SOFTWARE - Rainbow

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 This lesson features multiple representations, which purposefully deliver concepts in relation to distinctive disciplinary subject areas through story-based animations that are closely related to learners' life experiences. The learning activities were designed with story-like animations to display situations associated with a family trip and the viewing of a rainbow
(Figure 1), themes integrating the concepts related to rainbows in mathematics (similar figures and trigonometric functions), physics (“straight light,” the mirror effect and refraction), biology (the structure of the eye) and earth sciences (the daily motion of the sun and atmospheric humidity).

Basically, this online lesson was designed based on Story- Problem-Comprehension (Reusser, 1996): there were a story-like animation of a situation. Some learning mechanics were designed into Lesson Rainbow, such as animated tutorials to facilitate problem solving(Figure 2), an online forum for students’ social interaction to empower knowledge construction(Figure 3), and learning tools as cognitive organizers. The latter included an electronic notebook, an information bank, and an electronic map(Figure 4).

Associated with the design of animated tutorials, we provided several analytic or problem-based questions guiding students to apply, analyze and synthesize the data or information shown in Lesson Rainbow. Animated tutorials aim to increase new concepts into students’ schema; the computer program provides, not correct answers but only guiding feedback, in the form of implicit hints, to scaffold student learning.

  • Figure 1
  • Figure 2
  • Figure 3
  • Figure 4