[[abstract]]The objectivity of this study is to promote students' understanding of "atomic structure" conceptions through constructivist teaching activities which introduces the history of science into the contents of the course. The manner of problem-oriented and cooperative learning was used to accomplish active thinking and discussion. First, the history of science on the "atom" topics was established, it had three major parts: the history of atomism, modern atomic theory, and the evolution of periodic table. The constructivist teaching activities was developed according to high school chemistry curriculum which identify the conceptions students should learn, problem-design to help students' active thinking and inquirying for scientific problems, and uses of teaching strategies and teaching media. Empirical research was carried out in order to prove the value and viability of this activity. 191 senior high school students were selected with purposeful sampling, among which one class is experimental group and the other four are control group. The first study used action research to analyze students' conceptual change during the learning process. The second study took quasi-experimental design to see how constructivist teaching influenced students' learning. The third study was to analyze students' alternative conceptions of atomic structure, it can provide teachers some guides for their teaching practices. Results from empirical research showed that most students enjoyed the activity. They thought and participated in the activity, discussed and negotiated with each other and the teacher to construct their own knowledge. In the phase of concept learning, students had difficulty in understanding abstract atomic conceptions. It's not so simple for them to change their concepts. Finally, students in the constructivist classroom learned better than students in the traditional classroom. It is shown that the constructivist teaching model on the basis of atomic history and inquiry teaching is useful to promote students' learning and conceptual change.
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