- Dr. Shelley Rap
- Dr. Debora Ivana Marchak Ben Hamo, (Didi)
- Prof. Ron Blonder
Secretariat and Administration:Shani Motsa
Some experts claim that, should all the citizens of Israel employ strict and continuously mask-wearing behavior for a period of two to four weeks, the reproductive number (R) of COVID-19 would drastically lower. However, as reflected by the high number of fines given in Israelis who failed to do so, many people tend to ignore this. In this research, we examine if combining public health knowledge with education can contribute to overcoming this challenge. We propose to provide students with a specially designed nanochemistry education unit aimed at impacting their knowledge, their perceptions, and ultimately their behavior – particularly their mask-wearing habits. This approach, if found successful, can be more widely distributed to reach a greater audience, and decrease the overall spread of COVID-19 in Israel, and even worldwide. A teaching unit was developed as part of the project, aimed at answering commonly asked questions such as: What is the Coronavirus? What is the coefficient of infection, and how does it change? Can masks really prevent infection? Answering these questions is done by improving the general understanding of scientific concepts related to the pandemic, which are presented daily by the media, as well as by teaching the chemistry behind the effectiveness of masks (e.g., functional groups, molecular relationships, and hydrophobicity/hydrophilicity). This unit addresses the cognitive, emotional, and social aspects of the subject. At the end of the unit, the students engage in various educational activities to incorporate the knowledge they have acquired into their behavior through social action.
We study the effects of the teaching unit on students’ knowledge, their attitudes towards wearing protective masks, and their actual behavior with regards to mask-wearing in closed spaces.
The research and development of this project are supported by Miel de Botton.Contact us