You can now sign up for our next Debate Kit, on Stem Cells! What are you waiting for?
Maybe you read all the things that we’ve written about the debate kits and think, ‘Well they would say that, wouldn’t they?’ I know I would.
As we all know, the ASE are the bee’s knees when it comes to science education, so you should definitely listen to them.
Sign up for these kits now if you have not done so already; they are too good to miss. The IVF ‘kit’ (cards in a wallet) is the first of four to be produced by the ‘I’m a Scientist’ team. The second, Are we too clean?, is now also available. Paper stocks of both kits, sent out to teachers, have run out, but they can be downloaded from the site and are freely photocopiable; the convenient size of the cards means that you can get four to a page. It might be sensible to laminate the cards before using with pupils. The remaining two kits will be produced over the next two academic terms in 2010.
Developed in consultation with teachers, these kits work. They are simple but very effective and well thought out. Intended for use at key stage 4 (ages 14-16), they hit the ‘How science works’ nail on the head with their 50-minute lesson plan, which includes a starter and a plenary, by promoting knowledgeable debate. Background notes are provided for the teacher and suitable homework suggested. There is no reason why the kit could not be used with older or younger pupils if thought appropriate by the teacher. Not all characters need to be used and some with potentially sensitive issues, such as cancer patients and lesbian couples, teachers might want to select which cards to use in advance. This would not affect the overall activity.
I am looking forward to kits number three and four.
School Science Review, March 2010, Vol 91 Number 336