2017 Graham Nuthall Annual Lecture
Presented by: Dr. Alberto Rodriguez
As communities and nations, we will continue to experience unanticipated, and often unprecedented, challenges and opportunities. Finding the solutions and innovations for the future will require working in transdisciplinary ways, and strengthening the scientific and mathematical literacy of all members of society. This presentation highlights findings from several research projects informed by sTc, a transdisciplinary and cross-cultural framework for science/STEM education. The framework enables teachers and students to move away from just “covering” curriculum or memorizing facts and concepts. Instead, teachers and students engage in learning for understanding, using hands-on, minds-on, culturally and socially relevant science/STEM connected to everyday life and real-world issues. The primary goals of sTc teaching and learning are to enhance personal and collective agency in order to effect positive social change. In the presentation, several examples will be shared that illustrate how sTc has successfully been used to enable transdisciplinary and cross-cultural science/STEM education in preservice and in-service teacher education, as well as with elementary and high school students.
Dr. Rodriguez is the Mary Endres Chair in Elementary Education and Professor of Cross-Cultural Science Education in the Department of Curriculum and Instruction at Purdue University. His research focuses on the use of sociotransformative constructivism (sTc) as a theoretical framework that merges critical cross-cultural education tenets (as a theory of social justice) with social constructivism (as a theory of learning). He is investigating how teachers can make their pedagogy and curriculum more culturally and socially relevant to all students, as well as how teachers can better integrate STEM across all curriculum subjects. Dr. Rodriguez is the PI of the 20/20 Vision for Transdisciplinary Cross-Cultural STEM Project, which brings together teacher education faculty from across all the curriculum areas to co-design cross-cultural and socially relevant integrated STEM modules.
Dr. Rodriguez is the recipient of the Innovations in Research on Diversity in Teacher Education Award from the American Educational Research Association (AERA), Division K (Teaching and Teacher Education, 2017), and the Kappa Delta Pi – Teaching and Teacher Education Research Award from AERA in 2000.
sTc – sociotransformative constructivism
POE -Predict – Observe – Explain
Teacher centered – magnetism blah blah blah
￼Critical thinker in the middle
How to learn:
- dialogic conversation
- Authentic Activity
Example activities: A scientist like me – digital quilt
A scientist like me – digital quilt
Higher expectations you need to provide more support.
BrainPop.com. Concept maps.
New challenges. Enrolment and attendance increased.
See how what they learn can help them in everyday life.
School experiences wash out your teacher training experience. Kind of teacher you want to be vs the kind of teacher you are becoming. But into the culture of the school. Has this happened to me? How has the school culture impacted my philosophy of teaching?
This is why research has good ideas but no big impact because it is not able to break into the culture of a school.
Making the invisible visible in our learning spaces.
What does do well mean??
Key = critical thinkers?
Fall in love with the subject. Then they will do well in the subject area. Learning for understanding.
Content vs quality – which is more important. This is a juggling act. I know my personal philosophy is to go with quality deep learning over covering large amounts of content. What impact does high stakes assessment have on this? Is this detrimental to our students learning?
I want to reflect on my teaching philosophy that I wrote during my teacher training and ask myself what is my current teaching philosophy and how has it changed? What kind of teacher am I becoming? Can I find any areas that I want to improve on? What are my blind spots?
Are my students falling in love with science? Do they feel inspired to pursue science as a subject area? From the feedback I have collected through surveys, the majority of the students are. Perhaps there is an opportunity here to delve deeper and conduct an inquiry around this.
Criteria this relates to:
Practicing Teacher Criteria
PTC 4 – demonstrate commitment to ongoing professional learning and development of personal professional practice
PTC 6 – conceptualise, plan and implement an appropriate learning programme
PTC 12 – use critical inquiry and problem-solving effectively in their professional practice
1 – Wānanga: participating with learners and communities in robust dialogue for the benefit of Māori learners’ achievement.
5 – Ako: Taking responsibility for their own learning and that of Māori learners.,
1 – Key Competencies – Managing Self,
3 – Key Competencies – Thinking
Code of Ethics
2 – Justice – to share power and prevent the abuse of power,
3 – Responsible care – to do good and minimise harm to others,