The relationship of teacher role characteristics, staff development, and school climate to the use of manipulatives in primary grade mathematics Public Deposited

http://ir.library.oregonstate.edu/concern/graduate_thesis_or_dissertations/dr26z195j

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  • A review of the literature revealed that there are many variables that influence teachers' instructional practices. These influential variables fall into three categories: those related to the teacher, which are referred to in this study as teacher role characteristics; those related to the inservice education activities of teachers, referred to as staff development variables; and those related to the teachers' individual teaching situations, referred to as school climate variables. It was hypothesized that there may be variables that are related to the use of manipulatives for mathematics instruction by primary grade teachers. Nineteen independent variables in the three categories were studied. In order to investigate the hypotheses, a population of teachers was located in eight school districts outside of but within a sixty-mile radius of Corvallis, Oregon, and a sample was drawn from those teachers having some specialized training in the use of manipulatives beyond their initial teacher certification college coursework. One hundred eighty teachers were mailed a survey instrument, designed and field-tested by the researcher, whose purpose was to determine amount of manipulatives use. Following the completion of this survey, there were 145 participating teachers who were then sent a questionnaire, designed and field-tested by the researcher, which Pearson correlations were calculated for the variables based on continuous data and one-way analysis of variance was computed for the variables based on categorical data. Multiple regression analysis was then performed on the three independent variables that were statistically significant at the .05 level. A teacher's attitude toward the usefulness of manipulatives training, his/her current teaching beliefs (child-centeredness), and perceived attitude of students' parents were all highly correlated with manipulatives use. In the final regression model, each of these three variables made a unique contribution for explaining the variance in teachers' use of manipulatives. Other variables that may also have some relationship to the use of manipulatives included: quality of manipulatives training, follow-up from initial manipulatives training, and perceived response from students.
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