Designing of the unit of work must base on the expected learning outcomes of the student or the learner. Many important lessons can be learned from the primary connections which encompasses a learning program for learners as an effective tool to enhance teaching as well as learning science and literacy (Flores, 2016). The unit learning objectives must encompass the learning outcomes keeping the student as the centre of the unit program. The teaching pedagogy and delivery of the unit lessons must be strategically planned to satisfy the cognitive learning needs of the students; motivating them to thing logically and rationally to produce an explanation of a scientific phenomenon. Scientific pedagogy and literacy are inter-related. It encircles a set of values and a clear goal or a vision; an effective UoW framework helps in organized and structured learning, realistic assessment strategy with an aim of enhancing actual learning instead of basing the assessment on unrealistic and biased academic performance alone; According to Gary et al., 2020, “ A Unit of work and unit learning outcome must ensure that the individual students develop confidence in themselves and become successful learners and responsible citizens. Designing of the unit recognizes that schools exhibit continuum of learning and encourage the idea that students can be anywhere along in this continuum.”
The curriculum has been rampantly evolved since past many years. It is structured in a way that each segment of the curriculum is directed towards achieving a specific learning outcome or the goals of the unit. It is significant to identify the challenges which hamper the scientific pedagogy to be prevalent in the learner. To attain the scientific understanding and encouraging logical thinking the old teaching methods should be assessed for their ability to produce results which are more practical and not only the results which are focused on strong academic performance. Such sort of learning does not encourage critical thinking and does not inspire the learner to think, beyond the grades (Shinno et al., 2018). Due to this there is a negative impact on the student’s mind. It is vital to recognize the link between the unit of working framework and the activities as well as assessments which are carried out in the class.
As discussed earlier, based on the theory of Benjamin Bloom, (Paatsch, Hutchison & Cloonan, 2019) “the research related to the process of thinking can be put in use in designing the unit. This means that the construction of the unit must put the Unit levels, courses and the activities in sync for a common goal or a desired outcome, instead of the outcome which is only based on instructions or a to do list. This will help the educators to stress on the teaching outcome and learning and less on the objectivity which focuses merely on the standards of academic excellence. Thus, task-based learning must be emphasized and equal participation of all students be encouraged in performing those tasks.”
According to the Australian Curriculum, “Science has three interrelated strands—Science Understanding, Science as a Human Endeavour and Science Inquiry Skills—that together ‘provide students with understanding, knowledge and skills through which they can develop a scientific view of the world’ (ACARA, 2014).” The first strand is comprised of: “Science as a Human Endeavor” shown in box below.
The Second and third strands are shown in the box below: Science Understanding & Science Inquiry Skills.
It represents the presentation of scientific learning of the students based on pictorial, graphical data. It is important aspect of scientific to have the ability to interpret the understanding of the scientific concepts in the form of flowcharts, graphs and other diagrams. It tests the inquiry skills of the student, as in how the student “processes and analyses” data and the relevant information. It also helps in understanding of data comparisons, predictions as well as development of logical reasoning behind the scientific phenomena.
Student-generated explanations can be represented in a variety of ways (fig 1 to 3). According to Parnafes, 2010, “the students negotiate and co-construct representations with their peers. Finally, they design representations for explaining the phenomenon to an external audience. The analysis identifies various representational practices utilized by students for making sense of the phenomenon, developing explanations, and communicating their ideas to their peers. The analysis examines how these practices support students in achieving some cognitive and communicative goals.” SGR helps learners to enhance their own understanding. It involves creative skills and development of inventiveness which is critical for any science student. It also helps in increasing competitiveness.
The student generated gestures are goal oriented, and serve the following functions in making sense of the activity for obtaining cognitive goals. They are:
1). Organizing the data or the information- for instance, using a flowchart, which chalks out the relevant details of the subject or the topic.
2). Construction of the idea and describing the logic/rational for the same.
3). Manage complex task.
From the discussion, I have realised many factors which influence the scientific learning in the students. A few modifications were made in the unit design based on the 5Es teaching and learning model (Box 4).
There must be transparency while constructing the assessment process. Students must be made aware of the importance and goals of the assessment in order to gain a positive outcome. It is important that the student has a clear understanding of the assessment, which is to judge its own cognitive abilities rather than comparing with the peers, the grading system causes conflicts in the child’s mind at a subconscious level. Different teaching strategies must be deployed by the teachers which should cause an engagement of students during the activities. As science is an active subject, teacher must stress more on the critical thinking process, encouraging students to explore their surroundings and verifying their findings. The methods of teaching must be flexible and must bridge the learning gap of all the students. It should encircle those students who have low IQ level. As per Min et al., 2019, “Effectiveness of the unit lies in the ability of student to actively engage himself/herself in learning outcomes and ability to adapt to the changes which occur as adjustments within the mandated standards. It is of significance importance that the students must actively participate and engage in the formation of the unit.”
Teaching Challenges in Science.
There are various challenges, which the educators face pertaining to the subject of science. Primarily, it is well known fact that the educational standards that are too high for the learners, with complex learning outcomes. It hampers actual learning and makes the goals unachievable. Spencer & Yuill, 2018; Smith & Kennedy, 2019; Ennis, 2016; Min et al., 2019, were some of the researchers which suggested that, “The focus of the educators remains of covering the syllabus and not achieving learning of concepts in the manner which help the students in solving real time problems.” The AQF level pertaining to the higher education considers the qualifications being offered and the achievement of the students. This is well associated to the course learning outcomes that are being assessed (Spencer & Yuill, 2018; Smith & Kennedy, 2019; Ennis, 2016; Min et al., 2019).The Australian Qualification Framework has the constraints associated with the mobility issues and the engagement of the domestic and global education in a unique manner. The recognition of the qualification and the recognition policy encourages the deployment of recognition practices. Researches on this model should be shared for renewal of policies at a national as well as global level.
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