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Networks: An Online Journal for Teacher Research

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Full-Text Articles in Education

Action Research In The Time Of Covid-19, Victoria Seeger, Troy Fredde, Brianna O'Neal, Johnna Stewart Feb 2023

Action Research In The Time Of Covid-19, Victoria Seeger, Troy Fredde, Brianna O'Neal, Johnna Stewart

Networks: An Online Journal for Teacher Research

This study provides a picture of the impact the novel Coronavirus (COVID-19) had on action research performed by graduate students at a small Midwest university. A qualitative case study was conducted to examine how the participants’ abilities to implement their research, gather data, and analyze the results was impacted by COVID-19. Participants were asked a series of questions regarding modifications made, the impact to the research that was done, the impact to their findings, and implications for future research. Based on the responses to these surveys, researchers determined four prominent themes; altered timelines, limited access to data and materials, quality …


Teacher Inquiry: A Catalyst For Professional Development, Divonna Stebick, Jonathan Hart, Lauren Glick, Jaime Kindervatter, Jenna Nagel, Cathy Patrick Feb 2023

Teacher Inquiry: A Catalyst For Professional Development, Divonna Stebick, Jonathan Hart, Lauren Glick, Jaime Kindervatter, Jenna Nagel, Cathy Patrick

Networks: An Online Journal for Teacher Research

Teachers seek and require meaningful professional development opportunities to truly grow in the profession. Teacher inquiry, or teacher research, is one way to accomplish professional development goals. Teacher inquiry is thought of as individualized, personalized, and meaningful professional development (Cochran-Smith & Lytle, 1999). In this paper we articulate the learning of a cohort of certificated professionals engaged in a year-long project that included asking research questions, designing data collection tools, and developing an independent study to examine their questions. Nine certificated professionals participated in the year-long project representing various grade levels and experiences. Data was collected through teacher reflections and …


Self-Study In A Pandemic: Process, Pedagogy, People, And Publishing, David M. Schmid, Shelley Price-Williams, Morgan Anderson, Matt Townsley Feb 2023

Self-Study In A Pandemic: Process, Pedagogy, People, And Publishing, David M. Schmid, Shelley Price-Williams, Morgan Anderson, Matt Townsley

Networks: An Online Journal for Teacher Research

Since its inclusion as a qualitative research approach in 1993, self-study has offered an opportunity for faculty members to merge two components of their position involved in tenure and promotion decisions: scholarship and teaching. This paper portrays a yearlong self-study of four probationary faculty members, in the same college of education department at a comprehensive regional university, all completed during the COVID-19 pandemic. Findings include the incorporation of engaging pedagogy in coursework, the impacts of COVID-19 on faculty and students, the importance of relationships with faculty colleagues and students, the incorporation of observation, feedback, and reflection as an avenue to …


The Symbiotic Relationship Between Reading And Music: A Natural Pedagogical Collaboration, Jarrett D. Moore, Kathryn Simonyak, Kelsey Ruzicka Feb 2023

The Symbiotic Relationship Between Reading And Music: A Natural Pedagogical Collaboration, Jarrett D. Moore, Kathryn Simonyak, Kelsey Ruzicka

Networks: An Online Journal for Teacher Research

Reading and music instruction can form a symbiotic relationship to positively impact lower-elementary literacy and increase student engagement. In this action research study, cross-curricular instruction between reading and music at the 2nd grade elementary level was taught by both the reading and music teacher. This study employed reading, rhythm, rhyme, instrumentation, writing, physical movement, and song to benefit students’ phonemic awareness while reading. Developmental Reading Assessments (DRAs) were used to measure student growth from the start of the study to its conclusion. These DRAs were used as pre- and posttests and were bookended around instruction using reading, rhythm, rhyme, instrumentation, …


Differentiated Spelling: Using Small Group Instruction, Sara Broughton Feb 2023

Differentiated Spelling: Using Small Group Instruction, Sara Broughton

Networks: An Online Journal for Teacher Research

Spelling instruction is often overlooked by many teachers during reading and language arts. The purpose of this study was to implement a manageable differentiated word study instruction program, drawn from the Words Their Way (WTW) program, to determine how it affected students’ spelling accuracy and how the participants perceived its effect on students’ daily journal writing time in a fourth-grade self-contained classroom. Students were placed into small groups based on their spelling pre-test scores. Data was collected through field notes, student and teacher interviews, a pre- and post-test, and a survey. Qualitative data was analyzed using the constant …


Editorial Introduction: Better Together, Suzanne Porath Feb 2023

Editorial Introduction: Better Together, Suzanne Porath

Networks: An Online Journal for Teacher Research

This issue of Network touches on both topics – the continued impact of COVID on teaching and learning and the importance of collaboration during educator inquiry projects. Adult learning theory, also known as andragogy (Knowles, 1980) is an approach to learning that is problem-based and collaborative. Each of the articles in this issue highlight the importance of educators guiding their own professional learning in collaboration with others.


Community Mapping 2.0: Using Technology To Raise Community Awareness, Chris Sclafani Jan 2022

Community Mapping 2.0: Using Technology To Raise Community Awareness, Chris Sclafani

Networks: An Online Journal for Teacher Research

Community mapping can be an important tool for educators who aim to freely allow students to share their own connections and experiences. During community mapping, students identify areas within their own localities that matter to them, and engage in various literacy events centered on those places. Often, classes will study foreign lands and cultures during the course of a school year. While this is a wonderful learning opportunity, do they take the time to look deeper into their own personal neighborhoods and surroundings? This study uncovers the nuances of community mapping, as a group of third grade students work through …


Probation, Practitioners, And Pedagogy: Lessons Learned From Self-Study, David Schmid, Matt Townsley Jan 2022

Probation, Practitioners, And Pedagogy: Lessons Learned From Self-Study, David Schmid, Matt Townsley

Networks: An Online Journal for Teacher Research

The reward systems typically found in colleges and universities often serve as a barrier rather than a catalyst for improving teaching. As such, an increasing number of university faculty members are using their own classrooms as a site of inquiry and reflective practice (e.g. self-study) to concurrently advance their own research and teaching. This paper portrays a yearlong self-study of two former practitioners turned probationary faculty members within a college of education at a comprehensive regional university. Findings include tensions within relationships, the influence of our past positions, the engagement of students, and how scholarship requirements influence our professional lives. …


Factors Influencing Students' Willingness To Communicate In Korean Elementary School Efl Classrooms, Mark A. Matuzas Jan 2022

Factors Influencing Students' Willingness To Communicate In Korean Elementary School Efl Classrooms, Mark A. Matuzas

Networks: An Online Journal for Teacher Research

In this teacher-research study I examine factors influencing willingness to communicate (WTC) on 39 students, grades 1-6, enrolled in after-school EFL classes in Korea. Quantitative data from student surveys, was analyzed to identify student perceptions of their comfort when engaged in various types of communicative classroom activities and to identify trends occurring across gender and grade levels. Qualitative data gathered from journals recorded after each day’s lessons was coded to identify themes related to classroom WTC. Findings from these data sources were compared with observation records and self-reflection. Factors identified that influence student WTC included: familiarity with speaking tasks, class …


Significant Relationships, Suzanne Porath Jan 2022

Significant Relationships, Suzanne Porath

Networks: An Online Journal for Teacher Research

No abstract provided.


Teacher Educators Learning With Prospective Teachers: Finding Relevant Mathematics In Our (Their) Lives, Lindsay M. Keazer, Eryn M. Maher Apr 2021

Teacher Educators Learning With Prospective Teachers: Finding Relevant Mathematics In Our (Their) Lives, Lindsay M. Keazer, Eryn M. Maher

Networks: An Online Journal for Teacher Research

Two mathematics teacher educators (MTEs) discuss the mathematical contexts generated by prospective teachers (PTs) when pushed to look for relevant mathematics in their lives and communities. Through collaborative teacher action research focused on iterations of collecting, categorizing, and discussing PTs’ mathematical contexts, and posing selected examples for PTs’ own examination, layers of learning occurred for both PTs and MTEs. PTs began to craft more personalized, story-like contexts, seemingly noticing more mathematics in their lives. MTEs were unexpectedly pushed to clarify their thinking about what it means to develop contexts that are authentic and relevant, and to contemplate how their actions …


Putting Research Into “Action”: The Impact Of Brain Energizers On Off-Task Behaviors And Academic Achievement, Rebecca Buchanan, Lauren Davis, Trisha Cury Apr 2021

Putting Research Into “Action”: The Impact Of Brain Energizers On Off-Task Behaviors And Academic Achievement, Rebecca Buchanan, Lauren Davis, Trisha Cury

Networks: An Online Journal for Teacher Research

There are many factors influencing the learning environment in public school settings. As such, the recognition of developing a multidimensional approach incorporating a variety of “tools” for a teacher’s toolbox can prove to be very effective. Research indicates that movement is one such tool that can increase the capacity for students to learn (Ratey, 2008). The purpose of this study was to explore the effects of brain energizers in a 1st grade classroom in rural Appalachia. Results of the study indicated that brain energizers had a positive effect on off-task behaviors as well as academic achievement. The incorporation of movement …


Editorial Introduction: To Stay Afloat, Maybe Collaborate?, Suzanne Porath Apr 2021

Editorial Introduction: To Stay Afloat, Maybe Collaborate?, Suzanne Porath

Networks: An Online Journal for Teacher Research

No abstract provided.


Imagination At Work: A Book Review Of The Power Of Practice-Based Literacy Research: A Tool For Teachers, Catherine Lammert Sep 2020

Imagination At Work: A Book Review Of The Power Of Practice-Based Literacy Research: A Tool For Teachers, Catherine Lammert

Networks: An Online Journal for Teacher Research

This is a book review of of The Power of Practice-Based Literacy Research: A Tool for Teachers.


Discussion-Case Analysis For Facilitating Pre-Service Teachers' Exploration Of Play In The Early Childhood Classroom, Meredith Resnick, Ane T. Johnson Sep 2020

Discussion-Case Analysis For Facilitating Pre-Service Teachers' Exploration Of Play In The Early Childhood Classroom, Meredith Resnick, Ane T. Johnson

Networks: An Online Journal for Teacher Research

This study sought to examine the experience of early childhood pre-service teachers participating in facilitated research analysis with discussion-case application. Specifically, we were interested in the impact on teachers’ knowledge of and attitude towards the role and value of play in the classroom. This study describes the qualitative phase of a sequential explanatory mixed method research project. Eight participants were interviewed after participating in an in-class activity of analyzing a piece of research on play and applying it to a hypothetical discussion-case in a small group Four key findings emerged from this study: participants viewed play as inextricably connected to …


Implementing Personal Devices In Math, Jamie W. Mcdaniel Sep 2020

Implementing Personal Devices In Math, Jamie W. Mcdaniel

Networks: An Online Journal for Teacher Research

This study examined the effect of implementing personal devices into a fifth grade mathematics classroom. Thirty-eight fifth graders participated in this eight-week project with a focus on six students to track their growth. During the study, students engaged in technology based stations that pertained to our geometry unit and coordinate unit. Students took pre and post test on paper to track progress. In addition, students completed online assessments within their practice websites and apps to track comprehension and growth of the content. Furthermore, students were interviewed to ensure they were staying engaged in the online activities and to track student …


Sharing Stories: Reflections Of Professors’ Literacy Identities And Beliefs, Christy M. Howard, Ran Hu, Johna Faulconer Sep 2020

Sharing Stories: Reflections Of Professors’ Literacy Identities And Beliefs, Christy M. Howard, Ran Hu, Johna Faulconer

Networks: An Online Journal for Teacher Research

Teacher identities and beliefs influence instructional practices. In order to explore this process, this self-study was conducted by three literacy professors from different ethnic backgrounds including one African-American professor, one Chinese national professor and one White professor. The purpose of this study was to examine how professors' literacy identities are shaped and how sharing these identities, experiences and beliefs in meaningful professional dialogues influences instructional practice. We examined the role of our identities and beliefs on our instructional practices using multiple forms of qualitative data such as journal entries, digital stories, and critical group discussions. Despite the range of differences …


Student Preferences For Group Size In A Language Development Course, Joshua Cohen Sep 2020

Student Preferences For Group Size In A Language Development Course, Joshua Cohen

Networks: An Online Journal for Teacher Research

Student preferences for group size were investigated. Pre- and post-study surveys, student written comments, and teacher observations were used to record changes in attitude and perception of group work while learning English over an eight-week period. In this study, I observed how arrangement impacted my students’ impressions of individual, pair, and group activities. My purpose for focusing on student configuration was twofold: firstly, I wanted to learn more about my students’ preferences for group size, and secondly; I wanted to find out whether certain combinations of students affected their perceptions of learning more than others.


Reclaiming And Redefining Research, Suzanne Porath Sep 2020

Reclaiming And Redefining Research, Suzanne Porath

Networks: An Online Journal for Teacher Research

Action research, practitioner inquiry, self-study, scholarship of teaching and learning, or practice-based research – there are numerous names for this work. Yet, whether you are new to action research or a veteran of classroom inquiry, I hope this issue of Networks continues to inspires you to “reflect on classroom practice through research ventures… alone or in collaboration, use inquiry as a tool to learn more about your work with the hope of eventually improving its effectiveness” (from the mission statement of Networks: An Online Journal for Teacher Research).


The Power Of Workshop, Stephanie Nagl May 2020

The Power Of Workshop, Stephanie Nagl

Networks: An Online Journal for Teacher Research

This action research explores the use of Readers’-Writers’ Workshop (RWW) in the secondary English classroom. RWW often requires a paradigm shift on the part of the teacher to allow for more student autonomy and limiting direct instruction time. The researcher sought to discover whether or not this model would impact the engagement level and the attitudes toward reading of high school seniors. Findings suggest RWW can be an effective tool for engaging students, as well as, helping students to develop positive attitudes with reading practices.


The Impact Of Family Engagement On Student Achievement, Christina M. Hall May 2020

The Impact Of Family Engagement On Student Achievement, Christina M. Hall

Networks: An Online Journal for Teacher Research

This action research study explores the impact of family engagement on student achievement using three family/student pairs. Family involvement has an impact on student learning and achievement throughout the school year. Taking a look at how a family’s involvement in their student’s learning plays a part on the achievement the student has throughout the school year. Previous writing scores were used to compare the growth made within a three-month period after the families worked with students to give feedback through a classroom communication app. Families were able to work at home to give feedback while their students were in class …


Spelling Interventions For Students Who Show Signs Of Dyslexia, Caitlin N. Gritz May 2020

Spelling Interventions For Students Who Show Signs Of Dyslexia, Caitlin N. Gritz

Networks: An Online Journal for Teacher Research

This action research examines the impact of spelling interventions for students who show signs of dyslexia. The action research also shows how using growth mindset can help students with characteristics typical of low self-esteem. Students learned a new spelling pattern weekly and a growth mindset lesson to teach students how to have a growth mindset rather than a fixed mindset related to spelling skills. A pre-spelling inventory test and a post-spelling inventory test were compared to see that word study activities help students remember specific spelling patterns.


Self-Care Amongst First-Year Teachers, Leia Baker May 2020

Self-Care Amongst First-Year Teachers, Leia Baker

Networks: An Online Journal for Teacher Research

This paper explores a study completed with two first-year teachers over a three-month period while self-care strategies were suggested and practiced. The paper discusses the impact that practicing and not practicing self-care has on first-year teachers’ attitudes and attendance. It also includes firsthand accounts from journal entries completed by both first-year teachers.


Editorial Introduction: Classroom Research: Catalyzing Education Through Inquiry, Shantel Farnan, Victoria Seeger May 2020

Editorial Introduction: Classroom Research: Catalyzing Education Through Inquiry, Shantel Farnan, Victoria Seeger

Networks: An Online Journal for Teacher Research

No abstract provided.


The Power Of Please: How Courtesy Scripts Improve Self-Control And Reduce Peer Conflict By Creating New Language Patterns, Michael J. Haslip Feb 2020

The Power Of Please: How Courtesy Scripts Improve Self-Control And Reduce Peer Conflict By Creating New Language Patterns, Michael J. Haslip

Networks: An Online Journal for Teacher Research

This teacher inquiry project describes how one first grade teacher learned to use coached language supports to improve children’s self-control and cooperation. Courtesy scripts were created in the process. The development of courtesy scripts and their application in early elementary classrooms is presented. Courtesy scripts are specific phrases explicitly taught (I do, we do, you do), reinforced, and used in conversations by both the speaker and listener. Children learned how to make requests while also honoring the needs of others. Use of these pragmatic language supports helped to create a peaceful classroom community. A practical method for teaching courteous language …


A Review Of The Reader Response Notebook: Teaching Toward Agency, Autonomy, And Accountability, Bobbie Kabuto Feb 2020

A Review Of The Reader Response Notebook: Teaching Toward Agency, Autonomy, And Accountability, Bobbie Kabuto

Networks: An Online Journal for Teacher Research

This book review examines two overlapping narratives in Ted Kelser’s The Reader Response Notebook: Teaching toward Agency, Autonomy, and Accountability. The first narrative is the reflective professional journey of Ted Kesler, who began re-envisioning the possibilities of reader response notebooks while he was an elementary and middle school teacher in New York City Public Schools. The second narrative is that of the students who used reader response notebooks in their classrooms. This review concludes with the idea of how The Reader Response Notebook is a comprehensive, practical book for teachers. The Reader Response Notebook exemplifies how inquiry lead to …


Preparing Teacher Interns For International Teaching: A Case Study Of A Chinese Practicum Program, Gregory R. Mackinnon, Robert Shields Feb 2020

Preparing Teacher Interns For International Teaching: A Case Study Of A Chinese Practicum Program, Gregory R. Mackinnon, Robert Shields

Networks: An Online Journal for Teacher Research

Acadia University, a small liberal arts institution, has for 15 years, offered a unique practicum experience for its teacher interns enrolled in the preservice Bachelor of Education. Students travel to Shanghai, China for a period of four months to teach English as a Second Language in school classrooms ranging from grades kindergarten to six. This paper describes the preparation of interns and the inherent challenges they face as pedagogues in a distinctly different teaching context. This action research account seeks to used mixed methods to identify areas of improvement in the process of preparing beginning teachers for a career in …


Enhancing Student Learning In The Online Instructional Environment Through The Use Of Universal Design For Learning, Kathleen A. Boothe, Marla J. Lohmann, Ruby Owiny Feb 2020

Enhancing Student Learning In The Online Instructional Environment Through The Use Of Universal Design For Learning, Kathleen A. Boothe, Marla J. Lohmann, Ruby Owiny

Networks: An Online Journal for Teacher Research

As college faculty who prepare future teachers, we strive to teach our students through instruction and modeling best practices in teaching. We constantly evaluate our teaching and make adjustments to include updated knowledge about effective instruction. The evaluation and adjustments made to our courses lend themselves to action research. We take what we learn from our research and make appropriate changes to better meet the diverse needs of students. This article provides an overview of a final project that used Universal Design for Learning (UDL) for assessing student knowledge. This research focused on the principle of Multiple Means of Action …


A Systematic Multisensory Phonics Intervention For Older Struggling Readers: Action Research Study, Elizabeth Henry Jan 2020

A Systematic Multisensory Phonics Intervention For Older Struggling Readers: Action Research Study, Elizabeth Henry

Networks: An Online Journal for Teacher Research

Upper elementary readers who persist with reading difficulties face both academic and emotional challenges when they do not make reading gains equal to their peers. Decades of research has shown that persistent treatment resisters respond positively to a systematic multisensory phonics intervention. In my action research study, I examined how 5th and 6th grade struggling readers responded to a multisensory phonics intervention. Following the eight-week intervention, students made gains in word reading accuracy and demonstrated increased confidence in word reading skills. Implications of the study bolster the importance of providing phonics instruction to older struggling readers.


Real-Life Nature-Based Experiences As Keys To The Writing Workshop, Margot Kinberg Jan 2020

Real-Life Nature-Based Experiences As Keys To The Writing Workshop, Margot Kinberg

Networks: An Online Journal for Teacher Research

For many years, research has supported the value of using real-life experiences as teaching opportunities (e.g. Noobanjong & Louhapensang, 2017; Powell, 2015). This is just as true of teaching writing as of anything else. In fact, when learners use writing (such as journaling) to share their experiences, they benefit in several ways, including their communication skills (e.g. Khanmohammad & Eilaghi, 2017).

Writing workshops have been shown to be effective approaches to coaching writing at several different levels (Williams, 2014). Such workshops provide the opportunity to reflect on drafts, collaborate with peers and work through the writing process. They are, therefore, …