The Repository @ St. Cloud State

Open Access Knowledge and Scholarship

Date of Award


Culminating Project Type

Starred Paper

Degree Name

Curriculum and Instruction: M.S.


Teacher Development


School of Education

First Advisor

Martin Lo

Second Advisor

Merton Thompson

Creative Commons License

Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 4.0 License.

Keywords and Subject Headings

Computer Simulations, Inquiry Based Learning, Science


Teaching science is a challenging task because the majority of sicence labs are interactive in which students manipulate and move things around in order to better understand the concepts being taught. Finding and utilizing appropriate labs for simpler concepts such as metals vs. non-metals or identifying rocks and minerals is fairly easy. However, the search for and use of appropriate labs is more challenging when teaching lessons of concepts that are of a more intangible nature. Concepts and lessons about the solar system, universe, or molecules are examples of such. For these, there is a lack of available hands-on activities which often requires the use of computer simulations. The purpose of this study is to examine ways of pairing computer simulations and hands-on activities in science instruction to create successful, engaging lessons.



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