Is there any research on the best way to teach?

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Offline thedoc

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Is there any research on the best way to teach?
« on: 14/07/2012 00:30:01 »
Alix Martin  asked the Naked Scientists:
Dear Dr. Chris,

Since you and the Naked Scientist team are involved in science education, and I teach science to teenagers, can you tell me if there have been any really good studies on the best way to go about it.  

Here in the US we know that we need to improve on what we have been doing, but there doesn't seem to be any solid research on the subject that follows children to adulthood to see if the methods used inspired them to develop and continue to learn about science, use it in their daily lives and apply scientific thinking skills to everyday problems.  All the information I can find seems to stop examining the effects at the end of the formal educational process, be it high school or college.  If you do know of any studies on this, and can pass on a link, my colleagues and I would be very grateful.

Thank you,

Alix Martin, New Jersey, USA

What do you think?
« Last Edit: 14/07/2012 00:30:01 by _system »


Offline Lynda

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Re: Is there any research on the best way to teach?
« Reply #1 on: 14/07/2012 12:31:05 »
I have never taught but it is easier to learn in a reasonably relaxed environment.    As I was shy when I was in a rather old-fashioned boarding school in the 1960s I had trouble learning as the policy was to instil fear into us!   Wrong!    I have learned more in the 6 subjects I took, and failed for GCE O'level.    When I re-took 2 O'levels in Evening Class at a local High School a few years after leaving school, on top of a full-time job I sailed through them as the teachers bothered to tell us things and we were more relaxed.

It should be a good idea to hold quizzes to test the pupils as the word "test" may be fearsome for some!
Only when the last tree has died & the last river has been poisoned & the last fish has been caught will we realise that we can not eat money


Offline David Cooper

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Re: Is there any research on the best way to teach?
« Reply #2 on: 14/07/2012 23:25:46 »
In general, proving that a particular method of teaching is better doesn't make any impact on the situation - people usually just ignore it and do things in inferior ways, and as soon as a new person takes over the running of a school, innovative ways of teaching which were showing a lot of promise simply get thrown in the bin so that that person's own preferences can be imposed, the result being that things don't generally advance in education over time. It happens time and time again, and it's deeply depressing.