I am a Registered Psychologist and the director of innovate Psychology and Education. I specialise in youth issues and I have conducted significant work in the learning and educational field, running seminars for approximately 3000 students on study skills. One of the seminars I present is on the subject of revision and how best to memorise for exams.
Curriculum Comics has asked me to review their posters and comic texts for senior secondary students. I believe these resources would be of great benefit for many students. We know that young people learn most effectively if they are entertained and if strong visual components are incorporated into their study. Curriculum Comics comic format makes their posters and comic text useful study supports for students, as they are entertaining and create additional interest for the students.
Whilst I am unable to comment on the accuracy of the physics information presented, I would strongly endorse Curriculum Comics materials as useful learning tools for secondary students.
Innovate Psychology and Counselling
I write in relation to Curriculum Comics and their educational learning product called Curriculum Comics. Curriculum Comics has presented their material twice to representatives of the curriculum group in DEC Sans and have explained the genesis/intent behind the development of their concept to officers in the group.
The policy of DECS is that unless we produce the materials as part of a departmental curriculum initiative or have participated formally and jointly in their development, we are unable to provide any endorsement for learning materials developed by any third party. We recognise that within the policy, individual schools have the authority to make independent decisions about which materials may be suitable for the learning context within their own sites and are free to exercise their professional judgement in this regard.
While recognising decs policy I can say that the materials shown to me and the Policy and Program Officer Science within the Learning Outcomes and Curriculum Group are most relevant to course work within the year 12 physics curriculum. It would be my expectation that teachers and students would find Curriculum Comics a useful addition to their science resource pool.
I encourage Curriculum Comics to continue with their obvious passion for this curriculum support work.
Director – Department of Education and Childrens Services.
Learning Outcomes and Curriculum Group
Curriculum Comics has asked me to comment on their comic book approach to the presentation of physics at secondary level.
I currently hold the position of Emeritus Professor of physics at Flinders University and prior to my retirement in 1989 taught at the University from 1967. During that period it was realised that many students had difficulty with the traditional methodologies, so we introduced a second at first year level directed towards those who had dropped out from Physics (and often Mathematics ) at secondary school. Many were very intelligent students interested in careers in Biology, Earth Sciences and Medicine, but were unaware that some basic Physics principles are essential to a proper understanding of these subjects. The presentation of this course relied heavily on the selection of examples relevant to these non-physics disciplines – in particular examples often experienced in everyday life through sight or tactile perception. At the same time a rigorous quantitative treatment of the subject was given at an appropriate mathematical level. The course was by no means a soft option for students with this background, but nevertheless was much appreciated by most of the class.
The material presented by Curriculum Comics in their poster and book material follows many of the principles outlined above and would be attractive to those who have difficulty with the abstract and overly mathematical approach often adapted. The colourful and sometimes light-hearted presentation does not detract from the rigor of the subject matter and I believe that this approach is worthy of serious consideration for secondary school courses. There is ample scope for further classroom development using examples and demonstrations with similar themes.
Ex Head Examiner