Methods of Teaching Science-Demonstration Method
M.Sc., M.Ed., JRF & NET
Assistant professor in Physical Science, Arafa Institute for Teacher Education
The teacher performs experiments before/after/during the class and meanwhile goes on asking relevant questions from the class. The students are compelled to observe carefully because they have to describe each and every step of the experiment accurately and draw inferences. The students are questioned and cross-questioned concerning the problem in hand and their inferences are discussed in the class.
The pupils become active participant in the learning process. They feel happy and try to learn more and more as they make use of their powers of observation, reasoning and drawing inferences are properly exercised.
This method is based on the principle: “Truth is that which works”. The teacher has to work out something and then and only then the students will believe.
This method is in accordance with a principle “From concrete to abstract.” The students observe the demonstration critically and try to draw inferences. It is always easy for the students to understand and remember concrete things.
This method (Lecture cum Demonstration Method & Demonstration method) is designed for two purposes:
a) To provide means of making certain parts of the subject matter clearly by objectifying it.
b) To do the above with as much as economy as possible.
It is good for small as well as elder students. Small children do not follow abstract ideas. They understand concrete objects. Students actually see the experiments. If the teacher is well prepared with demonstration it has the desired effect upon the students.
Criteria of a Good Demonstration
1. The demonstration should be planned and rehearsed will in advance.
2. The aim and purpose of the demonstration must be clear to the teacher.
3. The demonstration should be arranged in such a way that everything is clearly visible to all pupils.
4. Demonstration should be result of the active participation of the pupils and the teacher.
5. The pupils should be made familiar with each and every apparatus used for demonstration.
6. The apparatus should be arranged in a sequence on the table. It is better to keep the apparatus to be used on the left hand side and used on the right hand side.
7. Demonstration should be simple.
8. Difficult points in the demonstration should be explained before hand and should be summarised on the black board.
9. Every demonstration should be supplemented by various teaching aids like pictures, models, charts, and film strips to make it effective for learning.
10. The demonstration should start by posing a problem and the pupils should be led to solve the problem themselves, thereby they can exercise their abilities to explain, analyse, verify and infer. Thus they will get training in scientific method of solving problems.
11. The teacher should maintain the interests of the students
12. The teacher should impress upon the students to write what they observe.
Requisites of a Good Demonstration
The success of a good demonstration depends upon a number of factors. They are:
1. A good lecture-cum-demonstration room is necessary. The demonstration table should be visible to all studetns.
2. The apparatus to be used should be in good working order and there should be some spare apparatus to be used in case there is breakage of the apparatus.
3. A good blackboard for writing important facts and drawing sketches.
4. The teacher should be well-versed in the handling of the apparatus and should be able to undertake minor repairs on apparatus.
5. Thought provoking questions should be asked while the demonstration is in progress.
6. Major points of the demonstration may be written on the Blackboard before the demonstration.
7. Pupils should be told about things to be observed and recorded before the demonstration.
8. Time should be given for recording observations.
1. It is economical
* as the teacher alone performs the experiment.
* Save time, when a number of experiments are to be performed is a short time.
2. It is psychologically based because the students are shown concrete things and confirmed facts verified practically.
3. It is very suitable when the apparatus is very costly or very sensitive and is likely to be damaged if handled by the students eg:-Fortin’s barometer, electric dynamo.
4. Experiments involving special type of skills and those which are dangerous can be safely shown in the class. eg:-Reaction of Na with water, Fountain experiments, and collection of hydrogen.
5. This method is helpful when quick revision is required.
6. The method helps to develop scientific attitude in pupils.
7. It makes the learning situation meaningful and the pupils observe things in the concrete form.
8. It is a suitable method for all types of students, ie., average, below average and above average. There is uniformity of teaching and all learn at common pace.
1. There is no scope of ‘learning by doing’ which is one of the important principle of learning and the students should not get the joys of direct personal experience.
2. There is no scope of developing the practical skills of pupils as the teacher alone performs the experiment.
3. The method does not provide for individual differences. Slow learners and genius are treated at the same pace.
4. The pupils are not the active participants in the process. The teacher has the final responsibility to manipulate and perform the experiments in any manner he likes.
5. It does not inculcate the most needed scientific attitude and training in scientific method.
iii) Lecture-cum-demonstration method
Lectur-cum-demonstration method is the demonstration method followed by a lecture.
Reference: Science Education by T.K.Mathew & Molykutty