THE COOPERATION OF SCIENCE TEACHERS: SOME RELEVANT ISSUES
Authors: Vincentas Lamanauskas
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Nowadays a large discussion is open on the teaching/learning quality issue. It is clear that “learning is a process of construction in which the students themselves have to be the primary actors” (von Glasersfeld, 1995). By nowadays the view of the learner has changed from that of a passive recipient of knowledge to that of an active constructor of knowledge. It must be taken into account that “learning is a process of knowledge construction, not of knowledge recording or absorption” and “learning is knowledge-dependent; people use current knowledge to construct new knowledge” (Anthony, 1996). Having in mind this it is important to promote the active cooperation of science teachers in teaching process.
Collaboration and cooperation (there are some important differences between these two terms and we prefer to use the second one) of science teachers are very important components of process of teaching and learning. It is a first step to the constructive, integrated process of teaching. Without adequate cooperation it is not possible to reach the appropriate level of integration, except for internal integration of teaching subjects at a lesson. But in that case a degree of integration is not high enough. Cooperation of science teachers is possibly at all stages of educational process. For example, such cooperation is very effective by preparation of joint teaching/learning programs (curriculum) and concrete plans of activity. Cooperation depends on many factors, for example, the psychological microclimate in collective, motivation of teachers to work better, motivations of pupils and their interest to natural sciences in general. We need teachers to go beyond traditional school science with its emphasis on “key” concepts (Eisenhart, Finkel, & Marion, 1996) and focus also on the processes of learning and thinking about learning (Watters, James, Ginns, Ian, 2000).