed traditional values while maintaining its commitment to modernization, citizenship, and global involvement.

The ambitious and comprehensive reform plans developed in by the Ministry of Education still appear to enjoy widespread public and professional support. A broad spectrum of the society recognizes the need for lifelong learning as a precept for social and economic improvement. We would like to thank Dr. Young-Seog Kim, social studies doctoral candidate at the University of Georgia, for their assistance in the preparation of this paper. South Korean Education. The Education System The Korean public education structure is divided into three parts: six years of primary school, followed by three years of middle school and then three years of high school.

Visiting a High School The high schools that we saw were large and rather barren in appearance. Visiting an Elementary School We also visited an elementary school of students. Social Studies and the Curriculum Social studies education begins in the first and second grades with a course combined with science and titled "Intelligent Life. Humanity Education There have been proposals to change the nature of the educational process—from focusing on preparation for college and entrance into schools that will ensure economic success and intellectual development, over the cultivation of attitudes and abilities needed to become responsible citizens.

Looking Toward the Future Along with their strong belief in the family and cultural traditions, Koreans value education and are willing to make significant personal sacrifices to ensure that their children are afforded the best available learning opportunities. Some Tentative Conclusions Education has contributed to the growth of Korea's democratic government.

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Explore School Systems Around the World. Global Cities Education Network. Education in Vietnam. Vietnamese students surprised the world with their PISA results. Vanessa Shadoian-Gersing, a former OECD analyst who writes and consults on global education, offers observations based on her recent work in Vietnam. Students are able to choose from an extensive range of vocational education and training VET certificates offered either at the College or at an external training provider as part of their senior secondary studies.

The College has a reputation for quality curriculum design and engaging vocational education and training VET programs across the arts, trades, and technologies. Learning from the "Shanghai Secret". Transforming Learning in Cities. With such an approach, novices substantially improved in their ability to solve problems, even though the type of theoretical problem description used in the study was not a natural one for novices. Novices untrained in the theoretical descriptions were generally unable to generate appropriate descriptions on their own—even given fairly routine problems.

Skills, such as the ability to describe a problem in detail before attempting a solution, the ability to determine what relevant information should enter the analysis of a problem, and the ability to decide which procedures can be used to generate problem descriptions and analyses, are tacitly used by experts but rarely taught explicitly in physics courses. Another approach helps students organize knowledge by imposing a hierarchical organization on the performance of different tasks in physics Eylon and Reif, Students who received a particular physics argument that was organized in hierarchical form performed various recall and problem-solving tasks better than subjects who received the same argument.

Similarly, students who received a hierarchical organization of problem-solving strategies performed much better than subjects who received the same strategies organized non-hierarchically. If students had simply been given problems to solve on their own an instructional practice used in all the sciences , it is highly. Students might get stuck for minutes, or even hours, in attempting a solution to a problem and either give up or waste lots of time. In Chapter 3 , we discussed ways in which learners profit from errors and that making mistakes is not always time wasted.

However, it is not efficient if a student spends most of the problem-solving time rehearsing procedures that are not optimal for promoting skilled performance, such as finding and manipulating equations to solve the problem, rather than identifying the underlying principle and procedures that apply to the problem and then constructing the specific equations needed. In deliberate practice, a student works under a tutor human. Students enrolled in an introductory physics course were asked to write a strategy for an exam problem. Strategy 1: Use the conservation of energy since the only nonconservative force in the system is the tension in the rope attached to the mass M and wound around the disk assuming there is no friction between the axle and the disk, and the mass M and the air , and the work done by the tension to the disk and the mass cancel each other out.

First, set up a coordinate system so the potential energy of the system at the start can be determined. There will be no kinetic energy at the start since it starts at rest. Therefore the potential energy is all the initial energy. Now set the initial energy equal to the final energy that is made up of the kinetic energy of the disk plus the mass M and any potential energy left in the system with respect to the chosen coordinate system. Strategy 2: I would use conservation of mechanical energy to solve this problem. The mass M has some potential energy while it is hanging there. When the block starts to accelerate downward the potential energy is transformed into rotational kinetic energy.

Through deliberate practice, computer-based tutoring environments have been designed that reduce the time it takes individuals to reach real-world performance criteria from 4 years to 25 hours see Chapter 9! Before students can really learn new scientific concepts, they often need to re-conceptualize deeply rooted misconceptions that interfere with the learning. As reviewed above see Chapters 3 and 4 , people spend considerable time and effort constructing a view of the physical world through.

Mechanical energy is conserved even with the nonconservative tension force because the tension force is internal to the system pulley, mass, rope. Strategy 3: In trying to find the speed of the block I would try to find angular momentum kinetic energy, use gravity. I would also use rotational kinematics and moment of inertia around the center of mass for the disk.

Strategy 4: There will be a torque about the center of mass due to the weight of the block, M. The force pulling downward is mg. The moment of inertia multiplied by the angular acceleration. By plugging these values into a kinematic expression, the angular speed can be calculated. Then, the angular speed times the radius gives you the velocity of the block.


The first two strategies display an excellent understanding of the principles, justification, and procedures that could be used to solve the problem the what, why, and how for solving the problem. The last two strategies are largely a shopping list of physics terms or equations that were covered in the course, but the students are not able to articulate why or how they apply to the problem under consideration.

Having students write strategies after modeling strategy writing for them and providing suitable scaffolding to ensure progress provides an excellent formative assessment tool for monitoring whether or not students are making the appropriate links between problem contexts, and the principles and procedures that could be applied to solve them see Leonard et al. Starting with the anchoring intuition that a spring exerts an upward force on the book resting on it, the student might be asked if a book resting on the. The fact that the bent board looks as if it is serving the same function as the spring helps many students agree that both the spring and the board exert upward forces on the book.

For a student who may not agree that the bent board exerts an upward force on the book, the instructor may ask a student to place her hand on top of a vertical spring. She would then be asked if she experienced an upward force that resisted her push in both cases.

Another effective strategy for helping students overcome persistent erroneous beliefs are interactive lecture demonstrations Sokoloff and Thornton, ; Thornton and Sokoloff, This strategy, which has been used very effectively in large introductory college physics classes, begins with an introduction to a demonstration that the instructor is about to perform, such as a collision between two air carts on an air track, one a stationary light cart, the other a heavy cart moving toward the stationary cart.

The teacher first asks the students to discuss the situation with their neighbors and then record a prediction as to whether one of the carts would exert a bigger force on the other during impact or whether the carts would exert equal forces. The vast majority of students incorrectly predict that the heavier, moving cart exerts a larger force on the lighter, stationary cart. Again, this prediction seems quite reasonable based on experience—students know that a moving Mack truck colliding with a stationary Volkswagen beetle will result in much more damage done to the Volkswagen, and this is interpreted to mean that the Mack truck must have exerted a larger force on the Volkswagen.

After the students make and record their predictions, the instructor performs the demonstration, and the students see on the screen that the force probes record forces of equal magnitude but oppositely directed during the collision. Several other situations are discussed in the same way: What if the two carts had been moving toward each other at the same speed? What if the situation is reversed so that the heavy cart is stationary and the light cart is moving toward it? Students make predictions and then see the actual forces between the carts displayed as they collide.

Both bridging and the interactive demonstration strategies have been shown to be effective at helping students permanently overcome misconceptions. This finding is a major breakthrough in teaching science, since so much research indicates that students often can parrot back correct answers on a test that might be erroneously interpreted as displaying the eradication of a misconception, but the same misconception often resurfaces when students are probed weeks or months later see Mestre, , for a review.

Minstrell uses many research-based instructional techniques e. He does this through classroom discussions in which students construct understanding by making sense of physics concepts, with Minstrell playing a coaching role.

The following quote exemplifies his innovative and effective instructional strategies Minstrell, — :. The act of instruction can be viewed as helping the students unravel individual strands of belief, label them, and then weave them into a fabric of more complete understanding.

An important point is that later understanding can be constructed, to a considerable extent, from earlier beliefs. Sometimes new strands of belief are introduced, but rarely is an earlier belief pulled out and replaced. Rather than denying the relevancy of a belief, teachers might do better by helping students differentiate their present ideas from and integrate them into conceptual beliefs more like those of scientists.

Describing a lesson on force, Minstrell — begins by introducing the topic in general terms:. Today we are going to try to explain some rather ordinary events that you might see any day. You will find that you already have many good ideas that will help explain those events. We will find that some of our ideas are similar to those of the scientist, but in other cases our ideas might be different. When we are finished with this unit, I expect that we will have a much clearer idea of how scientists explain those events, and I know that you will feel more comfortable about your explanations…A key idea we are going to use is the idea of force.

What does the idea of force mean to you? At some point Minstrell guides the discussion to a specific example: he drops a rock and asks students how the event can be explained using their ideas about force. He asks students to individually formulate their ideas and to draw a diagram showing the major forces on the rock as arrows, with labels to denote the cause of each force. A lengthy discussion follows in which students present their views, views that contain many irrelevant e.

With this approach, Minstrell has been able to identify many erroneous beliefs of students that stand in the way of conceptual understanding. One example is the belief that only active agents e. Facets may relate to conceptual knowledge e. One of the obstacles to instructional innovation in large introductory science courses at the college level is the sheer number of students who are taught at one time. Classroom communication systems can help the instructor of a large class accomplish these objectives.

One such system, called Classtalk, consists of both hardware and software that allows up to four students to share an input device e. Answers can then be displayed anonymously in histogram. This technology has been used successfully at the University of Massachusetts-Amherst to teach physics to a range of students, from non-science majors to engineering and science majors Dufresne et al. The technology is also a natural mechanism to support formative assessment during instruction, providing both the teacher and students with feedback on how well the class is grasping the concepts under study.

The approach accommodates a wider variety of learning styles than is possible by lectures and helps to foster a community of learners focused on common objectives and goals. The examples above present some effective strategies for teaching and learning science for high school and college students. We drew some general principles of learning from these examples and stressed that the findings consistently point to the strong effect of knowledge structures on learning.

The approach stresses how discourse is a primary means for the search for knowledge and scientific sense-making. It also illustrates how scientific ideas are constructed. Like other exploratory processes, [the scientific method] can be resolved into a dialogue between fact and fancy, the actual and the possible; between what could be true and what is in fact the case. The purpose of scientific enquiry is not to compile an inventory of factual information, nor to build up a totalitarian world picture of Natural Laws in which every event that is not compulsory is forbidden.

We should think of it rather as a logically articulated structure of justifiable beliefs about a Possible World— a story which we invent and criticize and modify as we go along, so that it ends by being, as nearly as we can make it, a story about real life. In addition, students design studies, collect information, analyze data and construct evidence, and they then debate the conclusions that they derive from their evidence. In effect, the students build and argue about theories; see Box 7. Students constructed scientific understandings through an iterative process of theory building, criticism, and refinement based on their own questions, hypotheses, and data analysis activities.

Within this structure, students explored the implications of the theories they held, examined underlying assumptions, formulated and tested hypotheses, developed evidence, negotiated conflicts in belief and evidence, argued alternative interpretations, provided warrants for conclusions, and so forth. The process as a whole provided a richer, more scientifically grounded experience than the conventional focus on textbooks or laboratory demonstrations.

The emphasis on establishing communities of scientific practice builds on the fact that robust knowledge and understandings are socially constructed through talk, activity, and interaction around meaningful problems and tools Vygotsky, The teacher guides and supports students as they explore problems and define questions that are of interest to them. Students share the responsibility for thinking and doing: they distribute their intellectual activity so that the burden of managing the whole process does not fall to any one individual.

In addition, a community of practice can be a powerful context for constructing scientific meanings. Challenged by their teacher, the students set out to determine whether they actually preferred the water from the third floor or only thought they did. As a first step, the students designed and took a blind taste test of the water from fountains on all three floors of the building.

They found, to their surprise, that two-thirds of them chose the water from the first-floor fountain, even though they all said that they preferred drinking from the third-floor fountain. The students did not believe the data. Their teacher was also suspicious of the results because she had expected no differences among the three water fountains.

These beliefs and suspicions motivated students to conduct a second taste test with a larger sample drawn from the rest of the junior high. The students decided where, when, and how to run their experiment.

Teaching Materials Using Case Studies

They discussed methodological issues: How to collect the water, how to hide the identity of the sources, and, crucially, how many fountains to include. They decided to include the same three fountains as before so that they could compare results. What do students learn from participating in a scientific sense-making community?

Individual interviews with students before and after the water taste test investigation see Box 7. In the interviews conducted in Haitian Creole , the students were asked to think aloud about two open-ended real-world problems—pollution in the Boston Harbor and a sudden illness in an elementary school.

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They worried about bias in the voting process. What if some students voted more than once? Each student in the class volunteered to organize a piece of the experiment. About 40 students participated in the blind taste test. When they analyzed their data, they found support for their earlier results 88 percent of the junior high students thought they preferred water from the third-floor fountain, but 55 percent actually chose the water from the first floor a result of 33 percent would be chance.

Faced with this evidence, the students suspicions turned to curiosity. Why was the water from the first-floor fountain preferred? How can they determine the source of the preference? They found that all the fountains had unacceptably high levels of bacteria. In fact, the first-floor fountain the one most preferred had the highest bacterial count. They also found that the water from the first-floor fountain was 20 degrees Fahrenheit colder than the water from fountains on the other floors.

Based on their findings, they concluded that temperature was probably a deciding factor in taste preference. Not surprisingly, the students knew more about water pollution and aquatic ecosystems in June than they did in September. They were also able to use this knowledge generatively. One student explained how she would clean the water in Boston Harbor Rosebery et al.

Chlorine and alum, you put in the water. Note that this explanation contains misconceptions. By confusing the cleaning of drinking water with the cleaning of sea water, the student suggests adding chemicals to take all microscopic life from the water good for drinking water, but bad for the ecosystem of Boston Harbor. This example.

In September, there were three ways in which the students showed little familiarity with scientific forms of reasoning. First, the students did not understand the function of hypotheses or experiments in scientific inquiry. Ah, I could say a person, some person that gave them something…. Second, the students conceptualized evidence as information they already knew, either through personal experience or second-hand sources, rather than data produced through experimentation or observation.

In the June interviews, the students showed that they had become familiar with the function of hypotheses and experiments and with reasoning within larger explanatory frameworks. Elinor had developed a model of an integrated water system in which an action or event in one part of the system had consequences for other parts Rosebery et al. If you leave it on the ground, the water that, the earth has water underground, it will still spoil the water underground.

Or when it rains it will just take it and, when it rains, the water runs, it will take it and leave it in the river, in where the water goes in. In June, the students no longer invoked anonymous agents, but put forward chains of hypotheses to explain phenomena, such as why children were getting sick page 88 :. The June interviews also showed that students had begun to develop a sense of the function and form of experimentation.

They no longer depended on personal experience as evidence, but proposed experiments to test specific hypotheses. In response to a question about sick fish, Laure clearly understands how to find a scientific answer page 91 :. Teaching and learning in science have been influenced very directly by research studies on expertise see Chapter 2. The examples discussed in this chapter focus on two areas of science teaching: physics and junior high school biology.

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Others illustrate ways to help students engage in deliberate practice see Chapter 3 and to monitor their progress. Learning the strategies for scientific thinking have another objective: to develop thinking acumen needed to promote conceptual change. Often, the barrier to achieving insights to new solutions is rooted in a fundamental misconception about the subject matter. Another strategy involves the use of interactive lecture demonstrations to encourage students to make predictions, consider feedback, and then reconceptualize phenomena.

Students learned to think, talk, and act scientifically, and their first and second languages mediated their learning in power-. Using Haitian Creole, they designed their studies, interpreted data, and argued theories; using English, they collected data from their mainstream peers, read standards to interpret their scientific test results, reported their findings, and consulted with experts at the local water treatment facility.

Outstanding teaching requires teachers to have a deep understanding of the subject matter and its structure, as well as an equally thorough understanding of the kinds of teaching activities that help students understand the subject matter in order to be capable of asking probing questions.