This week I spent time reflecting on last week’s data to decide what my next step would be in the data collection process. After tweeting on Tuesday, I decided my next step would be to interview teachers and take observations during a lesson that used the technique I am actively researching.
To take the observations I had to plan a lesson that used literacy books to teach the mathematics concept. During the lesson, I would stop to take observation notes and I also had an aid assist with jotting down notes. Once, I did this I created a Wordle. I found I love Wordle! I got this idea from one of the twitter sessions and from a fellow classmate’s blog.
My next step in collecting data was to look outside of just the students’ reaction. I wanted to know if teachers had used this method of teaching math concepts and how well it went. At first, I thought the interviews would not turn out fruitful because many of my students said the use of literacy books to teach math concepts was new to them. However, I decided to interview the teachers anyway to see what came up. What I found was that all the teachers had claimed to use literacy books to teach math concepts. One thing that was almost universal with how they were used is that the book was read prior to the math lesson. During the interviews, I sought clarification for why the students did not recognize that teaching math concepts through literacy books was not something new to them. I was able to generalize from the information provided in the interviews that many of the teachers read the book separate from math time and treated the text being read just like their regular read aloud time. Therefore, the teachers just told the students they would be reading a story about a certain topic and that was it. I came to realize that maybe my students claimed it was a new method of learning because I had approached the books in a whole different way. The way that I had been teaching it had been based off of research.
It made me wonder if there was a way to collect data in regards to how well the math concepts were taught using a literacy book. With that being said, I decided to teach a book that had been used the year before to teach the same lesson. However, I would make sure I had a hands-on lesson and a follow-up activity, which was different than the year before. Before starting the lesson, I would ask them if they remembered this book and what it was trying to teach. The book title How Much is a Million, gives away the concept so I will ask them to be specific on how it helped. The main goal of collecting this information is to be able to make a connection about what was different about the lessons. Right now I am wondering if it was it the approach of using literacy books to teach math that determined the success of the lesson?
I look forward to fine tuning my data analysis process, however, I also feel like I am running out of different ideas for collecting data. I will be exploring how much is enough data to complete this project. I will also be looking for ideas from others blogs. I feel like I am straggling behind and always find good ideas from others.