Science and Technology

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General Education Path

Introduction

This document provides additional information about the learning prescribed in the compulsory secondary-level Science and Technology programs and its progression from year to year and from cycle to cycle. This document is intended to help teachers with their lesson planning.

To progress in their learning, students need to do more than merely acquire knowledge. They must also learn to apply their knowledge in a variety of increasingly complex situations. By appropriately using the knowledge, techniques and strategies listed in this document, they will develop the competencies outlined in the Science and Technology programs. By applying these competencies, they will acquire new knowledge which, in turn, will help them further develop their competencies.

In order to seek answers or solutions to scientific and technological problems (Competency 1), students must become familiar with strategies and acquire conceptual and technical knowledge that will enable them to define a problem, explore it and then justify their methodological choices and results. Similarly, the appropriate scientific or technological concepts and principles can help them understand phenomena, explain the operation of objects or form an opinion and, consequently, make the most of their scientific and technological knowledge (Competency 2). Finally, in order to communicate in the languages used in science and technology (Competency 3), they must have knowledge that will enable them to interpret and convey messages using the languages and types of representation associated with science and technology.

In elementary school, students became familiar with science and technology and explored knowledge involving simple and usually observable phenomena in their immediate environment. In secondary school, they further develop their scientific and technological literacy and continue to do so throughout their lives. In Cycle One, students learn about natural phenomena and man-made objects that interest them. In Cycle Two, the compulsory concepts are organized around two themes: The Human Organism in Secondary III and The Environment in Secondary IV. In the optional Environmental Science and Technology program, the knowledge to be acquired is organized around three environmental issues, two of which are new. Successful completion of this program will make it easier to enroll in the optional Physics and Chemistry programs offered in Secondary V.

The tables in this document outline the knowledge related to each of the four areas of the programs: The Material World, The Living World, The Earth and Space, and The Technological World. Each table is preceded by a text explaining how this knowledge contributes to students' learning in science and technology. Each section begins with a short text describing the related knowledge that was acquired at the elementary level.1 Two other tables provide information about the appropriate techniques and strategies for students to use.

The concepts are further clarified by a list of statements indicating the degree of complexity of the subject matter targeted and explanations of the progression of learning from one year to the next. In some cases, specifications about the extent of the knowledge to be addressed appear in parentheses.
1.  Elementary school teachers can choose themes from among those listed in the program. It is therefore possible that some students may not have studied certain concepts, even though the concepts mentioned here should have been addressed at the elementary level. The table of strategies includes a column devoted to learning acquired in elementary school.

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