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Title: An investigation into thinking skills and young children's metacognition in the Foundation Phase in Wales
Author: Lewis, Helen E.
ISNI:       0000 0004 7967 4824
Awarding Body: University of Wales Trinity Saint David
Current Institution: University of Wales Trinity Saint David
Date of Award: 2017
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This study aimed to explore the nature and extent of metacognition in young learners, and to better understand the pedagogical practices teachers use to effectively support the teaching of thinking. I designed four research questions to explore these aims: • How were Foundation Phase teachers in Wales teaching thinking? • How did the teachers involved in the study develop in their teaching of thinking through the course of the intervention? • To what extent did children in the study demonstrate development in their awareness of thinking? • What was the impact of the intervention on children's performance on a limited number of standardised tests? The questions were addressed through a mixed methods approach, comprising a survey of all FP settings in Wales to ascertain practitioners' views and practices relating to teaching thinking and an action research phase which lasted one academic year. BERA (2011) ethical guidelines were followed throughout. Six teachers participated in the action research to co-construct a shared understanding of the nature of thinking in the FP. We explored pedagogies for developing thinking, particularly the use of Visible Thinking Routines (Ritchhart et al, 2011). Video Stimulated Reflective Dialogue (VSRD) was used to explore teachers' reflections on their own teaching. The study also involved six children from each teacher's class. They were asked about their views on thinking. They made videos of 'good thinking', which were discussed using VSRD. They undertook cognitive tests at the start and end of the intervention. The findings are significant because they indicate that, through VSRD, teachers became more reflective and their interactions with children improved. The findings also reveal that VSRD supported young children's metacognitive thinking - they demonstrated increased metacognitive behaviours at the end of the study, and made more progress on three out of four standardised tests compared to the control group with medium effect size (Cohen, 1988). The study's conclusions have implications for teachers, teacher educators and policy makers in curriculum design and professional development.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available
Keywords: LB1501 Primary Education