The Implementation of Math Technology Supplemental Programs for Elementary Students

Carolyn Sue Torres, Walden University

Abstract

Many studies have focused on using technological devices in elementary education; however, more research is needed on the implementation of technology to improve student learning in math. The problem addressed in this study was the lack of information about how teachers implemented and used the new math software programs, Imagine Math and Reflex in their instruction and their perspectives on differences the programs made in students' math learning. The Technological Pedagogical Content Knowledge (TPACK) served as the conceptual framework for this study. The purpose of the study was to understand how teachers are using the new math software programs and to analyze their perspectives on differences they notice in students' math learning and comfort with online math tools after using the programs. This qualitative case study used data from interviews and observations from local teachers to illuminate the positive and negative aspects of implementing the new software programs. The data were coded into theme categories including usage, strengths, concerns, and professional development. The data showed the participants had generally a positive view of integrating the programs and felt the programs were beneficial to students, that the biggest challenges were lack of training and some technological issues, and TPACK changes were more prevalent for program-experienced teachers and limited to center time for those new to the programs. The finding helped identify the gap between what the math technology programs claim and what the programs actually do for teachers and learners. The potential for social change is to accurately capture the programs' benefits to students and the preparation required by teachers for online learning programs and assessments.