How do you see the future of science education?
The current UK government’s curriculum, which they suggest is a radical change in science education, does not teach children anything about what science really is. They mistakenly think the object of discovery is science. They also mistakenly conflate the core of science with its more superficial process / methodology. While of course the scientific method is essential, and while of course what we’ve discovered is important, what is at the core of good science is neither of these. Rather, science is a way of being. Indeed, it’s the only human endeavour that celebrates uncertainty, diversity, collaboration and is intrinsically motivating (i.e., it is its own reward). These principles of science are also the same values that define play. Hence … science can actually be reframed as play itself. Which means experiments are nothing more than games. The aim in reframing science in this way isn’t to bring people (young and old) to science by ‘making it fun’ – because science is actually very difficult (as is anything done well). Rather, the future of science education is to give children the skills to become adaptable, since being adaptable we be the core of their well-being and success in the future.
The main thing that this blog is trying to get across is that you do not need to be told something – you can discover it with science yourself. Your blogger also thinks that you will not believe this is fully and truly possible until you prove it yourself. At least this blog will try to help you believe it.
1. Get ready to fill in your applications for this school in Paris .
2. You may be able to download an episode of BBC click as follows ( with the relevant clip starting at 15.mins 42 sec Reporter Lara Lewington Finishes at 18min 48secs).
- If downloading is impossible you may be a blessing to follow the thread of the situation from the following transcript.
This coding school in Paris has no teachers, no syllabus, no hours and no fees. So what does it have?
Ecole 42 was created and funded by French billionaire entrepreneur Xavier Niel. He felt that the French education system could do better, so created this place for 18 to 30 year olds to learn coding, by affectively teaching themselves. This being a concept he’d already launched in San-Francisco.
Catherine Madiner, Technical & Pedagogical Manager, Ecole 42
We have implemented something we call peer-pedagogy, it was a mix of the Fermi method, the Montessori method, was done and implemented in the Finnish educational system. It was very much searched and researched, so it is a model that has been tested and tried out a lot before it was implemented here.
Landing a place on the course is the first challenge. Fifty thousand applicants get whittled down to three thousand, for what they call La Piscine (the swimming pool) stage, which doesn’t actually involve swimming, but more of a four week trial as to whether they’ll metaphorically sink or swim. Only eight to nine hundred will make the grade.
Catherine Madiner, Technical & Pedagogical Manager, Ecole 42
From the first day they arrive here on the site, we don’t tell them anything, we don’t give them anything. They have to figure out what to do, whether they’ll login and password, they have to go find a room, how to work.
Those taking part don’t even know what they need to do to impress, but they are aware that it’s their peers assessing them
There’s no lectures, and essays, you never quite know all the information so it takes a lot of trial and error, but it forces you to speak to your peers so there’s a lot of trying to interpret the exercises and working together with your colleagues.
It’s really a two way thing it’s not just me asking them for help it’s also them learning, through all of my questions.
I’ve seen some people that come here just for fun. And fun is not why we’re here, were not here for fun we’re here to work and to get better and to improve.
Seems to be a friendly place, it’s far more sociable than I’d expected. One of the main aims here is an educational meritocracy giving everyone no matter what their background and achievements to date, equal opportunity. And for that reason a place to sleep is available. Whilst undertaking the course trials some may just use it for a nap in the day, others could be staying there throughout the four weeks.
Apparently a lot of the work happened between 2 and 3am in the morning, when the place is quite busy.
For me, because I don’t have a salary it’s good to stay here in… (Incomprehensible)
But for those who do make it onto the full course, 80% gain employment while still studying, with 100% getting jobs by the end.
I think the really special thing about the school is the eco system where everybody who comes here is super ambitious and super motivated. And being surrounded by people who have the kind of mind set that really pushes you to perform better in life.
1 OK you will say it is the students themselves that become the temporary teachers if they are even sightly ahead of the person who is asking.
2. However this style greatly increases the responsibility of the student for his or her own progress , standards and confirmations , all of which cannot be bad.
3 Employers too, who must come into the building undistinguished from the students, can assess to their own requirements and standards, giving the appropriate level of remuneration for the observed abilities and decisions they make.
The whole system demonstrates a trust in humanity.
I think this heralds a whole shift of responsibilities in the learning processes. Teachers have no need to fear this . It is only the disruptive pupil who will suffer- if he/she swings into action it can only be themselves and their progress which suffers.
The things we know as schools now will become purely social establishments. They and all of society will be the better for it.
In addition to following this blog, asking questions, making comments, replies & suggesting general improvements we need your help in several other ways as follows.
- Help with WORDPRESS. It should be obvious to those that can help which features I am not using and which I should be using. If you are an expert in WordPress design I could do with some advice. As this is a not for profit blog I do not intend to ask for any paid actual work help, just advice
- IF YOU ARE A CODER THE proposed initial, all-age teaching Model of Science Processes shown in the “What is this thing called Science “post is obviously a 2D static model.
Science is not a static thing. Even though a question asked can remain static for a very long time, we want the solution processes to move as soon as possible. The above model then is NOT sufficiently flexible to characterise the real-life processes of science. It needs to convey how timings between processes differ as well as other variables not shown. Sometimes a conclusion is reached seconds after the hypothesis. On other modelling situations, it would take many decades or other long periods to pass between these two markers, testable question and possible answer. It needs to be a dynamic model animated ,stop framed and controllable between each process. Possibly in the future bring in another dimension.
If you code this, YOU could massively help to bring the model to a much wider attention. I am of the generation that was not taught coding, being frustrated and condemned just to struggle with using a smart phone successfully. It should not be a task without precedents as my vision of the animated process which I manged to cobble together by videoing a crudely constructed solid version is shown above.
Does it not resemble a Fruit machine; one armed bandit; gambling machine with lemons and fruits etc.?
Such computer versions of these must have sharable coding listings, and a colourful adaptation would be the main job. Please send a message if you are willing to try this, although I cannot guarantee to choose your version or any other, if possible adding your views on this question “Does the animated computer graphics produced by your work make better sense as a model of the changing processes of science. You will be given full credit if your work is used in this blog.
- If you have performed your own science at home using a science process model similar to the one we are proposing is discussed, then please send a BRIEF description of your work emphasising the different processes. We are particularly interested in work done safely in the home and in problems that are solved using science. It could be work done as a hobby e.g. birdwatching, robot wars, comfortable living devices, patent applications etc. etc.
This blog is a long term project and it may take a while to build enough posts to have an effect on you. In the meantime please register to receive more posts and try these quick booster nourishments. Each will naturally start science within you
What if .. The real hypothesis of this website
There is no doubt that science has its ‘enemies’, even possibly grouped into an anti-science movement. This blog tries simply to say that all opposition to science is unnecessary. Solution : Just find out what real science is and try it.
In the wider context, so many people also criticise science “because of its limitations”. It is my contention that science appreciation would benefit if tested as a complete universal way of thinking. By you and for you…in order to find out its potential for us ALL. Not just in the laboratory. In any situation where the processes outlined in the “What is this thing called SCIENCE post” apply.
This testing requires only you and your imagination, no chemicals test tubes, very few material objects, no advice written or otherwise, a consideration for other people of course but most of all using abilities that you were already born with (and may be surprised that you have). Perhaps this adventure in blog form would function better if you have more experience of life, but then science is always a good way of getting experience good or bad. Experience is all.
What if …the whole of our lives had to be lived without being told what to do and without telling anyone else what to do?
At this point I feel it necessary to state that “being told what to do” includes being commanded, forced, tricked or induced what to do and what to conclude. Also, to say that I realise for the sake of health & safety of the immature or incapable, it will be necessary to shout or tell someone that danger is imminent. This includes in advance by way of rules and simply anything that is the surest way to save a life.
THIS CAN ONLY BE THOUGHT OF AS AN IDEAL TO AIM AT and requires flexibility of thought and pragmatism. It will take an infinite time to apply but it does at least give us something to aim at.
This blog is an exploration of the implications of this theory. It cannot be disproved except by actually trying it. One can only guess at how long it would take to fully implement this theory.
I also realised quite early on that encouraging people to not obey the commands of others had quite a bit of anarchic feel about it. But I have concluded that this does not represent anarchism, which I take as a complete rejection of laws and all agreed ways of doing things existing in society.
My suggestion unlike anarchism does offer a viable alternative instead of listening to the views or instructions of others. That is your own personal science.
Being instructed or confined is the pure essence of slavery. We are talking of
Freedom through science
Taking all the above points into consideration perhaps the best way to express my hopes for society by way of a universal achievable common way of thinking would be.
Try Science in all situations, in
order never to be told or forced what to do.
This website is my effort to counter extremist views from all directions by using natural processes we are born with.
Further Points This video below makes many good points but he is telling you what to do. My view is that you can research yourself and try experiments with your life style which achieve the same ends
It would seem to be a good place to start with a definition of science, although definitions always eventually bring up difficulties. They have usefulness within restricted discussions and should be abandoned or rejigged in cases of failure to reach agreement
Such definitions as
do not help the person first trying to understand if that person has little knowledge including that of scientific method.
It MAY be helpful to think that science is not a ‘body’ –a group of scientists or a set of words and diagrams in a textbook, but to understand that it is a set of processes
It is always important to distinguish the processes of science from the actual conclusions from these processes. Processes can be refined and conclusions changed.
In this blog, we will try to consider science as a
‘Set of Processes’
Continue reading What is this thing called SCIENCE