A Community of Teachers: Using Activity Theory to Investigate the Implementation of ICTE in a Remote Indigenous School
Australian Association for Research in Education Annual Meeting,
Since 1999, most secondary students from the Indigenous community of Lockhart River in far north Queensland (Australia) have attended boarding schools in other places. In 2001-02, a project in Lockhart River called Reach In-Reach Out initiated classroom and community activities using information and communication technology (ICT). Activities involved Internet-based communication between externally-based students and their families and community, and the integration of community and cultural projects into the elementary school curriculum. A study investigating the project's impact focused on the teachers of Lockhart River State School and the changes made to their practices. Data collected via interviews and observation were analyzed using an Activity Systems Theory framework. The components of an activity system are subject, rules, instruments, community, division of labor, and object. Analysis of the various interactions among system components revealed a commitment to students above all; a strong sense of collegiality supporting the ICT innovation; and a willingness to adapt the project to meet specific needs of teachers, students, and parents. The "Travel Buddies" project, which typically involves exchanges of toys or puppets between schools plus related literacy activities, was adapted to the Lockhart context in several ways: whole-school approach, use of buddies to smooth student transition to boarding school, use of web publishing for inter-school communication, emphasis on literacy and numeracy, and use of buddies as a link to the community. (Contains 33 references.) (SV)
Lloyd, M. & Cronin, R. (2002). A Community of Teachers: Using Activity Theory to Investigate the Implementation of ICTE in a Remote Indigenous School. Presented at Australian Association for Research in Education Annual Meeting 2002.