Community Research and Development Information Service - CORDIS

FP7

Pri-Sci-Net Result In Brief

Project ID: 266647
Funded under: FP7-SIS
Country: Malta

Novel teaching and learning framework to engage children in science

Children are curious by nature, and this helps to explain the popularity of science in schools. An EU initiative promoted a learning-by-doing approach to science education at primary level.
Novel teaching and learning framework to engage children in science
Primary school teachers are often generalists who lack the necessary skills or knowledge to teach science in class. They may also communicate the subject in a traditional manner that involves rote learning, much like the way they were taught. Science education is much more effective if young learners experience and live it rather than read about it and memorise concepts.

With this in mind, the EU-funded PRI-SCI-NET (Networking primary science educators as a means to provide training and professional development in inquiry based teaching) project set out to assist primary school teachers in developing skills needed to apply inquiry-based science education (IBSE). Overall, the aim was to promote the engagement of children in science.

PRI-SCI-NET identified, trialled and published 45 IBSE activities in 15 languages that teachers can download and use in the classroom for ages 3 to 5, 6 to 8 and 9 to 11. Topics range from plant, sky, soil and water exploration at lower levels to the chemistry of everyday life. All activities are freely available on the project website.

A virtual platform was set up across Europe enabling teachers, professionals and academics in primary science education to network. Over 1 900 teachers benefited from 20-hour IBSE training courses held in 13 countries, in addition to three international teacher-training courses. An awards scheme was initiated to recognise teaching excellence in IBSE.

Project partners also established an open-access, peer-reviewed multidisciplinary journal on IBSE in primary science for the target age group.

PRI-SCI-NET introduced an alternative teaching and learning method for both teacher as facilitator and inquisitive student as learner in the science classroom. A new generation of primary schoolchildren is poised to learn about the world around them by doing.

Related information

Keywords

Science education, primary science educators, inquiry based teaching, inquiry-based science education, PRI-SCI-NET
Record Number: 175068 / Last updated on: 2016-04-26
Domain: Industrial Technologies