Beacon Primary School

Beacon, Singapore

Beacon Primary School

Beacon, Singapore
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This paper examines how a game-like 3D Multi-User Virtual Environment (MUVE), Quest Atlantis (QA), is used in an after-school programme to engage a group of 14 academically at-risk primary students in their learning. It adopts an activity theoretical perspective to identify the disturbances and contradictions during the implementation of the after-school programme. Based on the analysis of these disturbances and contradictions, the main findings highlight: (1) the importance of the less visible social mediators - the rules, community, and division of labour - in the programme; (2) the pivotal role of the teacher; and (3) the role of QA as both a tool and an object to the students. The findings suggest the importance of the social context where information and communication technology (ICT) is used and the possible use of its engaging elements to first extrinsically motivate these students in their learning. © 2010 International Council for Educational Media.

Tay L.Y.,Beacon Primary School | Ng J.S.,Nanyang Polytechnic | Lim C.P.,The Hong Kong Institute of Education | Nair S.S.,Beacon Primary School | Lim S.K.,Beacon Primary School
Proceedings of the 20th International Conference on Computers in Education, ICCE 2012 | Year: 2012

This case study research describes and evaluates the impacts of the learning of English language in an ICT-enriched learning environment in a primary school under the FutureSchools@Singapore programme. Students from the school are provided with two-to-one computing devices in Primary 1 and subsequently one-to-one computing learning environment from Primary 2 (i.e., Grade 2) onwards. Students procure their own computing devices from Primary 4. This case study describes how ICT has been used for the teaching and learning of English. The frequency of ICT use in the English classrooms is also presented. More importantly, the impacts in terms of the students' ICT skills, English test score and feedback from students involved are also presented and discussed. The students performed well in the ICT skill test. The students also performed relatively well in the English test as compared to the control school. In general, the students commented that they were satisfied with the use of their notebook computers. They found it interesting, useful and easy to use. However, students complained about the computer viruses, small computer screen, battery lifespan, weight of their notebook computers, slow internet connect speed and internet connect errors. In the self-reported higher-order thinking questionnaire, no significant difference was found for students' problem-solving skills. However, students from the control school reported a statistically higher score as compared to the experimental school for reflective thinking.

Lim C.P.,The Hong Kong Institute of Education | Tay L.Y.,Beacon Primary School | Hedberg J.,Macquarie University
Journal of Educational Computing Research | Year: 2011

Two grade 5 classes (11-12-year-olds) were introduced through an inquiry-based pedagogy to scientific ideas and concepts within a 3D game-like multi-user virtual environment (MUVE). This article explores how a particular set of strategies and conditions might encourage and sustain the use of the MUVE, Quest Atlantis (QA), as a problem-based learning environment. This set of strategies and conditions includes the commitment of the teachers and their support through professional development, ongoing technical assistance, and students' orientation and scaffolding. Ensuring the appropriateness of the technology access and structure of the curriculum required time-table planning. These factors predict the likely survival of an education innovation in the school and the possibility of scaled up for more widely-used pedagogical practice. © 2011 Baywood Publishing Co., Inc.

Lye S.Y.,Ministry of Education | Wee L.K.,Ministry of Education | Kwek Y.C.,Beacon Primary School | Abas S.,Indiana University | Tay L.Y.,Beacon Primary School
Educational Technology and Society | Year: 2014

Science simulations are popular among educators as such simulations afford for multiple visual representation and interactivity. Despite the popularity and abundance on the internet, our literature review suggested little research has been conducted on the use of simulation in elementary school. Thus, an exploratory pilot case study was conducted to address this research gap. In this study, an open source energy simulation was remixed for use in elementary school targeted at the Grade 4 & 5 students as an after-school enrichment program. We proposed 3 stages: design, customization and implementation, to provide useful insights with the aim to allow other educators to conduct their own remixed simulation lessons. The simulation design principles (e.g., learning outcomes and colour coding) with the corresponding TPACK construct that emerged from the design and customization stages were reported. Such simulation design principles would be useful to interested educators and researchers who wish to adapt and use simulation or teach others how to remix simulation. Data from the multiple sources (e.g., field observations, surveys, design notes and existing simulations) indicated that students enjoyed learning with the remixed energy simulation. © International Forum of Educational Technology & Society (IFETS).

Yee L.S.,Beacon Primary School
Proceedings of the 18th International Conference on Computers in Education: Enhancing and Sustaining New Knowledge Through the Use of Digital Technology in Education, ICCE 2010 | Year: 2010

This paper presents the preliminary findings of the use of Web-based Tools, like Tagul for generating Word Cloud and Forum for Asynchronous Online Discussion, in Science Teaching for a class of 9-year old pupils. The affordances and the implementation of the tools for Science Teaching are discussed in this paper. This exploratory case study of such tools provides encouraging evidence that the tools have the potential to engage the pupils in meaningful learning.

Ng S.H.,Beacon Primary School | Chai C.S.,National Institute of Singapore | Yee S.Y.,Beacon Primary School
Proceedings of the 18th International Conference on Computers in Education: Enhancing and Sustaining New Knowledge Through the Use of Digital Technology in Education, ICCE 2010 | Year: 2010

It is widely recognized that positive reading attitude affects reading performances [1]. As such, the aim of this study is to examine the effect of a reading program that leverage on social networking tool Facebook on reading attitude. Reading attitude is affected by personal beliefs, social beliefs and reading experiences [2]. In this study, pupils in the treatment group were required to post book reports onto Facebook which provided them with peers support and social purpose for reading and sharing their reading experiences with peers. Pre- and post- test were administered using Elementary Reading Attitudes Survey (ERAS) before and after the implementation of Facebook reading program. The result of the study shows that the treatment group developed a more positive attitude towards reading of Chinese story books than control group.

Tay L.Y.,Beacon Primary School | Lim C.P.,The Hong Kong Institute of Education | Lye S.Y.,Beacon Primary School | Ng K.J.,Beacon Primary School | Lim S.K.,Beacon Primary School
Learning, Media and Technology | Year: 2011

This paper analyses how an elementary-level future school in Singapore implements and uses various open-source online platforms, which are easily available online and could be implemented with minimal software cost, for the purpose of teaching and learning. Online platforms have the potential to facilitate students' engagement for independent and collaborative learning, enhance student-teacher interactions, and develop students' technological skills. A framework is constructed to facilitate the conceptualisation of the various pedagogical approaches for learning using such online platforms - learning from and with technology is proposed. Learning from technology leans itself more towards the didactic and behaviouristic theories whereas learning with technology has its origin from the constructivism and social constructivism paradigms. In addition, both the didactic and constructivist pedagogical approaches are applicable for online learning as they could be used to achieve different outcomes depending on the learning objectives. Implicit in the findings is also the importance of the teachers' commitment and competencies and good infrastructural and technical support in the use of technologies for teaching and learning in an educational setting. © 2011 Taylor and Francis Group, LLC.

Abas S.,Beacon Primary School
Proceedings of the 20th International Conference on Computers in Education, ICCE 2012 | Year: 2012

This paper describes how an English language teacher from a primary school in Singapore employed an ICT tool to understand the use of prepositions amongst nine-year-old children. Using the written composition of 28 primary three pupils in a Modular lesson that she has taught, the teacher created a learner corpus, named it CLAL (Corpus-based Learning about Language), and used Ant Conc, a corpus analysis technology, to identify patterns in her pupils' usage of prepositions, 'in', 'on' and 'at'. Drawing from the preliminary findings, the teacher then attempted to adopt the data-driven learning (DDL) approach in the teaching of grammar, harnessing on similar technology. She concludes by showing two angles in which Ant Conc could be used in classrooms.

Ling Koh J.H.,Nanyang Technological University | Chai C.S.,Nanyang Technological University | Tay L.Y.,Beacon Primary School
Computers and Education | Year: 2014

In school-based environments, teachers need to consider contextual factors such as the availability of technology and school policies as they apply TPACK to address instructional problems. However, qualitative TPACK studies tend to exemplify the seven TPACK constructs whereas its contextual influences have not been articulated in detail. This study describes TPACK-in-Action, a framework that can be used to visualize the interplay between TPACK and four contextual factors (Physical/Technological, Cultural/Institutional, Interpersonal, and Intrapersonal) that influence teachers' design of ICT lessons. This was used to analyze the lesson design discussions of 24 school teachers from a Singapore primary school who were teaching the levels of Primary 1, 4, and 5. Content analysis of the transcribed audio-recordings of teachers' discussions and chi-square analysis of coding frequencies found that when the logistics of lesson implementation as per the Cultural/Institutional category dominated group discussions, it curtailed the emergence of TPACK. When Intrapersonal factors such as beliefs of teaching and students were articulated and its pedagogical implications considered, it facilitated TPACK. Furthermore, the team facilitated by an experienced educational technologist also demonstrated higher occurrences of TPACK. These results suggest that for ICT innovation to be effective, the composition of design teams need to be carefully considered. Teachers also need to develop competencies to facilitate and discourse about design such that contextual concerns can be turned into opportunities to support pedagogical improvement. © 2014 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

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