Using phenomenography to study enacted object of learning: The case of teaching children to recognize Chinese characters

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Abstract

This study set out to use phenomenography as a theoretical framework to investigate teaching in classrooms, focusing on how the same object of learning was enacted differently in different teaching activities. We observed in person teaching activities intended to teach children to recognize Chinese characters (i.e. the object of learning) in Hong Kong preschools. Classroom observational data such as the delivery of the teaching activities and the conversation between teacher and children were used as the main data source. Three categories of teaching activities were identified from the data, which correspondingly reflected three ways of seeing the recognition of characters: (A) recognition as matching items, (B) recognition as imitating behaviors, and (C) recognition as constructing meanings. The results of this study were useful for fostering the professional learning of preschool teachers in practical ways. As teacher educators, we were particularly interested in the learning of teachers; thereby in the study we chose to investigate teaching from the perspective of learning to teach. We assumed that the ways teachers acted in enacting the object of learning reflected how they saw the object of learning. We hope to foster more discussion and in turn contribute to the methodology of phenomenography.
Original languageEnglish
Publication statusPublished - Aug 2016

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Teaching
learning
teacher
classroom
Hong Kong
conversation
educator
human being
methodology

Citation

Lam, H. C. (2016, August). Using phenomenography to study enacted object of learning: The case of teaching children to recognize Chinese characters. Paper presented at The EARLI SIG 9 conference 2016: Different Horizons: setting directions for phenomenographic research, University of Gothenburg, Sweden.

Keywords

  • Enacted object of learning
  • Phenomenography
  • Teaching
  • Word learning