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Sparking students’ curiosity: Embedding strategies to promote curiosity alongside teaching static electricity

Science Scope—July/August 2024 (Volume 47, Issue 4)

By Jesse Wilcox, Stephanie Zavalza Flores, MacKenzie Bruns, Sarah Nolting

In this article, we use the strategies listed above to engage students in a 5E lesson on static electricity (partially addressing MS-PS2-3). We start the engage phase by using a “magic trick” as a hook to engage students about static electricity. During the explore phase, students get the chance to interact with a variety of static electricity phenomena and write down what they are curious about. Next, we help students make sense of the experiences through teacher questioning in the explore phase. In the elaborate phase, we encourage student speculation and questions by having them generate their own research questions. In the evaluate phase, we use novel scenarios related to what students learned to assess their thinking and maintain curiosity. Throughout all of the 5E, we strive to model curiosity by looking excited, asking speculative questions, and being interested in students’ ideas (Clough et al., 2009).

5E Inquiry STEM Teaching Strategies Middle School

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