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Journal Article

Developing Critically Thoughtful, Media‑Rich Lessons in Science: Process and Product  pp161-170

Philip Balcaen

© Nov 2008 Volume 6 Issue 3, Editor: Shirley Williams, Laura Czerniewicz, pp161 - 254

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Abstract

In this paper, I describe a professional development approach and a conceptual framework used to create critically thoughtful and media‑rich science learning resources. Greater clarity about the nature of critical thinking and how to support teachers in learning to implement it are needed if we are to respond to broader calls for critical thinking both as a central goal in science education and as a key aspect in the ecology of 21st Century e‑learning environments. The conceptual framework is a model of critical thinking developed by the Canadian Critical Thinking Consortium that involves embedding the teaching of five categories of intellectual tools into the teaching of curriculum content. The "tools for thought" include addressing the need for focused and relevant background knowledge, criteria for judgment, thinking concepts, thinking strategies and the development of habits of mind. The professional development approach engages practicing teachers through focused inquiry groups in collaboration with rich media technicians to develop the e‑critical challenges (lessons). Aspects of this "comet approach" include a series of face‑to‑face sessions, gradual and planned for introduction to use of laptop computers, developing inquiry oriented writing teams and expert mentorship between large group face‑to‑face sessions. I explain the unique aspects of both the development process and the challenges in the context of a project involving twelve teachers in the creation of media‑rich critical thinking lessons in science for Grade 7 students. Although project assessment data analysis is currently underway, I offer several initial conclusions in relation to the four goals of the project.

 

Keywords: Critical thinking, science teaching, media-rich, professional development, one-on-one laptop, collaboration

 

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Journal Article

The Level of ICT Infrastructure as a Factor of ICT Integration in Greek High School Science Teaching  pp562-574

Charalampos Apostolou

© Dec 2020 Volume 18 Issue 6, Editor: Heinrich Söbke and Marija Cubric, pp462 - 574

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Abstract

This paper examines the extent to which the level of technological equipment affects the integration of the Information and Communication Technologies (ICT) in Greek high school science teaching. The limited ICT infrastructure environment, with only one computer‑projector system available and access to the internet (“PC‑VP” environment), is compared to the high level ICT environment (“1:1” environment) where, in addition to the computer‑projector system, each student has access to a computer and the internet. It is a study relying on a relatively small dataset derived from student answers to a questionnaire aiming to determine the degree to which some of the “expected” ICT benefits reach the students. The level of ICT integration is judged by the degree to which the ICT benefits reach the students. That is, the more the ICT benefits reach the students, the better – or the greater ‑ the ICT integration is. The participants were eighty‑nine, 14‑year‑old students who belonged in four different classes and the teacher who taught Physics in those classes. The SPSS non‑parametric "Man‑Whitney U Test" test was used to compare the statistical distributions of student answers. The results show that, when the applied teaching approach is used, the ICT integration is equally successful in both environments. This questions the idea of investing in “1:1" environments in the Greek public schools where less student centered and inquiry oriented teaching approaches are the norm. It also highlights the importance of the specific teaching approach as an ICT integration tool in “PC‑VP” environments that still exist in most Greek schools.

 

Keywords: ICT integration, ICT infrastructure, high school science teaching

 

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Journal Issue

Volume 18 Issue 6 / Dec 2020  pp462‑574

Editor: Heinrich Söbke, Marija Cubric

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Keywords: Community of Inquiry, continuing education, distance education, deep learning design, constructivist learning; academic dishonesty, cheating, online education, distance education, plagiarism; ODeL, online learning tools, mobile learning tools, Moya Messenger App WhatsApp, myUnisa’s ODF; Emotions and learning, flipped learning, university, science education; creativity, personality traits, students, virtual courses, gender differences; EFL learner, mobile learning, smartphone and language learning, attitudes and perceptions, process of learning English; Out-of-classroom communication (OCC), flipped classroom, motivation, intervention; ; ICT integration, ICT infrastructure, high school science teaching

 

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