On the potential of mobile and ubiquitous technologies to support collaborative processes with a science content in pre-schools

Research output: Contribution to conferenceAbstract


We will present on a project that sets out to extend current understanding of how emerging technologies can be used by children and their pre-school teachers as socio-cognitive tools to support collaboration and reflection in investigating complex, real-life problems. The research group LISMA has previously been involved in work situated at the intersection of new information and communication technologies (ICTs), social cognition, and learning with research focused on examining the potential of web-based technologies to support social and psychological processes which are at the centre of learning, with a special interest in inquiry-based science learning to support active involvement, collaboration, cognitive flexibility, reflective and critical thinking, and the development of adaptive expertise (Redfors et al. 2013). Hence, we will synthesise the two domains defined by Eshach (2006) for kids’ science learning; content (concepts, explanatory models) and investigations (hypothesis, problematizing, questions, experiments). With this project we will take this line of work further and focus on the role of ubiquitous technologies in pre-schools.


The project methodology is based on the idea of design-based research (Barab & Squire, 2004). This approach seeks to bridge the often disconnected worlds of academia and theory with the realities, complexities, and constraints of educational practice. Design-based research is the most suitable methodological approach to the goals of this project, since its iterative, participatory, and evidence-based philosophy can foster the development of viable, empirically tested practices. The collaborative activities that we will create will be iteratively tested and refined, first as pilot projects, then during local implementations, and finally during implementations and synthesis work at a global level. This approach can ensure that the outcomes of such work can be used in other similar learning contexts. In the context of this approach, we will follow a mixed-methods approach, which will include qualitative and quantitative data collection measures.


We will report on the first phase of the project where we will work with pre- and in-service pre-school teachers developing Slowmations (Fleer, 2013; Hoban, 2007) to develop their own and children’s understanding of science phenomena. Slowmations (“SlowAnimation”) are software generated simple stop-motion animations played slowly at two frames per second. Children photograph objects, creating a sequence of photographic images, which they put together as a video clip, with self-generated narration to explain the phenomena. Research suggests that slowmations (Fleer 2013) helps children to more consciously consider concepts. Teachers and students (during VFU) will in collaboration with researchers in a design-based process develop, enact and evaluate slow-mations. Through a future international group we will be able to identify the critical attributes, the important constraints and the crucial characteristics of successful research-based activities.

Original languageEnglish
Publication statusPublished - 2014
EventINTED conference 2014, 10-12 March, Valencia, Spain -
Duration: 1980-Jan-01 → …


ConferenceINTED conference 2014, 10-12 March, Valencia, Spain
Period80-01-01 → …

Swedish Standard Keywords

  • Didactics (50302)


  • collaborative learning
  • emergent science
  • pre-school
  • ubiquitous technologies


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