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.
Doctor of Philosophy (Ph.D.)
College of Education and Human Performance
Education; Exceptional Education
Length of Campus-only Access
Doctoral Dissertation (Open Access)
Taylor, Matthew, "Computer Programming with Early Elementary Students with and without Intellectual Disabilities" (2017). Electronic Theses and Dissertations. 5564.