Biodiversity Integrated Teaching and Learning

Integrated Teaching Approach is advocated in the FBD project. This approach enables the
project to penetrate the field of education in making the students and teachers aware of the need
for the conservation of farmland biodiversity. Moreover, the approach could also be a vehicle to
get the participation of teachers and students in assessing the impact of the application of
different pesticides on the life of people and other living organisms in the environment. This
provides information about the teaching approach in integrating FBD information in the different
subject areas in the basic education curriculum.

                                       Socio Scientific Issues

Socio Scientific Issues (SSI) is an active and innovative approach to learning, contextualizing
science concept in the societal phenomenon. Global warming and climate change issues is
closely associated to social issues. This is trans-disciplinary of science and non science learning
areas. This is coupling of social dimension and scientific concept integration to create a
phenomenon. This is interdisciplinary by nature thus teaching Socio Scientific issues must be

                                 Integrated Teaching Approach

Integrated Teaching Approach is a way to teach students in a more meaningful way by breaking
down barriers between subjects. It allows two or more concepts or skills within or across subject
areas to be integrated in one lesson. In this approach, knowledge from all of the traditional
subjects is accessed without labeling them as such. The concepts or skills are embedded in real-
life situations where students are given problem solving tasks that necessitate connection of
ideas already known to them with those they encounter for the first time.

Integration of ideas is also possible through themes. This is the reason why some call Integrated
Teaching as Thematic Approach. Themes are broad topics whose meaning could cut across
areas. The idea is to teach around themes or organizing ideas that students can identify with.
Examples of themes are environment, change, poverty, peace, and love. Specific concepts of a
subject area are culled from these broad themes, and activities are planned to teach them.

To illustrate integrated approach through thematic teaching, let’s take the unit on “The
Environment”. In this topic, students learn about the concept of conservation through activities
like starting their own recycling program, conducting a campaign for environmental awareness,
and conducting a survey of how local businesses advocate conservation. In the FBD project, the
themes are the biodiversity and cultural practices of pest management assessment concepts
which should be integrated in the ideas taught in the different subject areas in the basic
education curriculum. The concepts that could be integrated are as follows:
           1.  biodiversity                       18.    mapping
           2.  agro-biodiversity                  19.    ranking
           3.  habitat                            20.    ecological conservation
           4.  specie                             21.    uses of biodiversity
           5.  natural capital                    22.    life cycle
           6.  ecosystem                          23.    food chain
           7.  rainforest                         24.    decomposers
           8.  ecology                            25.    herbivores
           9.  ecological services                26.    herbicides
           10. predator                           27.    symptoms/signs
           11. parasites                          28.    pesticides
           12. pollinators                        29.    pesticide poisoning
           13. soil builder (fungi,bacteria)      30.    spraying precautions
           14. micro-organisms                    31.    storage disposal
           15. decomposers                        32.    classes of pesticides
           16. environmental conservation         33.    health impact
           17. environmental degradation

Integrative teaching also allows two or more individuals in different fields to be connected with
each other to broaden perspectives in one’s field or area of interest. Thus, for FBD concepts to
be possibly integrated in the basic education curriculum, agriculture specialists and workers
serve as resource persons for teachers handling academic subject areas in the basic education

Integrated teaching adds problem-solving, real-world application and social consciousness
through socio scientific issues learning process, making it a more comprehensive way of
educating and of learning. It is done for the following purposes:

       •    To promote collaboration
       •    To reflect the real world interaction
       •    To try an exciting socio scientific approach
       •    To connect school subjects and social issues
       •    To have fun and social interactions
       •    To motivate self and promote understanding for its individual uniqueness
       •    To involve the community in resolving the socio scientific issues
       •    To respond to collegial and administrative support for the school and community

The typical design of integration shows ideas taught in one subject area are embedded in one
topic by making natural overt connections. A very good vehicle in integrating concepts learned in
one subject area is by putting them in real situations so that the students will see their
applications in real-life.
Example: A Lesson in Math on Problem Solving

Joe has 1000 fingerlings. He placed 2/5 of these fingerlings in a circular pond with a diameter of
8.5 meters. The remaining fingerlings were placed in a rectangular pond that is 5 meters wide
and 8 meters long. Which pond is a better habitat and has a good ecosystem for the fingerlings
to flourish? The Socio Scientific Issue (SSI) here is the shortage of fish supply in the locality.
Justify your answer.


              Contextualization                                                 Re-contextualization

 Fish Shortage (SSI)              BD Concepts      Fractions   Geometrical Problem Solving   Fish Rearing
                                                                Concepts        Skills

                                                   Habitat and ecosystem

In the example above, SSI is fish shortage in the locality, the FBD is concept habitat, which is
the pond or the place for the fingerlings to grow, is used as the context for the integration of the
ideas on fraction and geometry, which are learned in Mathematics. To answer the problem
posed, one should know the visual image of circle and rectangle to know what formula applies in
computing their area. Then the number of fingerlings placed in each pond should be computed
by determining what is 2/5 of 1000, which is the number of fingerlings in the circular pond and
the remaining number that is placed in the rectangular pond. Then to know which better habitat
for the fingerlings is, one should divide the area of the pond by the number of fingerlings in it. To
justify which pond is better, one should be able to state that the greater the allotted space for
each fingerling, the better habitat and ecosystem the place is for the fingerlings. The students
develop the problem solving skills in the context of real environment of habitat and ecosystem.
So, the fish rearing is highly feasible when the students exactly know what the best habitat and
ecosystem for fish is.

The learning areas that are involved here are Math and Science, these disciplines provide skills
to solve the Socio Scientific Issues (SSI) of fish shortage.

The SSI framework: Contextualization is combining the sciences and social issues, de-
contextualization is identifying the sciences underpinning the Socio-Scientific Issues and learned
intensively its concepts and re-contextualization is the application of skills learned from science

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