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<ul><li><p>1</p><p>The Use of Constructivist Teaching</p><p>Model in the Environmental Science </p><p>of Beijing Normal University</p><p>Ye ZhaoBeijing Normal UniversityThe University of Sydney</p><p>10th June, 2003</p><p>PDF created with pdfFactory Pro trial version</p><p></p></li><li><p>2</p><p>1. Intruduction The traditional teaching and learning is the </p><p>process of the transmission of knowledge From teacher To studenti.e. the students have empty mugs to be filled up with knowledge from the professorial jugs. </p><p> This teaching method baffles the development of students active and creative abilities, and the students from the mug and jug education are no longer sufficient for an educated citizenry. </p><p>PDF created with pdfFactory Pro trial version</p><p></p></li><li><p>3Fig. 1 The mug &amp; jug education Model</p><p>jug with knowledge </p><p>mug wants some knowledge</p><p>PDF created with pdfFactory Pro trial version</p><p></p></li><li><p>4</p><p> The constructivism is a theory about how students </p><p>learn. It believes that the students learn by fitting </p><p>new information together with what they </p><p>already know. It has been one of the catchwords</p><p>in modern high education. </p><p> The constructivist teaching (CT ) emphasizes:</p><p>active &amp; collaborative learning</p><p>S-T discover and construct knowledge together</p><p>Students confront real-world problems</p><p>PDF created with pdfFactory Pro trial version</p><p></p></li><li><p>5</p><p>students observe or formulate his own questions</p><p>multiple interpretations and expressions of learning</p><p>group work and the use of peers as resources. </p><p>Everyone lives in the environment, and so everyone has some knowledge about his environment, based on the constructivism theory, everyone has the potential ability to learn the knowledge about environmental science (ES). </p><p>The CT models are very useful in teaching ES. </p><p>This paper shows how to use the CT models in teaching ES at university.</p><p>PDF created with pdfFactory Pro trial version</p><p></p></li><li><p>6</p><p>2. The development of environmental science</p><p> The concept of ES was first used at the meeting (1948) </p><p>of IUCN in Paris. </p><p> 1968 UNESCO Conference called for the development </p><p>of curriculum materials of ES.</p><p> In 1970s the studies of the University of Southern </p><p>Illinois had significant impact upon European, </p><p>Australian and Asian environmental education.</p><p>PDF created with pdfFactory Pro trial version</p><p></p></li><li><p>7</p><p> BNU is one of the forefront Chineseuniversities that developed ES.</p><p> In 1960s Prof. Liu Peitong beganto study the environment-pollution in China. But he was limited and was sent to farmland.</p><p> In 1978 UNESCO Supported BNU to train some researchers and teachers for environmental study in China, and then Prof. Liu formulated the definition of ESand published some textbooks of ES in Chinese.</p><p> I teach the ES for the third-year students at BNU. </p><p>Prof. Liu Peitong</p><p>PDF created with pdfFactory Pro trial version</p><p></p></li><li><p>8</p><p> Most Chinese students passively receive and absorb the environmental knowledge and theories recorded in the textbooks and in the thematic plan of teacher. Therefore, it is impossible for the traditional teaching methods to teach ES that is young, dynamic, complex. </p><p> CT model has emerged as a prominent method toteach sciences during the past decade, it includes concept map, mind map, PBL(case study).</p><p> CT model may be very effective &amp; useful in teachingES in universities. </p><p>PDF created with pdfFactory Pro trial version</p><p></p></li><li><p>9</p><p>3. The use of constructivist teaching models in environmental science</p><p>3.1 Concept mapping for teaching and learning environmental science</p><p> The concept map is a technique for representing knowledge in graphs, which may help students to integrate the new knowledge with their old knowledge, to design a complex structure and to communicate complex ideas.</p><p>PDF created with pdfFactory Pro trial version</p><p></p></li><li><p>10Fig.2 The concept map of new-concepts formation</p><p>PDF created with pdfFactory Pro trial version</p><p></p></li><li><p>11</p><p> Cpt-map method can improve the teaching of ES,</p><p>which makes the students learning to be a process </p><p>of sense-making, of adding and synthesizing new </p><p>information within existing knowledge structures, </p><p>adjusting prior understandings to new experiences.</p><p> How to construct some concept maps of ES ?</p><p>The teachers should get acquainted with the old </p><p>knowledge of the students based on constructivist </p><p>theory and principles.</p><p>PDF created with pdfFactory Pro trial version</p><p></p></li><li><p>12</p><p>Because old knowledge and experience are very important and effective for students to construct new ideas or concepts of ES.</p><p>For example, when teachers instruct the concept of environment (environment is the total of the factors in which human lives, the factors come from the techno-, atmo-, bio-, hydro-, lithosphere and sun).</p><p>CptMap of environment includes five nodes, there is so complex interaction between human and the nodes, so much close links among the nodes for students to understand, as shown in Fig.1. </p><p>PDF created with pdfFactory Pro trial version</p><p></p></li><li><p>13</p><p>Fig.1. T</p><p>he CptM</p><p>apof the environm</p><p>ent</p><p>PDF created with pdfFactory Pro trial version</p><p></p></li><li><p>14</p><p> How to use concept maps teaching ES ?</p><p>Teachers should use the knowledge of geology, meteorology and climatology, hydrology and ecology that the students have learned during the first and second year improving them to understand the factors and their links; </p><p>Teachers should encourage the students using their experience from their living to observe the factors (of technosphere, biosphere) and their links. </p><p>This method not only mobilizes the studentsinteresting in learning ES, but also educates their creative and observes abilities.</p><p>PDF created with pdfFactory Pro trial version</p><p></p></li><li><p>15</p><p>3.2 Mind mapping for teaching and learning </p><p>environmental science The mind map is the tool that helps students think </p><p>and learn new knowledge, it consists of a central </p><p>idea, around the central concept you draw the 5 to </p><p>10 main second concepts that relate to it. You then </p><p>take each of those child concepts and again draw </p><p>the 5 to 10 main third concepts that relate to each </p><p>of the child concepts. </p><p>PDF created with pdfFactory Pro trial version</p><p></p></li><li><p>16</p><p> The difference between a CptMap and a MdMap is </p><p>that a MdMap has only one main idea in it and</p><p>a CptMap can have several linked concepts. </p><p> The knowledge base of ES is very difficult for students </p><p>to comprehend. First the content of ES often address </p><p>an wide-ranging&amp;bewildering array of the knowledge; </p><p>Second, the content is dynamic and ever-changing; </p><p>Third, it has complex inter-relationships, problem </p><p>causes, impacts and solutions. </p><p>PDF created with pdfFactory Pro trial version</p><p></p></li><li><p>17</p><p> During Teaching ES, MdMap can help teachers </p><p>to train their students creative writing abilities</p><p>to explain why we are focusing on the particular </p><p>aspect of a topic. </p><p> Example: the students of my ES classes have been</p><p>living in Beijing for 2 years, they have some sensibility </p><p>of the air quality of Beijing. And so they are </p><p>encouraged to make some MdMaps of the air pollution </p><p>in Beijing City, as shown in Fig.2.</p><p>PDF created with pdfFactory Pro trial version</p><p></p></li><li><p>18</p><p>Fig.2</p><p>The m</p><p>ind map of the air pollution </p><p>in Beijing C</p><p>ity</p><p>PDF created with pdfFactory Pro trial version</p><p></p></li><li><p>19</p><p>During making the MdMaps; some students believe that winds import much particle in the air, but others think that winds often purify the polluted air, and than they make more observation, analysis and discussion for this question, the students understand that one persons solution may be anothers catastrophe in learning ES, and the students should have active learning abilities.</p><p>PDF created with pdfFactory Pro trial version</p><p></p></li><li><p>20</p><p>The photo of BNU campus</p><p>In 12H, 7th April 2000</p><p>SPI=500</p><p>The photo of BNU campus</p><p>In 12H, </p><p>16th April 2000</p><p>SPI=112</p><p>PDF created with pdfFactory Pro trial version</p><p></p></li><li><p>21</p><p>PDF created with pdfFactory Pro trial version</p><p></p></li><li><p>22</p><p> From the mind map that student made, the teacher </p><p>may know whether the student understand the </p><p>topic and whether the student is able to organize a </p><p>suitable structure of knowledge that he has learned; </p><p>The teacher may know whether the student has some </p><p>analysis and communication abilities. </p><p>And so it is a useful tool of teaching &amp; learning ES.</p><p>PDF created with pdfFactory Pro trial version</p><p></p></li><li><p>23</p><p>3.3 PBL for developing the students integrated consideration skill</p><p>PBL is both a curriculum and a classroom process; the curriculum consists of the real-world problems that demand from the students acquisition of critical knowledge, problem solving proficiency, self-directed learning strategies, and team participation skills; the classroom process replicates the systemic approach to resolving problems. So PBL can motivate students to identify and apply research concepts, information, work collaboratively and communicate effectively. </p><p>PDF created with pdfFactory Pro trial version</p><p></p></li><li><p>24</p><p>People obtain the knowledge of environmental science from three main sources, as shown in Fig.4. </p><p>The first source is the observation in his living;</p><p>The second source is the learning from other;</p><p>The third source is the experience his living.</p><p>And so during using PBL to teach ES, teachers should</p><p>pay attention to real-world question, and taking some </p><p>environmental problems that the students know as </p><p>the case studies for students. </p><p>PDF created with pdfFactory Pro trial version</p><p></p></li><li><p>25Fig. The processes of new-concepts formation in human brain </p><p>PDF created with pdfFactory Pro trial version</p><p></p></li><li><p>26</p><p>PBL is a strategy that promotes life-long habits of learning (Barbara, 2001). </p><p>Palmer (1998) thinks that the environmental teachers should pay attention to the studentscommunication and information that results from living and interacting in a particular locality and community. It is obvious that BPL is able to play a very important effect in teaching ES.</p><p>PDF created with pdfFactory Pro trial version</p><p></p></li><li><p>27</p><p>How to construct some case studies (or real-world problms) with PBL in teaching ES ?</p><p>Teachers should present some real environmental problems that are related with the content of ES, and the students are familiar with and interesting in one of these environmental problems, as shown in Tab. 1; </p><p>Teachers should recommend some papers, books, internet which are related with the problems;</p><p>Teachers should suggest the students to form some PBL groups. </p><p>PDF created with pdfFactory Pro trial version</p><p></p></li><li><p>28</p><p>Tab. 1 Some case studies (real-world EQs) for BPL in ES at BNU</p><p>Demand reading in Lib &amp; Internet</p><p>What is the effect of population growth on the environmental degradation in China?</p><p>5-8</p><p>Be familiar with Xiangshan Part and its tourism.</p><p>Which factors are important in minimizing the environmental impact in Xiangshan Part of tourism: technology, education, client-selection &amp; management? </p><p>4-5</p><p>Be familiar with the geography in Beijing and GIS.</p><p>What are the effects of the geographical factors on the atmospherically environment or the water resources of Beijing City?</p><p>3-12</p><p>Demand to sample and Lab. Works.</p><p>What is impacts of the wastewater from Yanhua Co.on the agriculture?</p><p>2-6</p><p>Demand to sample and Lab. Works.</p><p>What is major factors affecting the water quality of Yuehe Revier in Beijing City?</p><p>1-5</p><p>Special demandThe case studies (real-world environmental question)Group</p><p>PDF created with pdfFactory Pro trial version</p><p></p></li><li><p>29</p><p>How to use PBL in making these case studies?Every PBL group should select one of their interesting environmental problems;</p><p>read the materials relating with the problem;organize their ideas and previous knowledge; discuss and make a plan of their study;survey and sample the environment;measure and analyze the samples;write relative research papers or make some academic report or communication. </p><p>As shown in Fig. 6</p><p>PDF created with pdfFactory Pro trial version</p><p></p></li><li><p>30Fug. 6 The PBL processes of ES based on case studies</p><p>PDF created with pdfFactory Pro trial version</p><p></p></li><li><p>31During ESs PBL, the students are measuring some samples in Lab.</p><p>PDF created with pdfFactory Pro trial version</p><p></p></li><li><p>32The mid-water purifying landsystem of Fangshan in Beijing</p><p>PDF created with pdfFactory Pro trial version</p><p></p></li><li><p>33The case study of E.S. The students are observing and sampling. </p><p>PDF created with pdfFactory Pro trial version</p><p></p></li><li><p>34</p><p>During ESs PBL, the students are measuring the COD of the waste-water in Lab.</p><p>PDF created with pdfFactory Pro trial version</p><p></p></li><li><p>35</p><p>The Data for students to do some case study in PBL of ES in BNU. (The of Chinese population growth in last 30 years). </p><p>PDF created with pdfFactory Pro trial version</p><p></p></li><li><p>36</p><p>The RemateSensing Image of Beijing City</p><p>The Data for students to do some case study in PBL of ES in BNU.</p><p>PDF created with pdfFactory Pro trial version</p><p></p></li><li><p>37</p><p>From these case studies using in PBL, </p><p>the students have been given some important practical models, which can be copied if they successful or avoided if not. </p><p>the students have received the form of reality check, which is very useful in a field such as ES, where there are much rhetoric and recommendations literature. </p><p>Perhaps most importantly, at least from an academic perspective, PBL with case studies provides a basic for analysis in any field where predictive theory is week and testable hypotheses are wanting, such as ES. </p><p>PDF created with pdfFactory Pro trial version</p><p></p></li><li><p>38</p><p>4. ConclusionConstructivist teaching models necessitate respecting students' ways of knowing and learning. </p><p>By using Cptmap and Mdmap methods, the studentsactive and collaborative learning were emphasized, and their integrated consideration skills was educated, which gave the students much interdisciplinary knowledge;</p><p>By using PBL with case study, the students learning curiosities were engag...</p></li></ul>


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