Public lectures on Climate Change and Productive Pedagogy held at NISMED

As part of the activities in the celebration of NISMED’s 49th year and a run-up to its Golden Anniversary in 2014, a public lecture was held on November 20, 2013 at the STTC Auditorium, UP NISMED. The lecture was attended by 325 teachers in science and mathematics. The activity is the first of a series of public lectures which aims to promote scientific literacy and contribute to the professional development of science and mathematics teachers.

Two experts in the field of science education were invited to share with teachers current issues and trends relevant to science education. The lecturers were Dr. Carlos Primo David, a licensed geologist, a faculty member at the National Institute for Geological Sciences (UP NIGS), The Raya School and Project Leader of DOST’s Project NOAH; and Dr. Bill Atweh, an international education consultant, and a retired professor of the University of Brisbane, Australia.

Dr. David expounding on climate change.
Dr. David talked on “The Use of Rich Media in Teaching Climate Change.” He focused on the objectives of teaching climate change. According to him, two important points to be considered in teaching the topic are: 1) providing a scientific explanation of the phenomenon and its resulting impact; 2) inciting an emotion of reaction from the students in terms of what we should be doing about it. He stressed further that “while accurate information is crucial in teaching climate change, the mode of presenting it is what will achieve the second objective.”

Dr. Atweh answering questions of Dr. Francis Molina after his lecture.
Dr. Atweh, on the other hand, spoke on “Beyond Student-Centered Education Towards Productive Pedagogy”. During his talk, he emphasized the origins and limitations of the discourses of student-centered approaches. His presentation argued that the discourse of student-centered learning is open to the concern that it fails to pay sufficient attention to the complexity of the classroom and the social purposes of education. Thus, he proposed that through a productive pedagogy framework, the teacher is re-centered at the heart of the educative process and leads to a wider understanding of what schools are for, without undermining the rights of the child or the significant knowledge teachers have acquired in terms of the development of learning.