Innovating Science Teaching by Participatory Action Research – Reflections from an Interdisciplinary Project of Curriculum Innovation on Teaching about Climate Change

  • Timo Feierabend
  • Ingo Eilks
Keywords: Climate change, Curriculum innovation, Participatory action research, Science education


This paper describes a three-year curriculum innovation project on teaching about climate change. The innovation for this study focused on a socio-critical approach towards teaching climate change in four different teaching domains (biology, chemistry, physics and politics). The teaching itself explicitly aimed at general educational objectives, i.e., fostering students’ communication and evaluation abilities as essential components for preparing young people for active participation in society. Participatory Action Research has been used as a collaborative strategy of cyclical curriculum innovation and research. Using past experiences and selected results from accompanying research, this project and its methodology will be reflected upon from the viewpoint of the chemistry group taking part in the project. Core issues reflected upon include how the project contributed to the creation of feasible curriculum materials, how it led to innovative structures in practice, and whether it
supported experienced teachers’ ongoing professional development. General considerations for the process of curriculum innovation will also be derived.


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