Ask any teacher what his or her worst nightmare is. 9 times out of 10, you will get the answer that they dread the question, “Why are we learning all these? What is the use?” from their students the most. There is no good answer to the question, none that satisfies both the teacher and the students anyway. So what can be the solution? How can teachers make sure that whatever they are teaching students are finding it relevant? What if a student asks-”What practical use will learning about the chemical composition of sodium bicarbonate serve?”
There is no easy answer to these questions. However, one thing that teachers can do to teach science with real life examples to make them more interesting and more relevant to for the students. Moreover, they will learn much faster and remember it for a longer time. Arousing interest in students is the chief responsibility of any teacher and getting the students involved in the process of learning is a good way of doing that. As a teacher, you can do the following things-Take your students on frequent field trips. Take them to places of scientific interests such as a factory or a planetarium or a railway shed or anything else you can think of. The idea is to familiarize them with the concepts of science out in the real world.
- Encourage them to think beyond textbook and ask questions outside the syllabus. Let them ask you unconventional questions. This will make them develop a keen scientific mind which can grasp and analyse science better.
- Give them projects or activities to work on. Practical teaching is one of the best ways to pique their interest.
- Share your personal scientific experiences with them. Tell them stories about your scientific experiments or interests. Do not underestimate them because they are children. Sometimes children grasp situations better than adults.
- Encourage them to read outside the syllabus. Science fiction or even biographies of famous scientists often pump their interest up to a large extent.
We know that the formative years of learning is what shapes people to a large extent. It is, therefore, very important to make them see the wonders of science in those early years. If taught properly, there is no reason that they will not see it.