A study of technology-based best practices which support literacy learning in elementary schools
Kristine Barrus Drake, Pepperdine University, United States
Pepperdine University . Awarded
There is rapid accumulation of technology and commercial software as well as a national focus on Internet connectivity available to schools. Educators have not been able to reach consensus on the most effective use of technology in education. Some have identified specific applications for technology tools to enhance literacy learning. This study focused on technology-based best practices which support elementary reading.
The methodology for this research, first of all, included a review of the literature to identify technology tools which support literacy learning at the elementary level. Second, a panel of experts with technology expertise and elementary teaching experience were engaged to provide “expert” data on technology tools (hardware or software) that are considered best practices. The collected data from the literature and the expert panelists were sorted and organized into categories. Using these categories, the researcher created a checklist of technology-based strategies.
Finally, the researcher surveyed classroom teachers in the Palm Springs Unified School District to determine if these best practices on the checklist are present in the district. The Palm Springs Unified School District, an urban district with a diverse student population, is making a concerted effort to raise test scores, implement a new reading program, and install a Wide Area Network. The researcher is employed in this district.
The findings of this study indicated the six most widely identified technology-based best practices, which support literacy learning at the elementary level. These are: word processing, Internet research, e-mail, multimedia projects, computer assisted instruction (CAI), and miscellaneous activities. Evidence of technology-based best practices was found in the Palm Springs Unified School District elementary schools, based on a sample of teachers who were surveyed.
The researcher recommends that more staff development be available for teachers that focuses on the use of technology tools to enhance the reading program. There are still too few teachers who feel comfortable and expert in the use of technology-based tools.
Drake, K.B. A study of technology-based best practices which support literacy learning in elementary schools. Ph.D. thesis, Pepperdine University.
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Pamela Leslein-Yoshihiro, Knowledge Builders Hawaii, United States; Andrea Bartlett, University of Hawai'i at Manoa, United States
EdMedia + Innovate Learning 2009 (Jun 22, 2009) pp. 2205–2208
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