chapter  10
24 Pages

Beyond the laboratory

Teaching science is a very demanding occupation, requiring you to be competent in many different areas of the subject and to have a multitude of teaching skills. How can a new science teacher possibly find the time to devote to other issues in the school outside teaching in the laboratory? On entering the profession you might initially react by posing the question, 'What's in it for me? I have enough to cope with understanding the National Curriculum'. There are many reasons why science teachers should be involved in all aspects of school life, for example:

Isolation in the science department can give rise to a very onesided view of a pupil's school experience. You can benefit enormously by talking to other teachers about the teaching methods used in their subject areas. You can investigate areas of overlap between subjects and consider ways that you may collaborate. Introducing aspects of other subject areas into science can enrich the presentation and promote interest. The school is required to ensure that pupils have access to certain themes and skills which go across curriculum boundaries. Science GCSE syllabuses encourage science teachers to work with teachers in other disciplines. The extract below is taken from a syllabus for the separate sciences: l

10.1 WHOLE SCHOOL ISSUES There are aspects of school life that affect all school teachers, such as attendance of pupils, behaviour, maintaining the general ethos of the school, whole school activities (plays, sport, etc.) and the place of the school within the local community. Becoming involved with these types of activities is all part of being a teacher and doing your share of the teamwork that goes to make the school an effective and enjoyable place to learn. There are many jobs to do and it is no use always

thinking that Mr Smith should do it because he gets paid far more than you do. A good school is one where teachers work together to give the pupils an all-round education. Involving yourself in activities such as games, clubs, concerts and displays helps you to get to know pupils in a different light and can help to develop your relationship with them.