Engineering After-School Program with Elementary Preservice Teachers and K-8 Students
Dr. Jennifer Cribbs, Oklahoma State University, Dr. Jeanine Huss, and Dr. Julia Mittelberg, Western Kentucky University
This study explores the influence of an after-school program involving high needs elementary-aged students at community-based sites and elementary preservice teachers (EPSTs) enrolled in a final sequence of methods courses at a local university. Data collection involved surveys, interviews, and reflections with EPSTs and interviews with elementary-aged children. Results indicated a significant positive correlation between EPTSs’ science perceptions and science teaching self efficacy. A series of Wilcoxon Rank Sum tests indicate significant growth from pre to post in participating EPSTs’ self-efficacy with the NGSS and the Engineering Standards within the NGSS. Interviews and reflections provided evidence that EPSTs benefited from the program by teaching in an unfamiliar setting that changed their beliefs and helped strengthen their teaching skills. Interview results for elementary-aged children revealed a hands-on, although somewhat limited, perspective of science, technology, and engineering. Perceptions of mathematics were primarily focused on computation.
STEM, Elementary Preservice Teachers, Elementary-aged Children (K-8), After School Program
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