TEMI at the Irish Science Teachers Association 2016

A TEMI workshop was held on April 9th 2016, at the ISTA conference in LIT (Limerick Institute of Technology), Limerick. The Conference had 250+ registered participants from different counties all over Ireland, and special guests form outside Ireland. At the time of the conference the TEMI project was coming to an end, thus, it was an appropriate time to disseminate lesson ideas to the science teaching community of Ireland. The workshop was an invitation to teachers to a TEMI taster Session, who were not involved in the TEMI teacher training cohorts which took place in UL. It provided an opportunity for them to gather information on the project and get involved by gathering useful lesson ideas.

On the day, there were two workshops, both run by Dr Peter Childs and Ms Laurie Ryan from the University of Limerick TEMI team. The turnout at both workshops exceeded the expected numbers with 27 participants attending workshop 1, and 24 participants attending workshop 2. The TEMI workshops turned out to be the most popular of 8 parallel workshops on offer. The workshop began with a quick overview of what the TEMI project involved, it then moved on to a quick insight in to the 5E model and the idea of turning a lesson around by using a standard experiment or demonstration to arouse questions instead of just giving the answers. Finally, the UL team presented 2 example TEMI ideas: the rolling tin and the 3 cup trick. Once this was done, teachers had the opportunity to sample 6 short TEMI lesson ideas, which were set up around the room. All teachers moved around the room trialling each idea and asking any questions they might have. The two presenters acted as facilitators explaining the mysteries and how they could be used. The sessions were only 45 minutes but the teachers who attended were enthusiastic and involved.

It was clear from the feedback that the teachers were very positive and interested in the TEMI ideas. The majority of teachers said they do the experiments at the end of a topic rather than at the beginning. All teachers were given an information booklet when leaving and had the opportunity to put their name down for an invitation to the final TEMI conference in June. This was a very worthwhile dissemination activity and provided the UL TEMI team with a good opportunity to seed the TEMI idea in teacher’s minds. The UL team will be offering a longer version of this workshop to ISTA branches around the country in the school year 2016-2017 as part of our dissemination strategy.