We present an analysis of students' reflective writing (diaries) of two cohorts of Grade 8 students, one undergoing inquiry and the other traditional science teaching. Students' writing included a summary of what students had learned in class on that day and their opinions and feelings about the class. The entries were analysed qualitatively and quantitatively. This analysis of students' first-person accounts of their learning experience and their notes taken during class was useful in two ways. First, it brought out a spectrum of differences in outcomes of these two teaching modes—conceptual, affective and epistemic. Second, this analysis brought out the significance and meaning of the learning experience for students in their own words, thus adding another dimension to researchers' characterisation of the two teaching methods.
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