My main goals when teaching physical sciences are that students:
- appreciate the reasons why we study physics and chemistry;
- have conceptual understanding of basic theories of physics and chemistry, as well as understanding how we use math to describe those concepts;
- have an understanding of the connection between theory and experiment;
- are able to apply learned knowledge in everyday life and develop fact based critical thinking;
- are exposed to hands-on experience and acquire basic experimental skills.
In my experience, the main, the most important, and the most difficult challenge is to motivate students to embrace the subject and to encourage them to find their own suitable path to knowledge. I believe that any subject can be interesting, and therefore motivating, as long as it is clearly formulated, the basics are well understood, and connections to previously gained knowledge and real world experiences are made. The question ‘Why?’ must be a central point of a class.