Prispevek na GIREP Seminarju 2016

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GIREP Seminar, Krakov, 30. avgust – 3. september 2016

20-minutno predavanje, povzetek:

ASSESSMENT OF EXPERIMENTAL WORK IN SCIENCE COMPETITION

Barbara ROVŠEK and Gregor TORKAR
Faculty of Education, University of Ljubljana

Abstract
In 2016 we ran the second science competition for 6 to 12 years old learners in Slovenia (The call). More than 15.000 students from more than half of Slovene primary schools voluntarily participated in competition. The competition is based on few science experiments, which should be performed in advance, either at school or at home. The idea for the preceding experimental part of the competition originally came from Sokolowska (2010). We will present two examples of the experiments from the last call which were both given to 11 and 12 years old students: they had to experiment with the pop-corn in the first and with the water flow through a siphon in the second. We will also show the problems, which the participants had to solve in the competition. All the problems in competition were related to given experiments. The problems were designed to assess if the students have detected the patterns and rules underlying the phenomena when performing the experiments and making the observations (Etkina, 2002). Some conclusions drawn from observations were obvious and easy to make, and others were advanced and complex. The problems were supposed to be of varying difficulty and to test from obvious to not so obvious observations. An example of experiment from the first run and competition problems related to this particular experiment are given by Rovšek (2016).
An efficient ICT support is offered to the teachers who are involved in organizing the competition for their students at all steps. With their help we collect the answers of the students and now we have a nice data collection showing how the students solved the problems given in the exam. We will present a simple statistics of obtained results. We are able to define which problems were objectively easy and which were difficult. From the data we are able to conclude if the major goals of particular experiment were reached and if students have discovered and learnt what was planned.

Keywords
experimental work, assessment, science competition.

References
The call of the competition is on the page https://www.dmfa.si/Tekmovanja/NaOS/Razpis.aspx
Sokolowska, D. (2010). Firefly – a new contest in science for primary school. Proceedings of GIREP-EPEC&PHES 2009, Physics community and cooperation: selected contributions. (pp. 352 – 357). Lulu, The Centre for Interdisciplinary Science.
Etkina, E. Van Heuvelen, A., Brookes, D. T., & Mills, D. (2002). Role of experiments in physics instruction – A process approach. Phys. Teach., 40, 351 – 355.
Rovšek, B. (2016). Observe your shadow. Phys. Teach. 54, 223 – 226.