During the first days of summer 2016, Ciência Viva, the Portuguese national agency for the scientific and technological culture, opened the call for social projects named "INTEGRA, science for inclusion". For us, it was a unique opportunity to work at the same time in two domains that might seem unrelated to each other: the teaching of science and the more traditional ambit of intervention of "SOS racismo". The hidden link between them is discussion. On the one hand, discussion is the foundation of mutual respect. On the other hand, according to sound evidence, is the key to scientific understanding. We designed KEY 1.0 around this process, with the double objective of promoting innovation in the teaching of science and a culture welcoming migrants and refugees. KEY is directed to all high school teachers of scientific subjects (mathematics, physics, biology, chemistry) and to their classes, especially if they include migrant students. The methodology that we intend to promote are based on the discussion among peers. Among these, we are particularly inspire by "Peer Instructions", formulated by Eric Mazur, professor of physics and applied physics at the University of Harvard. He noticed the the traditional method, entirely based on lecturing, is not effective in fostering a real understanding, one that is not merely recollecting formulas and applying them to solve standard exercises.
Our goal is to create the necessary conditions for the method to be implemented in schools, through formation events for teachers and a continuous interaction with those among them who will be willing to adopt such method. We also aim to gather more scientific data on the efficacy of the method.
With this in mind, we built a strong team and wrote down a simple plan with a good chance to successfully create positive social change.
Any teacher or student interested, may contact us by sending an email to email@example.com. He or she will receive support, intended to make teaching and learning more fun and effective.
Anyone should feel free to pose questions, give feedback, or express doubts. We suggest you to read the scientific section of this blog, where we stress the advantages of the pedagogical methods based on the discussion among peers.
We encourage students, teachers, reasearchers in the field of pedagogy, and anybody interested in our work for any reason, to share with us doubts and constructive comments, pose questions or propose collaborations. You may do this either by sending an email to firstname.lastname@example.org OR by filling in the form on the right.