Ed.D. Dissertations

Date of Award

1-2018

Document Type

Open Access Dissertation

College

College of Education

Department

Education

Degree Name

Doctorate of Education, Ed.D.

Faculty Chair

Heather Miller, Ph.D.

Content Specialist

Jillian Skelton, Ed.D.

Content Reader

Edward Kim, Ph.D.

Keywords

integration, instructional strategies, intervention, transformation

Abstract

This action research study examined the experiences of six fourth-grade teachers at a school in southern South Carolina regarding the integration of literacy and science. The analysis of data provided evidence that the teachers’ experiences during the study transformed their thinking concerning instructional strategies. The participants actively engaged in Stringer’s (2014) cyclical action research model: Look, Think, Act. Using this cyclical approach, they contributed to the five actions that took place during this study. They implemented a planned intervention that integrated literacy and science. The participants realized that using an integrated approach was a successful instructional strategy and began adding additional information to the intervention. The teachers discovered that integration enabled them to address more state standards effectively and efficiently. In addition, the participants embraced integration and began adding mathematics and social studies content to the intervention. The principal observed the fourth-grade teachers transform to using an interdisciplinary approach. Because of their success, the principal encouraged the fifth-grade teachers to engage in a similar project. As the participants viewed instruction through a new lens, they decided to develop and implement integrated plans for science and literacy for the remainder of the school year. This study demonstrated that transforming instruction from teaching in isolation to using an integrated approach can lead to efficient and effective use of instructional time for meeting additional state standards, and increased student learning in both English language arts and science, and successful preparation for mandated state assessments.

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