Dr. Michael Wittmann
University of Maine
Investigating Teacher Knowledge of Energy, Students' Ideas, and Pedagogical Strategies
102 Cardwell Hall
March 23, 2015
As part of the Maine Physical Sciences Partnership, a collaboration between the University of Maine, schools, and education research non-profits, we have been studying teacher knowledge of energy. In addition to investigating their content knowledge (what they know about energy transfer, transformation, and conservation), we have asked the teachers about their expectations of students' ideas about energy and how they plan to address and affect student thinking in the classroom. Data have been gathered primarily through surveys administered annually, meaning that we have multiple years of responses from several teachers and can follow the development of their thinking. We have used these data as part of our professional development activities with teachers, having them discuss and analyze their colleagues' responses. We find that even highly experienced teachers develop their knowledge of content, students, and pedagogy through our professional development activities.