B.E.S.T. (Building Effective Strategies for Teaching) of Science: An exploration into the culture of collaboration

Year: 1996

Author: Ferrer, Lourdes M

Type of paper: Abstract refereed

Success in improving teaching and learning can be achieved through collaborative inquiry. This is proven in the Teacher Specialist Project embarked by a partnership between the Ministry of Education and the university. This project involves the participation of teachers, teacher educators, researchers and education officers collaboratively inquiring into ways by which students can be helped perform better in science. This is one of the two subject areas in the primary school curriculum where difficulties in teaching and learning are frequently encountered. The extent to which this kind of collaboration has affected the teachers as learners and effected change in their teaching is discussed in this study. It reports how group endeavours can facilitate change by providing emotional support and cognitive guidance.

The importance of group collaboration as a factor of affect for change is not only stressed in the professional development of teachers but also in their work with their own students. Setting an environment of collaboration in the classroom and engaging the students in active interaction through group activities have generated cognitive and affective outcomes that serve as useful guide in B.E.S.T.(Building Effective Strategies for Teaching).

The introduction of collaboration into the culture of schools in Brunei is envisaged to contribute to the growing interest for better understanding of teachers and teaching as well as learners and learning.