Role-playing in a modeling-based unit on electricity for preservice middle school science teachers
Enriquez, Rutchelle Batan
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This study investigates how middle school preservice teachers transform different models including role-playing to reason about current electricity. A design experiment was conducted to explore the affordances and constraints of a learning sequence – in this case, a unit on current electricity that employs multiple forms of models such as computer simulations and varied analogies. Data were collected from videotaping, class observations, and student artifacts such as homework, activity worksheets, and quizzes. It was found that students demonstrated varied interpretations of a given analogy of electric current in a role-playing activity, that role-playing may be used as a diagnostic assessment, that students use appropriate props as part of their role-play, that students have the potential to develop new analogies from role-playing, and that students use multiple analogies to explain current electricity.