Masters Theses/Capstone Projects

Date of Award

Spring 5-1-2021

Document Type

Paper

Degree Name

Curriculum and Instruction (MAE)

Department

Education

Advisor

Dee Knoblauch

First Committee Member

Dr. Dee Knoblauch

Second Committee Member

Dr. Jeffrey Smith

Third Committee Member

Dr. Diane Ross

Keywords

Math Instruction, Differentiation, Math Stations, Meaningful Work, Challenging Work, First-Grade

Subject Categories

Elementary Education | Higher Education

Abstract

This study intended to determine the benefits of using differentiated math stations in a first-grade classroom. The goal was to learn if the levels of differentiated stations affected the first-grade students’ ability to select meaningful and challenging work. Six students from my first-grade class were selected as participants for a purposeful, stratified sample. All participants were volunteers. A research action design method was used to observe participants’ level selections and strategies. Participants interacted with three differentiated math stations in one rotation for a total of four rotations during three weeks of observations. An exit slip completed by students noted their feelings during stations, confidence in selecting appropriately challenging levels, and their favorite part of math stations. Exit slip responses were completed at the end of each rotation. The study supported students in attempting challenges, trying to find appropriate tasks, and expressing their mathematical understanding through the use of exit slips. The data suggested important benefits of differentiated math stations, but more research is needed regarding participant’s choice. Limitations such as the pandemic, health and safety precautions, the duration of stations, as well as the predetermined challenge levels used during the study could explain the outcomes.

Licensing Permission

Copyright, all rights reserved. Fair Use

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