The research investigated the use of bioplastics as a contemporary theme for the construction of the concepts of degradation, biodegradation and decomposition. The students had difficulties in their construction, possibly because they involved phenomena at the molecular level, which require a large capacity of abstraction and also because the aspects that differentiate between these processes themselves are fairly subtle. Bioplastics are quite appropriate to this kind of intervention, because they can be manufactured in laboratories in the school and would allow on-site observation of biological processes. The theoretical presuppositions of this work were the Theory of Personal Constructs (Cycle Experiment) and hermeneutic-dialectic methodology. The results indicate that initially the students had difficulties with the terminology and issues related to the perception of the phenomena on a micro scale. However, their final designs (individually and collectively) were significantly altered, because concepts were very close to the formal scientific definitions found in the literature of the area.
Bioplastics; Biological processes; Kelly's Experience Cycle; Hermeneutic-Dialectic Circle