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ERIC Number: EJ979365
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2012-Oct
Pages: 26
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: 62
ISSN: ISSN-0022-4308
Fostering Compassionate Attitudes and the Amelioration of Aggression through a Science Class
Castano, Carolina
Journal of Research in Science Teaching, v49 n8 p961-986 Oct 2012
This study explores how science education could contribute to the amelioration of violent behaviors towards humans and non-human species, specifically in a Colombian school with a population of socio-economically disadvantaged students who demonstrate high levels of violence. Until now science education has not sought to change attitudes or to address the issue of school violence that is faced in many communities. Debates around the purposes of science education have paid little or no attention to the possible connection that exists between our attitudes to non-human animals and those towards humans. This study suggests that science education can play a role in changing attitudes and developing behaviors that aim at caring for others including other humans and non-human animals. The findings reported here are part of a wider study which included the design and continuing modification of an intervention for a fourth grade science class. The original study took place over 7 months with a group of 38 fourth-grade students from a socio-economically disadvantaged population who already presented high levels of aggression. The main focus of the intervention was on encouraging compassionate attitudes towards animals through gaining an understanding of their needs, emotions, capacities, current situations and their similarities with humans. Data were generated through diverse qualitative methods including participatory observations, semi-structured interviews, and written responses to open questions in three moments during the study. Findings from this study suggest that science education with a focus on promoting understanding and compassion towards animals could contribute to the amelioration of aggression in schools. (Contains 3 notes and 2 tables.)
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: Elementary Education; Grade 4
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: Colombia