My second lecture for the Life in the Universe course was yesterday, with the theme of: Science of Life in the Universe.
Learning Outcomes for Week 2
By the end of this lesson, students will be able to:
- Understand the important ancient science concepts applicable to the search for life in the universe and how they lead to the dawn of modern science
- Know who the major players were in the Copernican Revolution and their major discoveries
- Be able to describe the important principles of modern science
I began by reviewing with a Kahoot quiz consisting of the 5 questions with the lowest number of correct responses from the first online quiz, and it was a hit! There didn’t seem to be any trouble handling ~250 students, which was fantastic! Next time I’ll bring prizes!
Then into a lecture component about the scientific developments of the ancient Greeks, specifically the geocentric model of the solar system, and how it lead to the dawn of modern science.
This lead into the Copernican Revolution, which involves 5 key players (Copernicus, Tycho, Kepler, Galileo and Newton) and their discoveries. Because this divides easily into 5 chunks, I thought I’d try to do a giant jigsaw activity. Somethings went well, and others did not. My next post will summarize this experience, so stay tuned!
At this point we had a break, and then I continued on with another lecture component about the scientific method, the hallmarks of science, the difference between science, non-science and pseudoscience, fraud in science, and use of the word “theory”.
As part of this discussion, I spoke about how eye-witness accounts are notoriously terrible (along with our memories) and had them complete this test:
I’ve always like this one because it shows just how awful we are at observing things when we’re distracted!
The lecture went well overall, with Kahoot and the last video being highlights. That being said, I did have a student come tell me that he enjoys my energy and that I like to try new teaching strategies in class. That made it all worth it right there!