News . Our Blog Sharing of experiences with the open-ended scenarios during the 3rd UAB meeting

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    The User Advisory Board (UAB) met for the third time on October 11th, 2021, in this occasion the objective of the meeting was to share and discuss experiences, barriers, and benefits from working with the Jury Format open-ended scenario in different school contexts. Experiences were shared by UAB members and project partners.

    In the Jury Format, students work on a local challenge they have defined themselves. Based on research and interviews made by students, the students will consult a stakeholder panel with the purpose of discussing possible solutions and writing recommendations to the local challenge. The open-ended scenario is based on the CONNECT Care-Know-Do framework, which aims to stimulate students’ interest in science supported by their families and the local community.

    Experiences from Brazil

    Presented by Raquel P. G. Kowalski (APC) and Luciane Hilu (professor, PUCPR)

    303 high school students were involved.

    The open-ended scenario was used as a guide for the development of activities, but adherence to the lesson plan was spontaneous.​ The experiences with the open-ended scenario in Brazil were affected by the COVID-19 pandemic, which made it difficult to involve the local community. There was a general interest of teachers to adopt open schooling, but the lack of support from the community made it difficult, and there were mixed experiences involving the parents. Furthermore, some difficulties emerged when making teachers follow the methodology proposed by CONNECT and it was suggested that practice should not be tied into a single methodology. The experiences also show that students and teachers were very engaged in the project. Choices of theme and how to display content in an advertising campaign format encouraged the participation of students. Despite the difficulties, the views on the open-ended scenario process were optimistic.

    Experiences from Greece

    Presented by Panagiotis Toumpaniaris (Association of Physicists of Crete)  

    30 high school students were involved.

    The Jury Format was applied with no significant changes to the process. Both teachers’ guides and student sheets were used. Together with the students, a project about global warming and chemical pollution was decided on.

    In Greece, the pandemic also made it difficult to involve the local community, in particular the last part of the process, where results from the project should be shared with the community. The overall knowledge and interest of the students were above average. The first part of the process worked well, and students produced materials such as videos, texts, and a game.

    Experiences from Brazil

    Presented by Miriam Struchner (University Federal of Rio de Janeiro)

    15 8th graders and 2 high school students were involved

    The Jury Format was applied, and the students were involved in the different steps of the process. The students decided to work with racism and produced podcasts. The choice of podcasts made it possible to integrate the open-ended scenario with the prescribed curriculum.

    Because of the pandemic, the project was delayed and a lot of students were not able to follow the online teaching. However, those students involved were very engaged because they had chosen the subject themselves, and some students even invited friends to participate. The students also enjoyed and felt empowered because they had the opportunity to exchange views with scientists. Based on the experiences it is proposed that the work with open-ended scenarios can be used as a method to make school make more sense to students, which could help the transition to universities.

    Experiences from Spain

    Presented by Rosina Malagrida (IRSI)

    868 students from primary and secondary schools were involved.

    COVID-19 was selected as the challenge by coordinators. The methodology used was a dialogue model containing five phases (exploration, consultation, integration, prioritization, and dissemination). In the consultation phase, a participatory workshop was held with the teachers. Afterward, the teachers conducted similar workshops with the students.

    The experiences shared from Spain addressed the following question: How can teachers, students, and families collaborate with scientists and act as co-researchers to improve Covid-19 prevention? One of the conclusions is that the open-ended scenarios are a great opportunity to facilitate the link to open schooling, and the cooperation with the government increased the engagement by teachers, students, and families. Furthermore, the participatory research method contributed to increasing meaningful learning and scientific literacy among students and their families. Also, involving teachers, students, and families as co-researchers in research to improve policies that affect them is key to assure that the policies respond to their needs and expectations.

    The CONNECT User Advisory Board will meet again on 14 February 2022.

    Learn more about our UAB members here.

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