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Abstract Title: Contradictory teacher goals for the teaching of energy
Abstract: Teachers discussing pedagogical strategies to help students with an incorrect idea about potential energy expressed contradictory goals for their teaching. Initially, teachers wished to avoid being "overly complicated" in their teaching, for example by asking students to stick to naming the forms of energy in the system and principles like the law of conservation of energy. But, the teachers' conversation about a proposed simple pedagogical strategy showed an interest in mechanism  as well as an operational use of energy transformations and conservation. Later on, teachers recognized that students might also engage in and have good ideas about more complex ideas in class. Thus, the desire for keeping instruction simple was contradicted both by an awareness that a simple situation required a complex description and by the recognition that students were capable of more complex analysis, even if it interfered with the goals of simple instruction.
Abstract Type: Contributed Poster Presentation

Author/Organizer Information

Primary Contact: Michael C. Wittmann
University of Maine
5709 Bennett Hall
University of Maine
Orono, ME 04469-5709
Phone: 207-581-1015
and Co-Presenter(s)
Carolina Alvarado, University of Maine

Contributed Poster

Contributed Poster: Download the Contributed Poster