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Effective Teaching in Science: A Review of Literature

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Author(s): Atilla ÇİMER

Journal: Journal of Turkish Science Education
ISSN 1304-6020

Volume: 4;
Issue: 1;
Start page: 20;
Date: 2007;
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Keywords: Effective Teaching | Effective Learning | Science Teaching | Science Learning | Constructivism | Formative Assessment

ABSTRACT
This paper presents a review of literature on effective teaching in science. It tries to explore what constitutes effective teaching in science. According to the literature reviewed, six main principles of effective teaching could be identified. The first is dealing with students' existing ideas and conceptions. This is important for teachers to help students construct their own understanding and knowledge. This requires teachers to help students activate their existing ideas and conceptions, be aware of them and in the light of scientifically accepted knowledge, modify, change or develop them further. For this purpose, such teaching methods and activities as question-and-answer, discussions either small group or whole class, small group activities, practical work, and using ICT facilities can be employed. The second principle is encouraging students to apply new concepts or skills into different contexts. In order to do this, teachers can use practical work, field trips, simulations, writing activities and role-play. The third principle identified is encouraging student participation in lessons. Involvement may be through a wide range of teaching and learning activities such as inquiry-based teaching, co-operative learning groups, questioning, discussions, field trips, role playing and so on. Encouraging student inquiry; encouraging co-operative learning among students; and offering continuous assessment and providing feedback are other principles identified from the literature. The paper discusses how these principles contribute to effective science teaching in science in detail. Finally, the importance of presenting research findings for reform attempts to improve the quality of teaching and learning in Turkish schools is discussed.
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