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Old 08-05-2020, 08:30 PM
 
8,211 posts, read 4,637,665 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ruth4Truth View Post
Thank you! So it sounds like your school district is, in fact, succeeding in getting students to "think science", as the OP says. My impression is that your school district isn't alone. I wonder where the OP got his impressions, that schools weren't teaching in this way. Maybe it depends in part on which individual students one is observing; maybe some just don't develop that natural curiosity the science curriculum is designed to foster...?
Gladly. Stick with me because it's a bit of a journey. It began during my own school years where I quickly learned I knew more science and taught myself more than my teachers in school. The only teacher in school who could teach a bit of science was our high school biology teacher. Chemistry? Physics? Forget about it.

My first years in college I discovered just how much my school had failed to prepare me for college level work. Those first two years were spent digging out from how far behind I was. But I got my degree in physics and have had a very good career.

My real involvement began when I had a daughter who wanted to study physics from kindergarten. I watched right alongside her that nothing had change since I was in school. This in spite of the fact our district was very highly rated in science. Having a daughter in STEM got me interested in the whole women in STEM issue and I began digging deeper.

About the same time studies began to show the US falling behind in STEM education. My employer and my professional society both became concerned about the issues in STEM education, including studies on the reasons students, esp female and minority students, didn't study STEM in college. As one of my "other duties as assigned" my employer added STEM outreach to my job. I also took that on from my professional society. Additionally, based on the studies, my employer began large grants to organizations working to improve STEM education. Because of this it's no longer anecdote but backed up by studies.

A key aspect of those studies is that kids in general are natural at science in elementary and elementary schools do fair with science. The problems in education begin in Middle School. That where the "leaky pipeline" as it's known begins. Kids who were interested in science at the beginning of Middle School just aren't by high school. During high school even more drop out. Then as both I and my daughter learned, lack of preparation in high school leads to problems in college and more kids opting out. In her case she completed her degree in physics, but it helped having a father who knew what to expect and guide her through the rough spots that the teachers couldn't.

As mentioned part of my job is education outreach. For several summer I facilitated CEU classes for STEM teachers. One of the things we observed was the vast majority had zero exposure to science beyond the typical gen ed courses most students take in college. Of those who did, every single one had taken biology. None had taken the harder, math intensive courses like physics and chemistry, and few had taken even one lab based as opposed to textbook focused science course. Very few were teaching science because they wanted to but because they had been assigned to.

So the tl:dr version: experience, backed by studies and data done by my employer and by professional scientific societies with an interest in STEM education.
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Old 08-20-2020, 07:41 AM
 
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The problem is that not every person can be a chemist or a physicist. I like the Georgetown University principle. During the introductory exams, students write a short georgetown essay in which they answer a series of questions. And it is from this essay that the commission determines the appropriate direction for each of the students.
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Old 08-21-2020, 10:47 AM
 
Location: State of Transition
85,933 posts, read 79,124,938 times
Reputation: 88177
Quote:
Originally Posted by tnff View Post
Gladly. Stick with me because it's a bit of a journey. It began during my own school years where I quickly learned I knew more science and taught myself more than my teachers in school. The only teacher in school who could teach a bit of science was our high school biology teacher. Chemistry? Physics? Forget about it.

My first years in college I discovered just how much my school had failed to prepare me for college level work. Those first two years were spent digging out from how far behind I was. But I got my degree in physics and have had a very good career.

My real involvement began when I had a daughter who wanted to study physics from kindergarten. I watched right alongside her that nothing had change since I was in school. This in spite of the fact our district was very highly rated in science. Having a daughter in STEM got me interested in the whole women in STEM issue and I began digging deeper.

About the same time studies began to show the US falling behind in STEM education. My employer and my professional society both became concerned about the issues in STEM education, including studies on the reasons students, esp female and minority students, didn't study STEM in college. As one of my "other duties as assigned" my employer added STEM outreach to my job. I also took that on from my professional society. Additionally, based on the studies, my employer began large grants to organizations working to improve STEM education. Because of this it's no longer anecdote but backed up by studies.

A key aspect of those studies is that kids in general are natural at science in elementary and elementary schools do fair with science. The problems in education begin in Middle School. That where the "leaky pipeline" as it's known begins. Kids who were interested in science at the beginning of Middle School just aren't by high school. During high school even more drop out. Then as both I and my daughter learned, lack of preparation in high school leads to problems in college and more kids opting out. In her case she completed her degree in physics, but it helped having a father who knew what to expect and guide her through the rough spots that the teachers couldn't.

As mentioned part of my job is education outreach. For several summer I facilitated CEU classes for STEM teachers. One of the things we observed was the vast majority had zero exposure to science beyond the typical gen ed courses most students take in college. Of those who did, every single one had taken biology. None had taken the harder, math intensive courses like physics and chemistry, and few had taken even one lab based as opposed to textbook focused science course. Very few were teaching science because they wanted to but because they had been assigned to.

So the tl:dr version: experience, backed by studies and data done by my employer and by professional scientific societies with an interest in STEM education.
Thank you for your detailed response. Just wondering; back when I was in HS and college, it was required to take at least one lab-based science course. In fact, it was required for admission to some public universities back then, so college-prep school/programs required it for graduation from high school. I took biology, and then biology again in college for the lab science requirement. I find it hard to believe, that that requirement has been dropped, in view of the fact that college admissions have become much more competitive than when I applied, and university graduation requirements seem to have become more demanding. Am I missing something?
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Old 08-21-2020, 10:05 PM
 
8,211 posts, read 4,637,665 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ruth4Truth View Post
Thank you for your detailed response. Just wondering; back when I was in HS and college, it was required to take at least one lab-based science course. In fact, it was required for admission to some public universities back then, so college-prep school/programs required it for graduation from high school. I took biology, and then biology again in college for the lab science requirement. I find it hard to believe, that that requirement has been dropped, in view of the fact that college admissions have become much more competitive than when I applied, and university graduation requirements seem to have become more demanding. Am I missing something?
Me too. I just took them at their word that they hadn't. That was part of the opening, where everyone tells a little about themselves, where they went to college, what degree they had, what they taught, why they were taking the course, etc. The standard ice breaker sort of thing. First year we were kind of stunned. Follow on years it didn't stun us any more. There were always a couple. I mean no one could doubt their enthusiasm for teaching, but the subject matter expertise was lacking.
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Old 08-22-2020, 02:38 AM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by williamclarks View Post
The problem is that not every person can be a chemist or a physicist. I like the Georgetown University principle. During the introductory exams, students write a short georgetown essay, in which they answer a series of questions. And it is from this essay that the commission determines the appropriate direction for each of the students.
It is better to immediately decide on the choice than to learn what you do not understand and do not like.
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Old 08-26-2020, 06:15 AM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by williamclarks View Post
It is better to immediately decide on the choice than to learn what you do not understand and do not like.
I think many people find it useful to read the article https://writemyessay4me.org/blog/essay-writing-tips. It will help you successfully rock the exam and supplement your knowledge.
I wish everyone success in the new school year.
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Old 08-26-2020, 10:47 PM
 
Location: We_tside PNW (Columbia Gorge) / CO / SA TX / Thailand
26,166 posts, read 43,924,389 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by williamclarks View Post
I wish everyone success in the new school year.
Especially the Science teachers!!!

This (Pandemic era) is such a Golden Opportunity to get students engaged in Science and how it affects them, and what they could contribute to science that might have a lasting impact on society.

I learned about (4) different types of immunities today. That was fascinating. (I would have never thought of that?)

There is a lot to glean from the entire world all working on different research and solutions. And certainly a great study in sociology of how different cultures and countries have responded and reacted. (and OVER-reacted and under responded )

Very important teachable moment that may not come around again for 100+ yrs, Psychology majors will have adequate content to study the Covid-19 behavior responses. (grief recovery, Quarentine, schooling-at-home, hoax, intentional spread to weaken competitive nations, and global financial and political security... )

My interest in science came from being around engaged and inquisitive adults who worked in science careers. Teachers who had first served their time (20+ yrs) in a science, medical, or engineering industry. (they can deliver interesting and relevant content).

We did a lot of science in 4-H. Adult leaders and farm kid peers were exceptional motivation to learn and practice science everyday.

I still read science news first (don't do sports), and keep Science Friday as a 'favorite'.

Last edited by StealthRabbit; 08-26-2020 at 10:56 PM..
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