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A Case study on pre-service science teachers’ dynamic mental constructs on the concepts regarding the phases of the earth’s moon

Sağdıç, Ali
The purpose of the current study is to examine pre-service science teachers’ knowledge pieces regarding concepts of phases of the moon. The data were collected from fourteen pre-service science teachers via clinical interview. Pre-service science teachers responded interview question with oral explanation, drawing and model demonstration. The finding of the study showed that pre-service science teachers activated knowledge elements and constructed mental structure in order to explain phases of the moon. It was revealed that their mental construct were dynamic characteristics, which may change in different contexts. More importantly, it was showed that pre-service science teachers’ explanations are shaped by their spatial abilities. The finding of the study suggested that pre-service science teachers should re-organize their knowledge elements in order to have sophisticated understanding regarding phases of the moon. Therefore, pre-service science teachers should be provided training which may improve their awareness on their own mental structure.