Lifelong Learning Programme

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Title of the Experience
Ecosystem as a basic element in nature - work in terrain
Name of the teacher
Irena Šuchterová
Country where it took place
School typology
Lower Secondary School
Thematic Area
Experience typology
Teaching in class
Type of contact
Description of the Experience
Thematic unit Man and Environment provides both me and the students a space for discussion, dialogue during the lessons, group work, field work (in the school yard) as well as independent work with information.

Lesson objective: getting to know the plants in the field. The lesson met its objective by using the method of obtaining information by own students’ experience. The lesson was clearly lined with realistic tasks that were possible to meet.
Teaching the lesson on Ecosystem as the basic unit of nature I very simply and briefly explained what an ecosystem is and what kinds of ecosystems there are (20 minutes). Together with the students we prepared a PowerPoint presentation as we hold the lesson in a computer lab. Then we moved into the field work on campus (school yard).
Before the lesson I prepared pictures of 10 plant species (herbs, trees, shrubs). I divided the students into pairs and gave them the following task: find all types of the plants in the school yard, take a small part of each plant and determine what kind of plant it is. Many students did not have a problem with finding the plants, but had a problem with their determination. When all the students finished collecting the plant samples, we went through the collection and identified the plant species together.
Students also received a home work: make a herbarium from the collected samples. They had to dry the plants first, attach them to sheets of paper and name all the species correctly (both Slovak and scientific- Latic names). They also had to choose a correct plant family for each sample. This lesson was held on April 24, 2014. Herbarium must be prepared for May.
I know I described the lesson of an earlier date, before our first meeting, but for me and my students it was a very interesting one. Such a procedure I repeated also in another classes, and there was also a success. Certainly I will teach this topic in the same way during the next school year.
Observations of my students (their views on the lesson) were positive- the lesson was fun, more relaxed than sitting in the classroom, getting to know the campus better, improved knowledge about plants. They said: “We realized that the lesson can also be different than just reading from a textbook. We were outdoors and got to know the plants better by our own real feel. We did not have to write long and boring notes. In general we were relaxing. It was also good that we worked in pairs rather than individually.”
To increase students' interest in the subject of biology I use the help of ordinary nature phenomena, phenomena of everyday life, and also even a higher interest of students in their environment and health.
Student evaluation - during the lesson verbally and after admitting the herbaria, rating with a grade.

Comments on this Teachers Experience

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Date: 2014.10.16

Posted by Darina Tatarlieva (Bulgaria)

I find the proposed practice very interesting, but impractical for students from grade 9 in Bulgaria /it is then, when they study the ecosystem concept/. The proposed option is not in consistence with our curriculum. In my opinion, it can be successfully applied as extracurricular activity or in activities at an ecology club.


Dissemination Seminar in Florence

31 October 2015 The seminar has been held in ITIS “A. Meucci” one of the schools involved within Goerudio project activities. Its main aim was to promote the results of the project toward a broad sample of stakeholders even overcrossing the number of people directly involved in the production of project outcomes. This purpose has been totally achieved especially thanks to the participation of students and teachers coming from different schools or from other classes instead of those ones directly involved within the project activities.