Literature Search

How can teachers use programming to teach science in secondary school (from 8th to 10th) in Norway.

Documentation

Preparation

We first started with trying to find out exactly what we wanted to search for and what kind of information we wanted to read more about. The goal for this literature search is to find more information on how teachers can use programming to teach science in secondary school in Norway. 

We want to find literature on:

  • What methods are being used today for teaching natural science in school.

(Methods AND teaching AND “natural science”)

  • What problems teachers face when teaching science.

(Problems AND teachers AND teaching AND “natural science”)

  • Which science-subjects are listed in the curriculum that classes have to get through.

(“Natural science subjects” AND curriculum)

(naturfag AND ungdomsskole AND læreplan AND teknologi)

  • How is programming being used to teach science in schools today.

(programming AND teach AND “natural science”)

  • What are some examples of already existing technology/solutions for teaching science.

(technology AND teaching AND science)

  • Which methods are used today teach with programming at school.

(Methods AND teaching AND programming)

Keywords:

Here are the different keywords we thought would be important to use to find relevant information on our topic.

  • Natural Science
  • Science
  • Teaching methods
  • School
  • Curriculum
  • Programming
  • Technology

Search engines:

These are the search engines we used to find information.

  • Google scholar
  • Google 

Search

We decided to focus our search more by changing the keyword “science” into “natural science” as it reflects the meaning of the norwegian word “naturfag” better. 

After some tries we found that programming yielded more relevant results than coding so we changed some of our keywords and sentences to fit better 

Since we’re looking for the curriculum in Norwegian secondary school, we added some keywords in Norwegian.

Selection and evaluation


1. The article discusses one of the technologies being developed with the goal of teaching children natural science using AR. The experimental results from their tests showed an example of new technology improving on students motivation and confidence compared to the use of conventional learning approaches.

Keywords: «natural science» AND «teaching methods»

Chiang, T. H. C., Yang, S. J., & Hwang, G. J. (2014). An augmented reality-based mobile learning system to improve students’ learning achievements and motivations in natural science inquiry activities. Educational Technology & Society, 17(4), 352-365.  Retrieved from https://www.jstor.org/stable/pdf/jeductechsoci.17.4.352.pdf?seq=1#page_scan_tab_contents

2. Interview with Mitch Resnick the creator of scratch about the future of coding in schools and his view of technology’s place in the classroom.

Keywords: “How is coding being used to teach science in schools today”

Merrill S. (2017). The Future of Coding in Schools. Educational Trends. Retrieved from https://www.edutopia.org/article/future-coding-schools

3. This article is about how programming can be implemented in school, different ways to use programming and issues that you can meet on the way. It also gives us information on feedback from students on how they liked to be taught. For example through pre recordings.  

Keywords: Methods AND teaching AND programming

Bennedsen, J., Caspersen, M. E., & Kölling, M. (Eds.). (2008). Reflections on the teaching of programming: methods and implementations (Vol. 4821). Springer. Retrieved from 37KI&redir_esc=y#v=onepage&q=Methods%20AND%20teaching%20AND%20programming&f=false

4. A master’s thesis from NTNU, from 2011. It has no other studies referencing it. The thesis is titled «Hva skjedde med teknologi i skolen? En studie av læreres erfaringer med teknologi og design i grunnskolen». It is particularly relevant to our research question, because it questions how teachers use «technology and design» in the 5th to 10th grade in Norwegian schools. The thesis contents with what seven teachers associate with the topic, where six are teaching natural science.

Keywords: naturfag AND ungdomsskole AND læreplan AND teknologi

Dundas, A. A. (2011)  Hva skjedde med teknologi i skolen? En studie av læreres erfaringer med teknologi og design i grunnskolen. (Master’s thesis, Norwegian University of Science and Technology, Trondheim, Norway.). Retrieved from https://ntnuopen.ntnu.no/ntnu-xmlui/handle/11250/270256?show=full

5. The government’s digitalization strategy from 2017-2021. About future, renewal and digitalization. 

Keywords: naturfag AND ungdomsskole AND læreplan AND teknologi

Kunnskapsdepartementet (2017, August 25). Framtid, fornyelse og digitalisering Digitaliseringsstrategi for grunnopplæringen 2017–2021. Retrieved from https://www.regjeringen.no/contentassets/dc02a65c18a7464db394766247e5f5fc/kd_framtid_fornyelse_digitalisering_nett.pdf

6. Curriculum in natural science for norwegian students, from the national Directorate of Education.

Keywords: naturfag AND ungdomsskole AND læreplan AND teknologi

Utdanningsdirektoratet (2013, August 01). Læreplan i naturfag (NAT1-03). Retrieved from https://www.udir.no/kl06/NAT1-03/Hele/Komplett_visning 

7. Programming as an elective course in secondary school from the Norwegian Ministry of Education.

Keywords: koding AND valgfag AND ungdomsskole

Utdanningsdirektoratet (2017, July 07). Programmering valgfag på ungdomstrinnet. Retrieved from https://www.udir.no/kvalitet-og-kompetanse/nasjonale-satsinger/realfagsstrategien/forsok-med-programmering-som-valgfag/

8. Article that resolves around how to implement coding to teach other subjects in the classroom. Quote: “While it may not appear this way, there are intricate links between traditional language arts and the language of coding. In a story by the International Society for Technology in Education (ISTE), author Julie Randles highlights some of the many programs that can help teachers introduce coding fundamentals into their language arts classes.”

Keywords: “implement coding secondary school”

Kajeet. 6 Ways to Incorporate Coding into Your Classroom (2018). Retrieved from https://www.kajeet.net/extracurricular/6-ways-to-incorporate-coding-into-your-classroom

9. This study tells us about how more innovative teaching methods are important for education and software solutions are “significantly enhancing teaching experience and improving education quality.”

Keywords: Problems AND teachers AND teaching AND “natural science”

Daineko, Y., Dmitriyev, V., & Ipalakova, M. (2017). Using virtual laboratories in teaching natural sciences: An example of physics courses in university. Computer Applications in Engineering Education, 25(1), 39-47.  Retrieved from https://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/abs/10.1002/cae.21777

10. This project tells about how a group used the “Authentic enquiry” approach to create learning material within science in an attempt to improve results. This approach is about focusing on the student’s interests and basing the teaching process on that. This project’s success proves that, if done right. A project based on our question can help both students and teachers. While this project was not based directly on digital methods, it is similar in the way that it focuses more on teaching students in a way that they care about. (this project was successful in improving enthusiasm and the student’s general problem-solving abilities.)

Keywords: Programming AND teachers AND teachers AND “natural science”

Widowati, A., Nurohman, S., & Anjarsari, P. (2017). Developing science learning material with authentic inquiry learning approach to improve problem solving and scientific attitude. Jurnal Pendidikan IPA Indonesia, 6(1). Retrieved from https://journal.unnes.ac.id/nju/index.php/jpii/article/view/4851

11. This article is a case study about how science teachers can be educated to give the best possible lectures in the opinion of scientists at field stations. The results of this study seems to promote more physical/involved lectures, and the importance of having a bond between student and teacher, as this makes lectures more fun and memorable. This is something I think can come in handy for future projects in this class. Maybe as inspiration for a product.

In the introduction Johnson writes about how important the more physical lectures in science class were in her education and interest in the topic. This might be something that can be made more available through programming?

Keywords: Coding AND teach AND “natural science”

Johnson, S. R. (2016). Case Studies of Innovative Science Teacher Professional Development Programming at Biological Field Stations. Retrieved from https://digitalcommons.hamline.edu/cgi/viewcontent.cgi?referer=https://scholar.google.no/&httpsredir=1&article=5152&context=hse_all

Summary

Programming is often viewed as something to learn on its own for the sake of learning to program, while the reality is that it has the potential to be used on many more fields. As stated by Merril S.(2017), “very few people grow up to be professional writers, but we teach everyone to write because it’s a way of communicating with others—of organizing your thoughts and expressing your ideas. I think the reasons for learning to code are the same as the reasons for learning to write. When we learn to write, we are learning how to organize, express, and share ideas. And when we learn to code, we are learning how to organize, express, and share ideas in new ways, in a new medium.”

Some of the articles shows how the use of new technologies can have a positive effect on learning by motivating and stimulating students. One example of this is an experiment on a class in Taiwan that was done by the Journal of Educational Technology & Society to test the effectiveness of doing inquiry based learning using AR-technology. According to Chiang, T. H. C (2014), “It was found that the students who learned with the augmented reality-based mobile learning approach showed significantly higher motivations in the attention, confidence, and relevance dimensions than those who learned with the conventional inquiry-based mobile learning approach.”

In Norway, programming is currently an elective course in secondary school (), though technology and design is a topic in natural science, according to Utdanningsdirektoratet (2013). The Norwegian Ministry of Education said that they want students to learn programming in other courses as well. They are searching for ways to include technology, programming and algorithmic thinking into the current curriculum, especially in math and science. (Kunnskapsdepartementet, 2017). Programming would be added in courses that already exist and used to see and solve problems in new and different ways.  

Since a lot of teachers don’t have the education relevant to programming, it can be hard for the students to get a good understanding on how to think while programming. According to Bennedsen, J.(2008), textbooks are not the most efficient way to teach the process of programming, but a recording of someone doing the exact task or someone teaching it live is more efficient.

Teachers need more knowledge and time to implement programming into the classroom. According to Kunnskapsdepartementet (2017), 1 of 3 teachers thinks they don’t get good enough support from the school to be able to use IT in an educational way.

Natural science and mathematics are the courses in Norwegian school that use the ICT (Information and communication technology) least, according to the Norwegian Ministry of Education (2017). 

Through research and communication within the sector, they have found some areas that are problematic for the implementation:

  • Students lack digital knowledge
  • Teachers lack professional digital knowledge
  • Digital tools are lacking in quality
  • Varied and ineffective infrastructure 
  • Lack of research and development on the subject

If the digital tools available are in general not good enough, then it’s hard to implement programming to a subject.

The potential of using programming as a tool in subjects other than programming itself, should be investigated. If educational technology continues to be considered as a focus area in the future, it becomes easier to incorporate programming education into the school. As of today there doesn’t seem to be many existing tools for teaching through programming in the classroom.

The resources that are required to train teachers in programming, whom have traditionally never needed programming skills, needs to be weighed against the potential of programming as a tool in the specific subject. The benefits of using it should be clear.

 

Task

School, Norway

Teacher<–> Student

How can teachers use programming to teach science in secondary school (from 8th to 10th) in Norway.