Facilitating border crossings: A case study of pre-service primary teachers' learning about science and science teaching

Year: 2007

Author: Howitt, Christine, Venville, Grady

Type of paper: Abstract refereed

Using an interpretive case study methodology, and the theoretical concept of border crossings, this research describes the science learning journeys of four pre-service early childhood teachers over a semester science methods course. Based on critical incidents identified by the pre-service teachers during their weekly workshops, vignettes were co-constructed and co-interpreted to describe the nature of each journey, and the pre-service teachers’ changing perspectives towards science and science teaching. Common themes across the four learning journeys are identified and described to illustrate the new perspectives these teachers developed along their journey: simplicity, inclusivity, open-endedness, importance of connections, ‘disguising’ science, and immersion into science. Two assertions are presented that assist teacher educators to construct and manage smoother border crossings for pre-service teachers from early childhood education to science education, framed in terms of representation in science and identify in science.