Designing for concreteness fading in primary computing

Trory, Anthony Michael, Howland, Kate and Good, Judith (2018) Designing for concreteness fading in primary computing. 17th Interaction Design and Children Conference, Trondheim, Norway, 19-22 June 2018. Published in: IDC '18 Proceedings of the 17th ACM Conference on Interaction Design and Children. Association for Computing Machinery ISBN 9781450351522 (Accepted)

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In primary education, concepts are commonly introduced through concrete instantiations, such as physical manipulatives and kinaesthetic activities, with an expectation that learners will gradually move towards working with abstract representations. There has been considerable research in subjects such as mathematics on how children can move from working with concrete to abstract materials, but relatively little research on how this can be achieved in computing, which has recently become a more prominent subject at primary level. This paper reports on the design and evaluation of a low-fidelity prototype learning environment that aims to teach children aged 9-10 about a key computing concept (internet routing), using a concreteness fading approach commonly applied in mathematics. An empirical study with 59 children showed that those following a concreteness fading progression scored significantly higher on a post-test than those using a concrete only prototype, and had an increase in positive attitude towards computing in line with alternative approaches. We highlight the potential for an augmented reality implementation of the prototype to support investigation of further key questions raised by this research.

Item Type: Conference Proceedings
Schools and Departments: School of Engineering and Informatics > Informatics
Research Centres and Groups: Centre for Innovation and Research in Childhood and Youth
Creative Technology
Subjects: L Education > LB Theory and practice of education > LB1050.9 Educational psychology > LB1060 Learning
Q Science > QA Mathematics > QA0075 Electronic computers. Computer science > QA0076 Computer software
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Depositing User: Kate Howland
Date Deposited: 21 May 2018 11:19
Last Modified: 06 Jul 2018 13:51

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