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Learning Cellular Respiration Through Models and Modeling: A Case of and for Constructing Gapless Explanations

Sat, April 10, 10:40am to 12:10pm EDT (10:40am to 12:10pm EDT), Division C, Division C - Section 1d: Science Paper and Symposium Sessions


Students struggle to articulate explanations that are coherent in narrative and mechanism. As a disciplinary science practice, model-based learning has the potential to help students with this difficulty. This case study examined how modeling may serve as a tool to construct explanations as a high school student explores the energy transfer in cellular respiration. Data sources were classroom audio and video recordings that captured the development of a model and its subsequent use to make sense of a science text along with student work products. Findings centered on two themes regarding how the student constructed gapless explanations: developing inter-textual explanations of what happened across the segmented ideas in the text and developing extra-textual explanations as to why the events occurred.