Abstract

Researchers suggest students at the preschool and kindergarten grade levels are active learners and creators and need to be exposed to science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) curriculum. The need for student understanding in STEM curriculum is well documented, and positive results in robotics, computer programming, and coding are leading researchers and policy makers to introduce new standards in education. The purpose of this single case design study is to research the abilities of kindergarten students, with and without intellectual disabilities (ID), to learn skills in computer programming and coding through explicit instruction, concrete manipulatives, and tangible interfaces. While constructionist methodology is typically used to teach robotics, best practice for students with ID is explicit instruction. For this reason, a group of students with ID and a group of students without ID were taught to program a robot to move in a square, through explicit instruction, and by using the iPad application, Blockly. It was discovered that students in both groups were capable of programming the robot, though students learned at different rates. Introducing STEM to students with and without ID at an early age could prepare students for future STEM careers and encourage students with ID to pursue STEM-related paths.

Graduation Date

2017

Semester

Summer

Advisor

Dieker, Lisa

Degree

Doctor of Philosophy (Ph.D.)

College

College of Education and Human Performance

Degree Program

Education; Exceptional Education

Format

application/pdf

Identifier

CFE0006807

URL

http://purl.fcla.edu/fcla/etd/CFE0006807

Language

English

Release Date

August 2017

Length of Campus-only Access

None

Access Status

Doctoral Dissertation (Open Access)

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