27 SES 04 A, CREATIONS: Engendering Creative Science Classrooms
It is a well-known fact that modelling as a complex suite of strategies provides further benefits such as offering multiple ways for learning science and understanding routes to historical discoveries. In out-of-school labs model-supported teaching promotes cognitive achievement in addition to classic experimental challenges. Thus, we implemented a hands-on module for 9th graders, in combining experimentation and creative model work to visualize molecular and otherwise invisible contents of DNA-structure. Our study´s major aim was to observe impacts for successful model constructing in an outreach lab focusing potential inputs from individual creativity. The participants (N=115; 40.87% female; age M±SD=14.45±0.69) produced independently a DNA-model with the help of an ad-hoc compiled modeling box containing various handcrafting materials. We correlated individual creativity levels with cognitive achievement and the evaluated model quality scores. Surprisingly, our findings demonstrated gender effects: Firstly, it needs pointing out that girls received significant higher scores for their constructed models than boys (Mdnboys=13.50; Mdngirls=15.58), U=1094.00, z=-2.79, p=.005, r=-.26. Additionally, girls short-term and mid-term knowledge increases are significantly influenced by the applied model constructing approach (Spearman´s correlation coefficients rs ≥.338 ≥.469), while we found no effects for the boys regarding creativity and model quality. However, boys countervailed their poorer modeling outcomes and reached equal knowledge levels after the module. Consequently, the model constructing part of our module seems to appeal more strongly to girls and might be a suitable approach for integrating arts in science education. Thus, with the attempt to attract women for scientific ideas creative modelling offers further advantages in contrast to one-sided experimentation.
Svoboda, J., Passmore, C. (2013). The strategies of modeling in biology education. Science & Education, 22(1), 119–142. Gilbert, J. K. (2004). Models and modelling: Routes to more authentic science education. International Journal of Science and Mathematics Education, 2, 115–130. Sternberg, R. J., Lubart, T. I. (1996). Investing in creativity. American Psychologist, 7, 677–688. Van Driel, J. H., Verloop, N. (1999). Teachers' knowledge of models and modelling in science. International Journal of Science Education, 21(11), 1141–1153. Csikszentmihalyi, M. (2000). Beyond boredom and anxiety (25.th ed.). San Fransisco: Jossey-Bass Publishers. Howes, E. (2002). Connecting girls and science: Constructivism, feminism, and science education reform. New York: Teachers College Press.
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