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Teachers’ enactment of a co-designed mobilized science curricular innovation
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Paper presented at the International Science Education Conference, Singapore, 25-27 November 2014
To a large extent, how teachers enact innovative curriculum will determine the success or
failure of the innovation. However, previous studies found that teachers sometimes
implement the curriculum in a way which was not intended by the designer of the innovation.
In the efforts of diffusing a mobilized science curricular innovation from one pilot school to
five more schools in Singapore, a community of practitioners (COP), consisting of a
champion teacher from the pilot school and the seeding teachers from the other five schools
(one or two from each school), was formed. It engaged in a variety of activities including codesign
of the curriculum for teacher capacity building, and diffusion and dissemination of the
innovation. In this paper, we investigate how the teachers from different schools implemented
the co-designed lessons using the dimensions of both structure and process. Data sources
include videotaped classroom observations of focal teachers, audiotaped post-observation
discussions within the COP, and interviews with focal teachers. We find that although the curriculum was designed collaboratively, teachers enacted it in somewhat differing ways. The
teachers mainly followed 5E structures for activity design and flow, with differences in
details of substantiation. Varied pedagogical orientations, and different levels of facilitation
skills and use of technology, were identified. The differences were caused by their teaching
and learning beliefs, previous teaching experiences, and the supports they received within
their own school context. Implications are drawn for teacher professional development in the
context of diffusion of innovation, as well as to the implementation of a mobilized inquiry-based
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