Giving, Prompting, Making: Aligning Technology and Pedagogy Within TPACK for Social Studies Instruction

Jun. 25, 2009

Source: Contemporary Issues in Technology and Teacher Education, 9(2). (2009). p. 160-185.
(Reviewed by the Portal Team)

Theory, Purpose, and Practice in Technology Integration Into the Social Studies

Technological pedagogical content knowledge (now known as technology, pedagogy, and content knowledge, or TPACK) has become a widely referenced conceptual framework within teacher education. It provides a common language to discuss the integration of technology into instruction (Koehler & Mishra, 2008) and builds upon the concepts of pedagogical content knowledge (Shulman, 1987) and teacher as curricular “gatekeeper” (Thornton, 2001a, 2001b).

This article describes a three-part pedagogical model—giving-prompting-making—to explicate the relationship between pedagogy and technology within the social studies classroom. This model is intended to enhance the TPACK framework by providing a clear and intuitive comparison between social studies teachers’ pedagogical aims and their choices with technology.

Giving: Tell It to Me Straight

In this model, giving corresponds to the transmission or direct instruction paradigm of learning (Drake & Nelson, 2009): Teachers impart information to students; students absorb information from teachers. When the pedagogical aim is giving, students are to be given clearly and efficiently the information contained in the textbook and other curricular materials, minimizing uncertainty or confusion.

Prompting: What Do You See?

The teacher is prompting students to interact with the content. The student experiences the content area as part of a dialog with the teacher. Through inquiry-based instruction, students develop new understandings. These understandings go beyond rote memorization as students engage in disciplined thinking and meaning making.

Making: Show What You Know

The third and final pedagogical strategy in this model extends the constructivist ideas underlying prompting into student creation of whole products—making. The student learns while creating a representation of the content area. Making as a pedaogical mode moved students beyond rote memorization or responding to teacher prompts and allowed them greater latitude to conceptualize social studies subject matter, creating a new, unique product.

The Giving-Prompting-Making Model and TPACK

This proposed model—giving, prompting, making—is designed to work with TPACK. Focusing on these three modes of teaching calls attention to the fit between teachers’ pedagogical intentions (informed by their PCK) and their selection and use of technological tools (informed by their TK and TPACK).

The giving-prompting-making model can be used to guide social studies teacher education students to make the most appropriate use of technology.

Drake, F.D. & Nelson, L.R. (2009). Engagement in teaching history: Theory and practice for middle and secondary teachers (2nd ed.). Upper Saddle River, NJ: Pearson.

Koehler, M., & Mishra, P. (2008). Introducing TPCK. In AACTE Committee on Innovation and Technology (Eds.), The handbook of technological pedagogical content knowledge for teaching and teacher educators (pp. 3-29). Mahwah, NJ: Lawrence Erlbaum Associates, Publishers.

Shulman, L.S. (1987). Knowledge and teaching: Foundations of the new reform.
Harvard Educational Review, 57(1), 1-22.

Thornton, S. (2001a). Educating the educators: Rethinking subject matter and methods.
Theory into Practice, 40(1), 72-79.

Thornton, S. J. (2001b). From content to subject matter. The Social Studies, 92(6), 237-242.

Updated: Feb. 21, 2010