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vol.9 issue1Early learning experiences, school entry skills and later mathematics achievement in South AfricaDistribution of additive relation word problems in South African early grade Mathematics workbooks author indexsubject indexarticles search
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South African Journal of Childhood Education

On-line version ISSN 2223-7682
Print version ISSN 2223-7674

Abstract

KORTJASS, Makie. Reflective self-study for an integrated learning approach to early childhood mathematics teacher education. SAJCE [online]. 2019, vol.9, n.1, pp.1-11. ISSN 2223-7682.  http://dx.doi.org/10.4102/sajce.v9i1.57.

BACKGROUND: This article gives an account of what I learned through the process of a self-study research project. Self-study teacher research allows teacher educators and teachers to improve their learning, plan new pedagogies and impact students' learning AIM: The aim of this self-study research was to improve my own practice in early childhood mathematics teacher education through interaction and collaboration with others, such as colleagues and students. SETTING: As a South African university-based teacher educator, I piloted an integrated learning approach (ILA) in the teaching and learning of early childhood mathematics in a selected undergraduate programme. METHODS: I began by tracking my personal development in mathematics education and in so doing was able to recognise my personal learning of mathematics as a child growing up in an African township context. I then worked with a class of 38 student teachers to create collages and concept maps to explore their understandings and experiences of ILA. RESULTS: Through this project, I discovered that colleagues in the role of critical friends provided essential feedback on my work in progress. I also learned that student teachers need to be equipped with knowledge and hands-on experience of how integration can take place in teaching and learning early childhood mathematics. I realised that it was essential to constantly reflect on my own personal history and my professional practice to explore new ways of teaching mathematics. CONCLUSION: Teacher educators may consider engaging in self-study research that includes art-based self-study methods to reflect on their practices and see how they change for the benefit of their students and ultimately for the benefit of the learners.

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