Science Classes Experience an Experimental Year


Due to the pandemic, it is difficult for the science classes at PHS to function like they used to, especially with labs. 

“At the beginning of the school year, the science department was highly encouraged against permitting our students to share materials for fear of cross-contamination. Therefore, I will demonstrate the lab on my display table and project it on the screen via an old webcam and my multimedia projector. I use this to guide the whole class through the collection of observations and to engage them in a discussion of what the observations might mean. After that, they work to answer lab and activity questions on a pre-made Google Slide and Google Form,” said seventh grade science teacher Jason Poe. 

Poe believes that the limits on in-class labs is intellectually and emotionally impactful on the students, but is better than not doing the labs at all. 

In biology, biology teacher Laurie Andry is having to use an entirely different curriculum, due to the fact that the curriculum relies heavily on activities and group work. 

Both anatomy and physiology and biology are still doing labs, but they are trying to follow social distancing to stay as safe as possible. 

“I think not doing as many labs has affected their enjoyment of science classes. Lots of students need to move their bodies to maintain a level of engagement with a lesson, so a lack of movement is hard for kids. Furthermore, the labs that we usually do either lead to a discovery of some concept that is important to understand or reinforces a concept in some way. Students are missing the chance to ‘discover’ new knowledge,” said Andry.

Story by Haley Owens