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Publications (10 of 23) Show all publications
Walan, S., Jeannie, F. & Kilbrink, N. (2019). Building with focus on stability and construction: Using a story as inspiration when teaching technology and design in preschool. Education 3-13
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Building with focus on stability and construction: Using a story as inspiration when teaching technology and design in preschool
2019 (English)In: Education 3-13, ISSN 0300-4279, E-ISSN 1475-7575Article in journal (Refereed) Epub ahead of print
Abstract [en]

In this study children's learning of the concept, stability, during some building activities were investigated. It was also examined how a story can create meaning, having the children build for some animals in the story. Two preschool teachers and 10 children participated. Data consisted of video-recordings from activities with the children and was analysed through thematic coding. The findings showed that the children enjoyed to build and showed an understanding of how to build stable constructions, however without using the word stable. There were connections to the story and new stories were also made by the children during building activities.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Routledge, 2019
Keywords
Building, constructing, preschool, storytelling
National Category
Pedagogy
Research subject
Education
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:kau:diva-72135 (URN)10.1080/03004279.2019.1601751 (DOI)2-s2.0-85064015265 (Scopus ID)
Available from: 2019-05-28 Created: 2019-05-28 Last updated: 2019-06-07
Walan, S. & Gericke, N. (2019). Factors from informal learning contributing to the children's interest in STEM: experiences from the out-of-school activity called Children's University. Research in Science & Technological Education, 1-21
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Factors from informal learning contributing to the children's interest in STEM: experiences from the out-of-school activity called Children's University
2019 (English)In: Research in Science & Technological Education, ISSN 0263-5143, E-ISSN 1470-1138, p. 1-21Article in journal (Refereed) In press
Abstract [en]

Background: Previous studies have investigated effects of out-of-school STEM activities aimed at stimulating children's interest in science with positive results. However, research has not discussed the reasons why such activities are successful. Purpose: In this study, we address this gap by investigating which factors children themselves identified as interesting when they visited events at an out-of-school activity named The Children's University. Sample: Children aged 8-12 participated in the study. Altogether, there were 353 children involved in the data collection. Design and methods: A mixed method design was used, including a questionnaire and semi-structured interviews in which children's self-reported experiences were collected. Likert scale questions in the questionnaire were analysed based on descriptive statistics. The open-ended questions and data from the interviews were categorized by content analysis and analytically interpreted through 'the Ecological framework for understanding learning across places and pursuits'. Results: The children were positive about their visit, and these utterances could mainly be related to the development of the individuals' interest and knowledge according to the Ecological framework. We identified two new factors influencing student's interest in STEM in out-of-school activities: appreciating the spectacular and learning; verifying two factors of importance previously suggested in the literature: appreciating the content and the learning environment. Conclusions: The study highlights the specific factors the children actually appreciated from their visits to out-of-school activities, which could be of interest for stakeholders arranging different kinds of STEM events promoting informal learning. The content in the activities is important as well as spectacular features. To have the opportunity to learn something new in an environment that is conducive to learning is also of importance for children.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Routledge, 2019
Keywords
Interest in STEM, content, spectacular, learning, informal learning environment
National Category
Natural Sciences Pedagogical Work
Research subject
Educational Work; Biology
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:kau:diva-75200 (URN)10.1080/02635143.2019.1667321 (DOI)000487549400001 ()
Available from: 2019-10-10 Created: 2019-10-10 Last updated: 2020-01-07Bibliographically approved
De Loof, H., Walan, S., Boeve-de Pauw, J. & Gericke, N. (2019). High tech learning environments – Are teachers ready for the future?. In: : . Paper presented at 2019 ESERA. 26-30 August, 2019. Bologna, Italy..
Open this publication in new window or tab >>High tech learning environments – Are teachers ready for the future?
2019 (English)Conference paper, Oral presentation with published abstract (Refereed)
National Category
Educational Sciences
Research subject
Biology
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:kau:diva-75282 (URN)
Conference
2019 ESERA. 26-30 August, 2019. Bologna, Italy.
Available from: 2019-10-14 Created: 2019-10-14 Last updated: 2019-12-12Bibliographically approved
Walan, S. (2019). The dream performance - a case study of young girls' development of interest in STEM and 21st century skills, when activities in a makerspace were combined with drama. Research in Science & Technological Education, 1-21
Open this publication in new window or tab >>The dream performance - a case study of young girls' development of interest in STEM and 21st century skills, when activities in a makerspace were combined with drama
2019 (English)In: Research in Science & Technological Education, ISSN 0263-5143, E-ISSN 1470-1138, p. 1-21Article in journal (Refereed) Epub ahead of print
Abstract [en]

Background: There is a shortage of people in the STEM sector, and it has been argued that more needs to be done, especially to attract girls. Furthermore, there is a need to develop twenty-first-century skills. No studies seem to have explored the combination of activities in makerspaces and the use of drama to stimulate interest in STEM and development of 21st century skills.Purpose: This study focused on a project with a unique combination of makerspace activities and the use of drama. The research questions investigated the outcomes that could be identified from combining drama and activities in a makerspace, with regard to the development of interest in STEM and twenty-first-century skills.Sample: Ten girls aged 7-11 years participated. A project leader, a drama teacher and three female engineering students supported the activities.Design and methods: The project lasted 3 months. Data were collected in the form of interviews and observations with video-recordings and field-notes, as well as documentation of props made by the girls. Analyses were conducted using thematic coding and discussed through the lens of Activity Theory.Results: The results showed that some of the girls developed an interest in science and technology. The girls also developed twenty-first-century skills, in terms of creativity, problem-solving and cooperation.Conclusions: Positive outcomes were found in this project, blending drama and making in a makerspace learning environment. Future studies could investigate how other skills and knowledge in different STEM subjects can be developed in similar projects.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Taylor & Francis, 2019
Keywords
Makerspace, drama, STEM, 21st century skills, interest
National Category
Educational Sciences
Research subject
Biology
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:kau:diva-74560 (URN)10.1080/02635143.2019.1647157 (DOI)000479316900001 ()
Available from: 2019-08-29 Created: 2019-08-29 Last updated: 2019-10-15Bibliographically approved
Walan, S. & Enochsson, A.-B. (2019). The potential of using a combination of storytelling and drama, when teaching young children science. European Early Childhood Education Research Journal, 27(6), 821-836
Open this publication in new window or tab >>The potential of using a combination of storytelling and drama, when teaching young children science
2019 (English)In: European Early Childhood Education Research Journal, ISSN 1350-293X, E-ISSN 1752-1807, Vol. 27, no 6, p. 821-836Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

Based on a sociocultural perspective, this study explores the outcome of using a model that combines storytelling and drama to teach young children science. The research question is: How is children’s learning affected when using a combination of storytelling and drama to explain a complex scientific concept?. Two preschools and one primary school were visited. Altogether 25 children aged 4–8 years participated. Each group listened to a story about The Rhinovirus Rita. No pictures were shown during storytelling. After the story was told, a play was performed with the children, telling the same story they just had listened to, and the children also made drawings. At a second visit to the schools, each child was interviewed individually and their drawings were used to stimulate recall. The results show that many of the children had learnt the names of immune system cells and how they work when someone has a cold. Moreover, they had also learnt that viruses cause colds. There were also a small number of children who did not show any learning development related to this specific content. Still, we argue that the combination of storytelling and drama is an instructional strategy that has positive potential when it comes to teaching children science.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Taylor & Francis, 2019
Keywords
Science, storytelling, drama, instructional strategy, socio-cultural perspective, aesthetic approach
National Category
Educational Sciences
Research subject
Education
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:kau:diva-75396 (URN)10.1080/1350293X.2019.1678923 (DOI)
Available from: 2019-10-15 Created: 2019-10-15 Last updated: 2020-01-07Bibliographically approved
Walan, S. & Mc Ewen, B. (2018). Students' reflections on participation in a science and technology school competition. In: Odilla Finlayson, Eilish McLoughlin, Sibel Erduran, Peter Childs (Ed.), Electronic Proceedings of the ESERA 2017 Conference: Research, Practice and Collaboration in Science Education. Paper presented at ESERA 2017 Conference, Dublin City University, Dublin, Ireland. 21st-25th August 2017 (pp. 273-282). Dublin, Ireland, Part 2
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Students' reflections on participation in a science and technology school competition
2018 (English)In: Electronic Proceedings of the ESERA 2017 Conference: Research, Practice and Collaboration in Science Education / [ed] Odilla Finlayson, Eilish McLoughlin, Sibel Erduran, Peter Childs, Dublin, Ireland, 2018, Vol. Part 2, p. 273-282Conference paper, Published paper (Refereed)
Abstract [en]

Different kinds of efforts have been made in many countries to stimulate students' interest in science and technology, for example through school competitions. Few studies, however,have investigated the effect of school competitions in science and technology. This study centres onhow students participatingin the science and technology school competition The Technology Eightexperienced the outcomesof taking part inthe competition. Semi-structured interviews were conducted with seventeen 15-year-old students. Transcripts of the interviews were analysed based on contentand resulted in four categories: Social effects, Attitude to competitions, Stimulated interest in science and technology and Gained knowledge. The students enjoyed participating in the competition and found that it had a positive effect on the social situationin the classroom. Competitions were also appreciated and seen to encourage students to work harder. However, the competition didnot have much effect in changing interest in science and technology. Finally, the students found it difficult to express how the competition had contributed to gainingmore content knowledge in the subjects, but they emphasised the practical aspects of learning.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Dublin, Ireland: , 2018
Keywords
Science and technology, school competition, outcome
National Category
Didactics
Research subject
Biology
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:kau:diva-48261 (URN)978-1-873769-84-3 (ISBN)
Conference
ESERA 2017 Conference, Dublin City University, Dublin, Ireland. 21st-25th August 2017
Available from: 2017-04-05 Created: 2017-04-05 Last updated: 2019-07-12Bibliographically approved
Walan, S. & Mc Ewen, B. (2018). Teachers’ and principals’ reflections on student participation in a school science and technology competition. Research in Science & Technological Education, 36(4), 391-412
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Teachers’ and principals’ reflections on student participation in a school science and technology competition
2018 (English)In: Research in Science & Technological Education, ISSN 0263-5143, E-ISSN 1470-1138, Vol. 36, no 4, p. 391-412Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

Background: The European Union asks for renewed pedagogies in schools according to teaching strategies and necessary competences for the twenty-first century, instead of the often-used transmissive pedagogies. The national Swedish competition in science and technology for grade eight, The Technology Eight, provides an opportunity for teachers to work with instructional strategies in line with suggested pedagogies.

Purpose: To investigate teachers’ and principals’ reflections on the competition in schools.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Taylor & Francis, 2018
Keywords
Principals’ reflections, school competitions, sTeM, teachers’ reflections
National Category
Social Sciences Didactics
Research subject
Education
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:kau:diva-65449 (URN)10.1080/02635143.2017.1420644 (DOI)000443911500001 ()
Available from: 2017-12-20 Created: 2017-12-20 Last updated: 2019-07-12Bibliographically approved
Walan, S. & Mc Ewen, B. (2017). Primary Teachers’ Reflections on Inquiry- and Context-Based Science Education. Research in science education, 47(2), 407-426
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Primary Teachers’ Reflections on Inquiry- and Context-Based Science Education
2017 (English)In: Research in science education, ISSN 0157-244X, E-ISSN 1573-1898, Vol. 47, no 2, p. 407-426Article in journal (Other academic) Published
Abstract [en]

Inquiry- and context-based teaching strategies have been proven to stimulate and motivate students’ interests in learning science. In this study, 12 teachers reflected on these strategies after using them in primary schools. The teachers participated in a continuous professional development (CPD) programme. During the programme, they were also introduced to a teaching model from a European project, where inquiry- and context-based education (IC-BaSE) strategies were fused. The research question related to teachers’ reflections on these teaching strategies, and whether they found the model to be useful in primary schools after testing it with their students. Data collection was performed during the CPD programme and consisted of audio-recorded group discussions, individual portfolios and field notes collected by researchers. Results showed that compared with using only one instructional strategy, teachers found the new teaching model to be a useful complement. However, their discussions also showed that they did not reflect on choices of strategies or purposes and aims relating to students’ understanding, or the content to be taught. Before the CPD programme, teachers discussed the use of inquiry mainly from the aspect that students enjoy practical work. After the programme, they identified additional reasons for using inquiry and discussed the importance of knowing why inquiry is performed. However, to develop teachers’ knowledge of instructional strategies as well as purposes for using certain strategies, there is need for further investigations among primary school teachers.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Springer, 2017
Keywords
Primary science teachers, Inquiry-based, Context-based, Instructional strategies, Pedagogical content knowledge
National Category
Didactics Biological Sciences
Research subject
Biology
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:kau:diva-41081 (URN)10.1007/s11165-015-9507-5 (DOI)000398944800008 ()
Available from: 2016-03-17 Created: 2016-03-17 Last updated: 2019-07-12Bibliographically approved
Walan, S. (2017). Star Wars Irl. In: : . Paper presented at Barnens universitet, 9 oktober 2017. Karlstads universitet, Karlstad.
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Star Wars Irl
2017 (Swedish)Conference paper, Oral presentation only (Other (popular science, discussion, etc.))
Abstract [sv]

Rymdmusik, finns det? Finns det ljud i rymden överhuvudtaget? Rymdfilmer, vad är sant och vad är falskt? Vilken roll spelar musiken i rymdfilmerna? Vi kombinerar fantastiska IRL rymdbilder med spännande musik.

National Category
Engineering and Technology
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:kau:diva-65774 (URN)
Conference
Barnens universitet, 9 oktober 2017. Karlstads universitet, Karlstad
Available from: 2018-01-19 Created: 2018-01-19 Last updated: 2018-07-05Bibliographically approved
Walan, S. (2017). Students' responses to visits at some researchers' night events. In: NFSUN 2017 Synopsis Book: . Paper presented at Nordic Research Symposium on Science Education 2017, Trondheim, Norway, 6-9 June 2017 (pp. 26-29).
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Students' responses to visits at some researchers' night events
2017 (English)In: NFSUN 2017 Synopsis Book, 2017, p. 26-29Conference paper, Published paper (Refereed)
Abstract [en]

Several activities around the world aim to stimulate students’ interest in science, technology, engineering and mathematics. The European Researchers' Nights are one example. In this study it was investigated how seven students in the age 15-19 years responded to a visit at Researchers' Nights events. The students were interviewed and answers were analysed based on content. The results showed that the students were all positive to the visit and in most cases it was better than they had expected. The results were organised into the main themes: expectations versus experiences, interest in research context and relevance of research. Most of the students were positive about being a scientist and could even imagine a future science career. The contexts presented at the events were catching the interest of the students and were relating to the daily life of the students, or found to be of relevance for society. The study is a pilot and will be followed by a future study with more students included.

National Category
Educational Sciences
Research subject
Education
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:kau:diva-65746 (URN)
Conference
Nordic Research Symposium on Science Education 2017, Trondheim, Norway, 6-9 June 2017
Available from: 2018-01-19 Created: 2018-01-19 Last updated: 2019-07-12Bibliographically approved
Organisations
Identifiers
ORCID iD: ORCID iD iconorcid.org/0000-0002-9060-9973

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