Science Seminar highlights

17th September 2004 at 01:00
The science programme in the Glasgow Science Centre will feature 30 seminars and workshops packed with advice.

* Rhona Goss, principal teacher of physics at Monifieth High in Angus, will explain how information technology can be embedded into science teaching.

"At Monifieth High, we specified a minimum level of ICT experience for all S1 and S2 science pupils, including research, presentations, simulations and data-logging. Lessons were identified and supported with back-up material and after-school staff development. In addition, all three science departments have made extensive use of ICT," she says. "Much of this supports existing teaching methods, but we are now looking at novel approaches - peer assessment, interactive handsets and thinking skills."

Embedding ICT into the Science Curriculum, Thursday, 1.45pm

* Fiona Cruickshanks, principal teacher of biology at the Gordon Schools in Huntly, Aberdeenshire, will talk about interactive voting systems. "We have been using an interactive system called Qwizdom in S1 science and in biology Standard grade and Higher. It enables you to prepare your own tests or buy software for different subjects. I have had my S4 class devise questions then challenge the new S3 class to answer them - with benefits to both sets of pupils. In the short time we have used the system, test percentages and pupil interest have both increased."

Voting for Success, Wednesday, 1.15pm

* Ian Birrell of the Scottish Schools Equipment Research Centre will demonstrate what the Improving Science Education 5-14 website ( offers teachers. "We have integrated resources and methods of working with the environmental studies guidelines," he says.

"And it is well worth taking a look at the planning spreadsheet on the site to see how this is put into practice."

ISE 5-14 website - What's it Got for You? Wednesday, 1.15pm

* Bob Kibble, an Edinburgh University lecturer in science education, will demonstrate a new classroom resource for teachers of 11-14 physics who have little background in the subject. It comes with professional development support from the Institute of Physics and comprises CD-Roms about light, energy, forces, electricity and space and a series of seminars starting in September. The five CDs are divided into three parts: the physics narrative, which concentrates on key ideas; learning and teaching challenges, which tackles concepts pupils can struggle over; and teaching approaches, which gives suggestions for activities.

Supporting Physics Teachers 11-14 Resources for Non-Specialists, Thursday, 1.45pm

* Sheila MacNeill, of Learning and Teaching Scotland, will explore the educational benefits of online projects, drawing on classroom experience of the popular Ticket to Space, which will start again on October 25. "We get a tremendous response from children taking part in our online discussions," she says. "But teachers sometimes miss that part out.

I want to emphasise the benefits of collaboration and communication. I'll be encouraging teachers to take part in video-conferencing sessions - which create tremendous excitement and bring a project to life - and I'll be looking at ways to help teachers and authorities run their own online events."

A Practical Guide to Using Online Events in the Classroom, Wednesday, 9.30am

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