Children’s Conceptions of the Earth: Scientific or Inconsistent/Non-Scientific

1333 Words 6 Pages
Aim of this study was to investigate children’s scientific view of the earth, aged between 5-6 years and 8-9 years, and different mode of questions, open and forced-choice questions, elicited different responses in terms of scientific or inconsistent/non-scientific concepts of the earth. One hundred and twenty-eight children were asked to draw picture of and answer questions about the earth. The finding indicated children, aged 5-6 years, made more inconsistent/non-scientific and fewer scientific responses, whereas children, aged 8-9 years, made more scientific responses and fewer inconsistent/non-scientific responses. However, different mode of questions did not elicited difference responses as children found the questions confusing. …show more content…
It is only in late childhood that children acquire the scientific model. However, Panagiotaki, Nobes and Banerjee (2006) found that Vosniadou and Brewer’s (1992) drawing tasks and questions to be confusing and ambiguous. They stated that, in the drawing tasks, children were unable to draw a sphere Earth, as they are poor at drawing three-dimensional object and have difficulty combining perspectives (Blades & Spencer, 1994; Ingram & Butterworth, 1989; Karmiloff-Smith, 1992, as cited in Nobes, Martin & Panaglotaki, 2005), instead, children chose to draw a flat, hollow or dual Earth. This, does not mean, children drawing a flat or hollow sphere earth, believed the Earth is flat or hollow (Nobes, Martin & Panaglotaki, 2005).
Subsequently, Panagiotaki, Nobes and Banerjee (2006) commented on the method of questioning. Vosniadou and Brewer used open questions and that when children’s replies were short; they rephrased the questions and ask the questions again. These mislead the children to change their answers as they presume their first answers must be wrong (Donaldson, 1978, Siegal, 1997, Siegal et al., 1988, as cited in Nobes, Martin & Panaglotaki, 2005). As a result, researchers misinterpreted children’s concepts of earth as coherent and systematic (Panagiotaki, Nobes & Banerjee, 2006). With the aim of to contrast Vosniadou and Brewer’s findings, Panagiotaki, Nobes and

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