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  • In this activity, students participate in an interactive ‘true or false’ activity that highlights common alternative conceptions about light and sight. This activity can be done individually, in pairs or as a whole class. A paper-based version is included in the download.

    By the end of this activity, students should be able to:

    • clarify some of their current views about light and sight
    • provide evidence to support their current views
    • debate ideas with others who hold different views that may challenge their current thinking
    • investigate some key light concepts including how light travels and how we see things.

    ...unless we know what children think and why they think that way, we have little chance of making any impact with our teaching no matter how skilfully we proceed.

    Osborne & Freyberg, 1985, p.13

    Download the Word file (see link below) for:

    • introduction/background notes
    • what you need
    • what to do
    • extension ideas
    • student handout.

    Related content

    This article introduces common student alternative conceptions about light based on education research.

    Useful link

    This page from the Australian education website (Victoria Department of Education and Training) outlines information about concept maps and the building of scientific concepts, including waves.

      Published 26 April 2012, Updated 3 June 2020 Referencing Hub articles
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