Om livets kontinuitet. Undervisning och lärande om växters och djurs livscykler - en fallstudie i årskurs 5
Sammanfattning: The aim of this thesis is to contribute to increased understanding of teaching and learning about life cycles, when the teaching is based on living organisms and the teacher is introduced to ideas of research on pupils’ ideas and formative assessment. This aim is addressed by investigating the pupils’ learning as well as their experiences of the living organisms, inquiring into the teachers’ competence and by describing the actual teaching. It is based on a case study of one teacher teaching two groups of pupils during two different terms. There are two years between the end of the first study and the beginning of the second. The pupils’ learning of aspects of life cycles and experiences of the living organisms are investigated by tests before and after each teaching period and, for the last group of pupils, by written tasks during teaching. The teacher’s competence is mainly investigated by interviews before and after teaching. The teaching is described through the teacher’s diary and through classroom observations. The analysis shows that the pupils learn about aspects of life cycles and that the pupils in the second study, seem to have learnt some of the aspects in a more correct and in a more qualitatively developed way than the previous group of pupils. It is also clear that the teacher has developed her competence to teach this content area, and that her teaching has changed during the period of the study. Possibly one reason for this is her increased use of formative assessment. It is also evident that the teaching and learning is rich in aesthetic experiences and that the pupils care about the organisms they are looking after. Apart from having a possible effect on cognitive learning, this might promote a care for nature, which means that learning about life cycles could play a part in education for sustainable development.
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