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Introduction to the astronomy and philosophy teaching

by Philippe Jeanjacquot last modified Jul 13, 2012 11:32 AM

title astrophilo.jpg

 

The spark….

- Want to teach astronomy.
- Profile scientific and non-science students may take an interest in astronomy.
- Make education which caters to both the literary and scientists.
- Astronomy is strongly linked to the evolution of scientific thinking.
- Motivate students to scientific culture.

The context.

- The school: the administrative team holds up our project.
- The telescopes and other equipments: we can get telescope with the help of the education ministry, and our district office.
- The motivation:

The realization

In France, according to a law, the schools can experiment new ways of teaching: we are followed by a ministry office. (Called in France the PASIE, it means innovation and experiment teaching office).

The choice of content

-Allow students to observe the sky (e.g. learn techniques of observation, observation preparation)
- Understand the evolution of scientific thinking, understand the process of research. Be introduced to philosophy.
- See scientific and literary disciplines can join.
-See other links (for example between science and literature, geography…)

Schedule (example of the year 2009-2010)

In 2009-2010 year our students have got 1hour of this teaching per week , on Monday between 5pm and 6pm.

The subject linked with astronomy are in black or blue, the subjects linked with philosophy are in red and the subject linked with literature are in green

Week number

Session N°

Subject of the session.

2 (7-11 sept)

1

Astro philo, an educational experiment, presentation of the year

3(14-18 sept)

2

Astronomy, general presentation, discovery of the sky.(1)

4(21-25 sept)

3

Astronomy, general presentation, discovery of the sky (2)

5 (28-2 oct)

4

Eratosthenes’s experiment, introduction to philosophy (generalities)

6 (5-9 oct)

5

How to lmocate in the sky (session on Stellarium software )

7 (12-16 oct)

6

Theory and experiment1 : rejection of the experience as observation …

8 (19-23 oct)

7

investigation session: how to determine the coordinates of the Sun and stars?

TOUSSAINT HOLIDAYS

(5-6 nov)

/////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////

10 (9-13 nov)

8

Investigation session: how to determine the coordinates of the Sun and stars? + start different ways of observing the night sky + generality on instruments

11 (16-20 nov)

9

presentations articles by students

12(23-27 nov)

10

The observation….

13(30-4 dec)

11

Observations, study of the Mount of the telescopes, preparation of a telescope, observation of the Moon and Jupiter(30'') ) theory and experiment 2 development: rehabilitation of the experience. Aristotle, the empirisme… part 1(30'')

14 (7-11 déc)

12

Observation of the night sky (identification of the constellations) drive implementation to station a few typical objects (stars, nebulae, clusters) () theory and experiment 2 if bad weather

15 (14-18 déc)

13

Night sky observation. Mars parallax project preparation

CHRISTMAS HOLIDAYS

16 (4-8janv)

14

Night sky observation. The concept of scientific revolution. Galileo.(1)

17 (11-15janv)

15

Jupiter observation by Galileo (after 400 years).

18 (18-22 jan)

16

Moon and Jupiter observations

19( 25-29 jan)

17

update current working

20(1-5 fev)

18

Experimental approach (end).

21 (8-12 fev)

19

introduction using a robotic telescope (Faulkes telescopes)

WINTER HOLIDAYS

22(1-5 mars)

20

20 presentation of posters on the astro-philo option by students

22(8-12 mars)

21

Experimental measuring magnification of a telescope. Simulation and preparation for the use of the telescope Faulkes finalization.

23(15-19mars)

22

study a topic, a few notions about the sight of the universe according the philosophy

24(22-26 mar)

23

Study of the science revolution concept

25 (29-2 av)

24

End on the work about the scientific revolution, organization Faulkes telescope, observing session, beginning the study of the Sun

26 (5-9 av)

Nothing Easter Monday

EASTER HOLIDAYS

27 (26-30av)

25

Georges Paturel’s lecture. Interest in philosophy and history of science in the work of the astronomer

28 (3-7 mai)

26

Sun observation with solarscope + The truth in science. Astronomy and literature (next year)

29(17-21 mai)

27

Faulkes telescope session+ Cinema and astronomy. (next year)

30(24-28 mai)

Holidays

31 (31-4 juin)

28

How to improve images quality with IRIS software

32

29

Education experiment evaluation

Conduct of a co-educational session.

Example of the Session 4 introduction to philosophy…
Session start: 1. Eratosthenes’ experiment completed in our high school during the day of the equinox. (see in history tag)
2. Transition from the Eratosthenes’ experiment: debate about the curvature of the Earth and also the Earth as the center of the universe (geocenstrim)
3. Presentation of philosophy and the relevance of philosophy and astronomy partnership.
4. Definitions of philosophy and sciences, rationality. Definitions of theory, observation and experience. The whole is illustrated with examples.

Evolution in year 2010-2011

In 2010, with the high school reform, the astronomy teaching was include in the curriculum of the first year for 22 pupils. It last 54hours, 2 hour per week during 27 weeks.
It is included in exploration and scientific method teaching (called MPS in France, Methodes et Pratiques Scientifiques.
It is still an pedagogical experiment, followed by the education ministry (Lyon office).

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