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ERIC Number: ED404160
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1996-Nov-6
Reference Count: N/A
A Survey of the Use of Science Manipulatives in Elementary Schools.
Shaw, Edward L., Jr.; Hatfield, Mary M.
The research question used for this study was Can elementary classroom teachers identify "familiar" science manipulatives as well as the availability of manipulatives and percentage of time they are used in their classroom? Questions were also asked to determine factors that influence manipulative use, science units that are appropriate for the incorporation of manipulatives, and whether manipulative use spans all elementary grade levels. The subjects were 143 teachers from elementary schools throughout the largest school district in southwest Alabama. Although teachers showed a relatively high familiarity with with certain manipulative aids, the availability of these aids for the classrooms was low. In conjunction with familiarity and availability, the use of manipulatives occurred in less than 20% of the school days. Since science is taught on the average of one period per day, the results indicate that manipulatives are used in only one of the five periods per week. Hence, overall science manipulative use in this study appears minimal. The authors argue that manipulatives are important for developing scientific inquiry skills, and they suggest additional inservice teacher education in the use of science manipulatives. The manipulatives questionnaire is included as an appendix. (PVD)
Publication Type: Reports - Research; Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Note: Paper presented at the Annual Meeting of the Mid-South Education Research Association (Tuscaloosa, AL, November 6, 1996).