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ERIC Number: EJ1009888
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2013-Mar
Pages: 21
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: 44
ISSN: ISSN-0036-8326
Preservice Elementary Teachers and Explanation Construction: Knowledge-"for"-Practice and Knowledge-"in"-Practice
Zangori, Laura; Forbes, Cory T.
Science Education, v97 n2 p310-330 Mar 2013
Effectively designed science learning environments revolve around students' sensemaking through the use of evidence to ground explanations about natural phenomena. However, little research has been conducted to investigate elementary teachers' learning to promote students' sensemaking in elementary (K-5) classrooms. The purpose of this multiple-case study is to explore how preservice elementary teachers conceptualize and foster students' construction of evidence-based explanations. Our findings show that when the preservice teachers had difficulty conceptualizing their ideas about explanation construction, they were also challenged to support students' explanations constructed in the classroom. They frequently accepted evidence as a complete explanation and afforded their students opportunities to describe evidence rather than formulate evidence-based claims. Furthermore, each of the preservice teachers articulated rich and varied conceptions of ways to elicit students' prior knowledge and scaffold new knowledge construction that were not evident in their enactments in the classroom. These findings, which complement and extend those of other studies focused on in-service elementary teachers, suggest that a lack of emphasis on sensemaking components of scientific practice could be an endemic issue across the teacher professional continuum for which elementary teachers require ongoing and multifaceted forms of support. (Contains 1 table.)
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: Elementary Education; Grade 2; Grade 3; Grade 4; Higher Education; Postsecondary Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A