The 21st century demands many countries to prepare human resources that can compete globally. Basic knowledge in science as well as up–to-date technical know-how and innovativeness are indispensable for countries aspiring to be part of this global world. One of many ways is to teach students about science; not only to prepare them to become scientists, but also to help them understand their environment and prepare them to survive and thrive in the workforce. Specifically, science can be learnt by applying inquiry learning methods that can train students’ ability to think critically and creatively.
SEAQIS as a regional constitution which has the main scope to develop Inquiry-Based Science Education (IBSE) conducted Training on STELR-STEM Education for Asia-Pacific Region as an effort to improve the professionalism of teachers in teaching science. The inquiry method is applied in Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics (STEM) education based on Science and Technology Education Leveraging Relevance (STELR) from Australia to enhance students’ interest in science and technology.
In collaboration with various institutions, that are the Australian Academy of Technology and Engineering (ATSE), Charles Darwin University (CDU), Southern Cross University (SCU), Deakin University, Australia-Indonesia Institute (AII), Australia Government Initiative, and ORICA, the training was held for five days starting from 20 – 24 November 2017 at Atlantic City Hotel, Bandung, West Java, Indonesia. The training wa attended by 41 participants from various countries in Asia-Pacific, including Indonesia, Singapore, Cambodia, Thailand, Laos, Maldives, and Pakistan with five qualified facilitators from Australia, Dr. Greg Smith from Charles Darwin University, Dr Connie Cirkony from Deakin University, Ms Pennie Stoyles and Mr Peter Pentland from the Australian Academy of Technology and Engineering, and Mrs Simone Blom from Southern Cross University. The training was officially opened on Monday, 20 November 2017 by the Director of SEAQIS, Prof Dr Triyanta.
Practical activities using KIT STELR and surrounding materials became the main methods in the training, with the subjects concerned on energy conservation, climate change, sound and hearing, water conservation in the 21st century, as well as the benefits and dangers of Carbon Dioxide. Each day at the end of the session, there was conclusion of the whole activity related to the 5E learning model (Engage, Explore, Explain, Elaborate, and Evaluate) and representative understanding.
The training was closed by Ms Elizabeth Campbell-Dorning, Education Attache from the Australian Embassy on Friday, 24 November 2017 followed by the awarding of certificates to all participants and resource persons.
Written by Lintang Ratri Prastika