By Georgia Parsonson
Australia is leading an international movement to introduce a new science curriculum for schools across the globe. The push is spearheaded by a book ready to be launched during National Science Week, and supported by a multi-national team of academics.
These academics — including two former winners of the Prime Minister’s Prize for Science — are campaigning to move Science Education into the 21st century with a new curriculum called Einstein-First.
The University of Western Australia’s Chancellor, Robert French AO, will launch the new book, Teaching Einsteinian Physics in Schools. It outlines Einsteinian Science to teachers at the level required for primary and middle school. It promotes the replacement of obsolete concepts with the Einsteinian concepts that underpin modern technology.
Emeritus Professor Blair and Professor Susan Scott, two of the joint winners of the Prime Minister’s Prize for Science in 2020, said it was almost unbelievable that in a world of black hole discoveries and quantum computers, school students were still being taught outdated concepts from the 19th century.
“No wonder most teenagers think science is boring,” Professor Blair said.
Project coordinator Dr Jyoti Kaur said, “We believe everyone has the right to share our best understanding of reality, which is all based on the science of Einstein.
“Kids love it because it’s easy, it’s fun, and because it explains things in a way they can understand.
“It is shocking that most children leave school without knowing why tiny amounts of CO2 cause climate change, why the sun burns, how solar panels make electricity, and how smartphones work.
“Our future depends on technology. We turn kids off STEM by teaching them old stuff and not giving them credit for an ability to understand Einsteinian concepts.
“Children learn quantum concepts with ease. Adults have trouble because it contradicts the 19th-century science they learnt at school, but our activity-first approach makes it easy for them, too.”
The team has received $1.5 Million in state and federal funding. At the book launch, a campaign for private sector contributions will be introduced to roll out the proven program online to Australian schools.
Schools will also be provided with renewable energy kits to allow students to power drills, lights and electrolysers through the use of solar energy.
Several high-tech companies have already endorsed the program.