The students of the Elite Graduate Program “MINT-Lehramt PLUS” were able to experience for themselves that mathematics can be grabbed at the ix-Quadrat math exhibition at the TU Munich. All participants enthusiastically helped to build the dome made of wooden rods, which of course got stuck when a heptagon was used instead of a hexagon. This is also fun for schoolchildren - everyone agreed on that. But what can be learned from it mathematically? How should a visit with a school class be prepared and followed up? What difference does it make to slide down the parabola and experience it in 3D?
Further samples of what is on offer for school classes at the Garching Research Campus were provided by Extraterrestrial Physics and the Max Planck Institute of Quantum Optics. During a visit to the Research Neutron Source II, the prospective teachers were also able to learn about actual research in Garching. Those interested in biology also got their money's worth at the Museum Mensch und Natur and the Zoologische Staatssammlung.
Irina Fritz, who is responsible for museum education at the Deutsches Museum, gave an overview tour of the opportunities and limitations of a visit with school classes. Again and again, the participants got stuck in the various exhibitions and would have liked to spend more time exploring on their own. There was more opportunity for this in the afternoon. Using the app "Actionbounds," students went in small groups to find the answers. Would this be an option for a visit with your own study group?
The excursion program was complemented by two workshops at the conference hotel. School psychologist Veronika Ertl presented principles of conflict management and led practical exercises on how to conduct problematic parent discussions, which, as one student admitted, turned out to be not so easy.
Martin Kramer provided an insight into his teaching practice, which is mainly supported by the students, by working out linear equations with matchsticks and boxes. The students thus learned from direct experience how student orientation and teamwork can succeed. They will certainly keep in mind what it means to speak only when everyone is listening.
Text: Sara Feldmüller, Elite Graduate Program “MINT-Lehramt PLUS“