Monday, September 24, 2012

Using 1:1 technology for primary science students

Looi, C. K., Zhang, B. B., Chen, W. W., Seow, P. P., Chia, G. G., Norris, C. C., & Soloway, E. E. (2011). 1:1 mobile inquiry learning experience for primary science students: A study of learning effectiveness. Journal Of Computer Assisted Learning, 27(3), 269-287. doi:10.1111/j.1365-2729.2010.00390.x

One to one mobile technology is gaining popularity in K-12 classrooms. Innovative schools and educators see the possibilities for increased engagement and deeper learning in the use of personal devices. For two years, the researchers collaborated with a 3rd grade classroom teacher to design and implement an inquiry-based science curriculum that utilized 1:1 technology, providing every student with a smartphone computer. The researchers distinguish between occasional or short-term use of 1:1 devices in the classroom, and integrated, long-term use that transforms the curriculum. To further describe this long-term project, the researchers provide examples of lessons and curriculum using the smartphone laptops. Qualitative and quantitative data collected revealed increased learning and deeper engagement with the material. The science test scores for students in the class increased after one year of mobilized curriculum.  The teacher also developed confidence in her ability to teacher primary science curriculum and gained an understanding of student needs and experiences through the process of teaching with the mobile devices. One to one mobile devices can greatly enhance science instruction by increasing student understanding and building teacher confidence.

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