The purpose of this study was to investigate possible relationships between the conceptions about the nature of science held by physics teachers and their classroom practices through a cross analysis of three ethnographical case studies. The ethnographical observation was carried out through immersion in the physics classes of three high school teachers acting in different types of schools: private, public and military. The findings indicated that the observed didactic practices do not include any aspects of the nature of science, and that Epistemology and History of Physics are not yet present in high school physics classes. This study suggests that the relationship between the epistemological views of teachers and their practices are fragile and are manifested implicitly. Nevertheless, it was possible to observe some differences in the practices of those teachers who have a more contemporary epistemological view, and who tend to keep a more open mind to didactic innovation.
Nature of science; Didactics; Physics teaching; High School