Remotely Teaching Practical Science in Student Kitchens

  • Bethan Sian Gulliver University of East Anglia
  • Kelly Edmunds University of East Anglia

Abstract

The challenge of teaching practical skills to students on a Foundation Year biology course within the constraints imposed by the Covid-19 crisis required the adoption of innovative teaching strategies. A series of kitchen practicals were devised to support the curtailed or streamed laboratory practical sessions. The activities were delivered through asynchronous, collaborative Padlets accompanied by synchronous workshops and support sessions. These activities involved applying abstract scientific ideas to familiar contexts. Engagement with these activities required the students to work individually. However, the Padlets enabled students to share their methods, results and experiences with their peers and teachers. The kitchen practical activities were popular with students and led to high levels of engagement and achievement. This article explores the reasons for the success of our strategy and argues that similar methodologies for practical teaching have their place in practical teaching post-pandemic.

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