Debate is a very important and efficient tool to develop scientific understanding and to gain scientific knowledge. The clash between ideas has the potential to provide new points of views to the debaters and to the audience.
Our middle schoolers are very much familiar with the discussion and expressing themselves in scientific argumentation. On the other hand, a debate setup is a new concept for them. Moreover, performing an online debate session was a big challenge for all of us.
A middle school tradition
As an MYP-1 (Grade-6) science class tradition, students learnt how to debate and they performed their first debates in April as a part of Earth science unit. The main debate topic was global climate change or global warming and this year there was a bit of an adjustment in the topic due to Covid-19 situation.
For the sake of global climate…
“Some of the factories should remain closed even after the pandemic issue is solved.”
“Let’s teach and learn STEM” eTwinning project was founded in August 2019 by Ülkü Kale Karaaslan and Ayşe Ünlü.
The aim of the project is to create STEM awareness among preschool teachers and to enable STEM applications from early childhood. Over a hundred female teachers were involved in the “Family Workshop” project where teachers were given STEM training. The teachers who received the training prepared the activity plans according to the 5e learning model in teams and applied them in their classrooms.
The “Family Workshop” (which is part of the project) was planned for the 2020 STEM Discovery Campaigning. On 5 March 2020, it was held simultaneously with 27 provincial 100 schools, 100 teachers, 2020 students and 2020 parents involved. The information on STEM Discovery Campaning has been provided to all participants.
What is STEM to parents? The families designed balloon cars with their children. The cars were tested as a result of the design process. Schools communicated with each other via social networks during the event.
Distance teaching due to Covid-19 outbreak can be challenging. Being Scientix ambassador to Turkey and willing to engage students in STEM education, together with 85 teachers, on 13 April, 2020 we started the challenge project “STEM at Home”. As during the pandemic students are learning from home we wanted them to develop their problem-solving, creativity, communication, presentation and entrepreneurship skills. I joined this challenge with my 7 years old students that are in 1st grade. Please see their works in the video format below.
The first activity we planned as a school within the scope of 2020 STEM Discovery Campaign Activities was “Unbreakable Egg” Experiment. We made the announcement of our activity to all our students. We received feedback from students with the Google form we created. 137 of our 259 students made a return that they wanted to participate in this activity. We divided 137 students into groups according to their ages. We carried out the first activity with 32 students in the 9-11 age group. By dividing these 32 students into 8 subgroups of 4 people, we enabled them to work together.