Electricity: Sixth Graders' Thoughts on it

By Tuula Keinonen.

Published by The Learner Collection

Format Price
Article: Print $US10.00
Article: Electronic $US5.00

The Science-Technology-Society (STS) - approach has been found to be an effective framework in science education. In this qualitative case study, primary school teacher students (N=12) following the STS-approach, planned and carried out an instruction project with sixth graders in the Finnish comprehensive school. The school was a typical rural school and the teacher students were guided by a teacher educator. The subject of the project was electricity in accordance with the school curriculum. Before and after instruction, sixth graders (N=53, two classes) were asked what is needed to light the electricity candelabrum, which was in the classroom. Before instruction, most pupils wrote that electricity was necessary for lighting. Energy was also mentioned, and some pupils listed different electrical components. After the project, the pupils explained that the net current was necessary to light the candles. The pupils did not mention the closed circuits. Nor did they include any causal relations in their answers. After instruction, the answers contained much more details, but the knowledge was still fragmented.

Keywords: Science Education, Primary School, Teacher Education

The International Journal of Learning, Volume 14, Issue 3, pp.127-134. Article: Print (Spiral Bound). Article: Electronic (PDF File; 511.476KB).

Prof. Tuula Keinonen

Senior Assistant, University of Joensuu, Joensuu, Finland

PhD in Physics 1984:Senior Assistant 1990-1998, Department of Physics, University of Joensuu; PhD in Education 2005: Senior Assistant 1998-, Department of Applied Education, University of Joensuu; Research activities: University of Joensuu, University Erlangen-Nuremberg, University Louis Pasteur Strassbourg

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