One strength of the IB Chemistry syllabus is the environment theme that runs through each topic. This provides a rich opportunity for contexualising important understanding through connections to the nature of science, international mindedness, and real life applications.
Topic 14.1 Chemical bonding and structure provides a context for thinking about international mindedness through the story of ozone and for thinking about
- How ozone depletion has changed over time?
- What we have done as a global community to reduce ozone depletion?
- The extent to which ozone depletion is an example of both a both a success and a failure for solving an international concern.
- The global impact of ozone depletion
On Friday we were finishing up Chemical Bonding and for our last lesson we spent 40 minutes having a discussion about ozone depletion from the perspectives of nature of science and international mindedness. I have to say I was impressed with the discussion, so I thought I would share the lesson and what my students were thinking
1. First, the students reviewed the pathways to scientific discovery flow chart http://undsci.berkeley.edu/flowchart_noninteractive.php (also on page 12 of the Chemistry Guide)\
2. They then watched The Antarctic ozone hole – From discovery to recovery, a scientific journey (from UNEP) https://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_embedded&v=AU0eNa4GrgU#at=946 and identified aspect from the video that connected to a specific aspect of the pathways to scientific discovery.
3. The students then shared the connections they made, which I summarized for them in a Wordle
4. Finally, they identified common themes that emerged.
Science involves identifying new questions
Scientists build on existing knowledge
Science involves international collaboration
Scientists work in cross-disciplinary teams (economists, mathematicians, sociologists, NGO’s and governments etc) to solve problems facing society
Scientists work in inter-disciplinary teams (chemists, physicists, geologists, biologists) to identify problems and find solutions to scientific problems
Ritchhart, R., Church, M., & Morrison. (2011). Making Thinking Visible. San Francisco:Josseyboss.