Active Learning Strategies II

These are a few promising approaches that teacher candidates might want to utilize to teach the non-science components of PHY 311.

Case Study

Case studies provide a context rich basis for discussion the actions that occurred in a particular setting. For instance, did a student teacher respond prudently and professionally in a given circumstance or situation. The use of the case study serves two main purposes: (1) understanding of a particular situation, and (2) fostering problem-solving skills. In case studies for teacher candidates, the action of the teacher most times would be the center of attention for the follow-up analysis.


Protocol Materials

Protocol materials help teacher candidates help preservice teachers to become aware of and understand certain aspects of teaching in the classroom. Protocol materials consist of two parts -- protocols and materials. A protocol is a record of some carefully selected, important, school-related event or topic. The record can be written, audio, or video recording. The material is an organized collection of relevant, related information intended to help the preservice teacher to better understand the event or behavior exhibited in the protocol. For instance, an event of cheating might be used to help teacher candidates to better understand the cheating phenomenon so that teachers better understand and know how to effectively respond to a particular situation calmly, analytically, and intellegently. What makes the protocol materials approach different from the case study is here the why and wherefore of student actions are the subject of focus.


Simulations / Role Playing

A major goal behind simulations or role playing is to allow teacher candidates the opportunity to experience an event or activity that they might not encounter in their day-to-day education. Simulations are based upon real-life experiences. Preservice teachers can use simulations to practice solving anticipated classroom and school related problems. Simulations generally have the following elements:

  1. participant(s) presented with information about hypothetical setting,
  2. introduce a task or problem in the context of that simulated setting,
  3. require participant(s) to generate one or more solutions to the problem, and
  4. provide the participant with information about approrpirateness of her or her solution.