This study concerns the nature of the analogies and metaphors used by secondary-level students in their explanations of the temperature of melting ice. The process the students followed to construct their explanations, the role of analogies and metaphors in that process, and the tendency to select the base-domain of analogies and metaphors, were examined. The teacher's question, which included the target situation and premises, was modified by reducing, simplifying, and altering elements of that situation and those premises. The transformation process-common among experts-constituted the processes of restatement and analogical reasoning. Through this process, the teacher's question was simplified to facilitate the students' ability to answer; however, this restricted the range of explanations. As a result, the students' explanations often became biased or inconsistent. Some of the students' analogies and metaphors were often incorporated into the explanations. While the students reached the same conclusion in spite of selecting a different base-domain, a base-domain used to explain one idea was never used to explain another idea. This tendency revealed that the students selected the near-distance domain as their base-domain more often than the far-distance domain, even if both domains were familiar. However, despite the use of analogies or metaphors, the students arrived at the same conclusions. The students' explanations should have been focused not only on conclusions, but also on the process followed to construct their explanations. The constructions of the explanations differed considerably from semantic and pragmatic perspectives; that is, the same conclusion did not always represent the same reasoning process, which included the recognition of a question and the construction of an explanation. In addition, the students' analogies and metaphors performed various functions in their explanations: generalizing the patterns or regularities of a phenomenon by relating it to another similar phenomenon; introducing new explanatory factors (some relationships or properties, etc.) into their explanations, and organizing their prior knowledge and experiences.
The purposes of this study were twofold: to determine the actual level of the high school students' metacognition in experimental activities through a survey called the "Metacognition Scale"; and to develop instructional methods to activate their metacognitive processes. The study surveyed 716 students at four high schools (A through D) in order to examine the compositional concepts of high school students' metacognition in general (analysis 1). In addition, a detailed analysis of the level of high school students' metacognitive ability was formed by comparison of schools A through D with that of one junior high school (E) (analysis 2). The following were the main results: (1) Two factors ("independent metacognitive activity of students" and "metacognitive activity stimulated by interaction with others") were identified as the compositional concepts of high school students' metacognitive ability in experimental activities. (2) "Independent metacognitive activity of students" at school D was lower before the experiment than that of school E. The metacognitive activity at school A was higher during the experiment than that of school D and school E. Moreover the "metacognitive activity stimulated by interaction with others" at school D was lower than that of school A and school E. (3) "Independent metacognitive activity of students" at school E was higher before and during the experiment than after it. The metacognitive activity of school A and school D, however, were higher during the experiment than before and after it. Furthermore, the "metacognitive activity stimulated by interaction with others" was higher before the experiment, than during and after it, in every school. The following conclusions were reached concerning instructional methods to activate the high school students' metacognitive processes: (1) It is important to promote the students' motivation and appropriate understanding of scientific knowledge on experimental activities in school D. (2) Experimental activities should be designed with a view to solving problems in the light of scientific knowledge in schools A and D.
This study aims to find out which behavioral characteristics are associated with "outstanding" Japanese language teachers from the standpoint of Japanese language teachers at secondary schools in Thailand. The questionnaire (consisting of 41 items modified from past studies) was completed by high school teachers, and the replies of 121 teachers were valid. The data was subjected to statistical testing using SEFA (Stepwise Variable Selection in Exploratory Factor Analysis). Through the analysis, four factors were identified: Factor I, specialist knowledge and teaching experience; Factor II, professionalism as a teacher; Factor III, teaching skills; and Factor IV, experience with learning foreign languages and academic degrees. Among these four factors, teachers evaluated Factor II, professionalism as a teacher, the highest. Two subcategories of Factor II, diligence and devotion, were also noted as the first and second most highly-evaluated attributes through comparison of the mean values of all 41 items. The findings, which are in common with those of Nuibe et al. (2009), relate to the good values of the teachers and their teaching skills. Factor I, specialist knowledge and teaching experience, and Factor II, professionalism as a teacher, are identified for the first time in this study. The results show that Japanese language teachers in secondary schools in Thailand think it is very important to be exemplary teachers, with strong professionalism, dedicated and considerate of learners, as well as making good use of teaching skills and expertise in TJFL, especially in order to promote and evaluate the learners' understanding.
In this investigation, an experiment was carried out in which a teacher of a junior college early childhood teacher training course improved his class based on student evaluations of his lectures. In the first study, teacher-related factors (i.e., teaching strategies and methods) that encourage students' satisfaction and comprehension of the class were examined. In a second study, the causal relationship between students' satisfaction and comprehension of the class, teacher-related factors, and students' self-evaluation of their learning, were examined. As a result of two analyses, the following became clear: 1) assistance with knowledge acquisition by the teacher (e.g., time for reflection and a conclusion to the lecture), and teaching skills (e.g., presentation of goals, and appropriate class organization) mainly encourage student satisfaction and comprehension of the class; 2) teaching skills affect students' interest in the class, assistance with knowledge acquisition affects students' practical skills for learning, and both affect students' knowledge acquisition. Furthermore, students' interest has an effect on their class satisfaction, and students' knowledge acquisition and practical skills for learning have an effect on their comprehension of the class, which in turn affects students' satisfaction with the class.
This study aimed to investigate junior high school students' learning process from experience of early childhood and care in Home Economics with a view towards of promoting caring education. In Home Economics, students can learn to have a good relationship with children by sharing daily activities with them. Educational experience in cooking with children after playing together is designed for junior high school students in order to deepen their ability to build relationships with young children. Interviews with students after the experience revealed that they had become receptive to children as 'people who care'. The students were accepted by the children and they recognized their 'identity-in-difference' at the first stage. At the next stage, they were trying to recognize children's expressions to know their feelings and wishes, showing respect for each child's personality. The children responded as 'people who are cared for', which made the students very pleased. The reciprocal relationship between the students and the children could be regarded as a 'caring relationship'.
The purpose of this study was to investigate the conditions in which students on teacher-training programs in Finland develop necessary skills, with a special focus on the subject, 'Crafts'. This study is based on classroom observations and interviews with staff in the department of education at two universities, elementary and middle schools attached to the universities, public elementary and middle schools, and the National Board of Education. Through this study, it was revealed that the teacher-training institutions emphasize "well-rounded lessons which incorporate the skills of various subjects" and "bridging basic learning and advanced learning." In this manner, the training programs aim to foster students who are able to develop appropriate lesson objectives and effective teaching materials. In addition, the programs focus on training students to assist learners' developmental processes while being conscious of "co-learning in diverse learner groups", "the acquisition of learning methods and the curiosity to learn," and "building appropriate learning environments". The present study found that the teacher-training programs develop students who can organize lectures that are appropriate for children's developmental processes through lessons in which children study the subject cooperatively, acknowledging peers' individual differences.