21st century Science Education
Posted by Jonathan Martin under General
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Nice article today, out of Florida, by a Science education expert. She says that new initiatives like NEON, the National Ecological Observatory Network, are seeking to track and monitor all kinds of biodiversity across the country, and schools can completely participate, having their students provide data streams to the project.
She applauds this kind of real-world science education, and lists six science education priorities for the 21st century. The particular interest here is in ecological education, and I should point out it is K-12, not high school specific.
The six are:
“No child left indoors,” a national movement to prioritize getting kids outside to learn about their local ecosystems;
Integrating technology with real ecosystems (virtual versus real ecology);
Training the next generation of scientists to communicate with public and policy audiences, not simply to create technical messages for their peers; and
Re-configuring national science so that it is not dominated by a testing system that fails to inspire creativity on the part of teachers.
And lastly, successful science education needs to engage all walks of life — citizens, policymakers, K-12, undergraduate, graduate, different ethnic and gender groups — to ensure advances in technology, clean energy and conservation required for future sustainability.