Cultivating Pedagogical Content Knowledge (PCK) in in-service science teachers: addressing deficiencies of 'teaching as taught'
Suping, Shanah Mompoloki
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The infrastructural educational landscape in Botswana has grown at a tremendous pace in the past two decades. However, this growth has not been paralleled by similar growth in the performance of students in the same school system. On the converse, performance seems to have declined with the increased infrastructural development almost at a directly proportional fashion, .4 self-study and exploratory case study methods were used in the research. Impact on chemistry in-service teachers' conceptions of chemistry was looked into. Classroom interactions at the secondary' school level showed that most of the leaching activities used in the classrooms have not changed from what they were some decades ago. In the area of chemistry education, for example, teaching has become simply a matter of keeping up with the tradition of teaching-as-taught. Using the topic atomic theoiy, this paper attempts to show that the tradition of teaching-as-taught can be challenged and changed by equipping teachers with proper ammunition so as to be able to face the challenges in their classrooms. It is argued that teachers resort to leaching as taught when they run out of ideas on how to tackle difficult and abstract topics so common in chemistry, and that given appropriate arsenal, they can develop enough confidence to present materials to students in very innovative ways. Recommendations are given in the form of questions that should be intei rogated further to seek answers to the problems.