Matching Items (38)

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Exploring Outdoor Makerspaces to Develop STEM Skills

Description

As an urgency has emerged to prepare students to be future-ready, makerspaces have been developed as a technique for teachers to use in classrooms to build science, technology, engineering and

As an urgency has emerged to prepare students to be future-ready, makerspaces have been developed as a technique for teachers to use in classrooms to build science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) skills. Makerspaces expose students to innovation and are powerful tools in training students to use science and engineering practices as they invent, discover and tinker. While indoor makerspaces have been studied in multiple settings, little research has been performed to understand the relevance of makerspaces in outdoor settings.

The goal of this study was to aid 20 elementary teachers in developing their understanding of the usefulness and benefits of outdoor makerspaces. A constructivist approach was used in order for participants to overcome pre-conceived barriers about taking students outside for learning. In this qualitative study, participants took part in a hands-on professional development session to learn how to integrate nature into instruction, then used outdoor spaces to engage their own students in three or more outdoor sessions. Teachers reflected before, during and after the intervention to see if the likelihood of engaging students in outdoor learning changed.

The findings of the study showed that spending time outside with students led to a multitude of benefits for both students and teachers. Benefits included increased student engagement, expanded learning for students and teachers, and STEM skill development. These findings, suggest that outdoor makerspaces introduce a new platform for training students and teachers about science and engineering practices while providing authentic science connections, high engagement, and benefits to social and emotional balance.

Contributors

Agent

Created

Date Created
  • 2020

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Strength Braining: An Innovation Countering Fifth-Grade Underachievement in Mathematics Through Growth Mindset and Self-Regulation

Description

The problem of practice addressed in this mixed methods action research study is the underachievement of fifth-grade students in mathematics. This study explores the effects of an innovation designed to

The problem of practice addressed in this mixed methods action research study is the underachievement of fifth-grade students in mathematics. This study explores the effects of an innovation designed to help students develop a growth mindset by utilizing self-regulation strategies to improve academic growth in mathematics. Students’ underachievement in mathematics has been illustrated by both state and international assessments. Throughout the decades, mathematics instruction and reforms have varied, but overall students’ psychological needs have been neglected. This innovation was designed to develop students’ psychological characteristics regarding facing challenges in mathematics. For this purpose, two guiding theories were utilized to frame this research study, Dweck’s mindset theory and self-regulation theory. To address the research questions of this study, pre- and post-questionnaire data, observational data and student work was analyzed. Results of the qualitative data indicated that the innovation positively impacted students’ mindsets and use of self-regulation strategies. However, quantitative data indicated the innovation had no effect on students’ use of self-regulation strategies or academic growth, and a negative impact on students’ mindsets.

Contributors

Agent

Created

Date Created
  • 2020

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Surveying Arizona's third through fifth grade teachers about their confidence in teaching the cognitive demands of the Common Core State Standards to all students

Description

ABSTRACT

The purpose of this descriptive study was to gain an understanding of the confidence level held by third, fourth, and fifth grade teachers as to their preparedness for teaching the

ABSTRACT

The purpose of this descriptive study was to gain an understanding of the confidence level held by third, fourth, and fifth grade teachers as to their preparedness for teaching the cognitive demands of the Common Core State Standards (Arizona's College and Career Ready Standards) to all students, in particular Hispanic students living in poverty, who occupy close to a third of all classroom seats in Arizona. The achievement gap between Hispanic students living in poverty and non-Hispanic students of non-poverty status is one of the largest achievement gaps in Arizona, which has existed with minimal change for more than 12 years. By gaining an understanding of the teachers' confidence in teaching critical thinking skills, further support and professional development is suggested to link a teacher's knowledge to instructional practice that in turn increases the academic achievement of Arizona's poor Hispanic students.

The process of gaining this understanding was by using a multi-dimensional survey with 500 third through fifth grade teachers in two uniquely different, but representative, Arizona school districts. Approximately one-third of those teachers responded to the multi-dimensional survey about teaching the critical thinking (CT) skills of Arizona's College and Career Ready Standards for English Language Arts. The survey asked teachers to rate their levels of preparedness for teaching CT to several types of students, to choose a CT definition, describe the relationship of CT and reading, explain how they teach CT to students who are reading below grade level, express the support they need to teach CT to those students, and rate the effectiveness of several CT classroom vignettes for different types of students. Although the questions involved several types of students, the primary focus was on exploring the teachers' position with teaching CT to Low SES Hispanic students.

A disconnect was revealed between the teachers' perception that they had the ability and knowledge necessary to teach critical thinking skills and their ability to identify ineffective critical thinking instructional practices. This disconnect may be interfering with the link between the professional development teachers are currently receiving to implement Common Core State Standards and teachers actively engaging in learning what is needed to effectively teach critical thinking skills to their students.

Contributors

Agent

Created

Date Created
  • 2014

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Mathematics in a second grade classroom: the effects of cognitively guided problem solving

Description

The need for improved mathematics education in many of America's schools that serve students from low income households has been extensively documented. This practical action research study, set in a

The need for improved mathematics education in many of America's schools that serve students from low income households has been extensively documented. This practical action research study, set in a suburban Title I school with a primarily Hispanic, non-native English speaking population, is designed to explore the effects of the progression through a set of problem solving solution strategies on the mathematics problem solving abilities of 2nd grade students. Students worked in class with partners to complete a Cognitively Guided Instruction-style (CGI) mathematics word problem using a dictated solution strategy five days a week for twelve weeks, three or four weeks for each of four solution strategies. The phases included acting out the problem using realia, representing the problem using standard mathematics manipulatives, modeling the problem using a schematic representation, and solving the problem using a number sentence. Data were collected using a five question problem solving pre- and post-assessment, video recorded observations, and Daily Answer Recording Slips or Mathematics Problem Solving Journals. Findings showed that this problem solving innovation was effective in increasing the problem solving abilities of all participants in this study, with an average increase of 63% in the number of pre-assessment to post-assessment questions answered correctly. Additionally, students increased the complexity of solutions used to solve problems and decreased the rate of guessing at answers to word problems. Further rounds of research looking into the direct effects of the MKO are suggested as next steps of research.

Contributors

Agent

Created

Date Created
  • 2013

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Self-regulated strategy development writing instruction with elementary-aged students learning English

Description

With Common Core State Standards (CCSS), all students are held to the same high expectations, including students learning English and other learners who may have academic difficulties. Many students learning

With Common Core State Standards (CCSS), all students are held to the same high expectations, including students learning English and other learners who may have academic difficulties. Many students learning English have trouble writing and need effective writing strategies to meet the demands the standards present. Ten fourth and fifth grade students learning English (6 girls and 4 boys), whose home language was Spanish, participated in a multiple baseline design across three small groups of participants with multiple probes during baseline. In this study, self-regulated strategy development (SRSD) for opinion writing using students’ own ideas was evaluated. Students who participated in this study demonstrated an increase in: the number of persuasive elements (e.g. premise, reasons, elaborations, and conclusion) included in their essays, overall essay quality, and the number of linking words used when writing opinion essays using their own ideas. Additionally, students’ knowledge of the writing process and opinion-writing genre improved. Students found the instruction to be socially acceptable. Limitations and directions for future research are discussed.

Contributors

Agent

Created

Date Created
  • 2018

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The effect of cognitively guided instruction on primary students' math achievement, problem-solving abilities and teacher questioning

Description

The purpose of this study is to impact the teaching and learning of math of 2nd through 4th grade math students at Porfirio H. Gonzales Elementary School. The Cognitively Guided

The purpose of this study is to impact the teaching and learning of math of 2nd through 4th grade math students at Porfirio H. Gonzales Elementary School. The Cognitively Guided Instruction (CGI) model serves as the independent variable for this study. Its intent is to promote math instruction that emphasizes problem-solving to a greater degree and facilitates higher level questioning of teachers during their instructional dialogue with students. A mixed methods approach is being employed to see how the use of the CGI model of instruction impacts the math achievement of 2nd through 4th grade students on quarterly benchmark assessments administered at this school, to see how students problem-solving abilities progress over the duration of the study, and to see how teacher practices in questioning progress. Quantitative methods are used to answer the first of these research questions using archival time series (Amrein & Berliner, 2002) to view trends in achievement before and after the implementation of the CGI model. Qualitative methods are being used to answer questions around students' progression in their problem-solving abilities and teacher questioning to get richer descriptions of how these constructs evolve over the course of the study.

Contributors

Agent

Created

Date Created
  • 2012

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Standing our sacred ground: one school community's struggle to negotiate restrictive language policy

Description

This is a qualitative case study using ethnographic methods of how one school community has been able to negotiate Arizona's restrictive English only language policies. Drawing from classroom and school-wide

This is a qualitative case study using ethnographic methods of how one school community has been able to negotiate Arizona's restrictive English only language policies. Drawing from classroom and school-wide observations, extensive interviews, and document collection, this case study explores three key questions in relation to this school's negotiation process: 1) What characterizes the curriculum for English learners (ELs) and bilingual students at the case study school? 2) How do key actors, processes, and cultural practices at the case study school support the negotiation of Proposition 203 and House Bill 2064? and 3) What are the perspectives of key school community stakeholders in relation to the curriculum supporting bilingualism and the policy negotiation process? Findings show that by sharing certain key beliefs and practices, the school community has been able to work together, at times through struggle and perseverance, to negotiate for what they believe to be most important in school. They do so by sharing such key beliefs as the importance of seeing the whole child and teaching in ways that are real and meaningful. They also negotiate by engaging in a set of shared practices, which include: the use of Spanish campus-wide both for instruction and for the life and operation of the school, the cultivation of relationships amongst all school community members, and key curricular practices. These practices include providing a variety of learning experiences, especially those based upon the Arts, as well as a curriculum that focuses on providing opportunities to examine real world issues in an integrated and in-depth manner, to learn by integrating students' language, families, and experiences into the curriculum, and has a final goal of creating students who are critical thinkers, self-advocates, and agents within their own lives. All of these beliefs and practices contribute to a strong sense of community. It is this sense of community and the shared beliefs and practices, along with the increased agency this interconnectedness creates for all stakeholders, which has facilitated the successful use of parent waivers. These parent waivers have enabled parents to continue choosing alternative language education programs to those mandated by the state, namely integrated content and English instruction within the mainstream K-4 classroom and the Spanish/English dual language program option at the 5-8 grade levels.

Contributors

Agent

Created

Date Created
  • 2012

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The impact of supplemental educational services on standards-based assessments

Description

ABSTRACT

When you have more students who are eligible for tutoring than those who are successfully meeting the academic requirements, then there is a problem. This study examined the impact that

ABSTRACT

When you have more students who are eligible for tutoring than those who are successfully meeting the academic requirements, then there is a problem. This study examined the impact that NCLB's federal mandates of providing Supplemental Educational tutoring services had on New Mexico’s Standards Based Assessment results for eligible elementary students in one district who participated in tutoring for three school years from 2008 to 2011. The quantitative study examined the archived Standards Based Assessment data for each tutored participant leading to the total average means scaled scores per year for four elementary schools in comparison to non-tutored students within the same schools. Research Question 1 asked if Supplemental Educational Services tutoring increased Standards Based Assessment scores. To generalize the results and state whether there was an increase in SBA test scores due to participation in the SES tutoring was not valid. Research Question 2 asked if the number of years tutored increased Standard Based Assessment scores. There were only three students who were tutored for two years consecutively. Research Question 3 asked if one group of providers were more effective than others. One provider was used from 44% to 88% of the time; however, there were no clear findings as to which SES provider was more effective as to SBA gains. Research Question 4 asked as to what services offered from SES providers was the parent choice for tutoring. The researcher found descriptions from the other SES providers to be similar to Club Z! Interviews were not part of the study and contacts made with the providers were not successful, pre- and posttest results of participating students were not available. The recommendation primarily was build internal monitoring and evaluation, collaborations with tutors, and continued study in area of tutoring.

Contributors

Agent

Created

Date Created
  • 2015

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The impact of multisensory instruction on learning letter names and sounds, word reading and spelling

Description

Children with dyslexia have difficulty learning to read. The purpose of this study was to investigate whether the use of simultaneous multisensory structured language (multisensory) instruction promoted better letter name

Children with dyslexia have difficulty learning to read. The purpose of this study was to investigate whether the use of simultaneous multisensory structured language (multisensory) instruction promoted better letter name and sound production, word reading, and word spelling for second grade children with typical development (TD; N=6) or with dyslexia (DYS; N=5) than structured language instruction alone. The use of non-English graphemes (letters) to represent two pretend languages were used to control for children’s lexical knowledge.

A multiple baseline, multiple probe across subjects single-case design, paired with an alternating treatments design, was used to compare the efficacy of multisensory and structure language interventions. Participant’s graphed data was visually analyzed and individual Tau-U and weighted Tau-U effect sizes were calculated for the outcome variables: letter name production, letter sound production, word reading, and word spelling.

Both interventions had an overall effect for participants with TD and DYS, though for individual participants intervention effects varied across outcome variables. However, the multisensory intervention did not provide a clear advantage over the structured intervention for participants with TD or DYS.

Contributors

Agent

Created

Date Created
  • 2016

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Identifying barriers to field based environmental education in K-8 public elementary schools in Arizona

Description

The purpose of this case study was to explore the barriers, or constraints, to the integration of field-based environmental education (EE) programs in K-8 public elementary schools in Phoenix, Arizona.

The purpose of this case study was to explore the barriers, or constraints, to the integration of field-based environmental education (EE) programs in K-8 public elementary schools in Phoenix, Arizona. Research continues to show that field based EE programs improve student outcomes (Bartosh, Tudor, Ferguson, & Taylor, 2006; Cole, 2007; James and Williams, 2017). Despite the empirical evidence, there appear to be obstacles to integrating field based EE into school curriculum. This study used Hierarchical Leisure Constraints Theory (HLCT) to identify and understand these constraints. There were 22 focus group participants and 13 interviewees from ten different schools and five school districts within the Phoenix area. Looking at the constraints identified by all participants, funding and the availability of transportation play a major role barring the use of field based EE programming. However, when applying HLCT, both of these barriers are structural in nature. This means these are constraints beyond the control of the individual but are negotiable. According to HLCT, you must first understand intrapersonal and interpersonal constraints and the effect they have on overcoming barriers. This study found that perception and prior knowledge emerged as the root of most constraints. In other words, while structural constraints are named as the primary issue in integrating field based EE in public schools, this study concludes from the findings that human nature and human values influence whether teachers and administrators participate in field based programming with their students.

Contributors

Agent

Created

Date Created
  • 2019