Implementing the STEM Approach in the Third Grade of a School Adopting the PYP Curriculum

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dc.contributor.author Aoun, Marianne
dc.date.accessioned 2022-08-31T12:16:20Z
dc.date.available 2022-08-31T12:16:20Z
dc.date.copyright 2020 en_US
dc.date.issued 2020-01-07
dc.identifier.uri http://hdl.handle.net/10725/13980
dc.description.abstract The job markets in the 21st century require a workforce with higher-order competencies. Therefore, it is important that teachers and administrators, along with the business community, work as a team to develop curricula that promote these skills. The STEM approach in the early years provides young students with a strong background in Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics, to play an essential role in global competitiveness and economic stability. The present research is a case study that employs participatory data collection methods with grade-3 teachers and students, in order to achieve its purpose. The purpose of the study is to develop and pilot a STEM-based unit for the third grade of a school adopting the PYP curriculum in Beirut, Lebanon, and to examine the ways it impacts students’ conceptual understanding of the involved math and science themes, students’ engagement, and their critical thinking and problem-solving competences. The study also aims to investigate some challenges or barriers that might be faced by a third-grade elementary teacher and students during the implementation of a STEM-based instructional unit. Three homeroom teachers and three sections of twenty-seven students each participated in this study. Observations were carried out during the piloting of the STEM-based unit in all three sections. One pre-assessment, three formative assessments and one summative assessment were used in order to collect data on the students’ learning, critical thinking and problem-solving competencies. Forty-two Exit Tickets were provided, via google forms, to check for the students’ learning and understanding. Two semi-structured interviews were conducted with two grade-three teachers. The teacher, who is also the researcher, kept a daily journal. The purpose of these entries was to probe information about the challenges faced. The findings revealed that students’ demonstrated grade level conceptual understanding of the involved math and science themes. The results also revealed that students’ engagement increased when a STEM activity was introduced. Students demonstrated critical thinking and problem-solving competences. The critical thinking skills that the students demonstrated are, making inferences using inductive or deductive reasoning, judging or evaluating, making decisions, asking and answering questions for clarification, interpreting and explaining, reasoning. As for the problem solving skills developed, by the end of the unit, all students were able to identify the problem, to gather information related to their project and analyze them, generate potential solutions to any problem faced when designing their own experiment or project, choose a solution and test it, and analyze and evaluate the results obtained. As for the internal and external barriers faced by teacher and students, different external and internal barriers were identified. The challenges faced by the students, and that are external, include time restraints, content and resources (books, information, materials…). Internal barriers faced by students include their ability to use technology skills, engineering a model and communication skills. External barriers faced by teachers include lacking sufficient resources and hands-on training for students, as well as time restraints. The internal barriers faced by teachers include content preparation and delivery, and confidence with the approach to teaching the STEM-based unit. Despite the fact that this study is limited to one grade level, the findings may be useful for other grade levels and even for other schools that intend to go into STEM. Other grade levels or schools may benefit from this study as it shows potential barriers that they may face, for which they will therefore take preventive measures or precautions. en_US
dc.language.iso en en_US
dc.subject STEM (Education) en_US
dc.subject Learning strategies -- Study and teaching (Elementary) -- Lebanon -- Beirut en_US
dc.subject International Baccalaureate Primary Years Programme en_US
dc.subject Lebanese American University -- Dissertations en_US
dc.subject Dissertations, Academic en_US
dc.title Implementing the STEM Approach in the Third Grade of a School Adopting the PYP Curriculum en_US
dc.type Thesis en_US
dc.term.submitted Fall en_US
dc.author.degree MA in Education en_US
dc.author.school SAS en_US
dc.author.idnumber 200902226 en_US
dc.author.commembers Kandil, Bassem
dc.author.commembers Bahous, Rima
dc.author.department Social and Education Sciences en_US
dc.description.physdesc xvi, 255 leaves: col. ill. en_US
dc.author.advisor Osta, Iman
dc.keywords STEM Education en_US
dc.keywords STEM Educational Approaches en_US
dc.keywords 21st Century Competencies en_US
dc.keywords STEM-Based Unit en_US
dc.keywords STEM teaching strategies en_US
dc.keywords Internal barriers en_US
dc.keywords External barriers en_US
dc.keywords The Primary Years Programs en_US
dc.description.bibliographiccitations Bibliography: leaves 120-126) en_US
dc.identifier.doi https://doi.org/10.26756/th.2022.442
dc.author.email marianne.aoun@lau.edu en_US
dc.identifier.tou http://libraries.lau.edu.lb/research/laur/terms-of-use/thesis.php en_US
dc.publisher.institution Lebanese American University en_US
dc.author.affiliation Lebanese American University en_US

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