1.4 Global approaches
1.4.1 Global science in the classroom
Other cultures have had flourishing examples of science that should be much more widely known by pupils… Pupils can be helped to see that science is a cultural activity, and it is inevitably the case that different cultures produce different sciences.
Reiss (2000) p. 17
There are many ways of helping students appreciate that science is a global pursuit.
In Activity 4 you are asked to consider a variety of ways of incorporating the global dimension in the work of your department.
Listen to the audio clip below in which a teacher from Oxfordshire continues his conversation and tells of the ways his department is planning to incorporate a global dimension into science lessons.
Transcript: Audio 2
Discuss the extent to which you would like to include the global dimension in the work of your department. In the light of your discussion and the ideas from the Oxfordshire school, consider these questions.
Where in your schemes of work could you incorporate some of the activities you have seen in this unit? Could ‘global anecdotes’ be included, too? A starting point might be to refer to the discoveries described in the quiz in Activity 2 at appropriate places in schemes of work.
Would it be worth setting up a simple system to collect news of interesting and relevant contemporary developments in science? Could each ‘story’ be linked to a scheme of work?
What other opportunities exist for promoting the global dimension in science, for example, through display or student projects?
As well as using resources like those in Section 3 ‘In the classroom’, you could try:
telling anecdotes – when studying light, you might mention that, 700 years ago, Quatb al-din from Iraq explained that rainbows are made when light rays are reflected and refracted by atmospheric water;
referring to news stories – about Nigeria's new satellite and about Brazilian researchers' claims that coffee makes sperm swim faster, both of which relate directly to the curriculum. Click the links below to view these articles.
Click "view document" to open 'Nigeria Satellite Takes Images of Nigeria, Liberia'.
Click "view document" to open 'Coffee makes sperm speed up'.
Some teachers incorporate anecdotes and add newspaper cuttings to schemes of work. This enables the global dimension to permeate science teaching and learning without being a time-consuming ‘add-on’.