All the stages occur within the age mentioned above, depending on the child’s maturation. The stages I shall explain will be the pre-operational and concrete stage because it relates to children aged 6-7 years which happens to be children in Year The Pre-operational Stage This stage affects children when they are aged between 2 to 7 years. During this stage children are required to think logically that is dominated by perception however sometimes errors and misunderstandings occur. During this stage Paiget had stated that children go through what is known as conservation, where the child was unable to understand that
“Certain aspects of an object remained the same in spite of various changes.” When children have understood conservation then they can move onto the next stage known as the Concrete stage. This can occur when children are aged between 7 and 11 years. During this stage children’s thinking becomes much less dependent on perception but more towards the various cognitive operations in respect to concrete situations. The main element of children’s thinking during this stage is relating to direct and concrete situations.
Children perform the operation in the presence of the actual objects. They must be able to look at the object or even be able to manipulate the materials used to understand a concept. Knowing the way children think and learn, for example if they are able to manipulate an object, they may be able to understand a concept. Therefore, children can be presented with a resource/object such as a Roamer. A roamer was devised through the Logo program. Logo can help enhance children’s learning of various mathematical concepts in topics such as counting and properties of numbers, measures, shape and space.
Allan Martin states that Logo was developed at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology in the late 1960’s. Cynthia Soloman, Wallace Feurzeig who had thought of the name and also Seymour Papert (who is widely known with the connection of Logo) created Logo. The Logo program introduces a language for the teaching of mathematical ideas to children through computer programming.
The most well known feature Logo offers is turtle graphics, which is a constructing designs or pictures to a drawing head which is a ‘turtle’. Roamer is a floor robot that resembles the shape of a turtle. The turtle can be represented on the screen as a small triangle or a floor turtle. It still has the same outcomes as logo where the user has to use the same computer language to make the Roamer move but it work independently from a computer. Allan Martin states that logo is ideally suited as it contributes to the way in which learning happens in schools, he quotes that
“It will assist in the development of the child’s thinking” I believe Logo is not only taught because it is useful but also because it should be a source of wonder offering children intellectual excitement and an appreciation of its creativity. Research Setting “A caring community, enthusiastic for everyone’s success.” The school I intend to carry out this investigation is located in Teddington. The school has excellent facilities for all infant education. It is a three-form infant school for all children from reception to year 2, which means there will normally be three classes in each age group. The school also has a nursery class.
The nursery has its own playground that is separate from the main playground especially as the children in nursery are so young and finds school a new novelty. Two classes from year one and year two are situated in the main school building, however a year one and two class has been situated outside in a hut. The school contains a Special Needs unit to support children with disabilities that is in the main building.
The school gives priority to those living in its locality and to those with sibling already attending the school. There is a junior school that use the same playing fields as the Infant but is separate from the infant school. Project Setting This study will contain children from Year 2 who have been assessed as having a mixed attainment level, which range from not being able to level a child according to a NC level descriptor to level.
The investigation shall be conducted in the ICT suite in the main building and not in the hut. The room is a communal room. (See plan in Appendix ) The class already has tables and chair like a normal classroom. The year two classes are either side of the ICT suite whereas the hall and toilets are the other side, which means that year two children have to go through the ICT suite to go to the toilets, the hall.
Implementation Research methods are essential when collecting evidence and data. Primary data allows personal input to be made to the project as it uses motivation and to a certain extent initiative. It is necessary for me to use several different methods as different aspects of this project require specific research tools that are going to be outlined. The case study approach has been decided because of the time I had to gather all information from my sources. The length of time was approximately one day a week for at about 10 weeks which did not leave a lot of time to gather relevant data for the study.
I intended to use qualitative primary data for this case study approach as it is an interpretative study. The case study will allow me to gather and discover new facts from a group of six children (where you will find in the next chapter that they have been named child 1 to 6). By randomly selecting the children for the study meant that a cross-section of the class participated. The group of children shall be divided into two groups, an experimental and control group.
By placing children into a experimental case study it allows me to repeat the study again using the same conditions. However if the children discover they are being experimented on they may act differently affecting the results to the study so it is important that the study is carried out in a lesson form. Unfortunately after a pilot study the lessons were not conducted in the form of a Numeracy hour as the information I wanted the children to learn did not fit into the 20-30 minutes activity session that has been recommended in the National Numeracy Strategy.
This research strategy is where the children are going to be assigned randomly to groups, which are then provided with experiences that vary a long some key dimensions. The experimental group of children shall be given a special treatment that intends to produce some specific consequences. The control group of children shall receive either no special treatment or some neutral treatment. The data that shall be gathered will be qualitative, which is often about attitudes, opinions and values. The advantage to qualitative data is that the area of study is subjective but it is not very scientific.
All data collected will be descriptive, as it will be obtained through lessons that shall be observed and taped recorded. The lessons designed for the children to carry out, have required me to be a participant observer as well as naturalistic and also due to the age of the children and the activities it seems as though teacher interaction will be necessary. The lessons planned, require teacher interaction but once the children are able to take control I shall became a naturalistic observer during the lessons.
The children will need teacher guidance in some of the activities as they have never experienced using the resource: Roamer before. This was an advantage to the study as the children were not affected by my presence as they were used to guided lessons from teachers and I was able to answer questions asked as well as promote mathematical learning.
At the start of the study, I wrote down what children were saying and how they behaved according to body language and interaction with one another. However this revealed that both elements by hand resulted in vital parts of the conversation being missed. I then decided to tape-record the lessons so that my evidence gathered was more reliable. Also I was not going to be able to write down every single word a child was to say during every lesson. Therefore I took the opportunity to observe children’s movements and tape-recorded what children had said leaving me to write up my transcripts after the session.
It is important that children remain anonymous through this study as I believe children should be made to feel safe and secure in their school environment especially as this document becomes published in the university library. Also if my results were lost on the school premises and found by a parents it would not be ethical as a child’s achievement should solely be discussed with their parents. Children will be de-briefed and thanked for taking part in such an important study of the MTeach degree so that they know why they have been selected from the rest of the children in the class.