Honoring the great work of PEER Physics teachers
I have been teaching using PEER Physics since 2017 and have noticed the research-based learning cycle has transformed my classes. It has resulted in more of my students experiencing meaningful conceptual based learning in which they are active agents in their learning. This transformation was highlighted during the shift to online learning last spring. 21 out of 22 students or 95% of the class completed 80% or more of their virtual/distance learning activities. In contrast, some of my other classes had a much lower completion rate of 60%, prompting me to ponder the high success rate of my physics class. It is my opinion that this class's success is due to these students playing a more active role in their learning throughout the year. When I reflect on the months leading up to this transition, I realize, thanks to PEER Physics, these students facilitated most of their learning over the course of the year within their collaborative learning teams. For this reason, much of the groundwork had been set for the virtual learning experiences that require quite a bit of independence and where the teacher plays a much smaller part in the learning process.
Alisa Grimes is a PEER Physics Instructor at Roaring Fork High School in Carbondale, CO.