Monday, 26 March 2012

Unit-5 Methods of Teaching Physical Science


Lecture Method
 It is oldest teaching method given by philosophy of idealism. As used in education, the
lecture method refers to the teaching procedure involved in clarification or
explanation of the students of some major idea. This method lays emphasis on the
penetration of contents. Teacher is more active and students are passive but he also uses
question answers to keep them attentive in the class. It is used to motivate, clarify,
expand and review the information. By changing Ms Voice, by impersonating characters,
by shifting his posing, byusing simple devices, a teacher can deliver lessons effectively,
while delivering his lecture; a teacher can indicate by her facial expressions, gestures and
tones the exact slode of meaning that he wishes to convey.
Thus we can say that when teacher takes the help of a lengthy-short explanation in order
to clarify his ideas or some fact that explanation is termed as lecture or lecture method
and after briefing about lecture method. Let’s see what is a demonstration.

Demonstration method:
 The dictionary meaning of the word "demonstration" is the outward showing of a
feeling etc.; a description and explanation by experiment; so also logically to prove
the truth; or a practical display of a piece of equipment to snow its display of a piece
of equipment to show its capabilities . In short it is a proof provided by logic,
argument etc.
 To define "it is a physical display of the form, outline or a substance of object or events
for the purpose of increasing knowledge of such objects or events.
Demonstration involves "showing what or showing how".
Demonstration is relatively uncomplicated process in that it does not require extensive
verbal elaboration.
 Now it will be easy to define what is lecture cum demonstration method.

To begin with, this method includes the merits of lecture method and demonstration
method. The teacher performs the experiment in the class and goes on explaining what
she does. It takes into account the active participation of the student and is thus not a
lopsided process like the lecture method. The students see the actual apparatus and
operations and help the teacher in demonstrating experiments and thereby they feel
interested in learning. So also this mehod follows maxims from concrete to abstract
Wherein the students observe the demonstration critically and try to draw inferences.
Thus with help of lecture cum demonstration method their power of observation and
reasoning are also exercised. So the important principle on which this method works is
"Truth is that works."
Requirements of good Demonstration:

The success of any demonstration following points should be kept in mind.

1.  It should be planned and rehearsed by the teacher before hand.
2.  The apparatus used for demonstration should be big enough to be seen by the
 whole class. If the class may be disciplined she may allow them to sit on the
 benches to enable them a better view.
3.  Adequate lighting arrangements be made on demonstration table and a proper
background table need to be provided.
4.  All the pieces of apparatus be placed in order before starting the demonstration.
The apparatus likely to be used should be placed in the left hand side of the table
and it should be arranged in the same order in which it is likely to be used
5.  Before actually starting the demonstration a clear statement about the purpose of
demonstration be made to the students.
6.  The teacher makes sure that the demonstration lecture method leads to active
participation of the students in the process of teaching.
7.  The demonstration should be quick and slick and should not appear to linger on
8.  The demonstration should be interesting so that it captures the attention of the
9.  It would be better if the teacher demonstrates with materials or things the children
handles in everyday life.
10.  For active participation of students the teacher may call individual student in turn
to help him in demonstration.
11.  The teacher should write the summary of the principles arrived at because of
demonstration on the blackboard. The black board can be also used for drawing
the necessary diagrams.
Steps needed to conduct a Lecture -cum demonstration lesson.

1.  Planning and preparation: A great care be taken by the teacher while planning
and preparing his demonstration. He should keep the following points I mind
while preparing his lesson.

a.  Subject matter.
b.  Questions to be asked.
c.  Apparatus required for the experiment

To achieve the above stated objective the teacher should thoroughly go through the pages
of the text book, relevant to the lesson. After this he should prepare his lesson plan in
which he should essentially include the principles to be explained, a lot of experiments to
be demonstrated and type of questions to be asked form the students. These questions be
arranged in a systematic order to be followed in the class. Before actually demonstrating
the experiment to a class, the experiment be rehearsed under the condition prevailing in
the classroom. Inspite of this, some thing may go wrong at the actual lesson, so reserve
apparatus is often useful the apparatus has to be arranged in a systematic manner on the
demonstration table. Thus for the success of demonstration method a teacher has to
prepare himself as thoroughly as possible.

2.  Introduction of the lesson: As in every subject so also in the case of science the
lesson should stat with proper motivation of the students. It is always considered
more useful to introduce the lesson in a problematic way which would make the
student's realise the importance of the topic. The usual way through which the
teacher can introduce the lesson is by telling some personal experience or incident
of a simple and interesting experiment. A good experiment carefully
demonstrated is likely to leave an everlasting impression on the mind of the
young pupils and would set the students talking about it in the school.

3.  Presentation: The method presenting the subject matter is very important. A
good teacher should present his lesson in an interesting manner and not in an
boring manner. To make the lesson interesting the teacher may not be very rigid
too remain within the prescribed course rather he or she should make the lesson as
much as broad based as possible. For widening the lesson the teacher may think
of various useful application taught by him. He is also at the liberty to take
examples and illustrations for allied branches of science like history, geography

Constant questions and answer should form a part of every demonstration lesson.
Questions and cross question are essential for properly illuminating the principles
discussed. Question should be arranged in such a way that their answers may form
a complete teaching unit

4.  Performance of experiment: A good observer has been described as a person
who has learnt the use the senses of touch, sight, smell in an intelligent way.
Through this method we want children to observe what happens in a experiment
and to state it carefully. We also want them to make generalization without
violating scientific spirit i.e. we should allow children from one experiment or
observation. The following steps are generally accepted as valuable in conducting
science experiment generally. 

a.  Write the problem to be solved in simple words.
b.  To make a list of activities that has to be used to solve the problem.
c.  Gather material for conducting the experiment
d.    Work out a format of steps in the order of preocedu8re so that everyone knows
what is to be done.
e.    Teacher should try the experiment before conduction. f.   Record the findings.
g.    Assist students to make generalisation.

5.  Black Board Summary: A summary of important results and principles should
be written in the Blackboard. Use of blackboard should be also frequently used to
draw sketches and diagrams. The entire procedure should be displayed to the
students after the demonstration.

6.  Supervision: Students are asked to take the complete notes of the black board
summary including the sketches and diagrams drawn. Such a record will be quite
helpful to the student while learning his lessons .Such a summary will prove
beneficial only if it has been copied correctly from the black boards and to make
sure that it is done so the teacher must check it frequently during this stage.

Common Errors In Demonstration Lesson

A summary of the common errors committed while delivering a demonstration lesson is
given below:

a)   Apparatus may not be ready for use
b)    There may not be an apparent relation between the demonstration experiment and  
the topic under discussion.
c)    Black board summary not up to the mark
d)    Teacher may be in a hurry to arrive at a generalisation without allowing students
to arrive at a generalisation from facts.
e)    Teacher may take to talking too much which will mar the enthusiasm of the
f)    Teacher may not have allowed sufficient time for recording of data.
g)   Teacher may fail to ask the right type of questions

Merits of Lecture cum Demonstration Method

a)  It is an economical method as compared to a purely student centered method
b)  It is a psychological method and students take active interest in the teaching
learning process
c)   It leads the students from concrete to abstract situations
d)   It is suitable method if the apparatus to be handled is costly and sensitive. Such
apparatus is likely to be handled and damaged by the students.
e)   This method is safe if the experiment is dangerous.
f)    In comparison to Heuristic, Project method it is time saving but purely Lecture
method is too lengthy
g)   It can be successfully used for all types of students
h)  It improves the observational and reasoning sills of the students
Limitations of Lecture cum Demonstration Method

a)  It provides no scope for "Learning by Doing" for the Students as students are only
observing the Teacher performing.
b)  Since Teacher performs the experiment at his/ her own pace many students may
not be able to comprehend the concept being clarified.
c)   Since this method is not child centred it makes no provision for individual
differences, all types of students including slow learners and genius have to
proceed with the same speed.
d)   It fails to develop laboratory skills in the students.
e)   It fails to impart training in scientific attitude. In this method students many a
times fail to observe many finer details of the apparatus used because they
observe it from a distance.


Project method is a natural hearted, problem solving and purposeful activity carried to
completion in a social environment this is the most concrete of all types of activity
methods. It is the revolt against the traditional, bookish and passive environment of

The project method of teaching is the practical outcome of the John Dewey’s
philosophy of pragmatism. Pragmatism has made a unique construction in the shape of
project method enuciated by the Kilpatrick the follower of Dewey.

In project method, study through workshop and source methods are also studied,
concrete activity rather than academic work take the dominant place in the project
method. The project method also transcends the subject barrier which is not done by
other methods.

In project method the teacher instead of following the lecture method substitutes
“the subject” with few outstanding problems and proceeds to solve the same by
experiment method with the active co-operation of the students. The purpose of this
method is to learn pupils into the trained investigators and prepare them for learning by


1) The principle of purpose: A purposeful activity will stimulate and provide to
the child to achieve the goal and to kindle interest in the activity and consequently
accelerated the learning process.

2) The Principle of Activity:
It is an activity oriented method. It enabler the pupil
to plan independently and to carry out the project in the co-operation of the

3) The principle of freedom: The method provider free atmosphere to do activity
since a project is a bit of real life that has been imported into school and freedom
to choose activity according to the interests, need and capacities of the children
give them a freedom of the free atmosphere.

4) The principle of Reality:
This method implies learning by doing. It meand
the learning by doing is real. It introduces real life situation in the curriculum and
the students. 

5) The principle of utility:
Knowledge for knowledge sake doesn’t appeal to a
young child thus this method enable the pupil to learn skills which may help them
in the later part of their life. 

6) The principle of correlation: Knowledge is artificially fragmented otherwise it is
holistic in nature correlation of subject is possible in project method.

Definitions of project method
  -Ballard:  “A project is a bit of real life that has been imported into the 
 - J. A. Stevenson:   “A project is a problematic act carried to the completion in its 
Natural setting”.
 - Kilpatrick:   “A project is a whole hearted purposeful activity proceeding in 
a social environment”.
  - W.W. Charters:   “In the topical organization principle are learned first while in 
the projects the problem are proposed which demands in the
solution the development of principles by the learner as needed”. 

 Different types of projects 
          - The producer type: Here the emphasis is directed towards the actual construction of 
a material object or article. 
         - The consumer type: Here the projective is to obtain either direct or vicarious
experience such as reading and learning stories and also listening
to a musical selection etc.
             - The problem type: Here the chief purpose is to solve a problem involving the 
intellectual process such as determining the density of a certain
liquid etc.
            - The dill type:
Where the objective is to attain a certain degree of skill in a 
reaction as learning a vocabulary.

 Various steps in conducting project
 Creating the situation: It is not right to force a project on the unwilling students. The
students themselves should define state and choose their problems. Through mutual
conversation the teacher helps in the making of a proposal by the students. The teacher
would discover the taste, needs of the students and would provide situation wherein the
students feel a spontaneous urge to carry out projects according to their felt needs.

Selection of project: All the projects the children selects cannot be accepted and so only
those projects which helps to meet the real needs of the students are selected. The teacher
needs to participate and make the projects clearer to the students. For E.g.  If teacher
wants that there should be flower garden then he takes the student to a garden instead of
ordering the students to plant a flower garden. The children thus are please to see the
flowers and wonder why there are no flowers and the students select a project to have a
flower garden. Thus in way teacher without ordering only by showing the situation can
develop interest and select a project.

Planning: After the project is decided and accepted the teacher may develop an outline
and ask the pupils to study it deeply at home. A class period may be devoted for this
work. The teacher should draw attention of the students to the need of planning before
undertaking the activity. The task of planning is difficult. Good planning leads to better
result reach child should be encouraged to give his suggestions. Different proposal should
be discussed and alternative consider the proposal. The best plan is agreed upon after a
good deal of discussion, suggestions counter suggestion and rejections. The teacher needs
to divided the work among the students according to their interest and ability and see that
they move towards accomplishing the task. 

Education of the plan: In this the students start collecting the facts according to their own
efficiency and the teacher nearly supervisor the task done by them. This is the stage at
which the student perform many activities and learn many various useful experience. The
children’s are busy in collecting information, reading keeping accounts, calculating pries,
visiting markets, museums etc For E.g.: Dramatizing the life of shivaji may be accepted
as project in history. Where such a project is accepted the teacher may develop in broad
outlines the life of shivaji and ask the pupils to study it thoroughly, children’s should also
be engaged in making maps of India showing the Mughal Empire. These maps may be
utilized in the drama at the appropriate places. 

Evaluating the project: The work is to be reviewed where it is completed. Here the pupil
criticizer his own task and he decides are accomplished objectives that he sets out to
achieve are occoueplished or not. They express their ideas before the teacher with
freedom about their drawback.

Recording: In this steps a complete record of all activities connected with the project
must be maintained. In this all the pupils write in details about their all the five steps of
the project with mention of consulted books aids, details of task etc. the project book
should be well maintained. The project book should give the procedure of providing a
situation and of choosing the project, duties assigned difficulties felt and experience
gained etc.

Merits of the project method
 1. The project strategy is based upon the laws of learning:
 a. Law of readiness: According to this law we learn most when our minds are
already to receive. The project method prepares the mind of the students by
providing them with suitable situation. 
 b. Law of exercise: Learning to be effective must be practised. The project method
affords many opportunities to the students to learn by doing.
 c. Law of effect: This law states that if learning is to be effective and fruitful it must
be accompanied by satisfaction pleasure when they manipulate their own
 2. This method makes education effective because it is purposeful, meaning arouses
curiosity etc. Learning becomes practical and intimately related with life. When
meaningful purposeful activities are provided to the students get opportunities to
acquaint themselves with the real problems of life. The students learn practical
usefulness of different subject of the curriculum. 
 3. The pupil involves in real life problem practically. They are trained to face life in
future since they work in natural conditions. 
 4. The project method gives unity of the curriculum. The subject do not remain
isolated in this method, but instead they are co-related and thus students learn
different learn different subjects in this method.
 5. The pupil acquires knowledge which is useful for the present and future life in
short time. The method providing sufficient opportunities to the students to work
co-operatively for common purpose decision are arrived at democratic way.
 6. This method imports training to the student to inculcate in there primary virtues
like tolerance independence, open mind ness, resourcefulness etc. 
 7. It cause an all round development of the pupils and attributes like self dependence
and self confidence. 
 8. Dignity of labour is engendered through the project method. The students have to
perform their activities on their own and thus they develop a taste for all kinds of
work. They learn that there is nobleness working and doing things with their own.
 9. The students work with great enthusiasm for the competition of their self chosen
project. They do not feel tried as there is good deal of Varity in their work and the
atmosphere is full of the freedom. As the children busy with their self chosen
work they do not get opportunities to think of the anti social ways. 

Limitation of project method
1. A project with limited scope cannot develop on all around personality secondly no
project can teach all the subject and so some times teaching becomes haphazard
and discontinuous. 
2. Neglecting intellectual work: There is a widespread misconception that the project
method glorifies hard work at the cost of intellectual work. The critics argue is
that the children are kept busy in model making only.
3. In this brilliant students lead other students who are passive and follow blindly.
4. This method practice and the development of skill in various subjects. The
students do not get adequate drill in arithmetic, reading spelling drawing etc.
5. Preparation of books suitable for the project work is by no means an easy task.
Moreover material required for the implementation of a project is very costly. The
method is not suitable for the ordinary schools. 
6. Some student who is not inclined to take responsibility may remain in the back
ground and do very little work. 
7. The school teaching can become disorganized and irregular because the method
needs freedom and flexibility.
8. For the successful working of this method, very learned efficient teachers are
needed. The method impose heavy burden and responsibility upon the teacher.

                                     Heuristic Method

Heuristic - word meaning to discover.

The word "heuristic" is derived from the Greek word heurisco" meaning "I find out" and the "Heuristic Method" is one in which the pupils are left to find out things for themselves. Children are placed, as far as possible, in the position of discoverers and instead of being told the facts; they are led to find out things for themselves.
Through this method the pupils are made to learn. The Heuristic method was, for the first time, coined by Dr. H. E. Armstrong (1888-1928), Professor of Chemistry at City and Guild Institute Kensington. This method of teaching is of a very recent origin. First it was used in Science and its success led it to be adopted in the teaching of all subjects in the School Curriculum.
The aim of this method is to develop the scientific attitude and spirit in pupils. The spirit of enquiry prompts the pupils to learn. This method insists on truth, whose foundation is based on reason and personal experiences.
As a matter of fact there is no spoon-feeding or more acceptances of facts which are given by the teacher. An eminent educationist has pointed out that the object of the heuristic method is "to make pupils more exact, more truthful, observant and thoughtful to lay this solid foundation for future self-education and to encourage this growth of spirit of enquiry and research."
All the children in a class may be set to work simultaneously at this same problem in adopting the heuristic method. Each child with all attention strives to find out something for himself. Heuristic method aims at the pupils' own observations to satisfy as many questions as possible to be raised in the teaching- learning situation.
Much is demanded of the teacher in the heuristic method of teaching. He should be a great reader of books in order to obtain varied information. The teacher should posses much curiosity, observation, interest and spirit of scientific investigation, because these are the qualities he wishes to develop in pupils. The teacher should realize the responsibility of fostering in this pupils good habits of reading and collecting various information from books.
In the heuristic method, the teacher is a guide and also a working partner. As a friend of pupils, this teacher should proceed on the way to discover facts. He is to see that this class room is pervaded by an atmosphere of freedom and that the work provided to the children encourages self-development, spontaneity and self-expression.
This method is used not only in teaching scientific subjects like Mathematics, Physics, Chemistry and Nature Study, but in all subjects of the curriculum. A close study of this method reveals that it is in reality this heuristic attitude which should characterize teaching of all subjects. It is opposed to dogmatic techniques of teaching, where pupils are passive learners. This may be applied to inductive as well as deductive lessons and thus heuristic method is problem- solving.
According to its author Prof. Armstrong, "Heuristic methods of teaching are methods which involve placing students as far as possible in the position of discoverers,—methods which involve their finding out instead of being merely told about things." This statement speaks very Cleary that telling is in no teaching. The Heuristic method tends to set the learner himself on the track of invention and to direct him into the paths in which the author has made his own discoveries. Heuristic Method is learning by doing.
                           In Heuristic method, the student is put in the place of an independent discoverer. Thus no help or guidance is provided by the teacher in this method. In this method the teacher sets a problem for the students and then stands aside while they discover the answer.
                           In words of Professor Armstrong, "Heuristic methods of teaching are methods
which involve our placing students as far as possible in the altitude of the discoverer -
methods which involve their finding out instead of being merely told about things".
                           The method requires the student to solve a number of problems experimentally.
To almost every one — especially children — experiments and science are synonymous.
Once an idea occurs to a scientist he immediately thinks in terms of ways of trying out
his ideas to see if he is correct. Trying to confirm or disprove some thing, or simply to
test an idea, is the backbone of the experiment. Experiments start with questions in order
to find answers, solve problems, clarify ideas or just to see what happens. Experimenting
should be part of the elementary school science programme as an aid to helping children
find solutions to science problems as well as for helping them to develop appreciation for
one of the basic tools of science.

Procedure of the Method

The method requires the students to solve a number of problems experimentally.
Each student is required to discover everything for himself and is to be told nothing. The
students are led to discover facts with the help of experiments, apparatus and books. In
this method the child behaves like a research scholar.

In the stage managed heuristic method, a problem sheet with minimum
instructions is given to the student and he is required to perform the experiments
concerning the problem in hand. He must follow the instructions, and enter in his
notebook an account of what he has done and results arrived at. He must also put down
his conclusion as to the bearing which the result has on the problem in hand. In this way
he is led to reason from observation.

Essentially therefore, the heuristic method is intended to provide a training in
method. Knowledge is a secondary consideration altogether. The method is formative
rather than informational.

The procedures and skills in science problem solving can only be developed in
class rooms where searching is encouraged, creative thinking is respected, and where it is
safe to investigate, try out ideas.

Teachers Altitudes

One of the most important aspects of the problem solving approach to children's
development in scientific thinking is the teacher’s attitude. H's approach should be
teaching science with a question mark instead of with an exclamation point. The
acceptance of and the quest for unique solutions for the problem that the class is
investigating should be a guiding principle in the teacher's approach to his programme of
science. Teachers must develop sensitiveness to children and to the meanings of their
behaviour Teachers should be ready to accept any suggestion for the solution of problems
regardless of how irrelevant it may seem to him, for this is really the true spirit of
scientific problem solving. By testing various ideas it can be shown to the child that
perhaps his suggestion was not in accord with the information available It can then be
shown that this failure gets as much closer to the correct solution by eliminating one
possibility from many offered by the problem.

In this method teacher should avoid the tempetation to tell the right answer to
save time. The teacher should be convinced that road to scientific thinking takes time.
Children should never be exposed to ridicule for their suggestions of possible answers
otherwise they will show a strong tendency to stop suggestions.

For success of this method a teacher should act like a guide and should provide
only that much guidance as is rightly needed by the student. He should be sympathetic
and courteous and should be capable enough to plan and devise problems for
investigation by pupils. He should be capable of good supervision and be able to train the
pupils in a way that he himself becomes dispensable.

Merits of Heuristic Method
 This method of teaching science has the following merits:
  1. It develops the habit of enquiry and investigation among students. 
(ii)  It develops habit of self learning and self direction.
(iii)  It develops scientific attitudes among students by making them truthful
and honest for they learn how to arrive at decisions by actual
(iv)   It is psychologically sound system of learning as it is based on the
maximum, "learning by doing" 
(v)  It develops in the student a habit of diligency. 
(vi)   In this method most of the work is done in school and so the teacher has
no worry to assign on check home task. 
(vii)   It provides scope for individual attention to be paid by the establishing
cordial relations between the teacher and the taught.

Limitations of Heuristic Method

Main limitations of this method are as under: 
(i)                  It is a long and time consuming method and so it becomes difficult to
cover the prescribed syllabus in time. 
(ii)  It pre-supposes a very small class and a gifted teacher and the method is
too technical and scientific to be handled by an average teacher. The
method expects of the teacher a great efficiency and hard, experience and
(iii)  There is a tendency on the part of the teacher to emphasize those branches
and parts of the subject which lend brandies of the subject which do not
involve measurement and quantitative work and arc therefore not so
(iv)  It is not suitable for beginners. In the early stages, the students needs
enough guidance which if not given, may greatly disappoint them and it is
possible that the child may develop a distaste for studies.
(v)  In this method too much stress is placed on practical work which may lead
a student to form a wrong idea of the nature of science as a whole. They
grow up in the belief that science is some thing to be done in the
laboratory, forgetting that laboratories were made for science and not
science for laboratories.
(vi)  The gradation of problems is a difficult task which requires sufficient skill
and training. The succession of exercises is rarely planned to fit into a
general scheme for building up the subject completely.
(vii)  Some times experiments are performed merely for sake of doing them
(viii)  Learning by this method, pupils leave school with little or no scientific
appreciation of their physical environment. The romance of modern
scientific discovery and invention remains out of picture for them and the
humanizing influence of the subject has been kept away from them. 
(ix)  Evaluation of learning through heuristic method can be quite tedious.
(x)  Presently enough teachers are not available for implementing learning by
heuristic method.

 This method cannot be successfully applied in primary classes but this method
can be given a trial in secondary classes particutarly in higher secondary classes.
However, in the absence of gifted teachers, well equipped laboratories and libraries and
other limitations this method has not been given a trial in our schools. Even if these
limitations are removed this method may not prove much useful under the existing
circumstances and prevailing rules and regulations Though not recommending the use of
heuristic method for teaching of science it may be suggested that at least a heuristic
approach prevails for teaching of science in our schools. By heuristic approach we mean
that students be not spoon fed or be given a dictation rather they be given opportunities to
investigate, to think and work independently alongwith traditional way of teaching.
                             Analytic – Synthetic Method 
Analytical Method:  The meaning of the word analysis is to “separate things that are together.” In this method we start from what is to be found or proved.
Thorndike says that,”  Analysis is the highest intellectual performance of the  mind.” Analysis also means, “Breaking up of a given problem, so that it connects  with what is already known.” In analysis we proceed from,” Unknown to Known.”
 Analysis is,” Unfolding of a problem to find its hidden aspect.”
 This method is used under the given conditions:
 When we have to prove any theorem.
 Can be used for construction problems.
 To find out solutions of new arithmetical problems.
• Merits/Adv of this method are as follows:
 Logical, leaves no doubt.
 Facilitates understanding, as we discover facts.
 Each step has reason and justification.
 Student gains confidence and understanding.
 Method suits the learner and the subject.
• Demerits of this method are:
 Lengthy method and also time consuming.
 Difficult to acquire efficiency and speed.
 Not applicable to all topics.
 Not suitable for students with weak conceptual knowledge.

 Synthetic Method:  The word synthesis simply means,” To place things together
or to join separate parts.” In this method we proceed from “known to unknown.”
It is the process of relating known bits of data to a point where the unknown
becomes true. It is the method of formulation, recording and presenting concisely
the solution without any trial and errors.
 Merits/Adv of this method are as follows:
 Short and precise method.
 Saves time and labour.
 Suits the needs of majority of the students.
 Can be applied to a majority of topics in mathematics.
 Omits trial and error as in analysis method.

 Demerits of this method are:
 Teacher–centered method, students are passive listeners.
 Students rely on rote memory.
 No opportunity to develop the skills of thinking and reasoning, as
understanding is hampered.
 Students lack confidence to do other type of sums.
From the above discussion we can see that both the methods of analysis and synthesis by
themselves have their advantages and disadvantages. In order to ensure the complete
understanding of mathematics in the learners that both the methods be used together to
teach mathematics. By using a combination of these two methods the teacher can ensure
that effecting teaching learning takes place.
                                  Problem-Solving Method: 
Life is full of problems and we term one as successful, who is able to use the knowledge
acquired and reasoning power to find solutions to these problems. Problem–solving may
be a purely mental difficulty or it may be physical and involve manipulation of data.
Problem-solving method aims at presenting the knowledge to be learnt in the form of a
problem. It begins with a problematic situation and consists of continuous, meaningful,
well-integrated activity. The problems are test to the students in a natural way and it is
ensured that the students are genuinely interested to solve them.

• Mathematical Problem Defined as,
A problem is a task for which:
 The person confronting it wants or needs to find a solution.
 The person has no readily available procedure for finding the solution.
  The person must make an attempt to find a solution.
• Goals Of Mathematical Problem-Solving:  The specific goals of problem solving in Mathematics are to:
  1.  Improve pupils' willingness to try problems and improve their perseverance when solving problems.
       2.  Improve pupils' self-concepts with respect to the abilities to solve problems.
       3.   Make pupils aware of the problem-solving strategies.
       4.  Make pupils aware of the value of approaching problems in a systematic manner.
5. Make pupils aware that many problems can be solved in more than one way.
6. Improve pupils' abilities to select appropriate solution strategies.
7. Improve pupils' abilities to implement solution strategies accurately.
8. Improve pupils' abilities to get more correct answers to problems.
• Steps of Problem solving method:
  •  Recognising the problem or sensing the problem.
  •   Interpreting, defining and delimiting the problem.
  •   Gathering data in a systematic manner.
  •   Organising and evaluating the data.
  •   Formulating tentative solutions.
  •   Arriving at the true or correct solution.
  •   Verifying the results.
• Merits:  The merits or advantages of problem solving method are as follows:
Ø  Method is scientific in nature.
Ø  Develops good study habits and reasoning power.
Ø  Helps to improve and apply knowledge and experiences.
Ø  Stimulates thinking of the child.
Ø  Students learn virtues such as patience, cooperation, and self-confidence.
Ø  Learning becomes more interesting and purposeful.
Ø  Develops qualities of initiative and self-dependence in the students, as they
Ø  have to face similar problematic situations in real life too.
Ø  Develops desirable study habits in the students.
Limitations:  The limitations are mainly due to ineffective use of the problem
solving method.
  • When a classroom is completely teacher dominated then in such a  classroom the problem solving method will fail.
  •  Difficult to organise e- contents of syllabus according to this method.
  •  Time consuming method.
  •  All topics and areas cannot be covered by this method.
  •  There is a lack of suitable books and references for the students.
  • Method does not suit students of lower classes.
  • Mental activity dominates this method. Hence there is neglect of physical and
  • practical experiences.

                                 Scientific method
  • The scientific method is a way to ask and answer scientific questions by making observations and doing experiments.
  • The steps of the scientific method are to:
    • Ask a Question
    • Do Background Research
    • Construct a Hypothesis
    • Test Your Hypothesis by Doing an Experiment
    • Analyze Your Data and Draw a Conclusion
    • Communicate Your Results
  • It is important for your experiment to be a fair test. A "fair test" occurs when you change only one factor (variable) and keep all other conditions the same.
  • While scientists study how nature works, engineers create new things, such as products, websites, environments, and experiences.

Overview of the Scientific Method
The scientific method is a process for experimentation that is used to explore observations and answer questions. Scientists use the scientific method to search for cause and effect relationships in nature. In other words, they design an experiment so that changes to one item cause something else to vary in a predictable way.
Just as it does for a professional scientist, the scientific method will help you to focus your science fair project question, construct a hypothesis, design, execute, and evaluate your experiment.

Steps of the Scientific Method
Detailed Help for Each Step
Ask a Question: The scientific method starts when you ask a question about something that you observe: How, What, When, Who, Which, Why, or Where?
And, in order for the scientific method to answer the question it must be about something that you can measure, preferably with a number.

Do Background Research: Rather than starting from scratch in putting together a plan for answering your question, you want to be a savvy scientist using library and Internet research to help you find the best way to do things and insure that you don't repeat mistakes from the past.

Construct a Hypothesis: A hypothesis is an educated guess about how things work:
"If _____[I do this] _____, then _____[this]_____ will happen."
You must state your hypothesis in a way that you can easily measure, and of course, your hypothesis should be constructed in a way to help you answer your original question.

Test Your Hypothesis by Doing an Experiment: Your experiment tests whether your hypothesis is true or false. It is important for your experiment to be a fair test. You conduct a fair test by making sure that you change only one factor at a time while keeping all other conditions the same.
You should also repeat your experiments several times to make sure that the first results weren't just an accident.

Analyze Your Data and Draw a Conclusion: Once your experiment is complete, you collect your measurements and analyze them to see if your hypothesis is true or false.
Scientists often find that their hypothesis was false, and in such cases they will construct a new hypothesis starting the entire process of the scientific method over again. Even if they find that their hypothesis was true, they may want to test it again in a new way.

Communicate Your Results: To complete your science fair project you will communicate your results to others in a final report and/or a display board. Professional scientists do almost exactly the same thing by publishing their final report in a scientific journal or by presenting their results on a poster at a scientific meeting.

Even though we show the scientific method as a series of steps, keep in mind that new information or thinking might cause a scientist to back up and repeat steps at any point during the process. A process like the scientific method that involves such backing up and repeating is called an iterative process.
Throughout the process of doing your science fair project, you should keep a journal containing all of your important ideas and information. This journal is called a laboratory notebook.


  1. Hello mam,
    Very informative post and understandable. Thnq for sharing , can you please explain the Methods of Mathematics also?

  2. Thank;s nice post we are manufacturer physics lab equipment exporter supplier in india