Professional Development of Pre-service Teachers Using Information and Communication Technologies
Elementary and Mathematics Education
Korea National University of Education
Ewha Womans University
Educational leaders in Korea have emphasized that teachers need to take advantage of Information and Communication Technologies (ICT) In fact, it has been successful that many teachers participate in large-scale training programs dealing with ICT. However, even a cursory analysis of how they incorporate ICT into their mathematics lessons shows that they focus on whether or not they use ICT rather than on how they use ICT, which in turn makes them develop negative disposition toward integrating ICT in mathematics lessons. Given this, it is imperative for teachers to be aware of the significance of using ICT as a way to achieve their instructional goals. It is especially true for pre-service teachers.
Against this background, the purpose of the study was to foster professional development of prospective elementary school teachers in terms of incorporating ICT in mathematics lesson plans in a way to optimize their teaching goals. The subjects were about 170 juniors who took a course of elementary mathematics teaching method for one semester.
We emphasized that lesson plans with ICT should consider the characteristics of elementary mathematics teaching and learning, student-centered activities, development of mathematical power, effective use of various multimedia materials, and connection to real-life contexts. Whereas previous studies tended to focus mainly on developing teaching activities per se, this research underlined not only activities but also plans in order to improve overall instructional design ability of prospective teachers.
While taking the course of elementary mathematics teaching methods, the pre-service teachers learned six instructional models using ICT that are appropriate to elementary mathematics teaching, analyzed pre-developed lesson plans and sample plans, developed their own lesson plans for grades 5 and 6, and implemented them during the period of practicum. In this process, in-service teachers as well as teacher educators reviewed the lesson plans. Given the various feedbacks, 229 lesson plans were finally developed and have been serviced through EDUNET, the most comprehensive educational information service on-line system in Korea.