Science is a huge and important subject that entails many key concepts. Students in Singapore start learning Science at Primary 3 and it’s compulsory for them to take Science subjects until at least their O-Levels.
If you’re a Science tutor, you play an integral role in creating and sustaining students’ interest in Science, and it may not be easy to do.
But you’ve come to the right article!
Here are 4 ways you can teach Science effectively to your students.
Do Science experiments
Experimenting is a big part of Science. Practicals are an examinable component in Science exams, which means that it’s necessary for students to learn how to execute experiments.
Through conducting experiments, students get to trial-and-error and learn how changing different controls can lead to different results.
Doing experiments can also help them to relate to the theories that they have learnt.
In order to have the most fruitful and fulfilling experiments, let them take control of the experiment and watch what happens with different variables.
You can give them a variety of materials or choices for them to choose from so that they can take charge of their own experiments.
Always relate it back to real life
Science is life and it exists everywhere around us.
To ensure that your students have a true understanding of the subject, it is important to expose them to the real-life context of what they’re learning.
This is especially since our exam papers are moving towards questions that involve application questions and students need to be able to apply what they have learnt from theories.
When you teach them concepts, always think of ways to help them relate to real-life situations.
Get them to ask questions
Being inquisitive is important for a Science student. Science involves lots of concepts and is not exactly the most straightforward subject to understand. It requires students to be active learners and always look forward to learning new things.
For example, in Chemistry, there are always exceptions and special cases to the rules of thumb. Students need practice and a curious mind to discover new things every lesson.
Sometimes, your students may be too shy to take the initiative to raise their questions to you. What you can do is to always include a portion for questions at the end of every exercise, be it on worksheets or on the whiteboard.
This will push students to consider if there are any gaps in their understanding and can be more helpful than you may think!
Make it a step-by-step process
As a tutor, you may have had years of experience with the subject and are used to just memorising and adopting formulas, but always remember that your students are usually learning the concepts for the first time and it might all be very confusing to them.
They need to be taught from the basics you can’t just introduce formulas or make them memorise just because. They need to understand the big ‘why’ in order for their foundational understanding to be strong.
Take the effort to always plan your lessons. Break down the big concepts into many small ones and know exactly what you want them to learn for every lesson.
At every checkpoint, add on new mini-concepts and show them the link between these many concepts. When they get their basics right and progress at an appropriate pace, it will be much easier for them to catch on to complex concepts as they move on.
Science is a unique subject that is not easy to teach. But its multi-faceted nature allows students to be able to learn and grasp the subject in a fun and engaging way.
The tips that I’ve just given you will help you to ensure that your students love learning Science.
What are some tips that you use to tutor your Science students? Let us know in the comments below.