Preschool Teachers’ Beliefs and Pedagogical Practices in the Integration of Technology: A Case for Engaging Young Children in Scientific Inquiry
Sarika Kewalramani 1 * , Sari Havu-Nuutinen 2
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1 Monash University, AUSTRALIA
2 University of Eastern Finland, FINLAND
* Corresponding Author

Abstract

This paper presents findings from an on-going international study (Australia and Finland) of preschool teachers’ beliefs and pedagogical practices in the integration of technology to engage young children in learning science. Scarcely used in early childhood education research, this study is framed using Mishra and Koehler’s (2006) Technological Pedagogical and Content Knowledge (TPACK) theory. Case studies presented in this paper are undertaken with data collected from three preschools in Australia. Participant observation of teachers’ (N = 7) and children’s play experiences, and semi-structured interviews, revealed that teachers occasionally used iPads and some apps within their intentionally constructed science investigations, both for teacher-initiated research and for communicating with parents via children’s journals. Teachers were not adverse to, but rather accepting of embedding technology as a pedagogical affordance and keen on planning for multimodal science-based experiences. The findings of this study imply the need for a pedagogical shift, wherein teachers’ technological pedagogical knowledge improves in how and when to sensibly integrate technology for children’s engagement in scientific inquiry, rather than relying on hands-on experiences alone. Implications lie in more closely aligning teachers’ TPK and related practices with science content knowledge by co-researching together with children and foregrounding both teachers’ and children’s perspectives.

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This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.

Article Type: Research Article

https://doi.org/10.29333/ejmste/109949

EURASIA J Math Sci Tech Ed, 2019 - Volume 15 Issue 12, Article No: em1784

Publication date: 08 Jul 2019

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