Designing and facilitating a virtual homework community for third grade learners

Bradley, Julie Ann
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[Honolulu] : [University of Hawaii at Manoa], [August 2013]
The purpose of this exploratory mixed methods research study was to understand how the establishment of an online Community of Practice approach supports the completion of homework for third grade students in an urban school. The study focused on issues of my facilitation and development of such an online community as well as the impacts on students within the community experience. While the issues of homework quality and completion rates were addressed, the intent of this study went beyond evaluation by examining how a Community of Practice evolved and developed among young children. A mixed method case study approach was selected based on the research questions and the diverse types of data that were to be gathered. Results indicated students had fun with their peers, engaged in meaningful work, and socialized while completing their homework within a Community of Practice. Defining separate spaces for socializing and collaboratively completing assignments within the social networking platform enabled students to understand the objective for the domain. State assessment scores improved; however, more research is needed to determine whether a causal relationship exists between this type of homework intervention and student achievement. Findings from this study provide new insights to designing and facilitating virtual learning communities for children.
Ph.D. University of Hawaii at Manoa 2013.
Includes bibliographical references.
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