Conceptions of the greenhouse effect and global warming among elementary students from diverse languages and cultures

Okhee Lee, Benjamin T. Lester, Li Ma, Julie Lambert, Melissa Jean-Baptiste

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

As part of a large-scale intervention, this study examined conceptions of the greenhouse effect and global warming among elementary students from diverse languages and cultures in the U.S. To make science relevant and meaningful for diverse student groups, the intervention emphasized the integration of (a) scientific understanding and inquiry, (b) English language and literacy, and (c) students' home language and culture. The study involved 5th grade students from five elementary schools of varying demographic makeup in a large urban school district. The intervention's effectiveness was measured by student responses on a writing prompt addressing this topic in the beginning and at the completion of instruction over the school year. The results indicate that students overall demonstrated more scientific conceptual understandings after instruction. Furthermore, all demographic subgroups in terms of gender, ethnicity, socioeconomic status, English proficiency, and home language demonstrated statistically significant improvements after instruction, with the exceptions of African-American and Haitian students showing little or no gain.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)117-125
Number of pages9
JournalJournal of Geoscience Education
Volume55
Issue number2
StatePublished - Mar 2007

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greenhouse effect
global warming
student
language
instruction
socioeconomic status
African American
literacy
ethnicity
school
elementary school
English language
social status
gender
school grade
district
science

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Earth and Planetary Sciences(all)

Cite this

Conceptions of the greenhouse effect and global warming among elementary students from diverse languages and cultures. / Lee, Okhee; Lester, Benjamin T.; Ma, Li; Lambert, Julie; Jean-Baptiste, Melissa.

In: Journal of Geoscience Education, Vol. 55, No. 2, 03.2007, p. 117-125.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Lee, Okhee ; Lester, Benjamin T. ; Ma, Li ; Lambert, Julie ; Jean-Baptiste, Melissa. / Conceptions of the greenhouse effect and global warming among elementary students from diverse languages and cultures. In: Journal of Geoscience Education. 2007 ; Vol. 55, No. 2. pp. 117-125.
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