This research is centred on teacher use of interactive simulations to support grade 6 natural sciences learners during guided inquiry. A particular focus of the study was to identify pedagogical strategies adopted by teachers. Technologically-based learning tools such as interactive simulations are being incorporated in the classroom to make learning more meaningful and to facilitate the understanding of complex concepts. Qualitative data were collected by means of interviews and classroom observations. The qualitative data was analysed using thematic analysis. The teacher made use of the following strategies. The emphasis of her lessons was the ‘learner-scientist’, where learning was encouraged through the learners exploring and investigating the problem posed to them. Secondly the teacher provided scaffolding to guide the learners through their inquiries. By using the simulations, the teacher further encouraged experiential learning – which encouraged the learners’ application of higher – order thinking skills. Furthermore, the teacher adopted the following three aspects during her lessons to ensure that the simulations were effective: preparation, active learner participation and post-simulation debrief.

Authors: Shenae Joubert, Umesh Ramnarain

Published in: Ireland International Conference on Education (IICE-2022)

  • Date of Conference: 18-20 October 2022
  • DOI: 10.20533/IICE.2022.10.0009
  • ISBN: 978-1-913572-47-1
  • Conference Location: Virtual (Dún Laoghaire, Ireland)