The Science Teachers and Their Way of Thinking About Astronomy
The research presented in this article is about the way science teachers from Elementary School think about astronomical elements. Its methodology is based on semi-structured interviews, which were video recorded. The research is centered in a three-dimensional perspective of astronomical elements, making it possible to determine the teachers´ conceptions about shape and dimension of the Earth, the Sun, the Moon, the planets and the stars, and also the conceptions about sky and Universe. The results indicate a Universe that contains: Sun, stars, planets and Moon; where the Solar System is a little part of the whole. Sometimes they think that the Solar System is the Universe. The objects are in the sky or in the Universe, which, for many of them, is only the space above the Earth. The flat shape of astronomical objects and the spatial structure of the Universe are striking features. Many of them think that Sun and stars are different: the Sun is a hot object and the stars are cold ones. These results worry us and they certainly indicate how urgent it is to plan Professional Development in Astronomy for teachers, after all the PCN´s emphasize that this subject is important to be taught.