New Teachers

First time teacher teaching science

What are some ways to get students engaged and curious about science topics?

Abbey Jodts
Abbey Jodts
200 Activity Points

Students are naturally curious so if you can tap into something timely and relevant to them, you will have their attention!

We just started a new unit on evolution. The unit begins with learning about antibiotic resistant bacteria. Timely Coronavirus comes into play. Before we even started the unit, I ordered some glow in the dark UV neon powder and a blacklight flashlight. I think I spent around $20. As students walked in I scooped a little powder into their palms, told them to rub it in and get their notebooks out. The chatter started immediately. (I used a different colored powder for each class.) I had someone turn off the lights so we could see a quick video about handwashing techniques. Then, with the lights still off, I walked around with the blacklight letting them see the powder glowing on their hands. There were handprints, fingerprints, and smears on the door handle, light switches, table tops, chairs, on some of their shirts etc. It was very dramatic. Lights were turned back on. Some students used hand sanitizer and some washed their hands with soap at the sink. We turned the lights off again and turned on the blacklight. The UV powder was still just as vibrant. Then the questions started faster than we could write them on the board! 

It has been two weeks since we started this unit and the students still talk about proper hand washing, how to properly cough or sneeze, they are bringing up new statistics on the Coronavirus. If someone coughs or sneezes and doesn't turn away from the group, they kind of freak out a little. 

 

Pamela Dupre
Pamela Dupre
92299 Activity Points

My first advice is to set the tone when you start the lesson. However you start your lesson will set the tone for the class. The beggining can either motivate students to learn or disconnect completely from you. An advice is to use games such as Kahoot it, or other online resources where students can compete, play, and test how much they know about the topic. This will help them be interested in knowing whether they are right or wrong. 

Then, my other advice is to make science fun by incorporating inquiry-based learning in which students are not just sitting and listening what they should learn, but rather allowing them construct their own knowledge by doing, working collaboratively, engaging in scientific investigations, doing hands-on activities, proving claims, and experimenting. If you find a way for your lessons to be less teacher centered, there you will be able to reach student's interest and engagement. 

Hope that my advices help! 

Sara Ordonez
Sara Ordonez
620 Activity Points

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