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Introduction to the Project on Bioethics for Informed Choices - page 66 / 115

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596Challenges for Bioethics from Asia

That is my first encounter with “Bioethics”.

The bottom line of this project seems to be that exchange between different subjects is brought into existence. In my Information Science class, this project is suitable, because I can facilitate students using technology in various aspects of the project. Also, in Mr. Shatari sensei’s biology class, students learn about the bioethical topics as one of the contents of biology they have to learn.

It is a little difficult to remove the wall between different subjects especially in high school education. That’s why I am very interested in chances like this relationship.

It is said that Project-Based Learning is an instructional strategy that helps students apply academic content to authentic problems that require critical thinking and increase students’ responsibility for learning. Through the project-baseed learning, I learned the important role as a teacher. I often act as Expert, Lecturer, and Director of Instruction, but acting as Advisor, Facilitator, and Resource Provider let me know the important role as a teacher.

Although I carried on this Bioethic Project more smoothly compared to last year’s performance, I still have many improvements I would like to make.

Authentic problems like the bioethical topics require more critical thinking and leading discussion by themselves. This year, students actively conducted the project, but teacher led too many things. If students take more responsibility for their own instruction and learning, collaborative learning would be more active and students journey into deeper level of study. As a curriculum designer creating more learner-centered instruction is my challenge to the next school year.

Through conducting this project, I not only learned many things but also I had chances to see Mr. Shatari, Ms Maekawa and Dr. Macer. I appreciate each one of their assistance and help very much. Also thank you for giving me a wonderful chance like today.

Discussion

Tsuboi: I have two simple questions.  Did you interact with the New Mexico school in English? In that case, what is the students’ Basic English level?

Asato: They like English.  Their average English level is about pre-grade 2 of STEP eiken.

Tsuboi: You said the project started in September, was the curriculum set so that you could take time apart from the biology classes?

Asato: Well I am an information class teacher, so I conduct the project within the information class.

Leavitt: You say something about technology making communication possible among people on earth. I’ve always been troubled whether this is a good thing or a bad thing. What I mean is there are people in Japan, India, Korea, Australia with who I am more closer than the people who live in my own building in my own home. I spend so much time on the internet than spending time with them. I wonder about the effect of spending time in international conferences rather than getting to know my neighbors better. That is, does this mean having more superficial friendships rather than getting to know people locally?

Asato: I don’t think it is leading to the loss of relations in real time. But this only means that it increases the chances of getting to talk or relate to people who you would normally not have the physical chance of meeting.

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