A DAY AT THE MUSEUM. LABORATORY TEACHING IN THE MUSEUM OF ZOOLOGY AT THE UNIVERSITY OF PADUA FOR PRIMARY SCHOOL
1 University of Padova (ITALY)
2 University of Pisa (ITALY)
About this paper:
Conference name: 11th International Conference on Education and New Learning Technologies
Dates: 1-3 July, 2019
Location: Palma, Spain
Abstract:The purpose of the present research is to analyze the Museum of Zoology at University of Padova (Italy) as a resource for improving Biology and ecology learning motivation in children, in particular by guided tours and laboratory activities. Even if now it was considered only a cultural and a recreational environment, the museum could be an important tool to raise children, because of it offers so many educational opportunities. Based on the active and experiential education in Dewey, the aim of the research is to prove that the experience at museum can help children to develop positive attitudes towards Biology, one of the most hated subject in schools both by children and teachers. According to social-constructivist educational theories, children must acquire skills that can be used in everyday life, and the research is based on this approach. The museum-based education gives to pupils the possibility to touch real zoological samples and to look at real animals. This leads children to have a clear image in their mind, that leads to develop scientific curiosity, and helps them to become aware of ecological issues connected to the species that they can see at the museum. For this reason, a poll has been done among teachers and parents of the children that have visited the Museum of Zoology. The results showed that both parents and teachers agreed that their children became more willing to study Biology and more aware of ecological issues. In addition, a second survey has been made among teachers and parents that didn’t have any experience at the museum, to understand whether they were interested in these activities to improve motivation of their children to study Biology. According to the obtained results, most of those questioned considered the museum laboratory activities an important tool for teaching Biology. In conclusion, it is desirable to implement the experiments to better understand the potential of museum-based education.
Keywords: Biology, laboratory didactics, museum-based education, motivation.