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A. Epitropova, Y. Dimova, K. Kamarska
University “P. Hilendarski”, Plovdiv
Researchers, Teachers
Over 10 pages
The active learning in science is a textbook written as part of the international project “Student Active Learning in Science” (SALiS). Academics and educators at ten partner institutions from six countries: Georgia, Bulgaria, Germany, Ireland, Israel and Moldova participate in this project to promote modern teaching and learning strategies in science education.
The book comprises an introduction, 3 chapters, 3 appendixes and a list of references. The first chapter considers three of the main aims of contemporary teaching: to develop natural science literacy, to build natural science skills, and to develop a positive attitude to nature and humans.
The second chapter views active teaching and learning strategies. According to the authors these are learner-centred strategies that allow students to learn by building their knowledge on their own through integration of new information and experience based on previous knowledge. In its nature this idea is constructivist in terms of the teaching/learning way. The following active strategies are presented in details and examples: visual and logo visual, role plays, autodidactic and computer games, conceptual flashcards and chemical experiments. Taking into account the experimental character of natural sciences, an emphasis is placed on experiments and research.
The third chapter presents the school chemical experiment as a tool and strategy for education and personal development, for mastering the scientific and research approach, developing skillfulness, and broadening natural science literacy. The detailed classification of school chemical experiments is illustrated by a number of examples, including virtual and extra-school (extra-curricular) experiments. The role of the school chemical experiment in active teaching/learning is also considered.
The appendixes present laboratory lessons including worksheets. They illustrate the principles of active teaching/learning, stated in the previous chapters. Those lab activities can be implemented with cheap available resources and can be directly applied to school practice.
Authors present the aims of school science education, such as development of scientific literacy, procedural skills and positive attitudes towards science. They give a classification of active science teaching and learning strategies along with their main features, and the application of chemical experiments in inquiry and problem-based student-centered teaching. In addition, some examples of active learning through simple, low-cost experiments and activities are given. The Active Learning in Science would be of great help for pre- and in-service science teachers, academics and educators.
The book is very useful for teachers in Natural Sciences. It is also a valuable resource for education authorities who, at the present moment, are rewriting the state educational requirements and are developing new curricula. One of its virtues is the extensive list of references, where over 130 items are cited, both up-to-date and classic ones.
Technical University Gabrovo

Comments about this Publication

Your comments are welcome

Date: 2014.10.06

Posted by I. Morales (Spain)

Message: This refernence is about a textbook written in an international project “Student Active Learning in science”. Several countries participate in this project and the aim is to promote modern teaching and learning strategies in education. The book describes strategies that allow students to learn by building their knowledge on their own through integration of new information and experience based on previous knowledge. It is based in constructivist theories about learning and teaching and includes experiments and research activities and resources that can directly applied to the school practice. I would have like to get provided for download a copy of this textbook. It probably is a valuable resource for secondary teachers from any country.

Date: 2013.11.25

Posted by Ömer Faruk Şen (Turkey)

Message: The fact that the book is not provided for download or view, it is only possible to have assumptions about the topic. According to the brief description it is to suppose that this textbook deals with teaching in general and active learning in science. The research was achieved under collaboration with several countries like Georgia, Bulgaria, Germany, Ireland and Israel.
The book is composed of 3 chapters. The first chapter mainly deals with contemporary teaching and the main aims of it like developing natural science literacy, constructing natural science skills and the development of a positive attitude to nature and humans. In the second chapter, the author is focusing on the learning strategies and their respective duties. Here, the strategies are described as learner-centered strategies. These kinds of strategies provide the learners learning through building knowledge with integrating the new information to the previous one- quasi learning based on constructivism. In this connection, the use of technological devices like visual components, computer games, conceptual flashcards, and chemical experiments. The third chapter comprises of school experiments which serve as strategic tool for teaching and personal development, developing skills, and to extend the nature of science and also the importance of experimental researches are touched on.
In conclusion, according to the brief description it is obvious that the textbook is interesting anyway. It deals with very important common and also controversial issues existing in the education system.

Date: 2013.07.10

Posted by Alžběta Jantová (Czech Republic)

Message: One can assume from the book\'s title and description that it presents an extensive study with contributions from scholars from many countries. Unfortunately it is not possible to view or download the book directly by clicking on the link. Therefore, it is impossible to provide an objective opinion on the book, one can only comment on a brief description of the work presented on the project website. My best attempt to comment follows.

The book deals with active learning in science, an issue closely related to the project. I would be most interested in the chapter where a lab-based chemistry experiments used at schools is presented as a tool for learning as well as for personal development. Lab-based experiments should form the basis of chemistry teaching and therefore this and related topics are crucial for chemistry teachers. Teachers, however, face financial constraints when it comes to budget given to the practical teaching. The book includes a set of instructions and tips which can be applied directly in the classroom and with their use make experiments financially accessible. These shall be interesting to flip through.

National Reports on successful experiences to promote lifelong learning for chemistry The national reports on chemistry successful experiences to promote lifelong learning for chemistry are now available on the related section of the project portal. The reports presents examples of successful experiences in the partner countries and the results of testing of ICT resources with science teachers.