Professional Development in Inquiry-Oriented Pedagogical Cont ...

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Abstract

This study focuses on Pedagogical Content Knowledge (PCK) development among four primary school teachers within the framework of inquiry-oriented teaching-learning as part of a pilot project concerning professional development that consisted of two parts combining both theory and practice. During the first, theoretical stage, the teachers were explicitly introduced to seven components of PCK, placing emphasis on inquiry teaching-learning, while the second stage was about the design and implementation of two Teaching Learning Sequences (TLSs) concerning the content of nanotechnology and material science in traditional classrooms. The results of the study have shown that, firstly, primary school teachers demonstrated similarities concerning two components of PCK—namely, the content-context interplay component as well as the PCK component—regardless of their experience and theoretical background. Furthermore, both similarities and differences were evident after comparing pre- and post-findings. It is notable that the component of the content-context interplay has been not extensively used before and after the program. It was also found that between the two most experienced teachers, the most, theoretically, trained teacher has shown the greatest development. Finally, certain qualitative results have indicated that professional learning regarding inquiry aspects of PCK seems to depend on the age, experience, theoretical background, or even the character of a primary school teacher.