Children, Youth and Environments.
Vol 14, No.2 (2004)
Extending and Augmenting Scientific Enquiry through Pervasive Learning Environments
We are interested in designing pervasive learning environments to enhance students’ ability to practice scientific enquiry. Our focus is on supporting idea generation, hypothesis testing and reasoning more effectively in the field. Traditionally, students have undertaken physical activities like discovering, collecting and recording of environmental/ biological processes in the field while higher level processes, such as analyzing, reasoning and predicting, have occurred subsequently when back in the classroom or lab. Our research is concerned with how wireless and mobile technologies can be used in the field to better integrate the various scientific processes. In so doing, our goal is to encourage students to use more holistic, creative and flexible forms of reasoning about the interdependencies and cause and effects underlying system processes. We present findings from the Ambient Wood project where a woodland was transformed into a pervasive learning environment, enabling students to integrate and practice their scientific enquiry skills outdoors.