At its core, the discipline of science is all about exploring, observing, collecting data, explaining patterns, making predictions, and drawing conclusions. It’s no wonder that people often scratch their heads at the thought of taking a science course virtually. How do you employ these (often tactile) scientific elements virtually?
We have released two brand new Edmentum Courseware science courses, Biology and Earth & Space Science – and within these courses we have emphasized the collaboration of online learning with real-world application. Students are provided with extensive and meaningful inquiry and lab experiences through lesson activities, course activities, and unit activities. We have designed these courses with four key learning benefits in mind:
- STEM curriculum – standards-based STEM curriculum (integrating science, technology, engineering design, and math)
- Active learning – student-centered active learning
- Real-world application – engaging content relevant to the real world
- Inquiry and labs – focused inquiry-based learning and hands-on labs
Let’s take a closer look at a lesson from our Biology course and see how each of these objectives come into play:
Each lesson starts with an objective slide that provides students with a clear, learning objective so that students go into the lesson aware of the end goal. Next, students are presented with a warm-up activity. These activities are designed to have students draw on their experience or make a hypothesis about the topic, prior to learning anything about it. This approach engages students in connecting personal experience with the inquiry-based learning process.
To both pique student interest and incorporate real-world application, we include engaging video content for every lesson.
We have also crafted a wide variety of interactions to present content and check for understanding. Interactions keep students engaged and range from animation and videos to A variety of technology enhanced items.
Demonstrating relevance and making real-world connections are also key to active, student centered learning. Students connect to real-world science topics through current-day issues, real-world videos, and dedicated “Science in the News” and “Careers in Science” sections.
In this example, students look into the science behind the supply and demand of food on a growing planet. This section:
- shows relevance to real world problems
- sparks interest in STEM careers
- ties into the ethics and practicality of science
- brings science directly into the student’s life and world
Additionally, each lesson has one or more Lesson Activities, where students exercise their inquiry skills. Lesson Activities like this employ simulations, online data, or other online resources that are easy to use in the middle of a tutorial, anytime and anywhere.
Lastly, in order for students to meet the lab requirement present in most high school science courses, we have them participate in direct observation and labs. These lab tasks employ scientific materials and methods to provide a comprehensive science offering that provides students with a rigorous, active, and engaging learning experience.
Ready to learn more? Check out our Course Catalog for a complete listing of our science courses, or explore some of the exciting new features and enhancements that are being released throughout the summer.