1 ERASMUS+k2 2020-1-SI01-KA226-SCH-093554 OTA - Online Teaching Advancement – Science through Art OTA Learning Methodology COMPILED BY IZOBRAŽEVALNI CENTER GEOSS D.O.O. (SI) WITH INNOVADE (CY), CESIE (IT), NARODNA GALERIJA (SI), OSNOVNA ŠOLA LITIJA (SI), HEUREKA – THE FINNISH SCIENCE CENTRE (FI)
2 Disclaimer: The European Commission's support for the production of this publication does not constitute an endorsement of the contents, which reflect the views only of the authors, and the Commission cannot be held responsible for any use which may be made of the information contained therein.
3 CHAPTER 1: OTA METHODOLOGY 5 1 INTRODUCTION 5 2 CORE PRINCIPLES OF OTA METHODOLOGY 5 2.1 WIDER CONTEXT 7 2.2 STEAM METHOD 9 2.3 THREE STAGE MODEL 12 2.4 OTA METHODOLOGY 13 2.4.1 STAGES IN OTA METHODOLOGY: 16 2.5 IDENTIFYING THE ART EXPRESSIONS AND VISUAL FORMS TOOLS 18 2.6 LEARNING OBJECTIVES 19 2.7 SELECTED TEACHING METHODS AND APPROACHES EXPLANATIONS 24 2.7.1 RESOURCE-BASED LEARNING 24 2.7.2 EXPERIENTIAL LEARNING 27 2.7.3 CREATIVE PROBLEM SOLVING 29 2.7.4 EDUCATION THROUGH SCIENCE 33 2.7.5 INQUIRY-BASED LEARNING 35 2.7.6 ONLINE TEACHING AND LEARNING 37 2.8 REFERENCES 39 CHAPTER 2: LITERATURE REVIEW 42
4 1 INTRODUCTION 43 2 METHODOLOGY 43 3 FINDINGS AND DISCUSSION 44 3.1 CHALLENGES IN A CLASSROOM SETTING 44 3.2 CHALLENGES IN AN ONLINE OR BLENDED SETTING 46 3.3 COUNTRY–WISE COMPARISON. THE OTA NEEDS ANALYSIS (IO1) 49 4 CONCLUSION AND FINAL REMARKS 51 5 LITERATURE 52 CHAPTER 3: EXAMPLES, GOOD PRACTICES AND INSPIRATIONAL MATERIAL 55 1 INTRODUCTION 55 2 PRIMARY SCHOOL OF LITIJA 56 3 NATIONAL GALLERY OF SLOVENIA 67 4 HEUREKA 85 5 INNOVADE 106
5 CHAPTER 1: OTA METHODOLOGY 1 INTRODUCTION When developing OTA methodology the first step was a thorough research on some educational approaches, which are relevant when teaching science subjects and combining them with art – or as OTA refers – teaching/learning them through art. Next step was implementation of those approaches in OTA methodology to form a solid base on what this project wants to achieve. Research gave a special attention on two pedagogical concepts - three stage model approach and STEAM approach. OTA project is coming out of the situation when a great deal of learning has to be done remotely and for a longer period. Therefore – the activities coming from OTA Methodology are flexible. Basis for their implementation is online, but should be easily adoptable also in live sessions. OTA methodology is coming out of the three stage model, which emphasises the importance of science in society; interdisciplinary STEAM approach; specifics of online teaching and learning; resource-based learning; experiential learning; creative problem solving; small-group working and teacher-led large groups. Using OTA methodology is also implementing elements of informal learning overall staying in line with the curriculum. The objective of OTA methodology is to provide positive learning experience for pupils, increase their intrinsic interest in science, establish their understanding that science is a part of real life and it is important for the society, for the wellbeing of the society, for the environment and preserving it. Using art expressions to achieve these objectives is a benefit not only for pupils but for the whole spectrum of the curriculum, because it will increase not only science education but also pupils' appreciation of art expressions and will enhance their ability to connect science with an environment, which is outside of their (virtual) classrooms. 2 CORE PRINCIPLES OF OTA METHODOLOGY The core principles of OTA Methodology are based on the STEAM method in educational settings. In IO1 the online survey among teachers of science subjects was made and also focus groups in each of the participating countries were conducted. Analysis of the national reports shows that the majority of teachers are not familiar
6 with the word STEAM, though they are using this methodology within their classes almost autonomously. Another element noted by the analysis is that teachers have realised how indispensable it is to make students more involved. Despite the stress and lack of time, teachers expressed in the four partner countries, there was a strong interest on the part of teachers to embrace innovation, to be more flexible and to be more versatile when teaching their subjects. Most of the interviewees, although not completely familiar with the STEAM method and the digitisation of teaching, welcome the production of new materials that are made available to teachers. According to them, on the one hand, this would allow a more fluid and interactive communication with students and, on the other hand, it would make it easier for teachers themselves by relieving them of the need to invent new materials and at the same time pay attention to the growth of their pupils. We have chosen the Three stage model as the methodological approach to lean on when implementing science topics in learning lessons. Three stage model approach emphasises pupils’ motivation in a way to make learning relevant. Relevance can be shown by linking science topics to a societal issue or issue that is relevant in pupils’ everyday life. Motivation for learning is also increased by making it more attractive. Using art expressions for teaching science, among other benefits, adds also to the element of attraction. Three stage model approach is paying a great deal of attention to the development of pupils’ awareness of being an important link in society and is encouraging them to be or become active citizens, capable of making reasonable decisions. The OTA Methodology: ● is research-based, drawing on the researches of different pedagogical approaches and methods relevant when teaching/learning natural and science subjects; ● is taking inspiration from a Three stage model approach; ● encourages varied approaches and methods when teaching natural and science subjects; ● promotes art as a tool when teaching science and natural subjects; ● promotes STEAM approach; ● encourages learner-centred approach; ● encourages hands-on activities.
7 In the document below we describe the approaches and methods that underpin the OTA learning methodology and give examples and good practices as an inspirational material for implementation and conducting high quality activities. 2.1 WIDER CONTEXT For pupils to become active citizens in the society, they have to learn some crucial skills from their early age. School is very important for pupils from the moment they step in the classroom at the early ages and till the moment they finish their education. It is a process that fulfils a major part of their days and a place to grow, learn, socialise and set the roots for their actions during schooling and later on. To achieve the goal for pupils to activate in serious societal matters, the school has to present a good example and prepare the inspirational path for pupils. Active role for each individual in the society is getting more pronounced each year and the 21st century is emphasising a person’s activation in different fields – especially education, being formal, non-formal, adult or even informal. Changes in the perception of educational processes are happening frequently but there are still gaps which need to be addressed and there is still room for improvements which can be fulfilled. Stepping in the educational process a pupil instantly becomes part of a system and it is expected that he or she will follow establishment, rules, tasks and guidelines. The most direct contact for pupils are their teachers; persons who went through an educational process of their own and are, of course, still learning, and at this point also teaching. On the other hand, teachers are as well part of a greater educational system with specific rules to follow: and the most straightforward are curricula. They are thus exposed to several different indicators: such as the examples they received while in school, the external curricula, the internal curricula that can vary from one school to another, and finally their own preferred intuitive approaches they use while teaching. Moreover they are also expected to improve, educate, evolve, upgrade and modernise; with new approaches and examples given, they can upgrade their lessons, reorganise their classes and add or improve existing objectives. For changes to be achieved, we have to speak to teachers themselves and enhance their willingness to improve. Motivation for changes can be achieved by showing them a greater meaning of new approaches and the positive consequences such approaches can have for pupils in a long-term meaning. Projects, such as OTA, are in this sense very welcoming from various perspectives. Firstly, they address teachers’ direct needs and challenges and try to help to overcome reported barriers, gathered through questionnaires and discussions. The needs are also examined through research on the topics. Additional values are also concrete examples which teachers can freely use in their classes with no or little extra work or they can serve as an inspiration on how to approach this or similar topics.
8 With the changes of teachers’ approaches and their willingness to reconstruct their style of teaching following the suggestions and observing positive impact such changes have on pupils as well as on teaching itself, also an important step is taken toward the overall renewing of mindsets. Teachers are reporting several problems they are facing, such as: limited space to implement different activities without their filling that they compromise either curriculums’ guides, their time for preparation or the time needed to teach certain lesson without cutting the important parts. In this way, OTA helps with saving time but also stays within a strong connection to the existing curriculum. With the start of the pandemic because of COVID-19 the pre-existing problems gained a whole new dimension. Not only, the old problems didn’t disappear, but all of the schooling had to be shifted in an on-line form and teachers had to bring their creativity in a completely, and for some of them even unknown, level. How was OTA methodology conducted? With methodology several issues and challenges when teaching science subjects were addressed. An important matter in teaching for OTA methodology is that all of the suggested methods and approaches are learner-based. With learner-based approaches we are stepping forward from the teacher being a narrator of theories toward a teacher being a guide. When pupils are presented with hands-on activities, they gain first-hand experience already in a classroom and the line for transferring their new knowledge in a later similar circumstance is thus shortened, moreover, their understanding of the topic is better and memorising stronger. Wondering, whether the result of the lesson will be shown whenever later-on and pass the test if it made a long-lasting impact, is somewhat fulfilled if the lesson is planned in a way, the results should be seen within its own proceeding. Mathematics, Chemistry and Physics are subjects OTA project took for the basis. Those objects are part of the greater field in a society, known under the abbreviation STEM (science, technology, engineering, mathematics). Several recent years researchers are going toward an upgrade of this, now well-established term, adding A into the company. A is representing ART. Together they form STEAM. According to results from a questionnaire administered by OTA partners, teachers are not familiar with the term STEAM. Though the element of art in STEM company is proven to be an important addition (see the chapter on STEAM method 2.2). It is therefore important to emphasise the connection between mentioned subjects and art a step into a contemporary, in line with 21st century tendencies, also in primary and secondary educational process. Art as a powerful tool to help pupils’ higher motivation, to help pupils to envision forms which can come across rather abstract when teaching or learning science and also to point out an undeniable bond those fields have completely naturally and spontaneously. Packing the activities in a guided three stage model has several advantages. To name a few. Setting a lesson with a starting point that is not abstract but speaks to pupils
9 directly, either coming from something they can easily relate to or to point out bigger societal issues, is the first step toward keeping their interest on a high level. Preparing stage two, which is committed to the core of the lesson, with hand-on activities as a priority has higher potential to keep their interest going throughout the lesson, rather than losing their motivation and concentration in an abstract theoretical narration. In stage three they should acknowledge the meaning of the lesson and the impact this new-gained knowledge has either for their personal life or for them, being an important part of the society. Pupils should see themselves as an important link that is constructing the future and see beyond the passive role. They should understand that the future to come is in their hands and that only their active role will lead toward a future, they would appreciate and like to live in. The three stage model as it is developed in OTA methodology leaves a lot of room for teachers to implement their lessons. Following the suggestions should serve as an inspiration on how the subjects they are teaching can be approached. With explanations of different learner-centred methods and approaches in teaching, teachers should explore their options and reflect on how to use art as a tool when teaching science. Further on, OTA being an up to date project is also addressing the barriers, teachers and pupils were facing, when pandemic hit the world and schools were almost immediately moved in a home environments for pupils as well as for teachers. Therefore, an on-line teaching and learning are addressed and implementation of the activities in an on-line environments is taken into a great account. With the digital era, we live in and counting the fact that on-line learning existed even before the pandemic, we can assume that in a post-pandemic world at least some forms of online teaching and learning will continue. Having strong bases and being prepared for this type of teaching and learning is an undeniable investment, especially now, when we experienced the worldwide situation of on-line education in all levels and are well aware of what kind of troubles it presents for educators and students. 2.2 STEAM METHOD STEAM Science, technology, engineering, arts, and mathematics. By now, the term STEM has already become a well-known term, which is connecting related subjects and can also be found in formal education around the world. Lately STEM got a new form – STEAM. STEAM is a method that is promoting interdisciplinary teaching, specifically for science subjects in combination with art. As the research in IO1 showed – a lot of teachers are thinking in favour of interdisciplinary teaching, but the majority is not familiar with the term STEAM. STEAM approach has been a
10 discussion point in the education field in recent years. There are different views on what exactly STEAM stands for. We can come across the view, which sees A in STEAM as school subject ART, another view takes A for all forms of art and craft and the broadest of them all takes A as arts, meaning humanities in general (Piila et al., 2021). By implementing STEAM approach in lesson plans several components are grouped together. From the OTA point of view, we use the STEAM approach to add art components in a company of Mathematics, Physics and Chemistry in a formal education environment. To achieve a high level of variety in that manner, elements from informal environments, such as galleries and science centres, are taken in consideration. Art is an entry point to science since it increases the value of science and makes it more effective. In the research article Hands-On Math and Art Exhibition Promoting Science Attitudes and Educational Plans, written by Helena Thuneberg, Hannu Salmi and Kristof Fenyvesi, we can read about benefits of using STEAM approach in education. They are highlighting the imagination, which allows pupils to see things in different ways. Imagination is supposed to be enhanced by art, artistic expressions and making art itself. The aesthetic part of art creates an emotional reaction in this is likely to support also cognitive part of learning. The possible negative experiences and feelings, which can occur during learning, can be eased with providing pupils with that kind of experiences (Thuneberg et al., 2017). Enhancing pupils’ imagination is extremely important not exclusively for pupils who tend to appear more artistic or crafty. It is important also for those who are about to pursue their careers in other sectors. For scientists to be creative, for entrepreneurs to be innovative, etc., STEAM approach is used in education to increase pupils' motivation regarding science subjects. The interdisciplinary manner is supposed to enhance pupils' abilities for problem solving. For pupils' motivation and engaging in problem solving situations the concept of lessons should be formed as a problem, they really feel, could affect them. This is relevant for the success of the STEAM-approach. Familiarity with the situations increases pupils’ motivation, thus improving the ability to find solutions to the presented problem (Piila et al., 2021). Abstract issues in scientific subjects, especially mathematics, should find a way to become more concrete. Art is a way to provide such concretization as it is a visual form, thus more concrete or at least it appears so. “As the creative element and aesthetic component are the inherent core of art, combining art with maths learning offers an additional dimension for concretizing maths concepts ...” (Thuneberg et al., 2017, p. 2).
11 When we speak about STEAM pedagogical approach several components or, better said, benefits are considered. Firstly, to accompany science with art, we reach on a field of pupils’ motivation to study science subjects, to approach science issues more willingly and to activate themselves more deeply. Not only does art provide an aesthetic component in a lesson, it also concretizes a given issue, so pupils can relate to it more profoundly. Art is surrounding us but it can go unnoticed. By emphasising its surrounding the connection to an out of school environment is established and to point out that this is also connected to a specific science issue we form a cycle, which is already a step toward the stages: from society to school/learning and back to society. Concretization of an abstract issue using art as an accessory is also a step forward of pupils understanding the very basics of science subjects, which are often forgotten as children grows older and the science subjects in school are becoming more abstract and more secluded and are exposed to division from not only non-natural science subjects but even between each other. Benefits of STEAM are also in enhancing pupils’ critical thinking. However, this cannot be achieved solely by using art in a school lesson. Art can be a good point to start asking questions and by those questions assure pupils can express their opinion in a safe environment. Safe environment should be established in any given circumstances, even when lessons are given online. Every pupil should feel comfortable to speak, respect others opinion, be aware that mistakes can also happen and should not be afraid to make them. This way also a communication is provided and a place for own creativity. STEAM as an interdisciplinary approach is a principle the OTA project is driven from. The way STEAM is incorporated within the OTA project is: to use art as a tool to teach natural subjects (chemistry, maths and physics) in primary or secondary schools for pupils in an age range 12–14. How certain art forms are used for specific subject topics depends on a lesson plan, topic itself, issue presented and the objectives of an individual lesson. STEAM as a motivation, STEAM to ensure better understanding through concretization, STEAM for improving creativity, STEAM for enhancing critical thinking, STEAM for teaching pupils to be active citizens in a society.
12 2.3 THREE STAGE MODEL Philosophy of “education through science” speaks in favour of educating science through societal point of view to learn the science knowledge and concepts important for understanding and handling socio-scientific issues within society. It encourages creativity, communicative skills, other personal skills (such as initiative) and development of social values related to becoming a responsible citizen and undertaking science-related careers (Holbrook & Rannikmäe, 2007, p. 1347-1362). By establishing the THREE STAGE MODEL approach, education is coming from society to science and then from science back to society. The concept of THREE STAGE MODEL, the OTA methodology is leaning on, is described in an article from 2014, written by Sormunen, K., Keinonen, T., & Holbrook, J. in Science Education International on pages 43-56. Mentioned THREE STAGE MODEL (TSM) was instructional innovation of the PROFILES project (www.profiles-project.eu), which aims to arouse students’ intrinsic motivation undertaken in a familiar, socio-scientific context (scenario), to offer a meaningful inquiry-based learning environment (inquiry), and to use the science learning in solving socio-scientific problems (decision-making) (Bolte et al., 2012). The three stages are: 1. Scenario, 2. Inquiry, 3. Decision-making. 1. Scenario: In this stage pupils’ intrinsic motivation should be aroused. This should be accomplished by presenting pupils the issue, which is relevant to their lives and worthy of greater appreciation. The scenario should be set carefully, coming out of pupils’ everyday lives, a surprising phenomenon in nature or socio-scientific issue. The initial motivation forms a key launching platform for the intended science learning. It should set a base for scientific questions or other relevant questions for the topic. 2. Inquiry: should sustain motivation, set in Stage 1. It should meet learning outcomes through inquiry-based learning and enhance pupils’ social engagement through collaborative teamwork. Consolidation is also part of Stage 2 and contains presentations of the findings, discussion of the relevance and reliability of the outcomes, interpretation. 3. Decision-making: the consolidation in this stage is meant to give acquired science ideas relevance by including them back into the socio-scientific scenario, which provided the initial pupil’s motivation. Pupils reflect on the issue. It can be formed as an argumentation debate, role playing, discussion to derive a justified, society-relevant decision or consideration seen as reasonable by the class (Sormunen et al., 2014, p. 4356).
13 One project that strives towards promoting interest and relevance is PARSEL (popularity and relevance of science education for enhancing scientific literacy). One possibility to make science lessons popular explored within PARSEL was to use every day related socio-scientific issues. In the context of the modules, popularity refers to students liking science lessons and wishing to study the subject in school. It also refers to liking science in general. Thus, an emotional component stems from the module and the way science is presented. It tries to address the concern – school science is not interesting. Rather than the students being stimulated to learn by the teacher, the subject matter or external pressures e.g. examinations, PARSEL strives to promote self motivation by the students having an inherent desire to study the module. It attempts this by relating to students’ needs and desires. An important component is assessment, which should take a step forward from the task being accomplished or not (Rannikmäe et al., 2010, p. 116-125). Figure 1: Source: Rannikmäe, M., Teppo, M., & Holbrook, J. (2010). Popularity and relevance of science education literacy: Using a context-based approach. Science Education International, 21(2), 120. 2.4 OTA METHODOLOGY Three stages in OTA Methodology are coming out of those, structured in PROFILES project. The adjustments were made, when setting three stages, so they fit the needs of the OTA project. First stage is emphasising pupils' motivation. If the motivation is carefully planned, pupils' intrinsic motivation arises and they feel their work in school is important and
14 relevant to them. OTA project is taking this in serious account, when developing methodology, furthermore, OTA project is accompanying to this aspect also the letter A – art in STEAM. Therefore, the stage, where the motivation for pupils should be implemented OTA project sees as a opportunity for art to be given a voice. A scientific issue can be presented to pupils through art. It can be an interesting phenomenon, which pupils could observe in their habitats (e.g. Why are statutes green?). This is something that will raise their interest, because immediately they will connect science to a circumstance they experienced outside the classroom in what is likely to be understood as a “real life” to their perspectives. After research on TSM proposed in the PROFILES project, the scenario set in the first stage seems to be a valid starting point for lessons. It is necessary to connect subjects from the curriculum to a situation that is familiar or relatable to pupils. Teachers are often faced with questions of a type “What good will this do to me in my real life?” etc. If we take these types of questions as a cry for help from pupils' perspective, we can quickly conclude that it is on teachers to show possible connections. With such an approach, we gain several benefits. Firstly, the question is answered, before it is even stated out loud. Secondly, pupils are taught to connect, link, observe and better understand the division between subjects in school’s curriculum is not necessarily a reflection of other so-called real-life departments. Thirdly, the barriers of division are thus blurred and are creating paths for further connections pupils create in other situations – outside school as well as within other school subjects. To ensure the motivation is set strong, the OTA project proposes that the first stage of school lessons is dedicated to this particular establishment. It can be formed in several ways. One of which is definitely setting the scenario, as PROFILES project suggests. Teachers showed some serious second thoughts, showing worries about length of time to carry out the whole lesson (Sormunen et al., 2014, p. 54). One of the crucial elements for the OTA project is that planned activities don't extend over a schoolhour. Expressed time worries have to be taken into account, so the motivational stage doesn’t feed off the time of other, also important, stages of school lessons. Propositions of formatting efficient motivational starting points are to create circumstances, where pupils are left with open questions to a proposed topic. A topic should be carefully chosen and also has to have a strong connection to a science theme, planned for the lesson. OTA project proposes, the topic is taken out of a world of visual arts, so the interdisciplinary approach starts as early as at the beginning of the lessons. To use art as a tool, though, it is not necessary to implement it in the first stage, especially if it doesn’t make a lot of sense. Art as a tool can have a significant role in the second stage of the school lessons. Expressing oneselves through visual art forms can leave a strong and long-lasting impression on pupils. When planning a second stage, some directions have to be
15 considered. Second stage has to come as a natural follow-up to the motivational stage. Pupils’ active participation should already be established within the (good) content in the motivational stage. To preserve pupils' motivation, this is the time where their curiosity should be stimulated. There are several teaching approaches that are appropriate for teaching science and are also very convenient when using art as a tool through which a specific topic from science class is taught. One of the approaches that is particularly interesting for the OTA project is resourcebased learning. OTA project, namely, is a teaching and learning form, carried out as remote classes. It is thus impossible to plan the lessons even in theory, without a serious consideration of resource-based learning, resource in this case being the internet. For science lessons the inquiry-based learning is another approach that has proven to be efficient, especially when the word is of pupils' active participation in previously proposed topic. Inquiry is the action that leads pupils to better understand the question, while they independently search for an answer. (See section 2.7.5 of this document for further explanation). “Authentic inquiry happens when pupils are looking for answers to questions owned and, where possible, formulated by themselves. Inquiry can thus make a difference to pupil motivation.” (Bolte et al., 2012, p. 11). OTA project is following schools’ curriculum, in particular the 4 curricula in 4 countries – Slovenia, Cyprus, Italy and Finland. Common topics in all four curricula were established through analysis in IO1. Art as a tool is crucial for OTA project. How a certain form of art is implemented in school lesson depends on the formation of a specific lesson. It is important, though, that the teacher points out the implementation of art. Not to leave it as something self-evident but to talk about it with pupils and lead them to see and understand the combination of natural science and art. Two school subjects that are separated in curriculum and can from pupils perspective came around as something completely different and even incompatible, while in reality they have very much in common in terms of co-existing and dependence on one another. The purpose of the OTA project is to raise pupils’ motivation and interest in science subjects in their everyday classes – circumstances they are experiencing every day. The project aims to achieve this purpose using art as a tool when teaching science.
16 2.4.1 STAGES IN OTA METHODOLOGY: 1. Motivational stage: Link of the topic from curriculum to a society issue that is seen relevant from pupils’ perspective, issue linked to a phenomenon in nature or phenomenon from pupils’ everyday life. Setting the first stage properly is one of the crucial points when planning school lessons. If pupils are presented with an issue that is interesting to them, they are more likely to actively follow the content of the school lesson. Thus, the issue has to be taken from something that is supposedly familiar to pupils, or a problem they feel are capable of solving. Pupils' active participation in resolving issues or solving problems is also one of the elements that increases their willingness to participate. Tasks should therefore be clearly set in a way that they follow the exposed issue and lead toward the second stage. 2. Investigational stage: This stage is a natural follow-up of the first stage, where pupils take matters in their own hands, with aroused motivation to find the solution. To fulfil the task and find solution(s), pupils will strive for different teaching method(s). Focus on subject topic, presentation of the art expression(s) used, setting objectives of the learning unit, leading the process through appropriate teaching method(s), which are not necessarily exclusive: creative-problem solving, resource-based learning, inquiry-based learning, setting small groups, teamwork, experiential learning. Second stage is the centre of the lesson. This is the stage where pupils’ activities are in motion, their path of resolving issues and finding the solution. This is also a stage, where a room for open questions should be established. Teacher as a leader of the stages can in this stage also present any necessary information for pupils to follow tasks as undisturbed as possible. 3. Consolidation stage: Reflecting the issues with chosen methods, such as discussion, argumentative debate, role-playing and deriving relevant decisions considering the above issue. In this stage, pupils are expected to link the scientific topic to an issue that was presented to them in the motivational stage. They are expected to conclude the lessons with a meaningful conclusion, whether being it an important decision, report on experiment’s results observation. OTA project is connecting art and science, so the topics from any of the science subjects (physics, mathematics, chemistry) are using art as a tool. Art as a tool can perform several roles. It can be a resource that connects science with everyday life
17 situations, thus a tool for motivation. It can be a tool for pupils to experiment and thus find the solution of a given problem. It can present an issue or problem itself in the first stage as the main character from which issue itself is presented in the first stage of the model. To follow OTA methodology, learning lessons have to be prepared as an ON-LINE COURSE but also with possibility to be implemented in real life sessions. They have to be linked to art expressions and follow the three stages of OTA project, as identified and described above. To follow three stages, lessons have to be linked to one or more societal issues or issues that are relatable for pupils. Art can serve as a presentation of a selected topic, serve as a tool for better explanation and understanding the scientific topic, which follows the curriculum. In consolidation state pupils are expected to find connection to issues, presented in the first stage. OTA project will follow developed Methodology with providing lesson plans and activities for the topics of three chosen N&S subjects - maths, physics and chemistry. The topics were identified by teachers as the hardest to learn and/or teach during the Covid-19 pandemic, when schools closed their doors all over the world and were exposed to a sudden reconstruction of their classes in on-line courses. Activities will be presented in a form, where the three stages of OTA Methodology will be clearly exposed. Form will also provide a quick overview of important information, such as art expression used, approaches/methods used, timeline, equipment needed and concrete description of proposed activity. Objective: The main objective of this methodology is to provide a framework of pedagogical principles for the development of practical examples for the topics in N&S subjects, which was reported to be the hardest for teaching or learning online in survey and focus groups meetings, done in IO1. The overall objectives of the methodology can be summed up as follows: 1) To provide educators with knowledge, skills and understanding of implementing STEAM methods in their classes. 2) To introduce to educators a variety of approaches for teaching science and concrete learning activities that follow these approaches. 3) To introduce to educators innovative approaches which are focused on pupils' motivation and emphasising pupils as a part of society, enhancing their roles as active citizens. Target Group: The target group of this methodology is two-fold: 1. primary target group: educators of N&S subjects of pupils in the age range 12–14. 2. secondary target group: learners within this age range.
18 2.5 IDENTIFYING THE ART EXPRESSIONS AND VISUAL FORMS TOOLS ART EXPRESSIONS Field of art expressions is wide and have variety of forms. With the use of artwork in school lessons we have several options. Art can be used as a starting point fort he whole lesson in the motivational stage, it can illustrate the core of the lesson's topic or present problem itself. It is important to have clear vision, what will selected artwork represent in the school lesson and how it will be used. Use Direct: artwork illustrates the subject, no in-depth context needed Metaphor: artwork serves as a starting point for discussion, description and attention to its features needed Analysis: artwork needs to be analysed to see the connections with the subject, its context is crucial for understanding Abstraction: artwork and the subject are both systematically boiled down to the common denominator, which reveals the underlying practical and theoretical parallels and structures Source Natural world: depiction of flora, fauna, geography, cosmos Human world: historical events, portraits and people, architecture, customs and traditions Religion: supernatural events, myths, legends, miracles, religious milestones Literature: depiction of events, characters and themes from novels, stories, poems, epics, essays, plays, etc. Theory: art about art, psychology, colour theory, reception theory, etc. (e.g. abstract expressionism, neoplasticism, surrealism) Art expressions can come from pupils themselves. There can be a task given in the school lesson, where they have to incorporate their own artistic expressions by making a piece of art. Art expressions that pupils make can come from a different field of art: for example painting, drawing, collage, sculpture, their own artistic video, computer art or other art forms, not necessarily from the field of visual arts (such as poems or other creative writing, creating music) or combination of different art expressions (for example: art projects, installation). When implementing the type of task, where pupils own art expression is expected, it is important for OTA project to keep in mind, that the
19 materials for pupils have to be easy reachable (preferably what is expected to be at homes) and not expensive. VISUAL FORMS TOOL STYLE Planar: subject is mentally transformed according to an ideal order and is presented as permanent, motionless, unchanging (Ancient art from the Middle East, Mediaeval Art) Plastic: realistic depiction, which includes shading, correct perspective and can inform other human senses (Renaissance, Roman Baroque, Neoclassicism, Biedermeier, and Realism) Painterly: recapturing the visual impressions, with sharp outlines lost, and the image made of patches of light and colour (Mannerism, Venetian Baroque, and Impressionism) Technological tools REPRODUCTIONS (DIGITAL AND ANALOGUE) Quality reproductions are crucial, both in digital and analogue forms. Open-source files available on Wikipedia, sites of larger international museums; contemporary works might be subject to copyrights. INTERACTIVE WHITEBOARD Should include features to draw on, cut and colour filter the reproduction while using it in class. HOME-MADE VIDEOS Numerous social-media apps allow users to prepare short videos - can be used by pupils or by the OTA project to create intros for online lessons. 2.6 LEARNING OBJECTIVES The STEAM methodology aims to revolutionise the traditional concept of teaching because it substantially changes its connotations and the position of those involved. The classical face-to-face approach develops its potential in the dual relationship between teacher and student, where the established relationship is one-to-one and hardly open to others. The STEAM methodology goes over the classic vertical and hierarchical teacher-pupil relationship by proposing a more inclusive approach in which circular knowledge is established, where learning is more equitable, flexible and interactive.
20 With the use of the interdisciplinary STEAM method, students will not only be "receptors" of knowledge, but will also be able to create knowledge thanks to the experiences, empirical, that they will make; students will be an active subject in the learning process, with greater motivation to learn and greater probability of realising their potential and abilities. Art, science and technology are creative, generative activities, which together tell the purpose of an innovative and interdisciplinary approach to research and teaching. LEARNING OBJECTIVES Albert Einstein wrote: “Where the world ceases to be the scene of our personal hopes and wishes, where we face it as free beings admiring, asking, observing, there we enter the realm of Art and Science. If what is seen and experienced is portrayed in the language of logic, we are engaged in science. If it is communicated through forms whose connections are not accessible to the conscious mind but are recognized intuitively as meaningful, then we are engaged in art. Common to both is love and devotion to that which transcends personal concerns and volition”. In the traditional method of teaching, students are forced to adapt to the complexity of studying specific subjects; but it can happen that they lose interest within the class or have difficulty keeping up with other classmates; on the other hand, it is certainly not easy for teachers to make up for the gaps of some without sacrificing the learning of others. An interdisciplinary method such as STEAM, based on a student-centred system, allows the student to approach the complexity of the subjects of study in different ways and from different points of view that might seem simpler to him, and also encourages the acquisition of a set of skills that are functional to the personal growth of the student. The change from traditional education lies precisely in this: in emphasising and stressing the interests, skills and learning styles of each individual student. Additionally, it allows teachers not to be alone in this teaching process and to be able to diversify the language with which they explain the concepts. STEAM approach allows students to explore their personal learning styles, connect the subject matter with their interests, find new learning approaches that work best for them, strengthen their self-confidence, their ability to analyse, and critical autonomy in thinking and acting.
21 The STEAM method brings with it a number of characteristics that enable the development of certain key skills for students. The key characteristics are: ● Multidisciplinary ● Collaborative ● Flexible ● Inclusive ● Students-centred ● Creative ● Coherent, Critical ● Interactive ● Fun Each of these characteristics is a precondition for developing and strengthening the following competencies: ● Developing critical and reflective thinking ● Learning to learn ● Understanding connections ● Collaboration and communication -> Encourage inclusion; foster socialisation ● Flexibility ● Empathy ● Self-confidence ● Self-efficacy ● Patience ● Autonomy ● Creativity ● Problem solving Characteristics of the STEAM approach What does it mean? Learning objectives Multidisciplinary The STEAM method is defined as a method or approach and not as a discipline because it works on a wide range while recognizing the importance of individual disciplines as well as the interaction between them and the reality that students live. The STEAM approach is therefore transversal, embracing at the same time several different subjects and avoiding reasoning and creating unproductive ● Reflective thinking ● Learning to learn ● MetacognitionUnderstanding connections
22 compartments between the various disciplines. The transdisciplinary nature of the method therefore allows it to focus on the individual student's commitment and the achievement of specific learning objectives. Collaborative The STEAM approach encourages group work and stimulates collaboration not only among students but also with teachers who become part of the learning process and are in constant communication with students and colleagues. ● Collaboration ● Communication Flexible It is a method that allows freedom of movement to teachers who can be free to modulate their activities and lessons according to the class and the needs with which they interface. The only common thread linking the individual subjects considered is communication and dialogue. Teachers will therefore be called upon to guide this dialogue and always stimulate the critical thinking of students. ● Flexibility Inclusive The STEAM approach fosters inclusion and the emergence of the talents and potential of the most sensitive and introverted students who, outside the logic of the classroom, are able to produce more results. ● Empathy ● Self-confidence ● Self-efficacy ● Patience ● Autonomy Student- centred Students are encouraged to participate fully in a stimulating and welcoming environment where there is no fear of aseptic judgement. The figure of the teachers within this process is fundamental because it is thanks to the teachers that this climate will be ● Autonomy ● Self-efficacy ● Learning to learn
23 established in which in addition to a vertical teaching (proper to the traditional method) will promote a horizontal learning process. Creative Approaching creativity and encouraging students to be creative is the essential aspect found in the STEAM method. Teaching students to approach theoretical concepts within the curricula in a creative way means giving them the foundation to apply this way of approaching things to life outside of school. ● Creativity ● Innovation ● Problem solving Coherent, Critical The STEAM approach inevitably needs internal coherence and compatibility within the curricula of all subjects with the subjects. At the same time, it must approach what students will learn critically, including through experimentation with what they study. ● Critical thinking ● Problem solving Interactive Learning by doing: students will experience a type of experiential learning, through doing. This method will be based on different factors that are equally important: concrete experience; observation, reflection, the formation of abstract concepts and the replicability of the method in different contexts. ● Communication ● Collaboration ● Critical thinking
24 Fun The interactivity of the STEAM approach makes lessons more fun and stimulates the curiosity of students who will be more motivated to learn. By increasing the level of attention and motivation of the students, thanks to activities/quizzes/games, the STEAM approach allows them to reach the specific learning objectives in a faster and more profitable way by stimulating inventiveness, communication and teamwork. ● Collaboration ● Problem solving 2.7 SELECTED TEACHING METHODS AND APPROACHES EXPLANATIONS 2.7.1 RESOURCE-BASED LEARNING Resource-based learning (RBL) is particularly interesting as we speak in terms of online teaching and learning as it emphasises the use of any given resources in the teaching process. When we move our lesson from a live environment to an online type of lesson a world of infinite new resources opens. Resource-based learning is a view, which gives prominence to the role of resources in the teaching and learning process. RBL conceptualises learning as a process which foregrounds the importance of the resources available to learners. When speaking of RBL, there are presupposes that the interaction between the learner(s) and the resources (including human resources) is the main structuring device of the learning situation (Esch, 2002). This aspect is important for OTA project, as the project focuses on development of on-line courses, thus, the basic resource is the internet itself. That said, OTA does not see resource-based learning as a stand alone approach but rather as an inevitable condition, which has to be completed in order to lead an on-line courses, whether being live or pre-prepared. It is also something schools, teachers and pupils had to have during the pandemic to continue the process of schooling even when schools as buildings and places to go to were physically inaccessible for everybody. While resource-based learning as a term exists for a longer period among educators and researchers, it was the beginning of the digital era that gave additional attention to this learning approach.
25 Since we entered the digital age, or better said, since the digital age expanded to almost inevitable width, the nature of resources has also changed. We are provided with a larger number of opportunities. They are more available and also provide several different perspectives. We now have access to more traditional and historic resources (e.g., books, articles) and also contemporary (e.g., daily news) information sources (Hannafin & Hill, 2007, p. 527). The digital age has redefined and transformed educational resources. Resources are now exposed to modification and have much easier access than in previous eras. Even more, they can be even created and easily shared to a wider or limited public. They can and are assembled from virtually anywhere to address individual goals and needs (Hannafin & Hill, 2007, p. 526). After the pandemic hit the world, even the most resilient institutions had to adapt and became equipped with the most recent and usable resources so they could keep in touch with their persons of interest. Even the most unexpected institutions, such as Theatres, Puppet Theatres and Nightclubs, did their best to offer some kind of interaction. And schools were no exceptions. Even teachers who never thought they’ll use digital resources of such measure, adapted and stayed in touch with their pupils and parents. The spread of the internet brought a different way of thinking. Its significance in educational systems became of greater importance during the worldwide on-line learning. At that time, even teachers and other educators who were at that time resisting the use of technologies in teaching were forced to form their lessons online and gained necessary skills to be able to do that. Resources being more accessible also have another dimension. They also became easy to produce. So the cycle goes round. Given resources can be used as a tool in education, but also pupils or educators can easily provide their own resources and present them digitally. Resource-based learning aims to enhance pupils’ active engagement in learning units and provides learning space, where pupils are free to experiment, research, deepen and search for certain information in a very open way – which depends on the amount of resources available for pupils. Teacher in this type of teaching has the role of a guide. One can implement resource-based learning in different ways. It can be set as an open environment and with unlimited resources. Whatever pupils’ think would serve them best for a topic they are researching or issues they are solving. Whether resources chosen were appropriate or not must be discussed with the teacher (educator) during the process. It is expected that pupils present their findings or results at the end of their inquiries and the effect of unappropriated selection on other pupils should be avoided. Teacher has to be present in all steps and keep control of pupils’ processes so their work is on an appropriate level and without possible disinformation. Nevertheless, they have to act as an active part of the lesson and fulfil given tasks as independently as possible. Thus, their creative thinking is empowered and they are solution-oriented.