Presentation on theme: "Creativity and Excitement in Primary Science"— Presentation transcript:
1 Creativity and Excitement in Primary Science Helen Wilson, Jo ThompsonOxford Brookes University
2 My test results must improve The tension in the current English education system?My test results must improveCreativityProcess drivenContent driven
3 ‘The stress on results means that there is a tendency towards extreme instrumentalism in learning: if it is not assessed then it is not important.’Wilde et al (2006) Nuffield Review Higher Education Focus Groups Preliminary Report The Nuffield Review of 14 – 19 Education and Training
4 Lessons from Gifted & Talented My test results must improveCreativityProcess drivenContent driven
5 My test results will improve CreativityMy test results will improveProcess drivenContent driven
6 If you are willing to deal effectively with the needs of able pupils you will raise the achievement of all pupils.Renzulli
12 Key Outcomes of Projects More emphasis on pupils’ independent scientific thinkingIncreased time within lessons spent in discussion of scientific ideasMore focused recording by the pupils, less time spent writingMore time for hands on, practical investigations
13 Or, more simply:More practical activityDeeper thinkingMore discussionLess writingMore questioning
14 Threads Think The Bright Ideas Time Talk Focused recording Do Practical science
15 Focused recordingQuestionsInvestigationsPupils as researchersInfusion: Higher order thinkingDialogueCreativityICTBright ideas timeProblem solvingCoates, D. & Wilson, H. (2003). Challenges in Primary Science. London: Fulton
16 Bloom’s Taxonomy High: synthesis - hypothesising, showing originality bycreating, inventing and composingevaluation - judging, rating and giving opinionsanalysis - categorising and comparing; distinguishingbetween fact and opinion or relevant and irrelevantinformationMiddle:application/use - transferring knowledge from onesituation to another similar oneLow:comprehension - summarising and putting ideas orinformation into other wordsknowledge - remembering, reciting or listing facts
17 Another definition of Higher Order Thinking: ‘Higher order thinking occurs when a person takes new information and information stored in memory and interrelates and/or rearranges and extends this information to achieve a purpose or find possible answers in perplexing situations.’InformationRelates, rearrangesPossible answersThis would be great as an animation – the information moves into the mind, is stirred around and then merges as possible answers to perplexing situations.Lewis and Smith (1993, p.136)
18 Too busy working to have time to think? True for children and us!
19 Content of the Curriculum Use/Apply Reflection HOTInfusion
20 Bright Ideas TimeThe Bright Ideas slot has taken off throughout the school. It really encourages the pupils to think & it is rather like a science mental starterAll the project schools developed this discussion slot
23 Discussing big ideas is more important than finding the right answer The Bright Ideas TimeGame shows: Odd One OutPMIA big questionConcept cartoonsDiscussing big ideas is more important than finding the right answer
33 Positive Statements:You won`t waste so much energyInstead of electrical toys you would have wind up radios –that would be fun!!The world would be equal
34 Minus Statements:It would be very scary walking home at night.There wouldn't`t be a London underground.You wouldn't`t be able to watch T.V!
35 Interesting Statements: You would have to be inventive in your spare time.Torches might become really fashionable.People might be fitter – less T.V = more exercise.
36 An eye in the middle of your hand The chocolate teapotLiving on the MoonAn eye in the middle of your handA world without frictionA flexible skeleton
37 Incorporating Bright Ideas time into every session The Bright Ideas have been an excellent way of stimulating discussion and questioning. They have also come up with some far more interesting ideas than I have thought of. I have noticed that the more we do, the more scientific their ideas have become. There is more of a buzz and children are a lot more confident when sharing their ideas - risk-taking has increased/improved greatly and this has a positive knock-on effectIncorporating Bright Ideas time into every session
38 Practical Investigations: Do people with the strongest legs jump the furthest?I think…because…
39 Do people with the strongest legs jump the furthest? Example:Do people with the strongest legs jump the furthest?Responses from Year 2 pupils
40 Rate these responses, according to the depth of thinking involved: Most of the time people jump further when they are strongerMuscles has got nothing to do with how far because muscles are if you carry heavy things not how far you goI think the people with the lightest legs will jump the highest because they don’t have to lift as muchThere is no reasonThe people with the stronger legs are strong so they can jump higherI think the strongest legs will push the most and go the furthest.The people with the strongest legs will jump the furthest because they have the strongest legs.
41 Year 2 Patterns in Data & Evaluations Lillie had the biggest bit round the thigh but she did not jump the furthestI think its about how high you go because it takes longer to land
42 How to focus the LO in Sc1Concentrate on one particular aspect of an investigation, e.g.predictionplanningresultsconclusion.
44 ‘But then when you do an investigation, you understand what you are actually writing about and you can write a lot clearer.’ ‘If you’re just told to write something, but if you find out something first and then report it, then you learn.’
66 When questions arise in the classroom that no-one can answer, put them in the poster of the light bulbQuestionsChallenge: who can find the answer?
67 The Light Bulb Award I asked the best question this week My question was …
68 Recurring themes from pupil interviews: Thinking about ideasTalking, discussing ideas with each otherMore doing for themselves (hands on) – investigations, experimentsLess writing Fun, enjoyment, interestingDeciding for themselves what to doUnderstand and remember more by doing
69 ‘I really like the Bright Ideas bit, especially the PMI, because it gets you thinking. … they are fun and get you thinking, which is what scientists have to do.’‘We used to have to write more in science, but this year I have had to do a lot more thinking and talking’
71 Pell and Jarvis (2001) in UK and Piburn and Baker (1993) have found that children’s enthusiasm for science decreases with age in primary schools.
72 Oxfordshire AZ Project I have enjoyed science more & think this has rubbed off on the classThey love science! They are very enthusiastic & feel that they are learning in a more interesting wayThey are far more interested in science & always want to do moreThat was good, you had to think a lot more…it makes science much more funOxfordshireAZ Project
73 I have give my children more opportunities to discuss their ideas about science topics and have found that they are more willing to share their ideas with me and others.It has been a great opportunity and the ideas learnt will definitely continue to be used and developed..London G&T ProjectThey have become more abstract in their thinking and have found activities more fun
74 % of pupils in project attaining level 5 = 53% % of pupils nationally attaining level 5 = 41%Number of pupils in project = 412A significantly higher proportion of children achieved the highest level in the project schools than was the case nationally.
75 ConclusionThe findings of this project suggest that the making of time for thinking through discussion and practical science is a priority in the primary classroom which should not be squeezed out by a content driven approach.