Kastamonu Education Journal, vol.29, no.1, pp.239-253, 2021 (Peer-Reviewed Journal)
Purpose: The aim of this study is to determine the changes in the cognitive structures of middle school students studying at 5th, 6th and 7th grades after the implementation of water cycle educational game activity.
Design/Methodology/Approach: The study was conducted according to a pre-experimental (single group, pre-test, post-test) method. The study group consists of 51 students at fifth (N: 18), sixth (N: 16) and seventh (N: 17) grades in a middle school in one of the districts located in the rural part of a province in the Eastern Black Sea Region. Word Association Test (WAT) and Water Cycle Drawing Test were used as data collection tools. The activity named as "The Incredible Journey" provided by the ProjectWET Association was used as the educational game. Content analysis method was used in the analysis of the data. In order to evaluate the results of the Word Association Test (WAT), the answers given to the key concept of "water cycle" were examined in detail. The rubric prepared by the researchers was used for scoring the drawings.
Findings: According to the data, it was determined that the fifth-grade students’ WAT results showed the most change compared to other grades. According to the results obtained from the drawing test, the insufficient and limited understandings of all students turned into limited, sufficient and excellent.
Highlights: Since the development of students' cognitive structures is closely related to the education they will receive,
trainings including educational games can be given especially to teachers. Teachers can use ProjectWET-The Incredible Journey
in their lessons.