- Volume 17 Issue 1
The problem solving processes of elementary school children who are talented in science have been seldom studied. Researchers often resort to thinking aloud method to collect data of problem solving processes. The major purpose of the study is investigating high ability elementary school students' problem solving processes through the analysis of written responses to science problems in everyday context. 67 elementary students were participated Chungcheongbuk-do Elementary Science Contest held on October, 1997. The written responses of the contest participants to science problems in everyday context were analyzed in terms of problem solving processes. The findings of the research are as follows. (1) High ability elementary students use various concepts about air and water in the process of problem solving. (2) High ability elementary students use content specific problem solving strategies. (3) The problem solving processes of the high ability elementary students consist of problem representation, problem solution, and answer stages. Problem representation stage is further divided into translation and integration phases. Problem solving stage is composed of deciding relevant knowledge, strategy, and info..ins phases. (4) High ability elementary students' problem solving processes could be categorized into 11 qualitatively different groups. (5) Students failures in problem solving are explained by many phases of problem solving processes. Deciding relevant knowledge and inferring phases play major roles in problem solving. (6) The analysis of students' written responses, although has some limitations, could provide plenty of information about high ability elementary students' problem solving precesses.