An international survey study exploring teachers’ perceptions on using mathematical storytelling: The case of England

This international qualitative survey study sets out to investigate in-service and pre-service primary school teachers’ perceived barriers to and enablers for the integration of storytelling in mathematics teaching and learning across five different countries (England, Ireland, Malta, Australia and Taiwan). While research over the past three decades have documented pedagogical benefits of teaching mathematics using children’s literature, research into teachers’ perceptions regarding the use of such resources is virtually non-existent. The study thus filled this research gap by drawing responses from open-ended survey questions of 1,000+ in-service and pre-service teachers across these aforementioned five countries. (In the context of this presentation, the focus will be on presenting data relating to England with some broad comparisons made with the other countries’ datasets.) A thematic analysis revealed a set of perceived barriers classified under themes, such as Lack of Pedagogical Knowledge and Confidence, and Time Constraint. Moreover, the study also identified a set of perceived enablers classified under themes, such as Pedagogical Benefits and Social Norms. Findings also showed that most of the teachers in the study have never used or infrequently used storytelling as part of their mathematics teaching. The study highlights the role of professional learning and teacher training in ensuring that both in- and pre-service teachers have the necessary pedagogical knowledge, experience and confidence in using children’s literature to enrich their mathematics teaching. The presentation will then conclude with a summary of the speaker’s research impact-generating activities based on the findings so far.