About the new Teachers’ and students’ roles in STEM approaches

About the new Teachers’ and students’ roles in STEM approaches

About the new Teachers’ and students’ roles in STEM approaches

Technology is progressing. Science drives its development. New jobs appear every day on the labour market, some we haven’t even thought about. Many of today’s students will do these jobs. They probably won’t be trained for these jobs since they haven’t been invented yet. However they will learn somehow.

„Nothing is more important in the twenty-first century than learning to manage change.” [1].

But for this to happen, their thinking and knowledge must be adaptable. The skills they acquire in school should allow anchoring in the real world.

On the other hand, the teachers’ role is changing from keepers of knowledge to facilitators of learning. „…many teachers are comfortable delivering information. They view themselves as the keepers of the keys. But our job as educators is to facilitate learning, which derives from the French facile or from the Latin facilis, „easy to do”. Our job is to make it easy for students to internalise whatever information we are trying to impart to them – to make it personal, and to take that knowledge and use it to make their lives richer.”[2]

Applying the principles of continuity and consistency in the school education reform in Romania in the curricular area of “Mathematics and Science” shifts the focus of the educational process towards the acquisition of skills and abilities.

Teacher’s role is to guide the teaching approach towards the student’s final acquisitions. On the other hand, the list of values and attitudes shapes the axiological and affective dimensions of personality development in terms of the subject. Achieving all these things should be the aim of the teacher’s activity, representing an intrinsic part of his/her job.

Unified scientific knowledge is a guarantee of correct interpretations of the various processes, phenomena, laws etc. achieved in the process of teaching-learning interconnected topics/concepts. The academic content presented by these subjects does not allow students to form a unified vision on the concepts, thus distorting the student’s integrate development.

Placing students in a position to reflect, to ask and wonder, to seek solutions and to check them experimentally and logically, problematization and discovery represent some ways of knowing reality at a level as close as possible to the scientific knowledge.

Problem-solving as a heuristic technique/method is interconnected with learning through discovery and can be accomplished through any method of training. The essence of problematization is the “problem”, designing, building and solving it. The problem is based on a cognitive conflict generated by the relation between the known and the unknown, which also generates the contradiction. The problem, as a set of known and unknown elements, somehow connected, has as its main element “problem – question”.

Problem-questions are incentives for the advancement of knowledge. The bridge between questioning and discovery is a “problem-situation” and all problem-situation are “significant situations”.

Problem-situations and significant situations are the necessary conditions to support the effort of thinking that makes progress towards competence. So students have to be trained in activities of problems and situations formulation – problem situation, search, investigation, experimentation and research situations which foster active and interactive learning based on creativity and discovery.


[1] Fullan M. (2008). The six secrets of change. Jossey-Bass, USA.

[2] DeLorenzo, A.R., Battino, J.W., Schreiber, M.R., Gaddy Cario, B.B., (2009). Delivering on the promise:The education revolution. (pp. 76). Solution Tree Press, USA.