Science education is a highly dynamic field of applied and basic research and of research-based development. If you’re in high school or college, you know by now that exams and tests come with the territory of being a student. Some exams are used to ensure that students have the proper knowledge needed to graduate or enroll in a particular class or program, while other tests are used to measure students’ skill levels in subjects like reading, writing, and math.
Science education is one of the most important subjects in school due to its relevance to students’ lives and the universally applicable problem-solving and critical thinking skills it uses and develops. These are lifelong skills that allow students to generate ideas, weigh decisions intelligently and even understand the evidence behind public policy-making. Teaching technological literacy, critical thinking and problem-solving through science education gives students the skills and knowledge they need to succeed in school and beyond.
Science has become an important component in the K-12 curriculum in American schools-but less so than reading and mathematics. At the end of the twentieth century reading and mathematics received more attention, government support, and focus for testing. It was assumed that reading and mathematics must be mastered first and that these skills were essential before the study of science and social studies. Science is often not taught daily in elementary schools, does not receive major attention in middle schools, and is often organized around disciplines that emphasize college preparation in high schools.
Australian Digital Technologies Challenges are a series of free online teaching and learning activities for students in Years 5 to 8 that are aligned to the Australian Curriculum: Digital Technologies. The Australian Computing Academy (ACA) at the University of Sydney is delivering this initiative, which includes professional learning workshops for primary and secondary teachers across Australia. Also delivered by the ACA, Dive into Code will offer a suite of fun and engaging coding activities and challenges for students in Years 4 to 12.
Governmental guidelines and tests often focus on middle and high school-level STEM (science, technology, engineering and math) education. Yet, many educators believe science education should begin much earlier. Not only does science education teach young learners problem-solving skills that will help them throughout their schooling, it also engages them in science from the start.