16 SES 07, ICT and Educational Innovation
This paper reports on the second stage of a three year collaborative project to develop teaching in computation for primary schools, involving European partners from schools, universities and training institutions in five countries. The project aims to develop and disseminate pedagogical materials in response to the rapidly changing curriculum developments for information technology (ICT), including computer programming and robotics, across five countries (Denmark, Lithuania Malta, Spain and UK). New curricula aim to empower pupils to use and express themselves through ICT, to develop competences for their future workplaces and become active participants in the digital world. The challenge to educators is how to support children to develop skills for work with and on the programmable devices of the future, when the field of programming keeps changing.
We have taken a lead from the observation by Knuth (1984:1) that ‘instead of imagining that our main task is to instruct a computer what to do, let us concentrate rather on explaining to human beings what we want a computer to do’; we have therefore adopted a relational approach both to helping us understand the role of the programmer, and to understanding how people learn about programming. In other words we understand that, if the children of today want to be successful future programmers, they should start by defining problems, working creatively towards solutions and communicating the whole process to someone else, using shared symbols. Our project therefore incorporates the ‘4Cs’ of 21st century learning - Collaboration, Communication, Creativity and Critical thinking – with ICT at the core (Denis and Hubert, 2001; Voogt and Pareja Roblin, 2010).
However, although changes might be expected as the first ‘digitally native’ teachers join the profession, many teachers currently lack confidence and competence in ICT (Morris, 2012; Wastiau et al., 2013). The project therefore aims to provide professional development for primary teachers in the fields of robotics and programming, taking into account their curricular context. In phase 1 of the project, to ensure a good match between project content and current needs, we used questionnaires and literature searches to answer the questions: what are teachers’ current attitudes towards and confidence/competence in these topics in the project schools? And where do coding, programming and robotics sit within curriculum frameworks within the five countries? A curriculum summary was compiled by project team members for each country and an online survey completed by staff in the ten project schools. We found that coding and programming featured in some but not all curricula, and that the topic of robotics had different cultural connotations across and within the five countries. These findings reinforced our aims to look at ways of developing skills in coding and appreciation of robotics through a focus on 4Cs of 21st century learning; promotion of collaboration, communication, creativity and critical thinking are acceptable pedagogic aims in all contexts, not just those where robotics and coding were already embedded.
After brief case studies showing how coding, programming and robotics have been interpreted within the sociocultural context of the five countries, we will report on the second phase of the project, namely the design and piloting of a sequence of training sessions to develop teacher confidence in the coding and programing, conducted in three schools in the UK. The materials will be shared with partner countries so that they may adapt them in their own contexts during the final phase of the project in 2017-2018. Our research question for this phase of the project is: how do different professional development experiences enhance teachers' confidence in using robotics equipment to teach children about programming?
Denis and Hubert (2001) Collaborative learning in an educational robotics environment. Computers in Human Behavior 17 pp 465–480 Knuth, D.E (1984) Literate Programming. The Computer Journal 27 (2) pp. 97-111. Retrieved 25 January 2016 from http://www.literateprogramming.com/knuthweb.pdf Mason, J. (2011) Facet Methodology: the case for an inventive research orientation. Methodological Innovations Online (2011) 6(3) 75 – 92 Morris 2012ICT and educational policy in the UK: are we on the way towards e-maturity or on the road to digital disaster? Research in Teacher Education Vol.2, No.2. October 2012. pp. 3–8. Roth, W-M., Lee, Y-J. and Hsu, P‐L. (2009) A tool for changing the world: possibilities of cultural‐historical activity theory to reinvigorate science education, Studies in Science Education, 45:2, 131-167, DOI: 10.1080/03057260903142269 Voogt, J. & Pareja Roblin, N. (2010). 21st Century Skills – Discussion Paper. Enschede (The Netherlands): University of Twente. Retrieved 25 January 2016 from http://onderzoek.kennisnet.nl/onderzoeken-totaal/21stecentury Wastiau, P., Blamire, R., Kearney, C., Quittre, V.,Van de Gaer E. and Monseu C. (2013) The Use of ICT in Education: a survey of schools. European Journal of Education, Part I p11-27
00. Central Events (Keynotes, EERA-Panel, EERJ Round Table, Invited Sessions)
Network 1. Continuing Professional Development: Learning for Individuals, Leaders, and Organisations
Network 2. Vocational Education and Training (VETNET)
Network 3. Curriculum Innovation
Network 4. Inclusive Education
Network 5. Children and Youth at Risk and Urban Education
Network 6. Open Learning: Media, Environments and Cultures
Network 7. Social Justice and Intercultural Education
Network 8. Research on Health Education
Network 9. Assessment, Evaluation, Testing and Measurement
Network 10. Teacher Education Research
Network 11. Educational Effectiveness and Quality Assurance
Network 12. LISnet - Library and Information Science Network
Network 13. Philosophy of Education
Network 14. Communities, Families and Schooling in Educational Research
Network 15. Research Partnerships in Education
Network 16. ICT in Education and Training
Network 17. Histories of Education
Network 18. Research in Sport Pedagogy
Network 19. Ethnography
Network 20. Research in Innovative Intercultural Learning Environments
Network 22. Research in Higher Education
Network 23. Policy Studies and Politics of Education
Network 24. Mathematics Education Research
Network 25. Research on Children's Rights in Education
Network 26. Educational Leadership
Network 27. Didactics – Learning and Teaching
The programme is updated regularly (each day in the morning)
- Search for keywords and phrases in "Text Search"
- Restrict in which part of the abstracts to search in "Where to search"
- Search for authors and in the respective field.
- For planning your conference attendance you may want to use the conference app, which will be issued some weeks before the conference
- If you are a session chair, best look up your chairing duties in the conference system (Conftool) or the app.