In the introductory part of the thesis, we explained the theory of motivation. Motivation is the process of promoting and directing human behavior towards achieving a goal. In order to increase internal motivation, students’ interests need to be developed. More interest is shown when work in the classroom is interesting to students.
In Slovenia, we teach the basic biology of the human body already in the first years of school, however skeletal and muscle system is taught in the 8th grade of the elementary school. The aim of our research was to gain insight into the knowledge of the 8th grade elementary school students in the field of human joints. We were interested in differences in knowledge based on the attending school, gender and age of the pupil. The data was collected with an anonymous questionnaire. We interviewed students from eight Slovenian elementary schools from different towns. 217 students from the 8th and 9th grades participated.
Our findings show a difference in students' knowledge according to the teaching school. Some questions were better answered by students in the 9th grade when compared to answers from the 8th grade students. On certain questions girls were more successful than boys.
We analyzed two certified textbooks, a workbook and the active learning booklet for biology in the eighth grade of the primary school which are all used for teaching human joints and muscular system. We have found that the theoretical part of the human joints and the muscular system is well covered.
Based on the findings of this research, we plan to continue with a master's course research which will be focused on preparing and verifying the effectiveness of the teaching preparation.