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ERIC Number: EJ959422
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2011-Oct
Pages: 19
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: 27
ISSN: ISSN-1306-3065
Primary School Pupils' Perceptions of Water in the Context of STS Study Approach
Havu-Nuutinen, Sari; Karkkainen, Sirpa; Keinonen, Tuula
International Journal of Environmental and Science Education, v6 n4 p321-339 Oct 2011
This paper focuses on pupils' perceptions of water issues. The instructional situations take place in a Finnish primary school and aim at introducing the Science-Technology-Society (STS) study approach. The primary aim of this study is, in the context of STS instruction, to describe issues that pupils associate with water. This paper involves fourth and fifth graders from a rural primary school in eastern part of Finland aged between 10 and 11 (n = 52). Pupils were asked to write down the issues that came to mind when they thought of water, both before and after instruction. In addition, in the beginning of the process, pupils were asked to draw something about water. After the first set of writings and drawings, pupils participated in a teaching and learning process, which was supervised by master level teacher students. Prior to this process, pupils mostly associated the role of water for human beings, with drinking and washing as well as recreational pastimes such as swimming and fishing. The issues in this process varied from scientific to environmental protection, although the pupils' perceptions were very limited. After instruction, pupils wrote about the meaning of water in more general terms, relating to science, technology and societal issues, including the idea of the water cycle. This study increases and broadens researchers' and teachers' knowledge of pupils' ideas and thoughts about water in an authentic school context. The study focuses on water issues in science, society and technology and aims to support pupils' understanding towards becoming more systemic, multidimensional and critical. Environmental and science education are enriched with technological issues and this study reveals the challenges of integrated instruction. Methodologically, the study discusses the role of essays and drawings in interpreting the research results. (Contains 3 tables and 8 figures.)
International Consortium for the Advancement of Academic Publication. Abant Izzet Baysal University, Faculty of Education, 14280 Golkoy-Bolu, Turkey. e-mail:; Web site:
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: Elementary Education; Grade 4; Grade 5
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: Finland