Demonstration as a teaching strategy refers to the visual presentation of the action and activities or practical work related to the facts and principles of a delivered lesson by the teacher in the classroom aiming to facilitate the task of teaching and learning. A teacher while using the strategy, demonstrates in a practical form, the objects, instruments, phenomenon, action and events related to the teaching of his lesson. All students of the class simultaneously gain practical richer experiences with the common demonstration exhibited to them by the class-teacher. As result such demonstrations help them a understanding the facts and principles in their proper form, pratically as well as theoretically.
Demonstration has been described as a 'synthetic art', involving the purposive co-ordination and control of the delicate organs of speech and muscles of the body combined with a sense of rhythm, with a view to free and intelligent expression of emotions and ideas.
Stages Related to Arrangement of Demonstration Lessons
1. Planning and Preparation:- Demonstration method is really a rigorous test of teacher's ability. Therefore, he should be fully prepared for this, while preparing, he should pay attention to the following things-
- (i) Theme.
- (ii) Lesson-Hint: It should also include the questions to be asked.
- (iii) Collection and management of necessary equipment.
- (iv) repetition of experiments.
Even after having a complete introduction to the subject, the teacher must read the relevant pages from the textbooks of the students, so that he will be able to stay focused on the related subject. It is equally important to make a lesson plan and it should include the principles which are to be explained, the experiments which are to be demonstrated. And there should be a description of the questions which are to be asked to the students sequentially. With this his work will be done properly. Nothing can discourage students more than a poorly designed text. By rehearsing the experiments, the teacher should intelligently arrange each and every item required for the demonstration task on the demonstration table, so that no difficulties may arise during the demonstration. In short, the teacher should prepare thoroughly for the lesson as a girl prepares for her wedding.
2. Presentation of the lesson:- It is pointless to start the lesson before the students are properly motivated and prepared mentally. The lesson should be presented in a problematic manner, so that the student can understand the importance of the subject. When the teacher awakens the enthusiasm and interest in the students, then half of the success is achieved at the same time. A lot depends on starting the lesson properly. The teacher should start the lesson with a personal experience or incident.
The lesson can also be started with a simple and interesting experiment or a familiar incident or an interesting story. The teacher should always keep in his mind the importance of interesting experiments. It is because of this experiment that students discuss things seen or done in science lessons inside and outside the school. Not only in the beginning, but the teacher should maintain the enthusiasm and interest of the students throughout the lesson through his constant enthusiasm. Such an experiment should be shown at every appropriate occasion, whose effective result can be attracted to the attention of the students.
3. Presentation of the subject material:- Under the lesson, only the missing links of the teaching course should be included, but the generality of its presentation is also very important. The actual lesson may be related to a certain subject, but it is in the hands of the teacher to present it in a narrow way or to choose material and illustrations for his teaching in a wide area of his knowledge and experience.
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4. Experimentation:- The work done on the demonstration table should be ideal for the students. An unclean and dirty display table leads the class using it to a bad job.
5. Chalk-board work:- The chalk-board proves to be very useful in the demonstration lesson. It is mainly used for two purposes:
- (a) Briefly write down important results and principles.
- (b) To make necessary sketches and line shapes.
6. Transcription and Inspection:- The demonstration lesson will be incomplete until the students have written down the sketches and sketches of the chalkboard on their copies. Brief descriptions of the chalkboard prove to be very useful later on, because the language used on the chalkboard is the students' own, so there is no harm in writing down those details. The brain of the students is not developed enough to make notes and sketches on its own. Therefore, they should be copied from the chalkboard itself. The teacher should visit the students frequently to see if they are copying properly.
Features of Demonstration Method
It has the following features-
- Time is given for rehearsals before the performance.
- In this method, the focus is on all the students.
- Problems are created and solved by the students.
- The performance is simple and slow.
- Experiments are performed keeping in mind the time and season.
- All precautions are taken care of.
- This is a planned method.
- The goals and objectives of the demonstration are clear.
Properties of Demonstration Method
(1) Based on Activities:- Although this method is not student-centred, but still, students can be engaged in many types of activities, such as observing, taking comments, answering questions, drawing lines, etc. Sometimes experiments can be done by the students themselves.
(2) Less expensive:- This method is less expensive. When there is not enough equipment for the individual use of the students, the teacher can conduct the experiment in front of the whole class. This saves a lot of time, as many experiments can be done in a short period of time.
(3) Psychological method:- This is a psychological method, because in this the students do not have to imagine anything, but concrete things and living samples are shown to them. As a result, they take an active part in the process of reading and writing. Therefore, his interest towards science gets inspired in this.
(4) Useful for everyone:- This is a useful method for all types of children, such as middle-class, retarded and intelligent. Through this, education can be given to all the students in the same form and speed.
(5) Valuable Tools:- It proves to be very useful when the equipment is precious and soft, and there is a possibility of breaking them when used by the students.
(6) Time Saving:- This method saves a lot of time. This method takes much less time than exploratory planning and experimental methods.
(7) Useful in dangerous experiments:- This method is also useful in dangerous experiments, such as preparation of chlorine, burning of hydrogen etc.
Defects of Demonstration Method
(1) Lack of individual difference:- It does not make the subject of individual difference accessible. The sharp intellect and the slow intellect are forced to absorb at the same pace.
(2) Contrary to the principle of learning by work:- There is no place for learning by work, whereas it is an important principle of education.
(3) Inhibition of development:- Proper laboratory skills are not developed in the students.
(4) Not student centered:- It is not a student centered method. Students cannot actively participate in this process. The ultimate responsibility of carrying out the experiment lies with the teacher and he can carry out the experiment as he pleases. So to some extent it is a sovereign empowered law.
(5) Unlike direct experiences:- In this, the students cannot get the pleasure of direct and personal experiences.
(6) Contrary to scientific approach:- It does not create the necessary scientific approach, nor does it provide training in scientific method.
Tips for Using the Demonstration Method
- The teacher should be trained so that he can make full use of the demonstration material.
- The seating position of the students should be such that no one faces difficulty in observing the demonstration activities.
- There should be a suitable place for demonstration in the classroom. The size of the class should be taken into account.
- The quantity of auxiliary material should be high so as not to cause difficulties in case of spoilage.
- Must have blackboard.
- Questions should be asked to increase the reasoning power and thinking power of the students.
- The size of the supporting material should be large so that it is visible to all.
- Time should be given to note down important things.
It is one of the best methods for teaching science to secondary classes. If the teacher feels that pre-practice, arrangement and demonstration takes a lot of time on the one hand, secondly he has to do a lot of work, which to an adequate extent can be taken from the students. Just as students can be called near the chalk board to get questions etc., similarly small groups of students can be called near the display table. Students themselves can also perform. Arrangements, pre-practices etc. can also be done by the students, but there should be no doubt that the teacher will always have to guide. In this way, the objection regarding this method will also be eliminated that it lacks 'learning through work' process and to some extent the teacher will get comfort.