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ERIC Number: EJ941464
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2011-Oct
Pages: 17
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: 65
ISBN: N/A
ISSN: ISSN-1059-0145
Atom Surprise: Using Theatre in Primary Science Education
Peleg, Ran; Baram-Tsabari, Ayelet
Journal of Science Education and Technology, v20 n5 p508-524 Oct 2011
Early exposure to science may have a lifelong effect on children's attitudes towards science and their motivation to learn science in later life. Out-of-class environments can play a significant role in creating favourable attitudes, while contributing to conceptual learning. Educational science theatre is one form of an out-of-class environment, which has received little research attention. This study aims to describe affective and cognitive learning outcomes of watching such a play and to point to connections between theatrical elements and specific outcomes. "Atom Surprise" is a play portraying several concepts on the topic of matter. A mixed methods approach was adopted to investigate the knowledge and attitudes of children (grades 1-6) from two different school settings who watched the play. Data were gathered using questionnaires and in-depth interviews. Analysis suggested that in both schools children's knowledge on the topic of matter increased after the play with younger children gaining more conceptual knowledge than their older peers. In the public school girls showed greater gains in conceptual knowledge than boys. No significant changes in students' general attitudes towards science were found, however, students demonstrated positive changes towards science learning. Theatrical elements that seemed to be important in children's recollection of the play were the narrative, props and stage effects, and characters. In the children's memory, science was intertwined with the theatrical elements. Nonetheless, children could distinguish well between scientific facts and the fictive narrative.
Springer. 233 Spring Street, New York, NY 10013. Tel: 800-777-4643; Tel: 212-460-1500; Fax: 212-348-4505; e-mail: service-ny@springer.com; Web site: http://www.springerlink.com
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: Elementary Education; Grade 1; Grade 2; Grade 3; Grade 4; Grade 5; Grade 6; Primary Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A