Faculty of Education
918 43 Trnava
Faculty of Education
Department of Preschool and Elementary Education
918 43 Trnava
Trnava University - short overview
The Faculty of Education of Trnava University in Trnava was established by the Academic Senate of University of Trnava on 1st September 1992 as one of the constitutive faculties of the re-established Trnava University that declares its attachment to the renowned Universitas Tyrnaviensis of the years 1635-1777. The faculty is committed to school and educate teachers of pre-primary and primary educational subjects and teachers for secondary education in individual subjects.
Faculty of Education at Trnava University is one of the best valuated pedagogical institutes aimed at future teachers’ preparation in Slovakia and well known institute aimed at a guarded and meaningful implementation of innovations into educational system. Slovak universities are the only institutes which can provide valid in-service training aimed at a teachers’ career development. Because of these reasons, the University of Trnava has a great impact on way how the traditional education is going to be changed. Trnava University has been participating on national curricula development of the last educational reform (dated 2008) and actually helps to improve local curricula of particular schools or regions. Great part of the University duties is aimed at research activities.
The faculty consists of following departments:
- Department of Biology
- Department of Chemistry
- Department of Physics
- Department of Mathematics and Computer Science
- Department of Slovak Language and Literature
- Department of British and Germanic Studies
- Department of Educational Studies
- Department of Preschool and Elementary Education
- Department of Education of Fine Arts
- Centre for Lifelong Education
Activities within the Fibonacci project
Short presentation of IBSME roots at Trnava University
The University of Trnava (Faculty of Pedagogy) is involving in IBSME activities for about 15 years. At international level, the University is involved in project FAST (Foundational Approaches in Science Teaching; http://www.nsdc.org/midbook/foundation.pdf ) and a partnership with La main à la pâte (www.lamap.fr) The main thoughts of the project are already included into pre-gradual courses of preschool, elementary and secondary didactics at Pedagogical Faculty of Trnava University (It means that every year about 150 future teachers will be taught in the IBSME conception).
Shaped dissemination of IBSME principles
The IBSME is going to be officially offered as an alternative conception of basic science education in kindergartens and primary schools. As we perceive the educational conception hidden inside of the Fibonacci project as very perspective one, our main target is going to be aimed at offering this conception to schools which are nowadays looking for suitable and already verified alternatives of teaching.
The Fibonacci project is nowadays implemented mainly in Trnava region, where we would like to start with complete implementation of IBSE into all levels of science education (from preschool age to lower level of secondary education) in a wider range. We also have in contact 3 different regions: Senica, Topolcany and Michalovce, where we are going to start with implementation of IBSE into primary science education. Mainly we are going to be aimed at improvement of teacher-training to become sure that the main principles are going to be really understood and mastered. That is why we would like to offer the in-service teachers completely prepared science courses ready to use in their everyday practice which are going to be vividly connected with the reformed national curricula.
The main principles of the dissemination process
One of the main principle flows out of our previous experience: If we would like the IBSE conception to be widely implemented, we should make it as easy available for teachers as is possible. The implementation does not need huge material support, it does not require specific environment, but it asks for change of teacher’s individual conception of teaching. As it is very complicated process, we need to be aimed mainly at teachers’ understanding of the IBSE principles and support them in a way they actually need. We do not want to show the teachers how to do it, we would like to teach them how to find own, new and effective way of science teaching which will be consistent with IBSE.
The main activities
1. Organizing continuous in-service teacher trainings.
One system of trainings for group of teachers consists of:
- 1 introductory (theoretical) training session (1 day)
- 4 practical training sessions (4x1 day)
- proposal of own activities and discussion (1 day)
- application of IBSE in practice (individually few months)
- 4 meetings based on discussions between the teachers and the trainer (4x1day)
Every year we are planning to train 4 groups of teachers (every group contains up to 10 teachers). The teachers are going to be certificated for further dissemination of the ideas.
2. Providing supporting materials:
- IBSE guidebook for kindergarten teachers (for science education)
- IBSE guidebook for primary teachers (for science education)
- IBSE guidebook for lover secondary science teachers
- evaluative tool for teachers (to identify pupils’ development of science process skills)
3. Research in IBSME implementation into the educational practice
Information about the project in Slovakian
Projekt Fibonacci sa zameriava na podporu prírodovedného vzdelávania na úrovni vyučovania a učenia v predškolských zariadeniach, na 1. a 2. stupni základného vzdelávania a to takým spôsobom, aby sa dieťa naučilo pozorovať, klásť si otázky a chápať veci, ktoré ho obklopujú. Učí deti experimentovať, rozvíjať si schopnosť vedecky premýšľať a argumentovať, riešiť problémy, kreatívne nazerať na javy pri tvorbe vysvetlení.
Všetok obsah prírodovedného vzdelávania sa sústreďuje na vysvetľovanie vecí, ktoré deti bežne pozorujú a nezamýšľajú sa nad nimi. V rámci internej tvorby vysvetlení môžu deti testovať svoje hypotézy experimentom, pozorovaním, vytváraním modelov, hľadaním riešení v dokumentácii, diskusiou s odborníkmi, exkurziami a pod. Za dôležitú súčasť je považovaná diskusia medzi deťmi, pri ktorej (s usmernením pedagóga) sa učia vedecky argumentovať a správne vyjadrovať výsledky svojich pozorovaní, experimentov a pod.
Deti cítia, že sú schopné si vysvetliť určité reality prostredníctvom svojich vlastných schopností. To rozvíja ich motiváciu k ďalšiemu vzdelávaniu v oblasti prírodných vied. Deti si podvedome vytvárajú reálny obraz o vede a vedeckých postupoch, čo ich motivuje k ďalšiemu vzdelávaniu, hlavne ak cítia úspech a uspokojenie v pragmatizme získaných poznatkov.
Aj keď je hlavným cieľom projektu Fibonacci najmä zvýšenie počtu záujemcov o štúdium prírodných vied a o napredovanie vedy, ide aj o to, aby sa v deťoch postupne celkom zdravo budoval rešpekt k vedomostiam, faktom cez ich pochopenie – aby sa stali v tomto smere skutočne aktívnymi obyvateľmi.
Referenčné centrum v Trnave má vytvorený akreditovaný systém školení pre učiteľov v praxi vo vyššie opísanej tzv. výskumne ladenej koncepcii prírodovedného vzdelávania. Učiteľom v praxi sa tak ponúka možnosť aktívne participovať nielen v samotnom projekte Fibonacci, ale najmä v celkovej inovatívnej zmene prírodovedného vzdelávania na Slovensku.
Other related projects
- Project Fibonacci implemented into primary science education is already specifically named project Vyhrnme si rukavy (Slovak version of La main a la pate project): pdfweb.truni.sk/vsr The webpage is going to be updated according to Fibonacci project.
- Some materials (like stimulating situations or practical activities) of specific topics are drawn from a resource of Centre for Health Education situated at the Faculty - pdfweb.truni.sk/katchem/VCZV/ This project is aimed at facilitation of meaningful implementation of health topics into primary and lower secondary science education.
- The Fibonacci activities are going to be supported also by Science Field Laboratory (administrated by the Faculty and situated in the nearby mountains of Male Karpaty) aimed at in-formal primary and lower secondary science education development: pdfweb.truni.sk/fak/katedry/katbiol/Filez/Teren/teren.html
- For better dissemination of main thoughts, results and didactic materials we are going to use own journal, well distributed all over the Slovakia and targeted to primary and secondary science education – Journal of Biology, Chemistry and Ecology (ISSN 1338-1024): pdfweb.truni.sk/katchem/BECH/ Specific section for Fibonacci project is going to be created within the content of the journal.