Thursday, July 1, 2010

Stage Two- Designing a Professional Development


As a follow-up of the recommendations from the first study, a professional development programme was organised for mathematics pre-service teachers from the University of Cape Coast in a pilot study. The main idea behind the pilot study was to get the practice of working with a preliminary design that will ensure the validity and practicality of an intervention to integrate technology among these mathematics pre-service teachers in the long run. Further more this stage was to test out any uncertain aspects of the procedure to be sure that it will work as intended in a main study (stage3). The framework that was used in this study was TPACK. Technology, pedagogical and content knowledge (TPACK) describes that body of knowledge that teachers need for teaching with and about technology in their assigned subject areas (such as mathematics) and grade levels (See the figure) .

The professional development approach that was used was the Teacher Design Teams (TDT). The design team (two teams) consisted of four pre-service mathematics teachers from the department of science and mathematics education programme at University of Cape Coast (UCC), with extra help and support from different external tools such as workshops and two different kind of support system, human support (the researcher) and exemplary materials. Findings of this stage are reported in the paper: Developing Technological Pedagogical and Content Knowledge through Teacher Design Teams: The Case of Mathematics Teachers in Ghana. (see the abstract below)

Abstract: Although many studies have shown the need to better align teachers’ preparation in the integration of technology in classroom practice, most teachers in Ghana have not had any preparation that develops their technology pedagogical and content knowledge (TPACK).This paper presents a case study of four mathematics prospective teachers at the University of Cape Coast, Ghana. The teachers worked in two design teams to develop lessons and subsequently taught in a technology-based environment for the first time. To make them familiar with technology use in mathematics teaching the teachers first discussed and used exemplary lesson materials, which were prepared by the researcher. Based on this experience the teachers designed their own technology-based lessons, which they taught to a group of teachers. Interview, observation, and survey data were collected throughout the study. The study revealed key attributes of a professional development scenario to foster growth of teachers in TPACK.

You can find full versions of the quadratic lessons the two teams designed here and here.

Knowing how to use technology is not the same as knowing how to teach with technology- Mishra and Koehler (2006).

The slides for their presentations can also be found here and here.

Stage 3: ICT integration in typical Mathematics Classrooms

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