Bitesize CPD #3 Predict, Explain, Observe (Explain)

Keeley (2013) describes how to use the P-E-O technique (Predict-Explain-Observe) to expose students’ preconceptions about buoyancy, but you can use the same technique across a range of topics - very useful before you begin teaching a topic or unit.

P-E-O begins with students drawing on their prior knowledge and experiences to make a prediction about what will happen. In this case, students predict what they think would happen if holes were poked all the way through the material as shown in the illustration.

Students select their prediction from each of the answer choices provided in the question and then write an explanation to support their reasoning.

Then in small groups, or as a whole-class discussion, students share their predictions and defend their reasoning. The teacher listens carefully for evidence of understanding or misconceptions related to how objects float.

The next step is for students to observe what actually happens, which often generates cognitive conflict.

A good extension to this is for students to then explain what they observed:  Predict-Explain-Observe-Explain


Have a look at 'Using the P.E.O technique' by P.Keeley.

What other topics or experiments could you use this approach with?   Share your ideas in the comments to build up a bank of ideas.




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