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Exploring design discourses and liminality as features of professional learning in an elementary makerspace

Exploring design discourses and liminality as features of professional learning in an elementary... Using Johansson-Sköldberg et al.’s (2013) descriptions of design discourses, this study aims to analyze teacher interviews, research notes and teacher and student artifacts to determine if engagement in design practices led to changes in the teacher’s thinking.Design/methodology/approachThis article presents results from a year-long study that explored how a teacher enacted design discourses to engage in curriculum learning within an elementary school makerspace. The design-based study involved a collaborative partnership where a teacher and researcher co-designed, co-enacted and co-reflected on three cycles of making featuring curriculum studies in science, mathematics and social studies.FindingsThe authors determined that engagement in all four design discourses led to transformative changes in the teacher’s thinking about herself as a teacher and her students as learners. The evidence suggests the school makerspace can serve as a liminal design space for professional learning, given that implicit in the makerspace is the embodiment of design practices such as problem finding, iteration and reflection.Research limitations/implicationsEngaging in design discourses in the makerspace can lead teachers to question the frames they hold about teaching and learning. However, teachers need ongoing support in developing discipline knowledge and prioritizing the time required for designing, iterating and reflecting on learning in the makerspace.Practical implicationsThe makerspace provides a liminal space for teachers’ professional learning in that implicit in the makerspace is the embodiment of design practices such as problem finding, iteration and reflection.Originality/valueThis study is unique, in that it places the importance of teacher learning in the elementary school makerspace on equal footing with student learning, thereby creating a culture of inquiry for all. http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png Information and Learning Science Emerald Publishing

Exploring design discourses and liminality as features of professional learning in an elementary makerspace

Information and Learning Science , Volume 123 (5/6): 19 – Apr 29, 2022

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Publisher
Emerald Publishing
Copyright
© Emerald Publishing Limited
ISSN
2398-5348
DOI
10.1108/ils-08-2020-0192
Publisher site
See Article on Publisher Site

Abstract

Using Johansson-Sköldberg et al.’s (2013) descriptions of design discourses, this study aims to analyze teacher interviews, research notes and teacher and student artifacts to determine if engagement in design practices led to changes in the teacher’s thinking.Design/methodology/approachThis article presents results from a year-long study that explored how a teacher enacted design discourses to engage in curriculum learning within an elementary school makerspace. The design-based study involved a collaborative partnership where a teacher and researcher co-designed, co-enacted and co-reflected on three cycles of making featuring curriculum studies in science, mathematics and social studies.FindingsThe authors determined that engagement in all four design discourses led to transformative changes in the teacher’s thinking about herself as a teacher and her students as learners. The evidence suggests the school makerspace can serve as a liminal design space for professional learning, given that implicit in the makerspace is the embodiment of design practices such as problem finding, iteration and reflection.Research limitations/implicationsEngaging in design discourses in the makerspace can lead teachers to question the frames they hold about teaching and learning. However, teachers need ongoing support in developing discipline knowledge and prioritizing the time required for designing, iterating and reflecting on learning in the makerspace.Practical implicationsThe makerspace provides a liminal space for teachers’ professional learning in that implicit in the makerspace is the embodiment of design practices such as problem finding, iteration and reflection.Originality/valueThis study is unique, in that it places the importance of teacher learning in the elementary school makerspace on equal footing with student learning, thereby creating a culture of inquiry for all.

Journal

Information and Learning ScienceEmerald Publishing

Published: Apr 29, 2022

Keywords: Makerspaces; Design; Liminal spaces; Teacher as designer; Design-based research; Curriculum

References