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Abstract Title: "Energy Theater": Using the body symbolically to understand energy
Abstract: The essential characteristics of energy are not typically an explicit topic of physics instruction.  Nonetheless, participants in physics courses that involve energy are constantly saying what kinds of thing they think energy might be, both verbally and nonverbally.  The premise of an embodied-cognition theoretical perspective is that we understand the kinds of things that may exist in the world (ontology) in terms of sensory-motor experiences such as object permanence and movement.   We offer an example of an "embodied learning activity" about energy: that is, an activity in which we deliberately arrange for human bodies to symbolize entities in physical phenomena involving energy transfers and transformations.  Our observations suggest that this "Energy Theater" uniquely promotes engagement with deep conceptual questions about energy.
Abstract Type: Contributed Poster

Author/Organizer Information

Primary Contact: Rachel Scherr
Seattle Pacific University
3307 3rd Avenue West
Seattle, WA 98119
Phone: 2066617501
Fax: 2066617501
and Co-Presenter(s)
Sarah B. McKagan, McKagan Enterprises
Hunter G. Close, Seattle Pacific University
Eleanor W. Close, Seattle Pacific University