TECHNOLOGY-BASED TEACHING AND LEARNING VIS-À-VIS EARLY CHILDHOOD EDUCATION

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CHAPTER THREE: A CONCEPTUAL FRAMEWORK FOR TECHNOLOGY-BASED TEACHING AND LEARNING IN THE FOUNDATION PHASE

The important thing is what those who live with, or work with and for young children in our present times and settings say and do. The important thing is that the new pioneers, those working in early childhood settings and elsewhere in the pursuit to make the best provision for young children, take these ideas (from the past) into the future and make them their own. There is no better tribute to those who have gone than to remould, revisit and revise their ideas for a new today.
–     Nutbrown, Clough & Selbie (2008:181)

 INTRODUCTION

In the previous chapter literature was reviewed that highlighted the context of ECE in South Africa, as well as providing elucidations of digital literacy and 21st century skills. The literature surveyed also emphasized the benefits and shortfalls of using TbTL and concluded with an overview of TbTL in ECE. The aim of this chapter is to provide insight into conceptual perspectives that are relevant to this study. I specifically define this chapter as a conceptual framework as it consists of a number of theories that are relevant to TbTL in the Foundation Phase. Firstly, it provides insight into the generational theory since doing so places the participants of the study into a particular cohort and assists in classifying their common attributes. Secondly, it considers teaching and learning theories that are both pertinent to the Foundation Phase, as well as to technology, namely: behaviourism, constructivism and connectivism. Lastly, the chapter investigates the application framework, TPACK in order to explain the relationship between technology, pedagogy and content for TbTL in the Foundation Phase.

GENERATION THEORY

Archaic societies from the Sumerians to the Mycenaeans to the Mayans, philosophers such as Plato, Polybius, Toynbee and Schlesinger and the Hebrew Bible point towards the generation to explain how and why recurring archetypes occur (Strauss & Howe, 1997:14-15). A generation “is the aggregate of all people born over roughly the span of a phase of life who share a common location in history and, hence, a common collective persona” (Strauss & Howe, 1997:16). Codrington and Grant-Marshall (2011:12) define a generation as “a group of people with a set of shared experiences that exhibit a shared worldview, and continue to exhibit the characteristics of that worldview until they grow up through life.” Furthermore, these authors explained that “as time and events began accelerating, the concept of generation identity has become more important to describe each new generation” (Codrington & Grant-Marshall, 2011:14).
Furthermore, Strauss and Howe (1991:35) explain a generation cycle as consisting of consecutive 20 year cohorts, namely: Idealist, Reactive, Civic and Adaptive. The characteristics of each cohort occur in a four stage process of history spanning roughly 80 years. The generation archetypes were since renamed in The Fourth Turning by Strauss & Howe (1997), where Idealist became Prophet, Reactive became Nomad, Civic became Hero and Adaptive became Artist. In order to inquire about what will happen next in terms of generation traits and eras, one has to link current generations with the repeated sequence of the four generation archetypes. Strauss and Howe (1997:19) explain that each archetype is recognised by the turning of their birth, with a Prophet generation being born during a high era, a nomad generation being boring during an awakening, a hero generation being born during an unravelling and an artist generation being born during a period of crisis. As a new turning commences, each generation moves into a new period of its existence.
To understand the above mentioned cohorts as well as their characteristics at each stage of their lifespan, a brief explanation from Strauss and Howe (1997:84) follows. The Prophet generation is described as accepting of societal order and being born near the end of a crisis. Strauss and Howe (1997:101) explain that the first turning is a high that takes place following a crisis era in which institutions take precedence over individualism. Due to the catastrophic years prior to their birth, Prophets grow up as pampered children, with a strong pursuit of morals and principles during middle age, and as the cycle completes, steer another crisis as senior citizens. The following cohort, the Nomad generation, are born during a period of social standards and spiritual agendas that confront the existent recognised order. In contrast to the Prophet generation, the Nomads develop as under-protected children and somewhat divided during an awakening period. According to Strauss and Howe (1997:102) the attack of institutions for the sake of individuality and spiritual independence characterises this era. This generation are sensible leaders during middle age and become flexible mature adults in a post-Crisis era. After an awakening and during an unravelling period, the Hero generation are born into individualism. Institutions are fragile and doubted, although independence is strong and burgeoning during this Third Turning which is in in several ways contrary to a high (Strauss & Howe, 1997:103). Heroes grow up sheltered but emerge as positive partners during the crisis of their youth and develop into dynamic and expectant young adults. They are cited as “powerful elders attacked by another awakening” (Strauss & Howe, 1997:84). The final cohort in the generation cycle is the Artist generation – the generation that Foundation Phase learners of this study were born into. This generation is born during a crisis which occurs after an Unravelling – a period where harmony and martyrdom caused by threatening social and political intricacy are part of the social order. Society is demolished and restored to awaken authority and community purpose. The Artist child is overprotected by parents from the Crisis era and develops into traditional and obedient roles as youth. As middle agers, this cohort emerges with a course of action in line with the Awakening of the time and then age into mindful individuals, post-awakening.

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Generations explained

“It is through this linkage of biological aging and shared experience, reproduced across turnings and generations, that history acquires personal relevance” (Strauss Howe, 1997:15). Strauss and Howe posit that “turnings come in cycles of four.
Each cycle spans the length of a long human life, roughly eighty to one hundred years, and a unit of time the ancients called the saeculum. Together, the turnings of the saeculum comprise history’s seasonal rhythm of growth, maturation, entropy and destruction” (Strauss & Howe, 1997:3).
The late 1980s were a time of radical transformation in terms of historical events that changed the world (Bush & Codrington, 2012). Such events started when terrorism reached the Western world, symbolised by the explosion of the Pan Am Flight 103 over Lockerbie in Scotland. Conversely, individual power reached the East as a series of demonstrations took place in Tiananmen Square in China in 1989. Moreover, the divide between the east and west collapsed as the Berlin Wall came down on 9 November 1989, bringing capitalism and democracy to the communist world. Thereafter, the Romanian communist dictator, Nicolae Ceaușescu, was executed. As Russia was undergoing political and economic reform, Eastern Europe also began to rehabilitate. Finally, these sequential events consummated on 11 February 1990 in South Africa as Nelson Mandela was freed from 27 years of imprisonment. The purpose of explaining these developments is because “we, and our children, will live the rest of our lives with the consequences of this global transformation” (Bush & Codrington, 2012:xvii)
Everyone has values, expectations and an attitude that is based on what life was like when they grew up. Moreover, and rudimentarily, “the idea behind generation theory is not to pour everyone into a mould; rather your age, your generation is an attitude” (Codrington & Grant-Marshall, 2011:3). The generation theory assists to characterise a cohort of people who are born during a particular period of the same 20 years.

CHAPTER ONE INTRODUCTION AND ORIENTATION TO THE STUDY
1.1 INTRODUCTION
1.2 RATIONALE
1.3 CONCEPT CLARIFICATION
1.4 RESEARCH QUESTIONS
1.5 THEORETICAL FRAMEWORK
1.6 RESEARCH METHODOLOGY
1.7 ETHICAL CONSIDERATIONS
1.8 OUTLINE OF STUDY
1.9 CONCLUDING REMARKS
CHAPTER TWO TECHNOLOGY-BASED TEACHING AND LEARNING VIS-À-VIS EARLY CHILDHOOD EDUCATION – A LITERATURE STUDY
2.1 INTRODUCTION
2.2 EARLY CHILDHOOD EDUCATION .
2.3 TECHNOLOGY-BASED TEACHING AND LEARNING.
2.4 TECHNOLOGY-BASED TEACHING AND LEARNING IN EARLY
CHILDHOOD EDUCATION
2.5 CONCLUDING REMARKS
CHAPTER THREE A CONCEPTUAL FRAMEWORK FOR TECHNOLOGY-BASED TEACHING AND LEARNING IN THE FOUNDATION PHASE
3.1 INTRODUCTION
3.2 GENERATION THEORY
3.3 TEACHING AND LEARNING THEORIES
3.4 TPACK FRAMEWORK
3.5 SYNOPSIS
3.6 CONCLUDING REMARKS
CHAPTER FOUR RESEARCH METHODOLOGY
4.1 INTRODUCTION
4.2 EMPIRICAL RESEARCH QUESTIONS
4.3 RESEARCH DESIGN
4.4 RESEARCH METHODS .
4.5 ADDRESSING TRUSTWORTHINESS
4.6 ETHICAL CONSIDERATIONS
4.7 CONCLUDING REMARKS
CHAPTER FIVE DATA ANALYSIS AND INTERPRETATION
5.1 INTRODUCTION
5.2 DATA ANALYSIS: CASE 1
5.3 DATA ANALYSIS: CASE 2
5.4 DATA ANALYSIS: CASE 3
5.5 SYNTHESIS OF THEMES AND CATEGORIE
5.6 EXPERT VERIFICATION
5.7 DATA INTERPRETATION
5.8 CONCLUDING REMARKS
CHAPTER SIX SUMMARY, CONCLUSIONS AND RECOMMENDATIONS
6.1 INTRODUCTION
6.2 CHAPTER OVERVIEW
6.3 SUMMARY OF KEY FINDINGS
6.4 VERIFICATION OF RESULTS
6.5 RESEARCH CONCLUSIONS
6.6 RECOMMENDATIONS
6.7 FUTURE RESEARCH
REFERENCES 
APPENDICES
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