A vertical pathway for teaching and learning the concept of energy
COLONNESE, DORIANA; University of Patras
SANTI, LORENZO; University of Udine, Italy
MICHELINI, MARISA; University of Udine, Italy
HERON, PAULA; University of Washington, USA
STEFANEL, ALBERTO; University of Udine, Italy
A vertically integrated, research-based approach to teaching the concept of energy in primary, middle and upper secondary schools was designed. In primary school, the energy concept is developed from the idea of a state property of bodies, occurring in four types, which transform from one to another during interactions. In middle school, transformations are analyzed in terms of variations in quantities associated with each energy type in simple experiments. In upper secondary school, the conservation of energy is addressed through the conversion of the different types into internal energy to identify their formal definitions. The learning process is monitored by means of students’ responses to tutorials and pre/post-tests, and interviews.
Energy, transformation, vertical path, primary, middle school