Changes in Second Grade Children’s
Preconceptions About the Earth as a Cosmic Body Resulting from a Short Series of Audio-Tutorial Lessons
Being constructive by nature, even when left on their own, children always tend to construct some meaning of their direct observation of physical phenomena as well as of socially transmitted accounts of physical phenomena. They construct their own meaning through cognitive assimilation of the phenomenon into their existing notions or by accommodating the existing notions to make more powerful assimilating frameworks.
Different children may come up with alternative frameworks (Driver & Easely, 1978) to the same phenomenon. Although theoretically the number of variations of the alternatives may be as high as the number of the individuals, in fact these alternatives tend to fall into a few distinct categories. From the viewpoint of schooling, children come to any learning of new content with some pre-existing relevant conceptual frameworks which they employ to asimilate the new instructional content. Ausubel, Novak, and Hanesian
(1 978) term these pre-existing frameworks preconceptions and assign to them the most crucial role in determining the longevity and qualitative content of what is learned and remembered.