Pre-service Teachers’ Choice of Physical versus Electronic Instructional Materials

 

The main goal of the current study was to analyze early childhood and elementary pre-service teachers’ choices of participant-designed materials and the reasons for their selection. To this end, 57 elementary and 39 early childhood teacher candidates were asked to design one physical material and one electronic material for instruction. Then, they were asked which type of material they would prefer if they were teaching and what their rationale was for this selection. The results revealed several dissimilarities between early childhood and elementary teacher candidates in terms of their choices and the reasons for their choices. In their rationale, elementary pre-service teachers more referred their limited technological knowledge while early childhood pre-service teachers took attention to the need for hands-on activities for their instruction. In general, participants raised critical questions related to teachers’ technological knowledge, and teacher preparation programs as well as professional development programs regarding how to integrate such instructional technologies effectively into course activities to enhance learning.