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Heat and Temperature

Teaching for Conceptual Change: Confronting Childrens' Experience

This article can be used with Sections II and IV to examine teaching strategies that confront elementary students' tenaciously held ideas about objects, such as mittens, coats, and hats, generating their own heat. The article is a nice glimpse into a fourth grade classroom example of teaching for conceptual change.

Bibliographic Citation: 
Watson, B. and Konicek, R. (1990) Teaching for Conceptual Change: Confronting Childrens' Experience Phi Delta Kappan, May 1990, Pp 680-684. To access article online: http://www.exploratorium.edu/IFI/resources/workshops/teachingforconcept.html

Teaching About Energy

This paper can be used to supplement CTS Sections II and IV. The paper addresses commonly held ideas students have about energy, why the concept of energy is so difficult to learn, considerations for teaching energy-related ideas, and suggestions for teaching specific energy-related concepts.

Bibliographic Citation: 
Millar, R. Teaching about Energy. 2005. Department of Educational Studies: Research Paper 2005/11. University of York. www.york.ac.uk/depts/educ/research/ResearchPaperSeries/Paper11Teachingaboutenergy.pdf

Ice Cold Lemonade and Mixing Water

These two assessment probes can be used with CTS Section IV.These probes target student ideas related to transfer of heat energy. The probes can be used to examine student work related to the topic study. In addition, the teacher notes provide further information for CTS Sections II, III, and IV.

Bibliographic Citation: 
Keeley, P., Eberle, F., and Tugel, J. (2007). Uncovering student ideas in science-25 more formative assessment probes. Arlington, VA: NSTA Press (available at nsta.org; also available through amazon.com).


This book can be used with CTS Section I. Selected readings help teachers improve their content understanding of energy related concepts.

Bibliographic Citation: 
Robertson, W. (2002). Stop Faking It! Finally Understanding Science so You Can Teach It- Energy Arlington, VA: NSTA Press.

Children's Ideas in Science

The chapters in this book can be used as supplements for Sections II and IV, providing a more detailed description of many of the same research studies summarized in Making Sense of Secondary Science, one of the collective resources used in CTS. Each chapter explores ideas of students aged 10-16 about natural phenomena and examines how students' conceptions change and develop with teaching.

Bibliographic Citation: 
Driver, R., Guesne, E. and Tiberghien, A. (1985). Children's Ideas in Science Philadelphia, PA: Open University Press.
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