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    Promoting Independence and Responsibility in the Classroom

    O'Dwyer, Amy (2019) Promoting Independence and Responsibility in the Classroom. Masters thesis, National University of Ireland Maynooth.

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    This thesis examines the question; How canI improve my practice to promote independence and responsibility in my classroom? I adopted a self-study approach within the action research paradigm to reflect on my practice with a view of learning how to improve it. My epistemological and ontological values underlie the research reported in this thesis.The epistemological value that I focused on was valuing the children and their developmental stage in order to empower them to further enhance their skills of independence and responsibility at differentiated levels.My epistemological stance is based on the constructivist theory, where students gain an understanding of the world through discovery and student-centred learning.Two cycles of action research were conducted with myself and the childrenin second class,as co-participants. I implemented routines, tasks and opportunities in which the children could engage in independent tasks and take on responsibilities. Qualitative data weregathered throughout both research cycles. Critical reflection on my practice contributed significantly to the data gathered. Surveys and interviews provided insights into the children’s experience of being independent and responsible in the classroom. Through conversations with colleagues, observations and dialogue with my critical friend and members of my validation group, I gained multiple perspectives on my practice. Ethical approval was granted by the school and University and ethical standards were adhered to throughout. The findings reported in this thesis reveal factors that contribute to the promotion of independence and responsibility in the classroom. Through thematic analysis, three key factors were identified. These factors include the teacher taking on the role of a facilitator, the impact of children workingas active agents in their learning and the value of co-operative learning.Having engaged in this self-study action research I have come to value creating a collaborative classroom where children are co-creators of knowledge. My research has had a significant impact on my own educational development. There is potential significance of my research in my own educational setting and for the wider educational research community. Through engaging in this self-study action research, I have deepened my own understanding of the value of critical reflection and have an increased desire to engage in further research.

    Item Type: Thesis (Masters)
    Keywords: Promoting; Independence; Responsibility; Classroom; Froebel; Department of Primary and Early Childhood Education;
    Academic Unit: Faculty of Social Sciences > Froebel Department of Primary and Early Childhood Education
    Item ID: 13685
    Depositing User: IR eTheses
    Date Deposited: 30 Nov 2020 10:16
      Use Licence: This item is available under a Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial Share Alike Licence (CC BY-NC-SA). Details of this licence are available here

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