Moving beyond a focus on conceptual difficulties to support students' learning in science
(English)Manuscript (preprint) (Other academic)
Systematic descriptions of students’ discursive ways of coping with various school science activities constitute potential resources for teachers in their ongoing interactions with students in the science classroom. In a previous study we showed that in order to give a scientific account of a real electrochemical cell high school students needed to learn how to distinguish and name constituents of the cell as well as to sort out correlations pertaining to the cell. Here we analyze consequences for students’ learning about electrochemical cells of introducing such taxonomic and correlational investigations into conversations between a researcher and single students. The investigations had consequences for (1) students’ ability to frame their explanations, (2) how students connected the macroscopic and submicroscopic levels of chemical representation and (3) students’ possibilities of perceiving what happened in the cell. The results show that problems of producing explanations as well as of connecting levels of chemical representation may be fruitfully dealt with by addressing issues beyond those linked to conceptual difficulties. The study suggests ways in which systematic descriptions of students’ own ways of coping with school science activities may be generalized and incorporated into teachers’ repertoires for action in the science classroom.
science, electrochemistry, learning, teaching, description, practical epistemologies, explanation, macroscopic, submicroscopic, perceiving
IdentifiersURN: urn:nbn:se:su:diva-32302OAI: oai:DiVA.org:su-32302DiVA: diva2:279987
ProjectsHur kan lärare hjälpa elever att resonera naturvetenskapligt?