Learning and Teaching at Gilson College

Learning for living, Character for life, Hope for the Future

Leave a comment

‘Science is for everyone, kids included’ – TED

Primary school students have their work published in a scientific journal!

From my standpoint as a Christian educator I disagree with the evolutionary presuppositions at the basis of the learnings of the students in this TED video, nevertheless it is an awesome example of what students (in this case Primary students) can achieve when they are encouraged by their teachers and facilitators to inquire into a question that they (the students) develop and want to explore.

It should be noted that their quest to be published took many more months than their inquiry! Because they were child scientists ūüė¶

I’m sure you’ll enjoy watching the video, and will consider some more the value of Inquiry-based Learning, the value of persisting through all aspects of ¬†any journey, and the importance of valuing our childrens’ learnings!


Leave a comment

YouTube in schools? Try YouTube for Schools!

YouTube for Schools

This information regarding YouTube for Schools might be a way to assist principals to solve the issue some school leaders and teachers are having when it comes to teacher use of video from online sources such as the regular YouTube. I think it would be worth leaders checking YouTube for Schools out and having a chat with your techs to set up a school account, as well as talking with teachers in regard to the videos they’d like to add to your school’s customisable list.

The following from the YouTube for Schools website explains:

‘YouTube for Schools lets schools access free educational YouTube videos while limiting access to other YouTube content. Students can learn from more than 400,000 educational videos, from well-known organizations like Stanford, PBS and TED, and from up-and-coming YouTube partners with millions of views, like Khan Academy, Steve Spangler Science and numberphile. Schools can also customize their YouTube for Schools experience, adding videos that are only viewable within their school network.’


YouTube for Schools provides schools access to hundreds of thousands of free educational videos from YouTube EDU. These videos come from well-known organizations like Stanford, PBS and TED as well as from up-and-coming YouTube partners with millions of views, like Khan Academy, Steve Spangler Science and Numberphile.


School admins and teachers can log in and watch any video, but students cannot log in and can only watch YouTube EDU videos plus videos their school has added. All comments and related videos are disabled and search is limited to YouTube EDU videos.


You can customize the content available in your school. All schools get access to all of the YouTube EDU content, but teachers and administrators can also create playlists of videos that are viewable only within their school’s network.


YouTube.com/Teachers¬†has hundreds of playlists of videos that align with common educational standards, organized by subject and grade. These playlists were created by teachers for teachers so you can spend more time teaching and less time searching.’

Another little trick I’ve learnt recently:

(Thank you Tom March)

YouTube for Schools doesn’t allow suggestions for related video to appear after viewing the target video.

If you want to prevent students surfing off into the wide world of YouTube after viewing the videos you download from YouTube video to embed into your blog, website, Edmodo etc., add &=rel=0 to the to source URL. For example, the video above has the following URL:

With &rel=0 added it looks like this:


Leave a comment

There’s More Than One Way to Flip a Classroom – Digital Education – Education Week

I’ve had a few conversations with colleagues lately about the concept of flipped classrooms, so I will make a couple of posts that provide some thoughts about this style of learning. Here’s the first article, written by¬†Katie Ash,¬†published in the Education Week blog¬†http://blogs.edweek.org¬†on June 26 2012, with the full version accessible from the linked article title here:

There’s More Than One Way to Flip a Classroom – Digital Education – Education Week.

‘In a packed session this afternoon at ISTE 2012 here in San Diego, a panel of nine educators, as well as two moderators presented their ideas and experiences with “flipping” their classrooms.

The session was led by Aaron Sams and Jonathan Bergmann, two chemistry teachers who pioneered the flipped learning model back in 2006. The pair recently co-wrote a book, published by ISTE and ASCD, called Flip Your Classroom.

Defining what “flipping your classroom” meant was the first topic of conversation, which proved to be somewhat more difficult than you might expect. In fact, the reason the panel consisted of nine educators, instead of two or three, was precisely to demonstrate that there were many different ways to effectively flip a classroom…’ Read more

Leave a comment

Science: Teachers from Finland, South Korea, NZ and Canada on science education. – Slate Magazine

Teachers from Finland, South Korea, and Canada on science education. – Slate Magazine.

The URL above links to an interesting article that interviews teachers from several countries which ranked high in the OECD’s PISA science testing in 2009.

Some quotes of points I found interesting, and the emphasis is mine. You may find different points interesting!

What do the leading countries do differently? To find out,¬†Slate¬†asked science teachers from five countries that are among the world‚Äôs best in science education‚ÄĒFinland, Singapore, South Korea, New Zealand, and Canada‚ÄĒhow they approach their subject and the classroom. Their recommendations: Keep students engaged and make the science seem relevant.

FINLAND:¬†Ari Myllyviita teaches chemistry and works with future science educators at theViikki Teacher Training School of Helsinki UniversityMy aim is to support knowledge-building, socioculturally: to create socially supported activity in student‚Äôs zone of proximal development (the area where student need some support to achieve next level of understanding or skill). The student‚Äôs previous knowledge is the starting point, and then the learning is bound to the activity during lessons‚ÄĒexperiments, simulations, and observing phenomena… Read more

SINGAPORE:¬†Dr. Charles Chew is a principal master teacher (physics) with the Academy of Singapore Teachers. Since joining the education service in 1986, he has been a junior college lecturer, head of science and vice principal of a secondary school, and a teaching fellow at the National Institute of Education…a systematic and systemic approach to curriculum planning and development to ensure that our focus is future-relevant,¬†a strong and connected community of curriculum planners, education experts, and school teachers toward enabling the curriculum in context, and¬†a commitment to developing a strong teaching force…the interface between the curriculum and the students is the teacher who breathes life into the educational process… Read more

SOUTH KOREA:¬†Soojin Lim teaches biology at Hansung Science High School in Seoul…The goals of my classes are to assist students in motivating themselves, to relate biology topics to the real world, and to nurture the ability to inquire by challenging students…Personally, I believe that even though hands-on experiments like those emphasized at my school take longer to show student achievement, they will pay off in the long run…¬†Read more

NEW ZEALAND:¬†¬†Steve Martin is head of junior science at Howick College. In 2010, he received the prime minister‚Äôs award for science teaching…The New Zealand Science Curriculum…has the ‚ÄúNature of Science‚ÄĚ as its foundation, which supports students learning the skills essential to a scientist, such as problem-solving and effective communication...I¬†provide students with various levels of success criteria, which are statements that students and teachers use to evaluate performance. In every lesson I provide the students with three different levels of success criteria, each providing an increase in cognitive demand. The following is an example based on the topic of the carbon cycle:¬†I can identify the different parts of the carbon cycle.¬†I can explain how all the parts interact with each other to form the carbon cycle.¬†I can predict the effect that removing one part of the carbon cycle has on the environment… Read more

CANADA:¬†Rick Pardo is a learning coordinator for 7-12 science for the Thames Valley District School Board in Ontario…In my classes, students don‚Äôt just design and conduct experiments. They also support and refute opinions, build prototypes, and solve messy problems. I recently took advantage of a national election to combine biology, chemistry, and environment concepts. Students were assigned one of the main four political parties and asked to prepare for a debate around a series of questions, like, ‚ÄúIf your party were to form the government, what can the rest of the world expect regarding the future release of CO2¬†by Canadians?‚ÄĚ and, ‚ÄúWhat does politics have to do with the science of ecology?‚Ä̬†The students poured over party platforms, investigated the background science, and interviewed local candidates.¬†Some even made their way to national party headquarters… Read more

Leave a comment

Making progress toward a 21st-century education

Continuing to define a vision for a “21st-century education” and the skill-set it comprises is the subject of this blog post by teacher Adam Bellow. Important shifts in education are under way, Bellow writes, with a move toward anytime-anywhere learning that utilizes technology as well as the world outside the classroom. “I feel (and hope) that education will continue to become more about questions rather than answers. Passion and inquiry should drive education, because they drive imagination and innovation,” he writes.

This news summary appeared in SmartBrief on EdTech on 06/27/2012
Click here to view the full issue.

View the original article:
SmartBrief/SmartBlog on Education