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Generic digital and study skills

2021 October 22 Friday 00:25

At gcse (level 2 qualification) it is relatively easy to complete the subject with a good teacher, by rote learn of the content "taught"; at gce a(s), more independent study must be performed by the pupil student:

Prepared to teach all sciences?

No. No. No. If the sciences (note, plural) are to be truly respected, why do sciences teachers tolerate being asked (and deployed) by management to teach subject matter beyond their specialism? How many teachers will arrogantly claim such capability? Too many jobs declare this requirement, seemingly with the logic that KS3/4 scientific content is sufficiently shallow to negate the need for specialists.

Beyond the sciences disciplines

On the topic of the sciences, a recent blog post (bera) discusses again the old argument about discipline-based or thematic-based pedagogy. The problem with the latter is whilst it may be more provocative, or exciting, any successful and efficient problem-solving require a deep comprehension of the (detailed) subject matter for the disciplines concerning the questions posed within the theme. In addition, there is a fundamental conflict between the collaborative nature of thematic, multi-disciplinary study and the competitive, individualistic assessment (i.e. examination grade results) that school pupils must first accomplish. As such, it remains doubtful that thematic pedagogy could yield "good insights" when the prerequisite specialist subject knowledge has yet to be understood with sufficient rigour. Long live the single sciences!

Move with the times

2021 October 28 Thursday 11:06

Previously, city air pollution is a useful "real-world" oppurtunity to discuss the relevance of chemistry to daily life. Although the transition away from fossil fuel combustion may be a slow process, will this scenario quite soon become an inappropriate theme for an exam question, à la the tungsten filament light bulb?

This week, London's ulez expands, ostensibly to tackle air pollution; similarly to the tobacco business, there is some tax revenue...Unfortunately too late for many, such as Ella Adoo Kissi Debra, but it will be interesting to see the impact over the long term. In the interim, there is the London Air Quality Network to monitor progress, as we read (on a side note: disappointed that 'Openstreetmap' technology was not used instead of that proprietary "do be evil" company).

Webmention: Structural racism

Reply: Hodder Education (book withdrawal), courtesy of 'mplouffe'

Looking at the nitter account of Ms Wilkinson, raises the standard questions about the all-to-common transgressions (did I write "trans"? More on that later):

Webmention: What about specialist search engines?

Reply: Rohan Kumar

Courtesy of post by Rocky III, nice to see an detailed review of internet search engine services. Students need to think beyond the single search engine they are introduced to within the school environment, which is unfortunately dominated by "big tech". Would be interesting to have a review of some specialist services such as base search and open knowledge maps (which reminds of kartoo, which needs to return with html5...).

Webmention: Diversity, gateway to or distraction from freedom

Reply: Noyovo

				The difference between the politics of diversity & inclusion and the politics of anti-imperialism / anticolonialism is the difference between "every slave deserves an opportunity to become free" and "no one should be enslaved".

Nothing more to add; thanks to share this statement.

Webmention: Cancel culture and freedom of expression

Reply: Peter Lindelauf

Once again (paleskin) penis privilege manifests. Coincidentally, a social media account then gets "suspended". Thankfully, the fediverse and the indieweb mentality makes ostracism a ludicrous concept. Long live freedom of expression, including the freedom to have a different opinion...

Just reminded of a recent statement of fact: "you [as far as known now] cannot change your sex" (see: Lord Professor Robert Winston), but too many activists fail to realise: sex ≠ gender. Now, to use another 'trumpism', time for an "alternate fact"...