Universitat Autònoma de Barcelona, Spain
Rethinking Dynamic Preschoolers’ Learning: A view into Autonomous and Collaborative Technology Supported Tasks/Working Spaces
This talk will present Preschoolers as dynamic and agentic learners. It is through the exploration of 5-6-year-olds’ interactions during an autonomous and collaborative task, supported by Beebots and iPads, that evidence of their agentivity is made visible. A social semiotic multimodal micro analysis of the preschoolers’ interaction makes relevant on the one hand that a view into modes in interaction allows evidence to be accounted for, and on the other hand that preschoolers are agentic and dynamic autonomous learners. The micro analysis of video data offers relevant and fine-grained information about the rich classroom context and the highly dynamic and vibrant interaction among preschoolers and makes visible subtle transformative engagement in interaction that remains unseen if not micro-analyzed. In this talk, learning is understood as a transformative engagement in interaction. Consequently, autonomous and collaborative technology-enhanced task designs are presented as tasks that allow preschoolers’ agency to arise by providing spaces in which preschoolers´ orientation, towards collaboration and autonomous task accomplishment, stimulates preschoolers’ orchestration of modes to manage own and others’ knowledge through transformative engagement. Thus, presenting such designs as rich and dynamic learning spaces that trigger meaningful learning as well as social and management skills in preschoolers. Hence, providing a context in which to rethink preschooler’s autonomous learning as powerful and resourceful, at the same time as suggesting that acknowledging adult power relations in the classroom is key. It is suggested that by recognizing children’s agentivity in autonomous learning situations and the power relation that an adult exerts, technology supported tasks can be designed to offer meaningful working spaces for transformative engagement to take place in autonomous and collaborative group work.
Nathaly Gonzalez-Acevedo is interested in very young learners’ agency and in the use of technology in the teaching and learning of EFL. Her research focuses, in the early years, on collaborative and autonomous task designs and working spaces supported by technology and the language learning triggers and transformative engagement that can arouse in such spaces. She is interested in social semiotic multimodal analysis as a lens to approach data. Nathaly is a full time preschool teacher and a part-time assistant teacher at the Universitat Autònoma de Barcelona. She is currently a PhD candidate at the Universitat Autònoma de Barcelona where she has recently won a YERUN Research Mobility Award.