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Going through a phase: Infrared cameras in a teaching sequence on evaporation and condensation
Uppsala University, Disciplinary Domain of Science and Technology, Physics, Department of Physics and Astronomy, Physics Didactics. (Physics Education Research)ORCID iD: 0000-0003-3070-567X
Uppsala University, Disciplinary Domain of Science and Technology, Chemistry, Department of Chemistry - Ångström.
The Concord Consortium, Concord, Massachusetts .
Karlstads universitet.ORCID iD: 0000-0003-4997-2938
2019 (English)In: American Journal of Physics, ISSN 0002-9505, E-ISSN 1943-2909, Vol. 87, no 7, p. 577-582Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

Phase transitions are everyday occurring phenomena, but students often find them difficult to comprehend, not least in terms of the principles of thermal physics. To be able to explain phase transitions in primary school, teachers need to understand various concepts and phenomena, such as condensation, evaporation, energy and temperature. As energy is absorbed or released during phase transitions, changes in temperature can occur. Infrared (IR) cameras can thus be utilized to visually observe and explore surface phenomena such as condensation and evaporation. In line with the resources framework, we have designed a teaching sequence which involves both everyday experiences and observations through IR cameras, and which is designed to encourage students to leverage common resources associated with evaporation and condensation. In testing our teaching sequence, we presented three thermal phenomena to a group of pre-service teacher students. Two of these phenomena, namely walking out of a shower and sitting in a sauna, were anchored in embodied experiences to hopefully activate the students’ resources and to make the students pay attention to the thermally relevant aspects. The third phenomenon was less familiar, involving the condensation of water on a piece of paper. The result shows that the students managed to carry out the sequence with the three phenomena and applied an explanatory model across all three to consistently explain evaporation. However, the lack of a more general model of chemical bonding and an overreliance on the second law of thermodynamics seem to have acted as barriers for the students’ forming of a coherent understanding of both evaporation and condensation.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
AIP Publishing , 2019. Vol. 87, no 7, p. 577-582
Keywords [en]
Physics Education Research, IR cameras, Phase transition, Teaching sequence, Thermal science, Energy, Teacher education, Coherence, Variation
Keywords [sv]
Fysikdidaktik, Didaktik, Värmekamera, Fasövergång, Värmelära, Lärarutbildning, Lärandesekvens, Instruktion, Variation, Koherens
National Category
Other Physics Topics
Research subject
Physics with specialization in Physics Education
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:uu:diva-387445DOI: 10.1119/1.5110665ISI: 000480387000009OAI: oai:DiVA.org:uu-387445DiVA, id: diva2:1329111
Funder
Swedish Research Council, VR 2016-04113Available from: 2019-06-24 Created: 2019-06-24 Last updated: 2019-09-26Bibliographically approved

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Samuelsson, Christopher RobinElmgren, MajaHaglund, Jesper
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