1. Lauren NourseEDU 710February 4, 2010Chapter 3 1. Preliminary topic: a. W hat is my topic? i. Is knowledge increased if students participate in investigatory lab activities? Retention of this knowledge would be assessed by comparison of test scores between classes that conduct more labs to classes who have not participated in the lab activities. b. What do I want to learn about this topic? i. Is it worth the time and effort involved in preparing and conducting a summarizing lab work: Is learning increased by these efforts or would the knowledge be obtained equally with routine lectures, note taking and quizzes. c. What am I planning to do in order to address this topic? i. Design inquiry labs to be used once or twice a week to enhance student reading and routine homework assignments and to complement the daily lectures and quizzes. d. To whom will the outcome of my study be important? i. To myself and potentially the other science teachers e. How much time do I anticipate the study requiring? i. 1 to 2 months or the length of the current chemistry unit f. How difficult do I anticipate it will be to conduct the study? i. Planned correctly, it should require only a moderate adjustment to my normal teaching syllabus g. Will there be any monetary costs? i. None above the originally anticipated costs for teaching this topic h. Do I foresee any ethical problems? i. None at this time 2. For this action research project I would not anticipate any ethical dilemmas. 3. Difficulty doing reconnaissance: This topic will involve overcoming prejudices that doing labs is just a way to have fun in class. There is a growing perception that there is not sufficient learning gleaned from the time commitment to do labs. 4. It will be easy to research on the internet. I think it might be difficult to find valid primary source material that is current in its findings. 5. Sources for Databases a. Published journal article: http://www.springerlink.com/content/vw41986254g91178/ Title; Computer-simulated laboratory explorations for middle school life, earth, and physical Science Journal of Science Education and Technology b. Paper presented at a professional conference: http://learnweb.harvard.edu/alps/tfu/pop3.cfm: TfU Picture of Practice: A Year of 8th Grade Science with Bill McWeeny c. Internet Web site: http://www3.delta.edu/slime/ssc.html
2. Literature review: Assume that you will write a literature review for only the three items youlocated in Number 5. Draft an outline of your review based on the contents of those three sources. 6. a. The purpose of this research was to incorporate the use of on-line tools to allow middle school students to participate in lab activities via the computer that would be too “difficult, dangerous, or outright impossible to do in a live laboratory.” A hypothesis was generated that these on-line tools would encourage investigations off-line. b. This paper described a teacher’s efforts to change the way he taught and assessed student achievement by employing a technique called Teaching for Understanding. This paper displaed the teacher’s entire year’s curriculum along with the philosophy and methods behind TFU. The ultimate goal of the project was to recognize understanding through performance. c. The purpose of this web site was to provide teachers with instruction in the use of small scale chemistry. The web site gives excellent detail on how to incorporate these new style of labs into the curriculum. The relevant part of the web site, however, was its link to the journal article supporting this type of lab work. “They appear to enjoy these laboratory classes more than the traditional laboratory experiments. Students are not concerned with breaking glassware and measuring out large quantities of reagents. Instead, there is more time for understanding the concepts and basic principles of these experiments. There is also a closer tie to their organic chemistry lectures.”To review http://www.sagepub.com/mertler2study Action Research; treachers as Researchers in the Classroom.