|Module Code:||ED8105||ECTS Credits:||5|
Social, Environmental and Scientific Education (SESE) seeks to examine and understand communities from the local to the global, their diverse heritages, their complex systems and how people and environments affect each other in the present and in the past. This area of study will explore scientific, geographical and historical concepts and procedures relevant to the SESE curriculum and to the students’ own personal and professional development in the different curricular areas. The course will focus on practical experiences that will provide the necessary skills and pedagogical understandings that primary teachers will need in order to teach the three SESE subjects of history, geography and science successfully in various classroom settings, urban, rural and multicultural. There will be a particular emphasis on practical investigations incorporating fieldwork in different settings for all three subject areas. Areas of study include curriculum content, methodologies and approaches, integration and planning, assessment, resource planning and use of technology in teaching history, geography and science. The study of the Primary School Curriculum (1999) and the associated Teacher Guidelines will be the main focus of the course. The course will afford students the opportunity to critically examine their own attitudes and beliefs in relation to the three subject areas together with effective strategies that will enhance pupils’ learning in social, environmental and scientific education.
Reform mathematics places an emphasis on conceptual understanding and problem solving informed by a constructivist understanding of how children learn. This is a new approach to mathematics for most first year students and therefore they will need exposure to new mathematical content followed by reflection activities so that they can begin to engage with the complexity of teaching mathematics at primary level.
The small group workshop session structure of this course aims to facilitate exploration of the content of the Primary School Mathematics Curriculum. They will also encompass the development of lesson plans for differentiation and assessment.
The focus of the workshops will be on exploring students’ own experiences and understandings of mathematical concepts and incorporating that learning into their first experiences of teaching mathematics to young children. The focus of the workshops will be on developing enduring mathematical understandings in both students and children (Wiggins, G. & J. McTighe (1998). Understanding by Design. Ohio: Merrill Prentice Hall), through exploring key questions such as ‘Why do we measure things?’ or ‘What makes a computational strategy effective and efficient?’
Students will use the backward design process (Wiggins & McTighe ibid) to inform their approach to both planning and assessment. Through engaging with this process they will explore what is worth being familiar with, what is important to know, and what constitutes enduring mathematical understandings in children. They will examine examples of both teachers’ and children’s work and use an advance organizer approach to unpacking the material.
On successful completion of this module students should be able to:
- Demonstrate dimensions of subject matter knowledge, content knowledge, pedagogical knowledge and curriculum knowledge in SESE
- Demonstrate a comprehensive knowledge of the current curriculum documents and recognise the strands, strand units, skills and competencies that pupils should develop at each level in the primary classroom for each curricular area
- Prepare and write lessons in SESE which demonstrate an awareness of the local and global concerns, and which incorporate a development education perspective appropriate to the primary school classroom
- Explore ways that various materials and resources, including the use of ICT, can be used effectively and safely in the classroom to create an active, engaging, learning environment
- Use diverse approaches to become a resourceful teacher and a thoughtful reflective practitioner in the subject areas of history, geography and science
- Explore a range of different environments through fieldwork to support children’s learning in their own immediate local environment
- Demonstrate the skills of working as an historian and a scientist / geographer
- Motivate, inspire, acknowledge and celebrate effort and success in the area of SESE
- Describe clearly a selection of key concepts in primary mathematics (second to fourth class)
- Demonstrate evidence of how to design effective learning activities in primary mathematics
- Apply a variety of appropriate methodologies to mathematical content
- Demonstrate knowledge and understanding of appropriate formative assessment strategies in maths
- Demonstrate ability to work collaboratively in the planning and teaching of mathematics
Methods of Assessment
1,500 word portfolio
1.5 hour exam