Teachers constructing a circuit connection using an electricity kit
During the opening program, Dr. Merle C. Tan, NISMED director, gave a plenary lecture on Understanding by Design and the key features that will help improve teaching practices and the way instructional materials are developed. The participants were then divided into two subject areas, science and mathematics. Both groups had a session on assessment where they were introduced to the cognitive domains of the 2007 TIMSS Assessment Frameworks and some guidelines in formulating multiple-choice and constructed-response questions. For the content sessions, each group was subdivided into three clusters.
In all, 15 science concepts—5 for each cluster—were taught through the processes of science inquiry. Science misconceptions were also explained and corrected as they cropped up during class discussions. Toward the end of each session, one or two assessment items were presented for critiquing and improvement. All these activities were done to help teachers write improved versions of their usual assessment items.