THE EFFECT OF COMBINING ANALOGY-BASED SIMULATION AND LABORATORY ACTIVITIES ON TURKISH ELEMENTARY SCHOOL STUDENTSí UNDERSTANDING OF SIMPLE ELECTRIC CIRCUITS
The purpose of this study was to investigate whether the combination of both analogy-based simulation and laboratory activities as a teaching tool was more effective than utilizing them separately in teaching the concepts of simple electricity. The quasi-experimental design that involved 66 seventh grade students from urban Turkish elementary school was used. The participants were randomly assigned to the control group I in which the real laboratory activities were used, to the control group II in which analogy-based simulation activities were used and to the experimental group in which both analogy-based simulation and laboratory activities were used together. Electricity performance test (EPT) prepared by the researchers was administered to assess the studentsí understanding of electric circuits before and after the teaching intervention. The results indicated that the combination of both analogy-based simulation and laboratory activities caused statistically greater learning acquisition than the analogy-based simulation and laboratory activities did alone. However, on the contrary to our expectations there was no statistical difference between the control I and control II groups. The results highlighted that environments of laboratory and computers are complementing each other, not to prefer one to another in teaching the concepts of simple electricity.