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Special Education Teachers’ Understanding of Learning Situation of Students with Visual Impairments Based on the Experiences of the Scientific Inquiry in the Darkroom

  • Journal of Special Education: Theory and Practice
  • Abbr : JSPED
  • 2015, 16(3), pp.321-336
  • Publisher : Research Institute of the Korea Special Education
  • Research Area : Social Science > Education

KIMHAKBUM 1 Pak, Sung Jae 2 JEONGHO CHA 2

1경북대학교 계통진화유전체학 연구소
2대구대학교

Accredited

ABSTRACT

The purpose of this study is to analyze perception of special education teachers who teach science in their schools on the learning situation of students with visual impairments through scientific inquiry in a darkroom. Twelve special education teachers who attended the Gwacheon National Science Museum workshop volunteered to participate in the darkroom scientific inquiry activities. They were encouraged to explore individually models of ‘the structure of eyes’ and ‘the molecular structure of ice’ freely, and had a discussion with a one of the researchers during the activity. All the conversation and discussion were audio-taped and a short survey on the darkroom activity was also administered. As a result, special education teachers who thought that they knew well the learning situation of students with visual impairments now recognized that their understanding had been superficial and that they were really lacking in understanding. They also understood unusual behavior of students with visual impairments by doing same behavior unintendedly in the darkroom. As the participants emphasized the importance of learning aids, they also suggested methods for teaching scientific concepts and preparing learning aids with consideration of students’ visual impairments. Finally, the scientific inquiry in the darkroom can be proposed to give special education teachers a meaningful experience to understand learning situation of students with visual impairments.

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