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ERIC Number: EJ854284
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2005
Pages: 25
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: 23
ISSN: ISSN-0126-7663
Shall We Continue to Teach the Candle Burning Experiment at Lower Secondary Level?
Dhindsa, Harkirat S.
Journal of Science and Mathematics Education in Southeast Asia, v28 n2 p48-72 2005
The candle burning experiment is usually conducted in lower secondary classes to prove the (about) 20% oxygen in air. The aim of this paper is to show that teachers misinterpret the results of the experiment to satisfy the objectives of teaching this experiment. However, when the results of this experiment are interpreted correctly, the objectives for conducting this experiment at this level are not satisfied. It is therefore proposed that this experiment is not suitable at this level and should not be taught at this level. Teaching this experiment to meet the desired learning outcomes is a waste of time and adds to misconceptions. However, the simple experiments reported in this paper may be used to develop critical thinking and creativity in secondary school students. Further research in identifying pieces of knowledge for which similar mismatches between factual (scientifically accepted) and actual (misinterpreted results) knowledge claims is recommended. (Contains 6 figures and 4 tables.)
Southeast Asian Ministers of Education Organization Regional Centre for Education in Science and Mathematics (SEAMEO RECSAM). Jalan Sultan Azlan Shah, 11700 Gelugor, Penang, Malaysia. Tel: +011-60-4-658-3266; Fax: +011-60-4-657-2541; e-mail:; Web site:
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: Secondary Education
Audience: Teachers
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: Brunei