ERIC Number: ED465617
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 2002-Jan
Use of Scientific Inquiry To Explain Counterintuitive Observations.
Lynch, Mary Jean; Zenchak, John J.
Many hands-on activities are just demonstrations in which students handle materials to illustrate concepts. These activities may initially capture students' attention, however, many of the activities are either so highly structured that they minimize exploration or are so loosely structured that they minimize conceptual understanding. To maximize learning, students need opportunities to explore in a way that enhances their understanding. A series of inquiry-based classroom activities has been designed for the elementary and middle school levels that excite students' curiosity, draw students into the experiences, use simple materials, and explain concepts at developmentally appropriate levels. The approach addresses teachers' concerns about process versus content and developmental appropriateness. The core of the approach to inquiry is the demonstration experiment, a structured exploration activity which begins with a discrepant event and then requires the use of scientific inquiry to explain the counterintuitive observations. This paper concerns the use of these activities in the classroom. (Contains 20 references.) (MVL)
Descriptors: Demonstrations (Science), Elementary Secondary Education, Hands on Science, Inquiry, Science Activities, Science Instruction, Student Motivation
For full text: http://aets.chem.pitt.edu.
Publication Type: Reports - Descriptive; Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Note: In: Proceedings of the Annual International Conference of the Association for the Education of Teachers in Science (Charlotte, NC, January 10-13, 2002); see SE 066 324.