Research / Teaching & Learning

Research: why bother?

By conducting my research I was able to explore a personal and professional interest into how iPads can be effectively used to engage children in the scientific enquiry process. While the research confirms there has been a development in knowledge of pedagogical issues and the need for continued training and guidance, both from Government and the schools leadership team; this has resulted in developing my awareness of knowing when and where to use iPads, as well as the importance of having appropriate training opportunities on the pedagogical implications.

The process of completing an observation has allowed first-had experience of how iPads are used to support children’s development of scientific enquiry, fostering positive attitudes and the acquisition of scientific vocabulary. The latter of which is an area of science previously not considered until conducting the research. This has been compounded through the semi-structured interview with the class teacher, as this discussion allowed further exploration of aspects such as opportunities for EAL learners to be equally involved in scientific enquiry.

As an NQT about to embark on a career in primary teaching, I feel empowered through the results of this research to make recommendations into how iPads can be implemented in the primary school. Whilst I acknowledge this was small-scale research and I cannot make generalisations, by conducting this research I have been provided with a wealth of knowledge and evidence, based upon literature to incorporate within my first classroom.

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As a researcher, I have developed my use of literature, not only to back up points and add credibility, but to challenge opinion and synthesise my own opinion based up research evidence and literature.

As well as answering my research question, I have identified further research possibilities. Moving forward, I am keen to develop my research skills. From this case study research, I have identified a desire to complete further action research into the use of iPads within primary science both within scientific enquiry and the acquisition of scientific language for EAL learners supported by iPads.

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