Explore the concept of "light" and its interaction with matter: an inquiry-based science education project in primary school
Journal of Physics, Conference Series
The exploration process leading to the understanding of physical phenomena, such as light and its interaction with matter, raises great interest and curiosity in children. However, in most primary schools, children rarely have the opportunity to conduct science activities in which they can engage in an enquiry process even if by the action of the teacher. In this context, we have organised several in-service teacher training courses and carried out several pedagogic interventions in Portuguese
... ions in Portuguese primary schools, with the aim of promoting inquirybased science education. This article describes one of those projects, developed with a class of the third grade, which explored the curricular topic "Light Experiments". Various activities were planned and implemented, during a total of ten hours spread over five lessons. The specific objectives of this paper are: to illustrate and analyse the teaching and learning process promoted in the classroom during the exploration of one of these lessons, and to assess children's learning three weeks after the lessons. The results suggest that children made significant learning which persisted. We conclude discussing some processes that stimulated children' learning, including the importance of teacher questioning in scaffolding children's learning and some didactic implications for teacher training.