Some Fundamentals of Engaging Stories

Environmental Education Research (Impact Factor: 0.85). 05/1996; 2(2):171-187. DOI: 10.1080/1350462960020204


This paper discusses a form of information transfer referred to as story. It is suggested that stories serve as a singularly effective replacement for direct experience, a useful but sometimes difficult environmental education technique. The effectiveness of stories is argued to derive from their ability to engage the attention of the reader. The paper concludes with a list of elements that can be used to create cognitively engaging stories.

Download full-text


Available from: Raymond K De Young, Dec 30, 2013
  • Source
    • "Klassen (2009) maintains that creating good stories is a challenging task, especially so for science educators without a background in the humanities. The criteria for selecting or creating a story that fosters the development of romantic understanding should, however, not be identified solely with the elements of an engaging story (see De Young and Monroe 1996) or with the criteria of a " good story " (Klassen 2009; Kubli 2001). A story that fosters romantic understanding should be structured in such a way that, in addition to the elements of a " good story " (i.e., coherence, problematization, mystery, characterization, problem resolution, challenging previous knowledge, raising questions), the distinct characteristics of romantic understanding are taken into account. "
    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: The purpose of this paper is to discuss and apply the notion of romantic understanding by outlining its features and its potential role in science education, to identify its features in the story of Nikola Tesla, and to describe an empirical study conducted to determine the effect of telling such a story to Grade 9 students. Elaborated features of the story are the humanization of meaning, an association with heroes and heroic qualities, the limits of reality and extremes of experience, a sense of wonder, and a contesting of conventions and conventional ideas. The study demonstrates the learning benefits of encouraging a romantic understanding through a story that is structured explicitly around the identified features, in this instance in the context of the production and transmission of alternating current electricity. Quantitative and qualitative analyses of journal entries showed that the group of students who were encouraged to understand the concept of alternating current romantically (the experimental group) became more involved with both the content and the context of the story than a comparison group of students who were taught the concept explicitly, without a context (the control group). The students in the experimental group also performed statistically better on a science-content test taken 1 week and again 8 weeks after the indicated teaching intervention. This finding, along with the content analyses of students’ journals, provided evidence of romantic understanding of the science content for those students who listened to the Tesla story.
    Full-text · Article · Aug 2011 · Science & Education
  • Source
    • "This structure attempts to re-create the dialogic interface between Indigenous and non-Indigenous peoples, assisting students and teachers to talk through the deeply entrenched colonial frameworks that can characterize this type of exchanges. In this metaphor, the notion that the method of presenting learning environments is just as important as the content is central to the design (De Young & Monroe 1996, p. 171). The gravity of these metaphors is used as a discussion trigger in tutorial sessions. "
    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: This paper reflects a long journey of collaborative policy and curriculum reform; the reform of many of the colonised spaces within which we work in higher education. The inclusion of Indigenous knowledges in higher education for many years has been positioned as an equity/ social justice issue, or as "study about" Indigenous peoples within unchallenged, colonial disciplinary spaces. To embrace, centralise and embed Indigenous knowledges as a core feature of the curriculum at QUT, and particularly in the education of pre-service teachers, a strategic, unique Indigenous pedagogy needed to be recognised and justified at a policy level, promoted and embraced at the teaching staff level, and implemented in the pre-service teacher education classroom through a compulsory unit called 'Culture Studies: Indigenous Education'. As such, this reform may be described as a continuing series of dialogues at many cultural interfaces (Nakata, 2002).
    Full-text · Article ·
  • Source
    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: The charming fame of Taiwan, Formosa meaning 'beautiful island,' has been faded away when economic development goes up. Building environmental concerns and raising awareness through education is a must. Therefore, The Ministry of Education has defined environment education as one of the six major issues of Grade 1-9 Curriculum Guidelines. Learning is the construction and refinement of knowledge structures in learner's mind. Not simply be formed from transfer or training; knowledge has to be built by individuals. Hence, ossified knowledge fails to offer a total solution to the needs of links between
    Preview · Article ·
Show more