Teacher design knowledge and beliefs for technology enhanced learning materials in early literacy: Four portraits
Teacher engagement in the design of technology-rich learning material is beneficial to teacher learning and may create a sense of ownership, both of which are conducive to bringing about innovation with technology.
During collaborative design, teachers draw on various types of knowledge and beliefs: know-what (facts, information); know-why (principles, beliefs) and know-how (ways to shape learning materials and activities). The goal of the present study was to understand the nature of individual teacher contributions during the collaborative design of learning materials and activities for early literacy. Through interviews, teacher knowledge and beliefs related to use of technology for early literacy were investigated. Thereafter, teachers collaboratively designed learning materials and activities for use with PictoPal (a technology-rich environment for early literacy). Analysis of design talk that occurred during the design of PictoPal resources showed that teachers differ in the kinds of design knowledge they explicate during design. Of the four teachers, two teachers were inclined mostly to express know-how, one teacher proportionally expressed more know-what, and one teacher more know-why. Given the variety in knowledge and beliefs among teachers, practical implications for supporting such diversity during collaborative design are discussed.