Approaching the history of science through its images in science teacher education
Joseph Priestley’s pneumatic apparatus. From Experiments and Observations on Different Kinds of Air (London, 1775), Frontispiece.
The search for appropriate formats to present the history of science to science teachers is far from a minor issue. This paper addresses the question of the suitability of historical images of science when used as teaching resources. Discussions about images enable students to discover elements that can help them to both generate and share explanations.
The objective is not so much to teach the history of science as to make use of it with an alternative approach by means of homeopathic doses through images. Joseph Priestley’s 1775 image of the pneumatic apparatus may be suitable as a guiding resource to promote discussion about issues such as the nature of the aerial state, the interaction between theory and apparatus design, or the constraints and risks of the materials used in the making of apparatuses.
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