A Qualitative Investigation Into Conceptual Understanding at Iranian Elementary Schools

نوع مقاله: مقاله پژوهشی

چکیده

This study attempts to root out some of the causes of absence of conceptual understanding in elementary level particularly in math subject and the factors that cause this deficiency. As a body of researchers, we use a quasi-form of methodology qualitatively designed by which we give a pre-test and post-test to our participants (randomly selected teachers and students), through some open-ended questions. Through open-ended questions, pupils will be led through processes like understanding the problem, how to fit new information into already existing networks of knowledge and - when thinking critically at the process of learning - the leaner will conceptualize and reorganize the thoughts in order to create presumably new knowledge. The data were collected through interviews (giving answers to post-test open ended questions) and observation and analyzed simultaneously just in order not to miss any information during the study. The conclusion of this study showed that there were various methods of teaching and every instructor would have his or her own style for conceptual learning. There is no universal “one-size-fits-all” teaching practice. Instead, depending on the goal and circumstances, it might be appropriate to combine various methods. For example, one might decide to embed cooperative group discussions into traditional lectures, or one could alternate between hands-on experiments and traditional lectures. The many possibilities then become a rich set of opportunities from which a teacher can construct a more meaningful learning instructional program.

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