Children’s representation of the Earth at the end of elementary school: the role of spherical and geographical information carried by the globe



Children’s representation of the Earth is usually analysed from an astronomical point of view. In our study, we used a globe to support children reasoning and we distinguished the impact of the two types of information that it carries: spherical and geographical. Children (aged 11 years) performed tasks with a regular globe or a blank globe. The results showed that children performed better in the presence of geographical information. In French education, the shape of the Earth is taught independently in science and geography classes whereas our study shows that these two fields are intertwined to support the representation of a spherical Earth.


Earth, knowledge, globe, astronomy, geography

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