Relationships between Learning Modes and Knowledge Structures of Primary School Children: Reflected on the Concept Maps of the 'Structure and Function of Plant' Unit

'식물의 구조와 기능'에 대한 초등학교 아동들의 지식구조와 학습성향과의 관계

  • Published : 2002.12.30

Abstract

This study examined the knowledge structure constructed by children before formal instruction, and successive changes in the structural complexity of knowledge during and after the learning of 'Structure and Function of Plant' unit. It also investigated how those changes were affected by children's learning modes. The researchers made the 5th graders draw the first draft of their concept map to see the pre-existing knowledge structure concerned with the unit and four more concept maps after completing every fourth lesson. And to see how long their knowledge structures were preserved, the researchers made children draw additional concept maps in 3 days, 3 months, and 7 months after completing the unit. Children drew their current concept maps on the basis of the previous one while learning the unit and without the previous one after completing the unit. Each concept map drawn by children showed the degree of their current understanding on the structures and functions of plants. The results revealed that only two levels of hierarchy and five relationships among the components of the first concept map(relationship, hierarchy, cross link and example) were proven to be valid in terms of conceptual relevance. Growth in the structural complexity of knowledge took place progressively throughout the unit and the effects of learning mode on the growth were favorably reflected in concept map scores of meaningful learners over time(relationship, cross link, example: p<.01, hierarchy: p<.05). Although there were some differences on the concept map scores between two types of learners, they commonly showed that knowledge restructuring had occurred apparently in the early periods from the 1st to the 6th lesson and had not occurred at all in the last period of the unit. The frequency of tuning was higher in rote learners than in meaningful learners throughout the unit, but the frequency of accretion was reverse. Concept map scores of rote learners constructed in the course of learning of the unit decreased little by little gradually in all the categories after completing the unit. However, the average total map score of meaningful learners increased a little more in 7 months than in 3 months after completing the unit. Therefore it can be inferred that meaningful learners construct more stable and well-differentiated knowledge structures than the rote learners.

Keywords

learning mode;knowledge structure;concept map;children;structure and function of plant

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