10 SES 05.5 PS, General Poster Session - NW 10
General Poster Session
This paper deals with the challenges of navigating in complex classroom practices, where the pupils exhibit a wide range of varying conditions and needs.
The focus is on teachers statements of how they design and set literacy environments and situations to prevent, identify and eliminated barriers for pupils´ literacy development. The teachers in the study work with preshool classes and special needs education. Aiming to explicate teachers' experiences in the field of early literacy development, from a multimodal and special educational view, the paper is based on data provided by focus groups interviews and observations with teachers in four Swedish elementary schools.
The theoretical approach is in design-oriented theories and Critical literacy. Design theory is rooted in issues surrounding how communicative affordances in an increasingly digital enviroment influence the conditions for knowledge and learning. Design theories are also based on a broader understanding of text according to witch not only graphic text or verbal language are the primary expressions for learning and meaning-making. Kress (2009) points out that these theoretical premises put the spotlight on the ways in which different resources are used (or not used) in social practices and in informal and formal learning enviroments, such as schools. Design for learning help us to understand learning in relation to a context and in relation to the conditions created for learning in different enviroments and situations (Leijon & Lindstrand, 2012).
Based on a critical literacy perspective, Janks (2010) describes texts and writing language with regard for four dimension: domination (power), access, diversity and design. These four dimensions are intimately linked, intersect each other and are all necessary to interpret and understand the extent of what a literacy practice means. it is about realizing that literacy practitioners contain the dimensions of power and dominance, opportunity and access, inequality that can also be enriching and capable of using text creatively, designing its textual creation. By staying in a permissive and creative literacy practice, the pupil will be able to develop all of these variations of reading and writing. Futherfmore, the critical literacy perspective can stimulate and inspire new pedagogical-didactic forms of work (Schmidt & Wedin, 2015).
The study was conducted at four schools in two Swedish municipalities, with teachers from preschool, lower school, and special education. Each focus group comprised five or six teachers and the researcher. The conversations were carefully prepared by visits to the respective school and through introductory discussions with the participants. The data collection took place through qualitative group discussions in the form of knowledge-seeking dialogue (Kvale, 2007). The discussions, each lasting for about an hour, were documented by sound recording and transcribed in their entirety, after which the analysis was made through qualitative content analysis based on research questions.
The participating teachers express the importance of using a variation of educational models, tools and methods; their responses elucidate the differences between different schools and different areas of operation respectively, as well as them between varying classes sizes. The multimodal approach is considered as beneficial for the pupil's learning, both in regards to motivation and the pupils' collaborative learning, as well as to bring structures and support to the learning process. The teachers described a number of challenges in the teaching situations such as: teaching pupils with reading and writing disabilities, neuropsychiatric disorders, intellectual giftedness, as well as pupils with a second-language and newly arrived refugee children. The result manifests the teachers’ statements regarding how they prevented, identified and eliminated barriers for pupils’ literacy development. Furthermore - factors for successful literacy development became visible in the analysis. The teachers highlighted the importance of writing for learning. In the teachers' stories of how they designed and motivated learning situations and learning environments they described the pupils urge for writing and the pupils’ competence in writing extensive texts, frequently and in different contexts.
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