Att skriva i naturorienterande ämnen i skolan
Sammanfattning: When children encounter new subjects in school, they are also faced with new ways of using language. Learning science thus means learning the language of science, and writing is one of the ways this is accomplished. The present study investigates writing in natural sciences in grades 5 and 8 in Swedish schools. Major theoretical influences for these investigations are found within the socio-cultural, dialogical and social semiotic perspectives on language use.The study is based on texts written by 97 students, interviews around these texts and observations from 16 different classroom practices. Writing is seen as a situated practice; therefore analysis is carried out of the activities surrounding the texts. The student texts are analysed in terms of genre and in relation to their abstraction, density and use of expansions. This analysis shows among other things that the texts show increasing abstraction and density with increasing age, whereas the text structure and the use of expansions do not increase.It is also argued that a central point in school writing must be the students’ way of talking about their texts. Analysis of interviews with the students is thus carried out in terms of text movability. The results from this analysis indicate that students find it difficult to talk about their texts. They find it hard to express the main content of the text, as well as to discuss it’s function and potential readers.Previous studies argue that writing constitutes a potential for learning. In the material studied in this thesis, this potential learning tool is not used to any large extent. To be able to participate in natural sciences in higher levels, students need to take part in practices where the specialized language of natural science is used in writing as well as in speech.
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