Jan Amos Jelinek, PhD

Affiliation: The Maria Grzegorzewska University (APS), Poland

Title: How children learn about physical phenomena using a computer program

Modern physics includes a number of scientific explanations and concepts that are not intuitive (McCloskey 1983; Lelonek 1984; Vosniadou 1994; Jelinek 2016). Free observations carried out in the everyday experiences (e.g. movement of objects on the arc) do not lead to the development of valid scientific explanations (McCloskey 1983). This means that the introduction of children into the world of mechanics must be assisted by an adult. Developments in learning about physical phenomena is taking more and more aspects of the phenomenon, and so over the course a more and less naïve theory (Schaffer 2010). Studies have shown that incorrectly formed ideas on preliminary stages of education are difficult to modify and you need many years to eliminate them (Friejdkin, Poddjakow 1976; McCloskey 1983; Spelke 1991; Vosniadou 1994).

It is well known that the most effective method of learning physical phenomena is to learn about it in a direct way, for example by organizing experiences (Szuman 1955, Franus 1967, 1978). Despite this, teachers rarely organize experiences and do not engage children in formulating hypotheses and conclusions (PISA 2009, IBE 2013). A form of alternatives are computer programs (e.g. Sokrates103, Jak to działa, Crazy Machines). They are a virtual space for safe experiences. However the question arises whether experience carried out on the computer screen enable children to build knowledge, they can use offline.

Previous studies (Masson, Bub, Lalonde 2011) assess only knowledge of children before joining the program and compared it with the knowledge of the students after completion of the work. Studies have shown that programs are not effective. However, based on these analyses, it is impossible to determine how children use the computer (is not analysed the behaviour of children on the computer screen). This element became the target of my research. In addition to analysing the state of knowledge of children before and after the series of meetings with the educational program in their studies, I also recorded the behaviour of students using the program.

During the lecture will be presented briefly a research tool (it was a compilation of experiences carried out on objects with saving the child’s conclusion of the experience on a piece of paper) and the situations in which students are able to use the program (students worked in pairs, once worked next to each other, once back to back). I will present how evolved the way of solving tasks (in this way carry out of experiments) and how it has resulted during the final test. Finally, I will present proposals for how to use the program to increase the educational function of it.

The results of these studies have not yet been published. However, the results of similar studies have been published on this website »

Dorota Kutyła

Affiliation:Institute of Philosophy, University of Warsaw, Poland

Title: Why do I want to know? — that is different views of motivation to learn

In the learning process there are two parties, a teacher and a student (and we are out here outside the school institution). Sometimes their goals are common, sometimes overlapping in some, and sometimes divergent. In my paper I would like to make a specific review of various theories related to motivation for learning. Initially, at the end of the 19th century and early The 20th century focused on the theory of urge. Behaviors, convinced of the lazy nature of man, have included in their thinking the concept of drives. According to the hypothesis of reduction of desire after satisfaction of lack of activity the body ceases. From this diagram breaks the curiosity, or motivation to know the environment, occurring in all higher living beings. This observation combined with a different perspective of vision has led humanistic psychologists to emphasize the importance of self-fulfillment (A. Maslow) or self-definition (Deci et al.).

The criticism of the behavioral concept of motivation is also found in cognitive motivational theories. According to them, human behavior is not triggered by fear of punishment or desire for reward, but by desire for order. Unlike humanist psychology, which is clearly opposed to behaviorism, cognitive theories are closer to them if they take into account the social factor. Social-cognitive motivation theory links belief in the consequences of behavior with behavioral expectations influencing behavior. Motivation is considered to be the effect of two factors, ie the expectation of an individual for a purpose and the value of that goal. This is called the expectation-value theory.

The idea of finding order is the continuation of two theories. In theory of cognitive dissonance and attribution theory. Man wants to know the world in which he lives. To this end, he gathers his experiences and observations and cares for their inner harmony. Inconsistency of novelty with this basis triggers cognitive dissonance (Leon Festinger’s conception). In short, this inconsistency stimulates people who want to re-order their images. These ideas are superimposed on thinking about external and internal motivation, according to Mietzel, "Curiosity is internal motivation." It engages in the confrontation of the individual with new experiences. Curiosity is one possible answer, the other - fear. It wins the stronger. If more afraid, then we run away from the news. If we are more curious, then we stay. The second part of the speech will therefore be devoted to the analysis of curiosity, its types, what stimulates it and what suppresses it. We will also look at the social dimension of motivation (rivalry, cooperation, individualism).

Theodosis Theodosiou

Affiliation: European University, Cyprus

Title: How learning trajectories can set practical examples in constructing and implementing differentiated STEM projects

The described pilot research was designed and  implemented as the initial part for the doctoral thesis of the researcher. The aim of this research is to try to build a Learning Trajectory (Clements & Sarama, 2009; Battista, 2011) of a STEM project based on electric circuits, as a united set of activities and work reflections, having as the main target the differentiation of teaching, learning goals and learning outcomes, based on the different levels of pupils’ readiness.

The methodology which has been followed is a qualitative research study. During the preparation stage the basic structure of the Hypothetical Learning Trajectory was constructed from the researchers. The learning process was scheduled for three learning sessions. Each session had prescribed goals, for knowledge, skills and attitudes. The theme of the HLT is electric circuits, and as a final consolidation target is the production of a limited alarm system, using and implementing the knowledge, skills and attitudes which would be built during the HLT.

The implementation of the HLT procedure took place in a Grade 4 primary classroom and fifteen children took part in it. Each group consisted of five children, who were divided in their groups according to their general levels of readiness in Maths and Science. The first group consisted of children with lower level of abilities in Maths and Science, the second group was at the target level and the third group consisted of gifted children in Maths and Science. Each session/application began with a problem situation which the children had to investigate by discussing, designing, using materials such as electric circuit’s materials and digital app for tracking and concluding to answers for the problem situations. Each bank of conclusions (knowledge, skills, attitudes) was about to work as a set of guidelines to their final construction during the last session/application of the HLT. The teacher had a scaffolding role through expressing questions or speculations and ideas in order to help each group reaching the highest level it could achieve. After the end of each session, the researchers were comparing the current results with the expected results of each group and rescheduled or reorganized the initial HLT plan, in order to help each group to help at least the basic target level.

The whole process was video recorded from the researchers. Transcript process followed and then the data analysis according to the differentiation of process for each group separately. The data spotted was the quantity and quality of the scaffolding intervention of the class teacher in each group, in which steps of the process the children in each group were able to surpass the target goals and set higher level of speculations, the level of the in-depth discussions’ development of each group and the use of the scientific vocabulary, as well as the handling of the materials given (both physical and digital).

The expected result/outcome of this research process is the creation of a LT for electric circuits with differentiated targets, expected procedures and results for each step, in each one of the directions/categories of STEM education.

Nils Hauan, PhD

Affiliation: VilVite, Bergen Science Centre, Norway

Title: Evaluations of self-guided learning based on students’ behavior

This study investigates four different designs of self-guided resources focused on a set of five interactive exhibits. Two of the designs could be described as low in terms of sophistication: one simply encourages open exploration, while the other can be characterized as a ‘traditional’ worksheet. Two other resource designs aimed to support self-guidance, by providing moderate structure for students’ actions, observations, group behavior and discussions, one using printed material, and the other using multi-media tablets. Verbal and non-verbal behaviors were recorded by cameras strapped to the chests of 11- to 13-year-old students. Findings suggested that designs for self-guidance can indeed influence students’ behaviors, leading to experiences that support students’ progress towards conceptual understanding.

Joanna Lilpop, PhD

Affiliation: Biology Teaching Laboratory, Faculty of Biology , Warsaw University, Poland

Title: Does the ‘teacher effect’ exist? Key mechanisms in the biology learning process and the success factors among participants of the National Biology Olympiad

Biology is often perceived as a factual subject, however the national core curriculum for biology underlines proactive educational objectives regarding: understanding and application, biological methodology practice, reasoning skills and significance of modern biology in human life. The Biology Teaching Laboratory of the Warsaw University surveyed the population of students taking part in the Biology Olympiad (BO). We search for answers on several issues like the frequency the teachers apply reasoning on their lessons. Do they require science research activity, practice science methodology, refer to achievements of scientists, or organize outdoor learning activities?

We try to depict teachers’ craft and practice in biology lessons in order to identify the key factors that may influence the performance of student participants in the OB.

Ba Harouna, PhD

Affiliation: New York Hall of Science & American Institute for Research, USA

Title: Playground Physics: Learning Science Through Physical Play

Playground Physics provides alternative inquiry-based instruction through a learner-centered, playful and active learning approach. It seeks to address the apathy and disengagement facing middle school students in science classes. The app enables learners to visualize and reflect on scientific data to deepen their learning of abstract physics concepts by iteratively exploring their physical movement. The curriculum highlights the principles of physics that are present in different types of physical play experiences. The professional development is a multistep, iterative learning process in which teachers experience inquiry-based science instruction as learners. These resources were tested with 3,128 students and were shown to improve their physics knowledge and engagement. Discussions will include the effectiveness of Playground Physics and links between engagement and content learning.

Jerzy Wiśniewski

Affiliation: Fundacja Naukowa Evidence Institute, Poland

Title: Polish "mega brains" students and their careers in the light of the results of international educational research

The Evidence Institute Foundation has launched the report "Europe’s Talent on the Edge of Change" where data on the percentage of the best pupils according to PISA 2015 in a population of all talented pupils in the European Union has been published. The greatest number of such students are in Germany (21%), Great Britain (20%) and France (17%). Poland is the fourth largest force in the European Union (7%) in terms of the number of talented pupils.

The purpose of the analysis is to characterize the group of those best students in Poland. We want to check if they are different in terms of attitudes toward learning STEM subjects from middle- and low-achieving students and whether they declare different working methods during lessons of science. In addition, we want to see if their professional and educational aspirations are related to the science-related professions such as engineer or scientist. The data comes from the PISA 2015, which involved several thousand students, consisting a representative sample of the entire 15-year-old population in Poland. Additional analysis was carried out on a sample of 20k students who participated in the "Competencies 2017 - National Skills Study", which was conducted in Poland in June 2017.

The results show no significant difference between the best students and other comparison groups. Although Polish students achieve high scores in natural skills, they still rarely plan to pursue professional careers in STEM-related occupations. In the presentation, the link between the characteristics of the school and the teaching of natural sciences in the school with the level of skills achieved by the students will be investigated.

Marek Muszyński

Affiliation: Fundacja Naukowa Evidence Institute, Poland

Title: What is related to good science skills of 15-year olds- a deepen analysis of PISA 2015 results.

PISA 2015 results showed that average level of science skills among Polish pupils is higher than the average for UE or OECD countries. In our analysis we present variables related to science skills. Using PISA’s study representative sample of Polish 15-year olds we aim to describe relations between context variables and science-related skills.

The analyses comprise of multilevel regressions, which enable variance decomposition between individual (learner) and group (school) levels, as well as quantile regression models.

The results show complicated pattern behind the learner’s results. Individual motivation and peer effects both play key roles in achieving high science skills. Inter-school differences are related to the methods endorsed by the teachers and also the level of science interest expressed by the pupils at a given school. The results also point to inter-gender differences in those relations, as well as differences between high- and low-achieving pupils. Practical considerations regarding science teaching follows the analysis.

Rooske Franse

Affiliation: NEMO Science Museum, Netherlands

Title: How to research children’s’ exploration process?

The exploration process is a complex process with many facets ranging from behavior to language use. To get a good description of this, systematic observation is required. Developing a good instrument is in many cases dependent on the exhibit and the context you are measuring in.  We will present our approach of measuring families exploration of  a stand-alone exhibit in the science museum. 

Maksymilian Bielecki, PhD

Affiliation: SWPS University of Social Sciences and Humanities, Poland

Title: Parent– child Communication and Sex Stereotyping in Task-solving Situation – Presentation of Methodology and Preliminary Results

Surprisingly little is known about the exact mechanisms of intergenerational transmission of gender attitudes and stereotypes, in particular – in the contexts important for successful STEM education. As stereotypes are predominantly transmitted through language, we decided to focus in our study on verbal interactions between parents and children in the task-solving situation. In this pilot study participants were tested in pairs using Parent-Child Task Oriented Communication Test (Frydrychowicz, 2003). Additional measurements allowed us to assess their explicit and implicit sex stereotypes as well as the perception of self-efficacy following the testing situation. This study was conducted at the Copernicus Science Centre in collaboration with Katarzyna Potęga as part of her PdD project.

Łukasz Tanaś, PhD

Affiliation: SWPS Uniwersytet Humanistycznospołeczny

Title: Cognitive curiosity and intellectual achievement

To what extent does cognitive curiosity and the level of pleasure derived from mental effort affect intellectual achievement? Literature review shows that the overall level of "cognitive investment" (such as curiosity, openness to experience) is positively associated with a variety of intellectual attainments, albeit moderately: the average correlation value is 0.3, but with a large range of results, between 0 and 0.5 (von Strumm & Ackermann, 2013). The role of cognitive curiosity in predicting school attainment is increasing with age, there is no relationship between these variables at early school education but there is such a relationship in grades 6-8 (Leon et al., 2017). This is the time when we start getting high heritability estimates of intelligence. Own research on the adaptation of the "need for cognition" scale for children and adolescents will be presented.

dr Ewa Dąbrowa

Affiliation: The Maria Grzegorzewska University (APS), Poland

Title: Kapitał naukowy uczniów w świetle międzynarodowych badań edukacyjnych

The English version of the abstract will be available soon.

Pojęcie kapitału naukowego, skonceptualizowane zaledwie kilka lat temu przez badaczy z londyńskiego King’s College, zyskuje coraz większe znaczenie w światowym dyskursie wokół współczesnej edukacji. Choć sama koncepcja wciąż domaga się doprecyzowania, to jednak już na obecnym etapie stanowi cenne narzędzie, pomagające zrekonstruować wzory formowania się aspiracji naukowych wśród uczniów. Co ważne, jest na tyle uniwersalna, że znajduje zastosowanie nie tylko w badaniach dedykownych bezpośrednio kategorii kapitału naukowego, ale też znakomicie wspiera proces pogłebionej analizy badań o charakterze przekrojowym.

Referat poświęcony jest analizie kapitału naukowego uczniów w perspektywie międzynarodowych badań Programme for International Student Assessment (PISA) oraz Trends in International Mathematics and Science Study (TIMSS).

Jakie czynniki mają związek z osiąganiem przez uczniów wysokich wyników w zakresie nauk przyrodniczych i ścisłych? Co dzieje się z matematyczno-przyrodniczymi zainteresowaniami dziesięciolatków (badanie TIMSS) w późniejszych latach edukacji (badanie 15-latków PISA)? Czy badania międzynarodowe mogą być podstawą do wstępnych analiz kapitału naukowego młodzieży? Poszukiwanie odpowiedzi na te i inne pytania związane z kształtowaniem kapitału naukowego to niezwykle ważne zadanie dla współczesnych badań edukacyjnych oraz rozwoju polityki edukacyjnej skorelowanej z potrzebami i tendencjami rynkowymi.

Peeranut Kanhadilok, PhD

Affiliation: Science Museum, National Science Museum, Thailand

Title: Traditional Thai Toys for STEAM Plus1 Learning at a Science Museum

This research aims to study the factors that encourage learning and learning process of STEAM plus 1 (Science, Technology, Engineering, Art, Mathematics and Plus 1 (Local wisdom Learning)) and learning outcomes of children that join Play and Learn with Traditional Thai Toys Camp at the Science Museum in the National Science Museum, Thailand (NSM.). The research follows 96 children (10 – 12 years old) that applied to join science camp in summer at NSM. STEAM Plus1 Learning Outcomes Questionnaire (SPLOQ), and STEAM Plus1 Learning Observation (SPLO) have been used to study STEAM Plus1 Learning Outcomes. Also, the results of Semi-structured ‘exit interview’ STEAM Plus1 used to study the factors that support STEAM Plus1 learning from the science camp. The results indicate that children who participated with play and learn with traditional Thai toys camp gained knowledge, understanding, attitude, values, enjoyment, inspiration and especially imagination and creativity. They develop skills, action, behavior and progress. The learn science and local wisdom (bi-gnostic learning) parallel during participating the science camp and expect to conserve traditional local wisdom. The results also present that they gained skills of technology, engineering, art and mathematics when making the toys in the activities.