Abstract: Parents’growing concerns about the current approaches to learning mathematics in elementary school have drawn public attention in Canada. Rather than dismiss such concerns, understanding parent perceptions and garnering their support is essential to ongoing curriculum transformation and students’ success in mathematics learning. Using phenomenography, we examined parents’ perceptions of the current mathematics curriculum and their children’s experiences as expressed in community-based focus groups and individual interviews. Parents responded based on their past experiences, their views of children’s current experiences and their future aspirations for their children. Our analysis of parents’ perspectives revealed that their concerns and critiques were grounded in the expectations they held for their children’s mathematics learning. In particular, parental expectations fell into three categories: students need the opportunity to reach expected goals of mathematics learning; essential supports must be in place to reach expected goals; and, home-school communication is necessary for parent understanding and engagement. We suggest that by understanding the specific expectations that underlie parents’ concerns, teachers can engage in conversations that begin with affirming mutual expectations and respecting parents’ personal experiences to lead to partnering with parents as they realize their agency in their children’s learning.
All posts by: technovision
Abstract: The teaching and learning of statistical reasoning is becoming challenging due to the change in the perspective emphasizing on the deeper understanding rather than basic statistics computations. As suggested by researchers, implementing technologies able to develop student interest in the topics leads to deeper understanding. Hence, this study used dynamic software, Fathom for teaching statistical reasoning. The purpose of this study is to examine the statistical reasoning understanding among upper secondary students after using dynamic software, Fathom. The sample consists of seventy-two students randomly assigned to control and experimental groups. The experimental group underwent an intervention where they learnt statistical reasoning using Fathom while the control group learnt statistical reasoning using traditional learning method not involving Fathom. Statistical Reasoning Assessment (SRA) was used in this study as the instrument for measuring statistical reasoning. The research hypothesis data were analyzed using MANCOVA test. The findings showed a significant difference across four statistical reasoning constructs namely Describing Data, Organizing Data, Representing Data and Analyzing and Interpreting Data between students in the control and experimental groups. Furthermore, the results of the analysis emphasized that the students who learned statistical reasoning using Fathom performed better than students in the control group. In brief, the upper secondary students’ statistical reasoning enhanced after implementing Fathom.
Attempting to Develop Secondary Student’s Interest for Science and Technology Through an In-Service Teacher Training Initiative Based on the Principles of the Learning Community
Abstract: This article presents the results of a quasi-experimental research that has been conducted by the (Infrastructure of the authors) for two years. This research aimed at increasing student’s interest for science and technology (ST) by enhanced pedagogical interventions, designed by their teachers in the context of a learning community. It also aimed at measuring this possible increase. Results show that three of the four intervention types (scientific inquiry, context-based and project-based learning) had positive effects of various strengths on students’ interest, but that collaborative teaching did not. Hypotheses to explain these results and recommendations are formulated.
Teachers and Museum Educators’ Views About Inquiry Practices: The Aftermath of a Joint Professional Development Course
Abstract: Current science curricula adopt inquiry as a basic component in their proposals, and at the same time they place emphasis on the non-formal aspect of education, due to the fact that inquiry is easier to be implemented in science centers and museums. In this context, both teachers and museum educators’ roles are viewed with a common lens, as though both groups of professionals have critical roles in the success of a school museum visit, they do not necessarily share the same agenda for the visit. In the present small-scale qualitative research, we studied two Greek science teachers and two museum educators who attended a joint professional development course on the Tinkering approach in Milan in the context of an EU funded project. We looked into the impact of the joint course on their views about inquiry and specifically their views about inquiry before and after being exposed to inquiry based Tinkering activities. We also studied their views about the joint course per se. Data collection was based on semi-structured interviews and the participants’ notes. The results point both to some different and common points between teachers and museum educators’ views. The opportunity to exploit the results in a broader non-formal science education context is also being discussed.
Almost 60 years ago Jawaharlal Nehru speaking about the future of India’s economy and society observed that it is “science alone that can solve the problems of hunger and poverty, of sanitation and literacy, of superstition and tradition, of vast resources running to waste, of a rich country inhabited by starving people… The future belongs to science and to those who make friends with science.”
Abstract: We conducted an unprecedented analysis of the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS) primary school science curriculum. The research question focuses on the general scientific quality of the five documents examined, the integration of religious content and the possible tensions between science and religion that result from including such material in the corpus. This content analysis also focuses on the ideological/political agenda that supports its content and structure. Conclusions argue that the ISIS science curriculum appears to be committed to an absolutist/theocratic ideological program that, among other things, promotes a very inadequate concept of scientific activity and content. Recommendations about secularization and the reconstruction of post-ISIS education systems are formulated.
Didactic proposal to overcome the difficulties in the learning of Area and Volume in Spanish Primary Education students
Abstract: This work presents a didactic proposal for the learning and measure of surface area and body volume. This proposal is framed in the Anthropological Theory of the Didactic (ATD), based on the recognized errors in the learning of these magnitudes and considering their connection with the typified learning difficulties or epistemological obstacles. The proposal was developed as a didactic sequence, including the tasks from didactic situations (as considered by Brousseau) and with a cross-curricular perspective in relation to the social-systemic structure (ATD), without restricting them in any didactic unit. The praxeology was structured in accordance with the approaches of the ATD, and the didactic methodology was based on the definition of the errors, which followed the phases of development of the usual models in the learning of Geometry. These phases were defined under a generic framework influenced by the developed Van Hiele model for the learning of Geometry. The tasks that composed the didactic sequences were created “ad-hoc” or extracted from adequate sources throughout the Spanish curriculum of Primary Education. The proposal was designed to be applied in the 5th Primary Education grade. The collection of evidences on the students learning regarding the area and the volume after the implementation of the proposal constitutes the natural next step of this project.
An Indonesian Translation and Adaptation of the POSTT: A Science Teacher Pedagogical Orientation, Formative Assessment Device
Abstract: Indonesia has experienced problems in teacher quality, especially science teachers. Teacher-training programs in which preservice teachers are taught to use the most appropriate science teaching methods are critical in order to prepare qualified teachers. Having a formative way to assess and discuss preservice science teachers’ preferred teaching orientations is important. Therefore, the Pedagogy of Science Teaching Test (POSTT) was translated and adapted into Bahasa as a formative assessment for preservice science teachers. There were eight steps in the translation and validation of a selected set of POSTT items into Bahasa (Indonesian language) involving Indonesian language experts and science content experts. Pilot study data indicates that the transadapted items are both reliable and valid for use with Indonesian teachers, and that the transadapted POSTT items are understandable and adequately fit with Indonesian school culture. This being the case, science educators in other countries may also wish to employ transadapted POSTT items for preservice science teacher education purposes.
Indonesia Vocational High School Science Teachers’ Priorities Regarding 21st Century Learning Skills in Their Science Classrooms
Abstract: The purpose of this study was to examine vocational high school science teachers’ instructional prioritizing the 21st Century Skills mandated in the Indonesian National Curriculum 2013 revision. The Indonesian government implemented this curriculum in 2017 to support students’ career readiness, which was inadequately addressed in previous curriculum documents. Survey data was obtained from the population of vocational high school science teachers in the city of Pontianak, West Kalimantan province, Indonesia. The study contrasted the prioritizing of 21st Century Skills objectives with previous curriculum objectives, in order to determine if teachers give priority to current curriculum requirements or are still focusing on previous requirements. The study furthermore examined whether teacher demographic data are associated with their teaching priorities. Results indicate teachers do prioritize the 21st Century Learning Skills over previous curriculum objectives. Novice teachers report higher priority on communication skills and male teachers give higher priority to problem solving. Future research includes determining how these priorities translate into classroom practice.
The Development and Validation of a 21st Century Skills Instrument: Measuring Secondary School Students’ Skills
Abstract: Due to the rapid change in technology and information dissemination, the qualities and skills employers and colleges demand in the 21st century have changed. To help higher education institutions and workforce to identify and measure their prospective students and employees’ skills respectively, we designed an instrument for secondary grade students to self-assess their 21st century skills. After successful piloting, validation of the final instrument was done with 282 high school students from a public high school in Texas. We utilized exploratory factor analysis and investigated construct validity for the instrument using principal axis factoring with Promax rotation and Kaiser normalization. We found that the original 48 items developed for the instrument were loading the four factors as theorized in our model. Finally, confirmatory factor analysis (CFA) models for four scales were separately investigated. Maximum likelihood estimation method was used for all analyses though Mplus8.2 (Muthén & Muthén, 1998-2017). We came up with 5 factors and 43 items. Researchers, K-12 educators, postsecondary educators, and employers may benefit from the development of this instrument.