Science Virtual Labs Vs Projects in Schools: Students Motivation
Science Experiments in School
A proper structure of the course taught to be children in schools helps to create a new dimension of thinking. Science experiments and virtual labs along with animation and simulations are the main sources we have. The physical experiments that verify physics or other Science Laws are the tools to make them aware.
The components of the experiment and actual concepts involved. But due to the advancement in technology, today there is no need to start with the basic components, their identification and working in Labs. The children are familiar with technology and its operating steps like a smart mobile phone, TV’s, online games, camera etc. without going to school.
They are interested in object oriented output not in observations as the traditional form in science labs. Today school going children are more active and involved directly with available science applications. An old wooden, rusted iron or closed box instruments does not attract the attention of the children. At least those students who have images of daily use home appliances in their mind.
I am not against to the traditional practical Labs but this is also true, those labs are not for every student or creative mind. Some students may create the interest by taking procedural observations of an experiment. While some may learn from the direct output just like an analysis of a graph or image/pictures.
Challenges for School Teachers
In the present perspective there are two challenges for school teachers;
1. Traditional Lab Approach
2. Virtual Labs Output Analysis
Being a teacher I accept both ways. In the case- 1 school have not a proper manual of experiments that can support to the students before they perform. The experiment designed for the science labs by a company. Who provides the physical instruments for experiments in schools are supposed to provide the manuals also of concern experiments.
Mostly science teachers are not equipping with the latest computer science applications. They are not able to incorporate technology in the traditional way of teaching and learning. This gap is noticeable for the output of students in terms of interest and creativity.
Can Science model help to learn?
In addition to the performance of the experiments in practical Labs, school teachers ask students to develop a science model/project also. Now again improper instructions to the students suggest them to create something without know the principles of Physics. In such a way they can buy models from the market or make with lack of pieces of information.
The available Science model one takes from the market but assembles and operate it their own seems logically me up to some extent.
Also along with regular experiments school teacher can demonstrate the model. They explain the output of science project or model. So students motivation level would increase and they will learn science with fun. Image or impression of Basic Physics Principles helps students to learn. They use it to develop a new kind of applications.
Pinhole Camera Demonstration as Model
A pinhole camera is demonstrated in the video. This camera develops an Inverse Image of the object on the screen. This concept explains the first physics principle for any smart camera that clicks the image with the lenses. The making of this optical device as a toy will help students in terms of their creativity.
They will understand how inverted image is possible on screen. What is the rectilinear propagation of light? Where one can use this paper camera? Such questions will help to know more about the working of the real camera. They will try to understand how camera captures the images, develop its and show pictures transfer in digital form.
In conclusion, the manual available to the students should be reform with proper instructions and pieces of information. The second point is the teacher should be aware of computer science applications and their uses in teaching and learning. The third point without science models or projects output demonstration by the teachers him or herself, please never ask students to develop the science model or project.
The writer of this post has several years experiences in physics education and these are his own thoughts on the basis of teaching experiences. If at any point you have any objection or need more clarification you can ask him directly or by typing message in a comment box. If you think you need more support for any physics lab or science lab experiments please email at firstname.lastname@example.org
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