Вы находитесь на странице: 1из 79

MR CONTENG: REFLECTIVE PRACTICE IN ACTION

WONG SONG JIE




















INSTITUT PENDIDIKAN GURU
KAMPUS PERLIS

NOVEMBER 2012


MR CONTENG: REFLECTIVE PRACTICE IN ACTION


WONG SONG JIE




An Action Research Project Submitted in Partial Fulfilment
of the Requirement for the Award of the
Bachelor in Teaching with Honours
(Mathematics Primary School)





INSTITUT PENDIDIKAN GURU
KAMPUS PERLIS

NOVEMBER 2012
ii

VERIFICATION OF SUPERVISOR




I admit that I have read through this research report
and in my opinion this work is adequate
in terms of scope and quality for the award of
Bachelor in Teaching with Honours
(Mathematics Primary School).

Signature of Supervisor : .
Name of Supervisor : Dr Nurulhidayah Lucy binti Abdullah
Date : November 2012

iii

ADMISSION





I acknowledge that this research report is the result of my own work except for
each quotation and summary that I have stated their sources.


Signature of Author :
Name of Author : Wong Song Jie
Date : November 2012
iv

DEDICATION



This research is dedicated to my parents,

Wong Kow Pin and Ng Wee Tiang

who introduced me to the joy of reading from birth,
enabling such as study to take place today.
v

ACKNOWLEDGMENT

I would like to express my sincere appreciation to my research supervisor, Dr
Nurulhidayah Lucy binti Abdullah for her great guidance and encouragement given
during the research period. The cooperation from the teachers and Year Three Pupils
in Sekolah Jenis Kebangsaan (C) Sin Min, Perlis is greatly appreciated too. I also
would like to thanks my beloved, Hon Ching Mei, who has been a source of
motivation and strength during moments of despair and discouragement. This
acknowledgement also goes to those that have been involved in this research directly
or indirectly that have helped in ensuring the success of this research. Last but not
least, I would like to take this opportunity to thank Pn Sabariah binti Morad as well
as my former secondary English teacher, En Tan Eow Tong for the grammar check.

vi

ABSTRAK
Penulisan refleksi terhadap tindakan dapat membantu guru dalam
memperbaiki kualiti pengajaran dan pembelajaran. Sebagai seorang pengamal
reflektif, guru dapat memperbaiki kualiti pengajaran kendiri melalui refleksi yang
ditulis oleh murid-murid. Melalui pengalaman saya sebagai seorang guru pelatih,
saya mendapati bahawa murid-murid tidak dilatih untuk berfikir secara kritis dan
tidak didedahkan untuk melakukan refleksi. Semasa murid-murid melakukan refleksi,
murid-murid akan melihat kepada pengalaman, tindakan, perasaan dan respons diri
sendiri dengan lebih teliti dan mendalam. Tambahan pula, refleksi adalah penting
dalam membantu murid-murid mencapai pembelajaran optimum dalam Matematik.
Jadi, melalui Mr Conteng, saya memberikan murid-murid satu buku khas untuk
menulis refleksi mereka. Melalui penilaian refleksi murid-murid, saya dapat
mengenal pasti kelemahan diri sendiri serta tahap pembelajaran murid-murid. Kajian
ini akan dijalankan ke atas 22 orang murid Tahun Tiga untuk meningkatkan
kebolehan membuat refleksi supaya dapat mengenal pasti kelemahan guru yang
semasa menjalankan sesi pengajaran dan pembelajaran. Pengumpulan data akan
dikumpul melalui journal guru, temu bual dan penganalisa refleksi terhadap lapan
orang responden untuk mengesahkan bahawa penulisan refleksi terhadap tindakan
dapat membantu guru memperbaiki mutu teknik pengajaran kendiri.
Kata-kata Kunci: Refleksi, kualiti pengajaran dan pembelajaran, pembelajaran
optimum, kritis, Mr Conteng.
vii

ABSTRACT
Reflective practice in action in this study is designed to serve teachers
interested in improving their professional development. As reflective practitioners
teachers can draw meaning from students reflections on each lesson with the intent
to change for the better. Teachers can take step that will carry them along the path to
better teaching. From my experience as teacher preparation courses, I found out that
students lack of opportunity to train their thinking skill especially reflection skill.
The reflection skill is an important skill in learning Mathematics as when students
reflect, they consciously looking at and thinking about their experiences, actions,
feelings and responses. So, I introduce a book which known as Mr Conteng to
pupils to write their reflections in it. Teachers will then analyze the students
reflection in order to learn from students comments. Hence, this research has been
implemented on eight Year 3 primary students to help students to improve their
reflection so that teachers uncover aspects of their work that may otherwise remain at
the tacit level. Data collected through teachers journal, interviews and pupils
written reflection shows that reflective practice in action is useful to help teachers to
think reflectively about their teaching and to tackle their professional development
needs..
Key words: Reflective, professional development, practitioners, Mr Conteng

viii

CONTENTS Page
VERIFICATION OF SUPERVISOR ii
ADMISSION iii
DEDICATION
ACKNOWLEDGEMENT
iv
v
ABSTRAK vi
ABSTRACT vii
LIST OF FIGURES
LIST OF TABLES
LIST OF APPENDICES
x
xi
xii

INTRODUCTION

1
Reflection of My Teaching Experience

4
Literature Review 5

RESEARCH FOCUS 9

What Is My Research Issue?

9
How I Collect Preliminary Data?
Non-participant Observation
Structured Interview
Conclusion
11
12
15
16

RESEARCH OBJECTIVES & RESEARCH QUESTIONS

17
What Are My Research Objectives?

What Are My Research Questions?

17

17
RESPONDENTS OF RESEARCH

Who Is My Respodents Of The Research?

18

18

CONTENTS OF RESEARCH

What Is My Action For The Research?

How Is My Action Research Process?

How I Collect The Data?
Teachers Journal
20

20

23

25
26
ix

Structured Interview
Analysis Students Document / Reflection

26
27

REPORT FOR CYCLE ONE

What Is My Action For Cycle One?
Week One (25/06/2012 - 29/06/2012 )
Week Two (02/07/2012 - 09/07/2012)

What Is The Result For Cycle One?
Teachers Journal
Structured Interview
Analysis Pupils Document/Reflection
Discussion on Results

What Have I Learnt in Cycle One?
31

31
31
32

33
33
35
37
41

42

REPORT FOR CYCLE TWO

What Is My Action For Cycle Two?
Week Three (09/07/2012 - 13/07/2012)
Week Four (16/07/2012 - 20/07/2012)

What Is The Result For Cycle One?
Teachers Journal
Structured Interview
Analysis Pupils Document/Reflection
Discussion on Results

What Have I Learnt In Cycle One?
44

44
44
45

45
45
46
48
54

55

WHAT I LEARNT?

57

WHAT SHOULD I DO NEXT? 58

REFERENCES

APPENDICES

59

62



x

LIST OF FIGURES

Figure Page
1
Adapted from Bloom, (1956) Taxonomy of
educational objectives.
6
2 Cover for Mr Conteng decorated by pupils. 21
3 Samples of pupils response in Mr Conteng. 21
4
Pupils used Mr Conteng as scrap book to do
computation.
21
5 Mr Conteng as scrap book and reflective writing. 22
6 The process of data collection. 23
7 The data triangulation. 25
8 Example of reflective writing. 31
9 Reflective writing by Respondent C. 34
10
Two weeks of reflective writing constructed by
Respondent B.
35
11 Example of level two reflective writing. 44


xi

LIST OF TABLES

Table Page
1 Pupil's reflective writing. 13
2
Questions and answers between researcher and
teacher.
16
3 Gantt chart for my Action Research. 24
4 Reflections rubric. 28
5 Rubric validation result. 29
6 Respondents responses in Cycle One. 36
7 The common mistakes in reflective writing. 37
8
Respondents mistakes in week one reflective
writing (Cycle One).
38
9
Respondents mistakes in week two reflective
writing (Cycle One).
39
10 Respondents responses in Cycle Two. 47
11
The common mistakes in reflective writing (Cycle
Two).
48
12
Respondents mistakes in week three reflective
writing (Cycle Two).
49
13
Respondents mistakes in week four reflective
writing (Cycle Two).
52


xii

LIST OF APPENDICES

Appendix Page
A Format of Teachers Journal 62
B Teachers Journal Week 1 (Cycle One) 63
C Teachers Journal Week 2 (Cycle One) 64
D Teachers Journal Week 3 (Cycle Two) 65
E Teachers Journal Week 4 (Cycle Two) 66


INTRODUCTION

Reflection is a mental activity aimed at investigating ones own action in a
certain situation and involving a review of the experience, an analysis of causes and
effects, and the drawing of conclusions concerning future action (Woerkom, 2003).
Reflection is concerned with consciously looking at and thinking about our
experiences, actions, feelings and responses and then interpreting or analysing them
in order to learn from them (Boud et al., 1994 as cited in Atkins and Murphy, 1994)
Hence, writing reflection is encourage to be included in our teaching & learning
process, so that pupils are able to reach the optimal learning. Furthermore, in
Technology Assistance Programme [TAP] (Southwest Educational Development
Laboratory, 2000) shows that optimal learning environment provides sufficient time
for both action and reflection. However, this is often difficult due to teachers
responsibilities to cover the curriculum and prepare pupils for state examinations.
My experience shows that teachers often end class activities without giving pupils
some formal or informal means of discussing what and how they learned. For
example, teachers often use the remaining time of the lesson to check pupils
correction and giving them some homework to do. Thus, an opportunity for the
meaning making, the introspection of reflection, is lost, and true learning is not fully
actualised despite the importance of reflection in enhancing optimal learning for
pupils.
2

The best thing any education can bequeath is the habit of reflection and
questioning. Seeing that reflection is one of the best things for education, therefore, I
plan to let my pupils do reflections at the end of every lesson. In addition, according
to Schon (1991), there are two types of reflection: Reflection-in-action and
Reflection-on-action.
Reflection-in-action is concerned with practicing critically. So, a
physiotherapy student working with a client on an exercise programmed is making
decisions about the suitability of particular exercises, which exercise to do next and
judging the success of each exercise at the same time as they are conducting the
activity. Meanwhile, reflection-on-action means reflection occurs after the activity
has taken place when you are thinking about what you (and others) did, judging how
successful you were and whether any changes to what you did could have resulted in
different outcomes. This is usually the type of reflection which you are asked to write
about as part of your studies.
As for my action research, my pupils did their reflection at the end of my
lesson and it is considered as Reflection-on-action. The benefit of doing Reflection-
on-action is it can help pupils understand why they do something in a particular way
and recognising how they feel about it. Furthermore, reflection-on-action can also
help pupils to identify their strengths and weaknesses, and it gives pupils chances to
build their strengths and find out the strategies to minimise their weaknesses. There
is another benefit mention by Hilsdon, 2006 (as cited inLearning Development,
Chapter 11), reflection is more than a set of skills, it is an expression of the natural
relationship that exists between learning and language. So, in my Mathematics
3

classes, pupils not only learn Mathematics, they can also strengthen their writing
skills by writing out their reflection.
As for me, by reading their reflections, I can improve my teaching skills or
find out suitable teaching strategies to help pupils in optimising their learning
Mathematics. In addition, it is a good opportunity for me to know their feelings in
learning Mathematics so that I can understand my pupils needs. For example, they
say they feel sad for today lesson because I scolded them for making so much noise.
From here, I know how they feel after being scolded and I leave some comments for
them in their reflection as giving chances to them to correct their disruptive
behaviour or to let them realise what they should do next. As for me, reflections by
the pupils are not an imagination of their fantasy world and believe what they reflect
is what really happened.
According to Hatton and Smith (2006), there are four domains of reflective
writing. The very first domain is descriptive writing; it means pupils write out what
had happened in class without giving any reason or mentioning the impact of the
incident happened toward himself or any other people in class. This very first domain
is the basic of the reflective writing so pupils must master the first domain before
moving to the second domain. The second domain is reflective descriptive writing; it
means the writer will mention very detail about the causes and the effect of the
incident that happened in class and writer will also give own opinion or justify the
incident that happened in class. The third domain is reflective dialogue writing; it
means the reflection will be written according to what the writer whispers in his or
her heart. This reflection can contains questions and the writer will also give answers
to those questions. Last but not least, the fourth domain is critical reflective writing;
4

it means the contents of the reflection is about the incident that happened in class and
the writer relates the incident to the philosophy of Mathematics, philosophy of
Science or any other issues such as economy issues or current issues.

Reflection of My Teaching Experience
Through my experience at SK Stella Maris, Perlis and SK Dato Syed Nahar,
Kedah, I noticed that pupils in these two schools do not have Mathematics note
books or scrap books for computation and writing notes in relation to the
Mathematics lesson. When I asked pupils to take out Mathematics note book to write
some information or notes, pupils always asked me question such as Teacher, what
book should I write it in? Mathematics Book A or B? When I decided to use
Mathematics A, some of the pupils did not have that book as they did not bring it to
school. Therefore most of the times, I would allow them to write the note in any
book or paper as they wish in order to avoid them from doing nothing.
Besides, my teaching approaches during mathematics lessons are often pupils
centred which allow space for lots of discussion. When I organised group discussions
for consolidation activities or any other activities, I usually provides Mini Boards to
them to write down their discussion points so that they can present it later. However,
I found out that pupils usually forget the things discussed after they have presented it
because they need to clean the Mini Board after each presentation so that the board
can be used to write down points for the next discussion. Therefore, they have no
reference to make reflection on what they have done for the whole lesson when
lesson ends.
5

Nevertheless, I noticed that some of the pupils did not involve themselves in
group discussions as they just sit in their group chatting with their friends or do
nothing. This situation makes them learn nothing during the whole session of
teaching and learning process as they did not involve themselves in group discussion.
So, during the consolidation activities, these pupils could not contribut to their group
members to finish the tasks given as they were not aware of the skills that were
needed to be applied in the task. Thus, the members in the group started to argu with
each other and the smarter pupils of the group would monopolised every task given
by teacher. This created negative situation for group activities as they did not
collaborate and cooperate to solve the task. Last but not least, I would like to ask my
pupils to write their reflections after every Mathematics lessons, so that I know what
they had learnt throughout my lesson. However, my pupils cannot write a proper
reflection for me as they hardly remember what they had discussed. They did not
have any notes to refer to in order to help them in reflecting the outcomes from their
discussion throughout the lesson. Thus, they could not trace back the activities or
their discussion. Thus, they cannot write out a good reflection.

Literature Review
From my experience during School Base Experience and the two phases of
practicum in school, I realise that most primary school teachers did not use a scrap
book for pupils to write lesson note, example of questions and outcome from
discussion. In my point of view, writing can help pupils in learning Mathematics
because children cannot sit long on the chairs and just listen to my explanation.
Drake and Amspaugh (1994) observe that teachers who add writing to their class
6

Evaluation
Synthesis
Analysis
Applcation
Comprehension
Knowledge
often find it easier to recognize and diagnose the nature of pupils conceptual
problems.
It is also clear that writing-to-learn activitieswriting strategies that give
pupils space to think through their problem-solving processeshave a place in
mathematics courses. Professor of Education at UNC-Charlotte David Pugalee
(1997) argues that writing can help pupils interpret unfamiliar texts, construct
arguments, struggle to understand complex systems, and develop new approaches to
problems. According to the National Institute of Literacy (2007), a researcher
agrees that, reading enable students to improve writing skills and improves their
capacity to learn Mathematics. In my opinion, reflection is very important to develop
pupils cognitive so that they can reach the highest level of Blooms thinking domain,
where they can evaluate their own learning and voice out their feelings.





Figure 1. Adapted from Bloom (1956) Taxonomy of educational objectives.
7

In addition, critical thinking is very important for pupils to optimise their
learning during their golden age of pupils. Mathematics subject need a lot of logical
thinking such as recognising the pattern of equations, recognising the relationship
between equations and understanding the meaning of equations. To recognise the
pattern of equations and the relationship between equations, also, to understand the
meaning of equations, pupils will need to analyse the information given by the
teacher and then apply it in the correct situation. So, pupils should be trained and
drilled to think critically so that they can understand the concept of Mathematics
easily. Scriven & Paul (1987), states that critical thinking is the intellectually
disciplined process of actively and skilfully conceptualizing, applying, analysing,
synthesising and / or evaluating information gathered from, or generated by,
observation, experience, reflection, reasoning, or communication.
Besides, from my experience in school, I noticed that pupils do not have
chances to think critically because the particular primary school teachers often give
drill practices to pupils in order to enhance their understanding about the skills that
they had learned. However, in my opinion, drilling them as an exercise is just like
creating robots for our country. Pupils cannot understand why they need to learn the
skills and how they can apply the skills in their real lives. Therefore, it causes pupils
to lose interests in learning and cannot solve their real lives problem through critical
thinking. Thus, pupils have poor reflective skills as they are not train to think
critically. To master the reflective skill, pupils will need to have critical thinking skill
first so that they can recognise the pattern of an incident and the cause of the incident.
Through reflection, it can help pupils to think more deeply and sometimes
help them to realise or connect the skills with the real life situation. In addition, by
8

doing reflection, pupils can transform the information they get as the useful skills in
answering Mathematics questions. In the words of Kemmis [1985] (as cited in
Learning through Reflection in Mathematics Teacher Education, 2006) as below:
Reection is a process of transformation of the determinate raw material of
our experiences given by history and culture, and mediated through the situations
in which we live into determinate products (understandings, commitments,
actions), a transformation effected by our determinate labour (our thinking about
the relationship between thought and action, and the relationship between the
individual and society), using determinate means of production (communication,
decision-making and action)
His statements support my opinion that reflection can be useful helper for my
pupils in their study. Furthermore, Horning (1997) also mentioned about the
importance of reflection for pupils learning process. She stated the importance of
reflection in the writing classroom as follows: First, reflective statements shed
important light on the form and content of pupils written work. Second, reflection
helps pupils become aware of their preferred approaches to writing, and enable them
to take risks to try new and more productive strategies on a particular task. Third,
when revising, pupils may examine their reflections on their earlier process of
writing and consider alternative processes or approaches. Fourth, reflective writing
produces an intimacy between pupils and teachers that enables teachers to respond to
and encourage pupils growth in writing skill; lastly, the reflective statements give
teachers insights into students thinking and development not normally accessible
otherwise.
9

RESEARCH FOCUS

The focus of my research is to help Year Three pupils develop reflective
writing skills.

What Is My Research Issue?
From my previous experiences, pupils in primary schools were not trained to
write reflection after they have learned a particular lesson. So, I decided to carry out
this research to train them in writing their reflection because I want my pupils to
optimise their learning during Mathematics lesson through reflection. Besides, they
can deeply understand about the skill that they learn in a particular lesson through
reflective writing. For me, writing can be valuable tool for learning content, not just a
way to report what has been learnt.
If pupils were to do verbal reflection, thus, I cannot evaluate their thinking at
that time as the time given is too short for them to make their reflection. Besides,
while evaluating verbal reflection, I might make mistakes as I need to evaluate it
immediately and continuously, plus, I cannot look back at my mistake because there
is nothing left behind for me to check back. In addition, I also have no chance to look
back at my pupils reflection. Another problem is I do not have sufficient time to
evaluate each pupils verbal reflection as they need a lot of time to reflect. So, I
decided to let my pupils write down their reflections in a particular note book so that
10

they have enough time to write better reflections, while I can evaluate most of the
pupils reflections. Therefore, I strongly believe that Mr Conteng (a scrap book
where pupils can write or draw freely in it) will be very vital as a teaching and
learning aid to help pupils to optimise their learning of Mathematics.
However, they hardly remember what they had done. As a result, their
reflections cannot be evaluated because it contains nothing but just a phrase like I
learned Mathematics today. I let my pupils copied down some notes or write down
their discussion in a scrap book or note book. Now there are something for them to
trace back the activities they had done in class, which helped them in writing their
reflections. As I mention earlier, pupils were not able to do a good reflection in a
short period as they need more times to restructure their reflection, so verbal
reflection is not the best way to do reflection for them. Thus, I let pupils to write
down their reflection and I give some comments on it for them to read. Besides, they
can also refer to their reflection in future to help them in their Mathematics.
McGinley and Tierney (1989) pointed to writing as a means to improve
pupils thinking and reasoning ability in academic subjects. While Walshe (1987)
concluded that writing activities increase the quality of learning by helping pupils
clarify ideas and relationships between Mathematics skills and the activities. Thus,
when pupils write out their reflection, it helps them to reflect more about what they
had learned during the Mathematics lesson and also helps them to discover the
relationship between current Mathematics skills and the Mathematics skills of the
previous lesson.
11

In TAP (2000), it also recommended pupils to write out their reflection in a
book or journal. It says that writing reflection is an effectual means of prompting
students reflection. Besides, when the pupils reflection is not to be graded and to
maintain their privacy, writing out reflection can be a very potent tool for promoting
pupils reflection.

How I Collect Preliminary Data?
Preliminary data is the work that is put into a grant to convince a panel of
experts that the proposed further experiments are worth doing. It is data that is likely
to be published -it is just the groundwork for the new work to be done.
To identify whether Year Three pupils of SJK (C) Sin Min are trained to
write reflection, I decided to collect some preliminary data before I start my research.
The preliminary data can help me to identify the use of Mr Conteng can help me in
developing pupils reflective writing. Furthermore, I also would like to determine
whether the Year Three mathematics teacher teach her pupils to do reflective writing
or not.
The instruments I used to collect the preliminary data are non-participant
observation and informal interview. Both interview helped me a lot by giving me a
lot of useful information about the Mr Conteng is needed to introduce in my lesson
as a book for my pupils to write their reflections.


12

Non-participant Observation
In non-participant observation, the observer remains separate from his study
population's activities, and attempts to be unobtrusive (Broshenka & Castro, 1983).
From the observation that I had done within the first week of my practicum, I found
that Year Three pupils do not have the habit of writing reflection after the lesson.
They also did not have a note book or scrap book for Mathematics. So, they just sat
there and listened while I was explaining the Mathematics skill such as reading and
writing the number sentences. When I asked them to discuss certain activities in
groups, they just simply took a blank paper or their own small note book to jot down
the main points for their discussion. However, not every pupil jotted down the points,
some just did not participate actively during the conversations in their own group.
For example, when I finished my first lesson on counting objects up to 10,000
by 1000, 100 and 10, I asked Year Three pupils to write reflection regarding the
lesson. However, the reflections from Year Three pupils showed that they did not
know what to reflect and how to write their reflections. Thus, I spent a few minutes
explaining to them about reflection. After that, I gave them 10 minutes to write their
reflections on a piece of paper. As a result, I found out that most of them still did not
know how to write their reflections. Most of them reflect their feelings such as: I am
happy. Nearly all of them did not write the reason why they felt happy and also did
not write about the incidents or activities that happened during the lesson.
Table 1 show a few reflections randomly picked and translated from
Mandarin to English. These reflections were written by Year Three pupils after my
50 minutes lesson on that day.
13

Table 1
Pupil's reflective writing.
Reflective Writing Translation

Pupil A
Happy

Pupil B
We are happy.

Pupil C
I am so happy.

Pupil D
Today, teacher took us to
computer laboratory I feel very
happy because teacher lets us to
learn Mathematics and play
game.


14

(cont)

Pupil E
Today I am so happy, because
teacher takes us to computer
laboratory. Teacher asks us
question and lets us play game.

Pupils written response in Table 1 shows that they are happy with teachers
teaching the lesson. Pupils were able to write out their feeling such as happy and I
am so happy. However from the reflective of Pupil A, Pupil B, Pupil C and Pupil D,
they cannot give any reason for their feeling.
On the other hand, the reflection written by Pupil D and pupil E are better
than Pupil A, B, C and D as they can give me simple reason about their feeling with
complete sentence. However they did not mention about what they had learnt for the
lesson and the process of the activities in class. So, there is still room for
improvement for them to write a better reflection.
From Table 1, I realised that Year Three pupils in SJK (C) Sin Min had poor
skill in reflecting because they cannot think critically about the lesson they had gone
through including the process of their discussion, the activities they had done and the
mathematics skill they had learnt from that lesson. Most of them merely write out
their feelings without providing any reasons. Only two pupils were able to explain
their feeling but yet did not mention about the process, the activities and the
mathematic skills. Lastly, I also realised that most of them cannot write a proper
15

sentence for their reflection and some of them cannot even write a complete sentence
for their reflection.

Structured Interview
A structured interview consists of a series of well-chosen questions (and often
a set of tasks or problems) which are designed to elicit a portrait of a student's
understanding about a scientific concept or set of related concepts (Southerland,
Smith & Cummins, 2000).
I had carried out an interview with the Year Three Mathematics teacher in
this school. She is the only Year Three Mathematics teacher. She has taught
Mathematics for about 8 years and she had three years experience in teaching Year
Three Mathematics. The aim of this interview was to get some information about
how she carried out closure for every lesson and the books that she has been using in
teaching Mathematics.
From the result of the interview (Table 2), it is proven that the Year Three
pupils do not have note books or scrap books for now. Therefore in my research I
will introduce Mr Conteng to Year Three pupils. Secondly, the result of the
interview also shows that the teacher does not implement oral reflection and written
reflection in her lesson. Thus, writing reflection is not yet a learning habit for Year
Three pupils.

16

Table 2
Questions and answers between researcher and teacher
Questions Answer ( Year Three teachers response)
What do you usually do during
the ending stage?
I usually test students understanding by giving
worksheets or answering questions on the board
and then I will do conclusion for the lesson.
Do pupils have a book as note
book or scrap book for pupils?

No. I havent done it yet for now but I will ask
them to use a new exercise book when I
needed.
How do you train your student
to think?
I usually post open ended question for them to
try and then I will guide them to the correct
answer.
Do you train your pupils to do
reflection?
No. I have never done it before.
What do you think about their
writing skill?
Their writing skill are poor as they have just
started to learn how to write the essay in Year
Three. In my opinion, they still need some time
to learn to write a complete and correct
sentence.


Conclusion
The results from both non-participant observation and the formal interview showed
that Year Three Pupils of this school did not have a note book or scrap book during
Mathematics lesson. Besides, the results from both data collection showed that Year
Three pupils did not acquire the thinking and writing skills to write reflection in
relation to their Mathematics lesson.
17

RESEARCH OBJECTIVES & RESEARCH QUESTIONS

What Are My Research Objectives?
In general, the main objectives of this research are to:
1. Develop reflective writing skill among my pupils.
2. Implement Mr Conteng in the classroom to develop reflective writing skill
among my pupils.
3. Determine the implication of implementing of Mr Conteng in developing
reflective writing skill among my pupils.

What Are My Research Questions?
1. What is the action that I can take to develop reflective writing skill among my
pupils?
2. Can the implementation of Mr Conteng helps to develop reflective writing
among my pupils?
3. What is the implication of implementing Mr Conteng in developing reflective
writing among my pupils?
18

RESEARCH RESPONDENTS

Who Are My Respondents Of The Research?
SJK (C) Sin Min is the only Chinese primary school in Pauh, Perlis and the
pupils in this school are mostly from nearby Kampung Baru. The total number of
pupils in this school is 135 pupils. There is no good class or weak class in this
school. There is only one just a class for each Education Year consists of pupils
with different abilities in one classroom.
My respondents for this research are the Year Three pupils of SJK (C) Sin Min.
In my class, there are 22 pupils. My class be considered as One Malaysia class as
it includes the three main races of Malaysia. There are 18 Chinese pupils, three
Indian pupils and one Malay pupil. However, this class have some difficulties in
writing the reflection as they are just exposed to essay writing in Year Three.
According to my preliminary data, only two of them can write a simple essay for
their reflection; eight of them can write simple sentences for their reflection; and
12 of them cannot even write a simple sentence for their reflection. So, I need to
waive the grammatical mistakes while looking at their reflections because their
reflections do not based on correct grammar.
19

Furthermore, according to the Year Three existing teacher, there are two
LINUS pupils whom could not perform well in computation and language writing.
So, I decided not to take these two pupils as my respondents. As time constraints for
my research, I randomly choose eight pupils from 20 pupils as my respondents
because I will evaluate their reflections for each lesson once a week continuously for
four weeks. So, I will need to evaluate 16 reflections attentively so that I can develop
their reflective writing skill through this research.
20

CONTENTS OF RESEARCH

What Is My Action For The Research?
According to the research focus and the research objectives, I have decided to
introduce Mr Conteng to Year Three Pupils. This Mr Conteng played the role as
a note book, scrap book and reflection journal for my Mathematics lessons. Pupils
used it to copy notes from my lesson, to answer example questions, to write down
their discussion outcomes, to do computation and to write their reflections. Thus, it is
a very useful tool for pupils to learn Mathematics and to improve their reflective
writing skill.
The notes and the discussion outcome in Mr Conteng helped pupils to write
their reflection as pupils can refer to Mr Conteng as reference when they write
reflection. They can recall the skills had been taught by the teacher, information
during their discussion and activities that have been carried out during the particular
lesson. By referring back to the information, their reflections would be more holistic.
Besides, pupils can identify the skills that they have learned before examinations or
any other tests. As the saying goes, killing two birds with one stone. Pupils can
optimise their learning process and they can also take it as reference book in future.
21

For the reflective writing, I set three aspects for the reflective writing, so that
I can grade their reflection to see their improvement from time to time. The aspects
that pupils should cover in their reflective writing are their feeling after the lesson,
the Mathematics skills that they have learned from the lesson and the activities that
they have done during the lesson. All three aspects are the basic criteria for their
reflective writing and it is important before they can write higher level reflection.



Figure 2. Cover for Mr Conteng decorated by pupils.

Figure 3. Samples of pupils response in Mr Conteng.

Figure 4. Pupils used Mr Conteng as scrap book to do
computation.
22



Figure 5. Mr Conteng as scrap book and reflective writing.

23

Preliminary Data
Non-participant
observations
Interview a Year Three
Mathematics Teacher
Cycle Two
Application of Mr
Conteng
Teachers Journal
Structured Interviews
Documents Analysis:
Pupils reflective writing
Data Analysis Planning Action for Cycle Two
Cycle One
Application of improved
Mr Conteng
Teachers Journal
Formal Interviews
Documents Analysis:
Pupils reflective writing
Data Analysis and
Writing Report
The Research Process
















Figure 6. The process of data collection.




24

Table 3
Gantt chart for my Action Research
No
Activity Practicum Phase 3
Week 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12
1 Determine problems and
preliminary data collection

2 Write action research
proposal

3 Action planning.

No
Activity Internship
Week 1 2 3 4
1 Brief Pupils on Mr
Conteng

2 Carry out first cycle action
3 Analyse pupils reflection
4 Determine the level of
pupils reflection

5 Write Teachers Journal
6 Interview
7 Discussion on the
problems in first cycle

8 Reflection on first cycle
9 Carry out second cycle
action.

10 Analyse pupils reflection
11 Determine the level of
pupils reflection

12 Writing Teachers Journal
13 Interview
14 Discussion on the
problems in second cycle

15 Reflection on second cycle



25

How I Collect The Data?
Reliability and validity are two aspects which we need to consider during
data collection. They are different but, in fact, they are related to each other (Trochim,
2006). Reliability emphasizes consistency, precision and repeatability of data;
however, validity centered on accuracy and variety of data.
When the data is reliable but not valid, then it may have limited use. So, the
general statement that we make about the world may not be applied to anyone.
However, when the data is valid but not reliable, we cannot make a general statement
about the world, we can only understand something about the particular group of
people that doesnt necessarily apply to all people.
Every research instrument has its weaknesses and we cannot make or plan a
perfect instrument for a research. Hence, triangulation is needed to provide a more
holistic and better understanding of the phenomenon under study of the researcher.
To triangulate data, researcher has to choose two or more suitable instruments so that
the data from each instrument can be used to support each other in a single research.
For my research, I have chosen three instruments to collect my data and the three
instruments are teachers journal, formal interview and analysis of students
document / reflection. Hence I triangulate my methods of data collection.

Figure 7. The data triangulation.
26

Teachers Journal
According to Alice Orr (2004), the writer's journal is a record of and
workbook for her writing life. It is your repository for bits of experience, observation
and thought destined for eventual use in one writing project or another. The entries in
a personal journal tend to be abstract, but the entries in a writer's journal should be
concrete.
For teachers journal (Appendix A), I wrote down my comments, respondents
weaknesses and the action to be taken after my observation. I wrote the journal
continuously for four weeks and I evaluated my action from time to time.

Structured Interview
Interviews are particularly useful for getting the learning situation behind
participants experiences (McNamara, 1999). So, I decided to use structured
interview as one of my action to collect data. From the interview, I want to ensure
that pupils are able to write their reflections and any problems occur in writing
reflections. It is very crucial to determine the reliability of the feedback, so, I plan to
choose a few pupils as subjects from the population wisely.
Interviews are organized every two weeks so that pupils have more time to
try out the reflective writing before they give comments about my action. Each
interview takes about 10 - 15 minutes for each respondent. The interview questions
included How do you feel about writing reflection? Why? , Do writing reflection
help you in learning Mathematics? Why? and Will you continue writing reflection
for other subject? Why?.
27

The interview was conducted at SJK (C) Sin Mins meeting room as the place
is convenient without interference by other pupils or teachers during the second
recess time, besides, other facilities such as fans, tables and chairs.
The aspect of my interview include pupils perception about Mr Conteng,
such as respondents feeling about reflective writing, how did writing reflection help
them in learning Mathematics and will they continue writing reflection for any other
subject. These three aspects are important to determine the implication of
implementing Mr Conteng in developing reflective writing.

Analysis of Pupils Documents / Reflections
Document analysis is a systematic procedure for reviewing or evaluating
documents. Like other analytical methods in qualitative research, document analysis
requires that data be examined and interpreted in order to elicit meaning, gain
understanding and develop empirical knowledge (Corbin and Strauss, 2008).
Meanwhile, scoring rubrics are descriptive scoring schemes that are developed by
teachers or other evaluators to guide the analysis of the products and/or processes of
pupils' efforts (Brookhart, 1999).
So, to interpret and examine pupils reflection, I created a rubric as shown in
Table 4 so that I can examine, interpret and grade respondents reflection based on
the characteristic for each level of reflections performance. The Rubric provides me
clear information about how well they are able to write their reflections. By using the
rubrics, I examined pupils reflection once a week continuously for two weeks. Each
week I checked and interpreted 22 reflections. However, I only took eight reflections
28

of my respondents for my first cycle. These eight reflections were graded according
to the rubric that I had created.
Table 4
Reflections rubric.
Level Characteristic
0 Not achieving the basic reflective level such as descriptive writing,
reflective writing, reflective dialogue writing and critical reflective writing
1


Descriptive writing; pupils write out what had happened in class without
giving any reason or mentioning the impact of the incident happened
toward himself or any other people in class.
2 Reflective descriptive writing; pupil will write very detailed about the
causes and the effects of the incident happened in class and the writer will
also give own opinion or justify the incident that happened in class.
3 Reflective dialogue writing; pupil write reflection according to what they
whisper in heart. The reflection can contains some questions and answers
are provided.
4 Critical reflective writing; the contents of the pupils reflection is about
the incident happened in class and writer relate the incident to the
philosophy of Mathematics and current issue.
* Grammar mistake are not taken into account.
To validate my rubric, I have asked two experience teachers in this school to
grade five examples of reflective writing of my respondents. The first teacher (TOne)
is an English teacher who is teaching Year Six pupils and the second teacher (TTwo)
is also a Mathematics teacher, who is teaching Year Three pupils. Both of them have
29

almost 10 years teaching experience at the primary school. According to the result
of the validation as showed in Table 5, the rubric is reliable as the grading of the five
pupils reflection by the two teachers and I would have high consistency. According
to TOne, she said that this rubric is very clear and easy to understand. However, the
pupils make a lot of grammatical mistakes and she felt that it is hard for her to
dismiss the grammar mistakes. Meanwhile, TTwo said that the reflection is easy to
be graded by following the rubrics as the rubric is easy to understand. In addition,
she is very surprise that there were two pupils who can write reflection identified to
be at level one during their first trial.
Table 5
Rubric validation result.
Pupils Reflection Translation
Level of reflection
TOne TTwo Me

Today, teacher takes us to
the Computer Laboratory.
Teacher gives us a sticker
because we done our
homework very well.
0 0 1

Today I feel very happy
because my group get six
points and we played
together.
0 0 0

Today I did subtraction. I
feel very cold. I feel very
happy. I feel very sleepy
too. Teacher scolded us
and gave us a lot of
subtraction questions.
1 1 1


30

(cont)

Today we learned
subtraction, two problem
solving questions and three
subtraction questions.
Today is Thursday so we
have class in Computer lab.
My group get one more
sticker today.
1 1 1

Today I feel very happy
because teacher taught us
subtraction.
0 0 0
31

What Did I Say?
I am very happy because my pupils
are very nice, we learned together in
class. Unfortunately, I had taken back a
sticker from the Sticker Board of Hibiscus
group because they did not pay attention
while I was teaching. I hope Hibiscus
group will learn from mistake and pay
more attention while I am teaching next
time.
REPORT OF CYCLE ONE

What Is My Action for Cycle One?
Week One (25/06/2012 - 29/06/2012)
I introduced Mr Conteng to my Year Three Pupils and I showed an
example of reflection (Figure 8) to let them read and I explained to them what
reflection is. I also guided them how to reflect and write their reflection in Mr
Conteng at the end of every lesson. Writing the reflection is a very useful way as
Applebee, Langer and Mullis (1987) concluded that writing serves as tool for three
basic process thought to learning: (a) to draw on relevant knowledge and experience
in preparation for new activities, (b) to consolidate and review new information and
(c) experiences and to reformulate and extend knowledge. These are the reasons to
provide opportunities to pupils write their reflection at the end of every lesson.

Figure 8. Example of reflective writing.
32

To do reflection at the end of the lesson, I asked my pupils to close their eyes
and think back what they had done and learned throughout the lesson. After five
minutes, I allowed them to write their reflections in Mr Conteng. Sometime,
environment can affect their reflections. Thus, it is important for them to remain in
the same environment while writing reflection, as they can refer to the existing
environment. For pupils who had difficulties to construct their reflections in word
thus, they can ask their friends or ask researcher to show them the word. However,
some of them could not finish it in class so I let them continue to write their
reflection at home.
At the beginning of the second lesson, I randomly chose a few pupils to read
out their reflection so that they shared their feeling and learning processes with their
friends. This can help to enhance the relationship between pupils and between pupils
and teachers. In addition, it can help them to improve their communication skills and
built their courage to speak in front of others. However, due to time constraint, I
postponed the sharing session to the next lesson. As a result, every pupil have chance
to share their reflection with their friends. However, I could only carry out the
sharing session for the first two weeks because I had to finish a few sub topics before
pupils examination.

Week Two (02/07/2012 - 09/07/2012)
During week two, I introduced three questions as guidance to my pupils to
write their reflection because their reflection during week one did not satisfied me.
The three questions were What mathematics skill have you learned today?, What
activities have you done today? and How do you feel about todays lesson?.
33

Pupils are requaired to copy the questions into Mr Conteng so that they can refer to
the guided questions from time to time. Besides, I also asked my pupils to read the
comments which I had written in Mr Conteng so that they know their weaknesses
in their reflective writing skill. In addition, to stimulate their learning in Mathematics,
I introduced King of Puzzle. The group that can finish the exercise in time (I will
set the time limit according to the amount of questions given), I gave a piece of
puzzle to the group and the group would paste the puzzle on the puzzle board. The
groups which complete the puzzle would be given a sticker for their sticker board.

What Is the Result For Cycle One?
Teachers Journal
From my observation in week one (Appendix B), I noticed that the
respondents used Mr Conteng to jot down notes and answer a few sample
questions. However, when respondents wrote their reflections, all of them did not
refer to their notes in Mr Conteng. Furthermore, they did not mention the skills
they had learned and the activities they had carried out. Their reflections were too
short and only two of the respondents were identified as level one.
So, I guided them to write proper reflection based on three questions: What
mathematics skill have you learned today?, What activities have you done today?
and How do you feel about todays lesson?. I reminded them to refer to their Mr
Conteng while doing reflection. From my point of view, my respondents did not
have the skills needed to write their reflection.
34

Today we learnt
regrouping.
Today, I am very happy because I
went to Computer Lab for my lesson.
I learnt addition where I added two
numbers, and then I add another
number. I have done 11 questions
plus 3 questions and it is very easy.
We have competed with other groups
to see which group finish homework
first and my group gets the second
piece of the puzzle. But we were
reprimanded by teachers. Mak Han
Wee is pitiful because he was scolded
by teacher because the teacher says
he did not do homework and was
talkative.
Week one
Week two
Figure 9. Reflective writing by Respondent C
During week two observation (Appendix C), my respondents fully use Mr
Conteng during my mathematics lesson. By referring to the three questions given,
they improved a lot in their reflective writing. As a result, six out of eight
respondents reflection were identified to be at level one. For example, Figure 9
shows the improvement of Respondent Cs reflective writing. Figure 10 show that
Respondent B did not show any improvement for her reflective writing. From my
point of view, my respondents cognitive are still immature and they need guidance
such as questioning to improve their thinking skill.




35

Figure 10. Two weeks of reflective writing constructed by Respondent B.










Structured Interview
From respondents responses as shown in Table 6, I summarised the
interview process and the results are:
How do you feel about writing reflection? Why?
When I asked the above question to Respondent A, she frowned and said that
she dislikes writing the reflection as she has not done it before. According to her,
reflective writing was a new thing. In addition, Respondent C said that writing
reflection is annoying as he did not like to think. However, he said that he was able
to write reflection confidently by referring to the three questions given by teacher.
However, Respondent H gave the opposite view as she said that she likes to write
reflection because it is just like writing in a diary. Respondent H agreed that the three
questions given by teacher is helping her a lot in writing reflection.
Today, I am very happy
because I learnt subtraction.
I am very happy, I went to Computer
Lab. I learnt Mathematics in mandarin,
I have done 6 questions. I know how to
do, I played game. I get ruler.
Week one Week two
36

Did writing reflection help you in learning Mathematics? How?
Respondent A and C gave the same responses as they said that writing
reflection did not help them in learning Mathematics. For Respondent C, he learn
Mathematics through extra homework and tuition. However, Respondent H
confidently said that writing reflection can help her remember what she had learnt
throughout the classroom activities.
Will you continue writing reflection for other subject? Why?
For this question, Respondent A, C and H would not continue writing
reflection for other subjects. This is due to their inability to write a proper reflection.
Furthermore, Respondent C would not write the reflection for other subject due to
time constraint and Respondent H, claimed that she did not have guided questions to
write the reflection for other subjects.
Table 6
Respondents responses in Cycle One.
Questions/Answer Respondent A Respondent H Respondent C
How do you feel
about writing
reflection? Why?
Writing
reflection is
hard for me
because I did
not learn it
before.
I like to write
reflection because it
is just like writing
diary and I do not
have a diary before.
Furthermore, teacher
gives me three
questions as
guidance and it help
me a lot.
I feel that writing
reflection is
annoying because
I do not like to
think. However, I
can write the
reflection as
teacher gives me
three questions as
guidance.
Did writing
reflection help you
in learning
Mathematics?
How?



No because I
still do not
know how to
write a proper
reflection.
Yes, because
reflection can help
me remember what I
have learnt through
the activities.
No, because I
usually do a lot of
exercise during
tuition and extra
homework from
my parent.
37

(cont)

Will you continue
writing reflection
for other subject?
Why?
No because I
still do not
know how to
write a proper
reflection.
No because I do not
have question as
guidance for the
subject.
No, because I do
not have time to
do it.


Analysis Pupils Document/Reflection
By analysing the respondents reflective writing in week one (Table 8), I
found out that there was no respondent had constructed the level one reflection in
week one. All of them have failed to fulfil the level one requirement in the
reflections rubric (Table 4). In week two, there was six respondents were able to
construct the level one reflective writing. However, there were two respondents were
still remain in level zero as they still failed to fulfil the level one requirement.
By analysing respondents reflective writing level, I have coded some
common mistakes made by the respondents (Table 7).
Table 7
The common mistakes in reflective writing.
Code Common Mistakes
1 Did not mention the Mathematics skill learned for the lesson.
2 Did not mention the incidents in class.
3 Did not mention their feeling.
4 Did not mention the activities carried out in consolidation.

38

To grade pupils reflection as level one reflection, they must not have three or more
mistakes in their reflection.
Table 8
Respondents mistakes in week one reflective writing (Cycle One).
Respondent Reflective Writing Translation Codes Level
A

Today I have done
subtraction. I felt
sleepy. Teacher
wanted us to
cooperate. Teacher
scolded us. Teacher
doesnt like us to
talk nonsense.
1,3,4 0
B

Today, I am very happy
because I learnt
subtraction.
1,2,4 0
C




Today we learnt
regrouping.
1,2,3,4 0
D

Today I am so happy
because my group
member gets 6
marks. We are good
to each other.
1,2,4 0
E

Today, I am very
happy because
teacher taught us
subtraction.
1,2,4 0


39

(cont)
F

Today I am so happy
because teacher
taught us subtraction
with regrouping.
2,4 0
G

Today I felt sad, I do
not know why I am
sad. We take part in
a competition.
1,2,4 0
H

Today I am so happy
because we had a
competition, many
groups did not finish
the game, so teacher
let us do it at home.
1,3,4 0

Table 9
Respondents mistakes in week two reflective writing (Cycle One).
Respondent Reflective Writing Translation Mistakes Level
A

Adding up two
numbers up to 4-digits
with regrouping.
2,3,4 0
B

I am very happy, I go
to Computer Lab. I
learn Mathematics in
mandarin, I have done
6 questions. I know
how to do, I played
game. I get ruler.
1,2,4 0



40

(cont)
C

Today, I am very happy
because I went to
Computer Lab for my
lesson. I learnt addition
where I added two
numbers, and then I add
another number. I have
done 11 questions plus 3
questions and it is very
easy. We have competed
with other groups to see
which group finish
homework first and my
group gets the second
piece of the puzzle. But we
was scolded by teachers.
Mak Han Wee is pitiful
because he was scolded by
teacher because teacher
said he did not do his
homework and talkative.
- 1
D

Today I am happy, I
went to Computer
Laboratory for class, I
learnt addition up to
three numbers without
regrouping, I know
how to do it, I played
a game, I won, and I
get an angry bird
sticker.
4 1
E*

Today, I felt a bit sad
because Mak Han
Wee was scolded by
teacher as he was
noisy.
1,4 1
F

Today I felt a bit sad,
because the teacher
scolded us as we did
not listen to him
especially Thomas. He
is troublesome. But I
felt a bit happy
because we went to
Computer Lab and
learnt addition up to
three numbers without
regrouping.
4 1

41

(cont)
G

Today I am not happy
because teacher was
very angry. We did
our class in Computer
Lab. I have learnt
addition within 1000,
addition up to three
numbers without
regrouping. I have
done 11 addition
questions.
4 1
H

Today I am very
happy because
teacher took us to
Computer Lab,
teacher taught us
addition up to three
numbers without
regrouping. We have
done 11 addition
questions and I know
how to do them.
4 1
* Respondent E was able to justify briefly about why Mak Han Wei was scolded.

Discussion on Results
By referring to week one Teachers Journal, reflective writing is still a new
skills for Year Three pupils. Thus, they needed guidance to lead them to write a
better reflection. To guide them in writing a proper reflection, I provided them three
basic questions so that they construct better reflective writing during week two.
Furthermore, my respondents were not able to construct a level one reflection in
week one as they did not fully use Mr Conteng. This was because Mr Conteng
was a new companion to them in learning mathematics. From the analysis of their
reflections, it showed that they do not know what they should reflect upon and how
to write their reflection. Thus, all reflections were identified at level 0.
42

From the result in Teachers Journal in week two, I realised that my
respondents have improve their reflective skills and they can construct the level one
reflection by referring to the three guided questions given and their notes while
writing their reflection. However, I realised that Respondent A and B had difficulty
writing the reflection. They sat and did nothing for most of the time. It showed that
Respondent A and B could not construct level one reflection. Meanwhile, the other
six respondents have improvements in their reflective writing due to guided
questions given to them. However, the sentences that they use to describe the
incidents were limited.
Constructing level one reflection required pupils to write concrete experience
about what they could see and what really happened. So, most of them can reach
level one as the guided questions stimulate their mind to think back what they had
gone through in the class. In conclusion, my guided questions could not help
Respondent A and B to produce the level one reflection. Thus, I would like to
continue guiding these two respondents (Respondent A and B) to construct level one
reflection. At the same time I also want to guide the six respondents to construct
level two reflections in Cycle Two.

What Have I Learnt In Cycle One?
In Cycle One, the first example that I showed to my pupils was a reflection
required by researcher. However, it was not suitable because Year Three pupils still
cannot think from teachers standpoint. Thus, I used a sample from pupils
standpoint when explaining to them on how to do the higher level of reflection so
that they can easily understand it. Besides the eight respondents, there was eight
43

pupils did not show their interest in writing the reflection. After I interviewed four of
them, I found out that their writing skill was very bad and some of them still do not
know how to make sentences. Besides, pupils with races, their mandarin knowledge
was limited and that was the reason they could not write proper reflection. Lastly, I
realised that the cognitive level of Year Three pupils could be develop to a higher
level as long as teacher guides them by using proper questioning technique. Good
open-ended questions with answers can stimulate them to think. They will learn from
the example and some of them can expand their thinking process. So, we must train
pupils to think critically since they are young so that we can produce the pupils with
creative and innovative thinking.
44

Figure 11. Example of level two reflective writing.
REPORT FOR CYCLE TWO

What Is My Action For Cycle Two?
Week Three (09/07/2012 - 13/07/2012)
For week three, I started Cycle Two for my action research. In Cycle Two, I
would like to guide two of my respondents to produce level one reflection and the
other six of my respondents to produce level two reflection. So, an example of level
two reflection from pupils standpoint (Figure 11) was shown to the respondents and
explained to them on how to improve their reflections as they will need to justify the
incidents in classroom.





Why? Why? Why?
Yesterday I went to Science Laboratory
for Mathematics class. I like the Lab
because it is very comfortable. Teacher
taught us to build the Multiplication
Tables of Six and Seven and I felt that this
lesson was very meaningful as I realized
and understood on how the
Multiplication Tables were built. Teacher
let us played the Angry Bird Puzzle, I felt
that it was very interesting because we
needed to find a correct answer for each
equation so that we can find out the
correct puzzle pieces to complete the
puzzle.
45

Week Four (16/07/2012 - 20/07/2012)
For week four, I realised that my pupils could not write the reflection which
can fulfil the criteria of level two reflection. So, I introduced three guided questions
to my pupils and the three questions were Do you like todays lesson? Why?, Do
you like the game for the lesson? Why? and How do you feel about teachers
teaching? .

What Is The Result For Cycle Two?
Teachers Journal
Before asking my respondents to write the reflection, I explained to them ways to
improve their reflection with an example so that they can reach level two. At the
same time, I showed level one reflection examples to Respondent A and B as I would
like to guide them to produce the level one reflection. From my observations in week
three (Appendix D), I found out that my respondents wrote better level one reflection
as they described more about the activities during the classroom. Meanwhile,
Respondent H was very active in writing the reflection as she kept asking me the
Chinese words as her knowledge is limited. However, they cannot justify the
incidents in class. When asked they could only nodded or just smile to me. Thus,
their reflection could not reach level two. As a result, I decided to give them guided
questions again so that they can construct level two reflections by referring to the
questions. For examples, the questions are Do you like todays lesson? Why?, Do
you like the game for the lesson? Why? and How do you feel about teachers
teaching? .
46

For week four observation (Appendix E), based on body language such as
scratching head while thinking and staring at Mr Conteng, I realised that my
respondents still could not write the level two reflection, I can see that they cannot
think about the causes and effect of the incident and to justify the incidents. In my
opinion, my rrespondents need longer period to improve their thinking skill. They
need more examples to help them in writing higher level reflection.

Structured Interview
From respondents responses as shown in Table 10, I summarised the
interview process and the results are:
How do you feel about writing higher level reflection? Why?
While answering my questions, Respondent A, C and H look puzzled.
Respondent A said that writing higher level (level two) reflection is hard for her
because she did not know how to give reason. Respondent C mentioned that it is hard
to write higher level reflection as he does not know how to write even with the
guidance of the guided questions. Meanwhile, Respondent H answered in a low
voice and said that I think that it is hard for me because I cannot think of any reason
to write about the incidents in class. It is not the same as writing the reflection before.
I would like to write a story rather than giving reason. I asked her why the low
voice and she said she lack the confidence in writing the higher level of reflection
and she felt sorry.
Did writing higher level reflection help you in learning Mathematics? Why?
47

All three respondents said that writing higher reflection did not help them in
learning mathematics as Respondent A said that she cannot relate to the higher level
reflection with the Mathematics lesson. While Respondent H gave the reason that she
cannot write a correct higher level reflection and Respondent C claimed that he really
did not know how to write higher level reflection.
Will you continue writing higher level of reflection for Mathematics? Why?
All three respondents claimed that they would not continue writing higher
level of reflection for Mathematics. Respondent A said that it is too hard for her to
write the higher level reflection. Meanwhile, Respondent C reasoned that he did not
like the higher level reflection as it is too tough for him. Respondent H refused to
continue writing the reflection. However she might continue writing the reflection
but not the higher level reflection.
Table 10
Respondents responses in Cycle Two.
Questions/Answer Respondent A Respondent H Respondent D
How do you feel
about writing
higher level
reflection? Why?
Writing
reflection is
hard for me
because I do
not know how
to give reason.
I think that it is hard
for me because I
cannot think of any
reason to write on
the incidents that
happen in class. It is
not the same as
writing the reflection
before. I like to write
story rather than
giving reason.
It is too hard for
me. I do not
understand how
to write the
higher level
reflection with
the guided
questions.

Do writing higher
level reflection
help you in
learning
Mathematics?
Why?
No because I
cannot relate
the reflection
with the
Mathematics
lesson.
No because I cannot
write a correct
higher level
reflection.
No because I
really do not
know how to
write higher level
reflection.

48

(cont)
Will you continue
writing higher
level of reflection
for Mathematics?
Why?
No because it
is too hard for
me.
No because I do not
like to write higher
level reflection.
No because I do
not like to write
higher level
reflection.

Analysis Pupils Document/Reflection
By analysing the respondents reflective writing in week three (Table 12), I
found out that there was no respondent had constructed the level two reflection. All
of them have failed to fulfil the requirement of level two reflection in the rubric
(Table 4). However, six of the respondents could construct a better level one
reflection compare to their reflections in week two, while, Respondent A and B could
construct level one reflection. In week four, all of the respondents were still failed to
construct the level two reflective writing (Table 13) as they still could not justify the
incident happened.
By analysing respondents reflective writing level, I have coded some
common mistakes made by the respondents in Cycle Two (Table 11).
Table 11
The common mistakes in reflective writing (Cycle Two).
Code Common Mistakes
1 Did not mention the Mathematics skill learned for the lesson.
2 Did not mention the incidents in class.
3 Did not mention their feeling.
4 Did not mention the activities carried out in consolidation.
5 Did not justify the Mathematics skill learned, the incidents or activities.
49

To grade pupils reflection as level two reflection, they must not have any three
mistakes in their reflection and they must justify incidents, activities or the
Mathematics skill learned.
Table 12
Respondents mistakes in week three reflective writing (Cycle Two).
Respondent Reflective Writing Translation Codes Level
A

Today I have class at the
Science Laboratory and I am
happy. I learn Multiplication
as repeated addition for 6.
Today teacher let us play
secret code game. We found
the code as RAJIN and we get
the Angry Bird Sticker.
5 1
B

Today I am happy, we have
class at Science Laboratory. I
learn how to construct the
Multiplication Table of 6 & 7.
I answered 2 questions from
teacher and I get the correct
answer for them. I did play a
game and we won.
4,5 1
C

Today I am so happy because
teacher did not get angry and
did not scold us. I felt that
teacher like us. Today we
have class the Science
Laboratory. Today we learnt
Multiplication as repeated
addition. Teacher let us write
multiplication in repeated
addition. We answered 12
questions.
4,5 1



50

(cont)
D

I am so happy, I go to Science
Laboratory for class, I learnt
how to build the
Multiplication 6 & 7, I played
a game, I got 22 marks, I got
Angry Bird sticker.
5 1
E

Today, I felt happy because
teacher takes us to Science
Laboratory. I saw many
teachers sitting behind and I
sat down too. Then, teacher
taught us to write the
repeated addition. Teacher
gave us time to do some
exercises. After that, Teacher
taught us multiplication.
Teacher asked us not to be
careless and do it slowly so
that we wont do it wrong.
4,5 1
F

Today I am very happy
because we went to Science
Laboratory for class. We
learnt Multiplication as
repeated addition. We have
done 12 questions as
exercise. After I finished the
12 questions, I felt tired but it
was very easy. We played
game but we do not get the
price.
4,5 1






51

(cont)
G

Today I am so happy because
we have class in Science
Laboratory. Teacher taught
us to write repeated addition
as multiplication. We just
need to add and no need to
memorise multiplication.
Teacher said multiplication is
repeated addition.
2,4,5 1
H

Today I am very happy
because teacher took us to
Science Laboratory. Teacher
taught us Multiplication as
repeated addition and gave
us some exercises. Then
teacher gave us 8 questions
as homework. Teacher let us
play a game, Teacher wanted
us to help the pirate to open
the treasure chest by finding
the secret code. Teacher gave
us a card to write down the
code. Teacher gave us three
minutes to find the secret
code and then put it on the
board. All other group get
RAJIN and only my group got
the wrong code because we
wrote as TAJIN. So we do not
get the prize. Then the bell
rung and we go back to class.
5 1






52

Table 13
Respondents mistakes in week four reflective writing (Cycle Two).
Respondent Reflective Writing Translation Codes Level
A

My class was in the
Computer Laboratory
and I felt comfortable
and sleepy because it
was very cold. I thought
that multiply two digits
numbers by one digit
numbers is easy.
Suddenly felt very hot. I
played with Pikachu and
was very happy. I helped
Doraemon find secret
code which was also very
fun. Teachers class very
fun.
5 1
B

I think that multiply two
digits numbers by one
digit numbers is easy. I
think that helping
Doraemon find the secret
code is fun. In my
opinion, Teacher Wongs
class is fun and no need
improve anything.
3,5 1
C

For me, learning in
Computer Laboratory is
comfortable because got
air-cond. I think that
multiply two digits
numbers by one digit
numbers is easy. Helping
Pikachu finding the way
home is boring.
5 1




53

(cont)
D

Today I went to the
Computer Laboratory for
class and I like it because
it is very comfortable.
Teacher taught us to
multiply two digits
numbers by one digit
numbers and it is difficult
for me.(Repeated for
two times). It is fun to
help Doraemon to find
the secret code.
2,5 1
E

Today, I am happy
because teacher took us
to Computer Laboratory.
Teacher taught us
multiply two digits
numbers by one digit
numbers. It is very easy.
Teacher asked us to
answer the question in
pg23. Then it is fun to
help Doraemon in
finding the secret code
because teacher let us
see his picture with
Doraemon. I think that
teacher do not need to
improve.
5 1
F

Today I am very happy
because we helped
Doreamon to find out the
secret code for his door.
The code is HAPPY. Our
group is the fastest
group. Multiply two
digits numbers by one
digit numbers is easy to
me.
5 1


54

(cont)
G

Yesterday, I went to
Computer Laboratory
and I liked it because it is
comfortable. We learnt
multiply two digits
numbers by one digit
numbers. This lesson was
very easy because
Madam Yin Su taught me
before. I think that
helping Pikachu getting
its way home is fun
because we just need to
multiply.
5 1
H

Today I am very happy
because teacher took us
to Computer Lab, I like
Computer Lab very much
because it is cold. I think
that multiply two digits
numbers by one digit
numbers is easy. Helping
Doraemon finding the
secret code is fun. Mr
Wongs class is fun and
he does not need any
improvement.
5 1

Discussion on Result
Results from my data analysis showed that Respondent A and B constructed
the level one reflection and the other six respondents had difficulties in justifying the
incidents. They had a hard time in giving reasons for the incidents as it showed from
their body language. This is supported by interviewing them as they claimed that
they did not like to write the higher level reflections. While analysing their
reflections, the results showed that they cannot justify the incident happened in their
reflection. They can only write the reason that was told by teacher and they did not
55

justify it with their own reflection such as teacher scolded us because I did not listen
to teacher and my friends were talking while teacher was teaching.
None of their reflections reached level two based on the rubric. Furthermore,
their reflective writing lack creativity as their reflections is almost the same such as
their feeling. However, four of them could produce better quality level one reflection
as they could describe the incidents with more details. As a result, Year Three pupils
were not able to write level two reflections as their cognitive level were still in
concrete level as they can only write out the incidents they had gone through but not
to justify them.
The findings of this research was supported by Piaget in Piagets Stages of
Cognitive Development (as cited in Cognitive Levels Matching, 1983), the cognitive
level of children from 7 - 11 year old are still in a concrete operational stage where
children develop logical structures to deal with changing object in the physical world.
He also mentioned that children were able to give reason and abstract thought
starting from 11 years old. So, I need more time to guide my respondents to write the
higher level reflection as their cognitive skill is in concrete operational stage. Thus, I
will need to provide more examples so that they are able to learn from the examples
in helping them to develop their reflective skill through examples.
In conclusion, I managed to train my respondents to write out the level one
reflection where they wrote about what had happened in class without having to
reason or mention the impact of the incidents. However, because of their cognitive
development, they need longer period and guidance with more examples so that they
can produce level two reflection where they can write in detail about the causes and
effects of the incidents and to provide opinion or to justify the incident in class. In
56

my own opinion, writing reflection is good but not for pupils as they need to be train
on how to reflect and to construct reflection.

What Have I Learnt in Cycle Two?
After evaluating my pupils response, I found out that I should motivate them
to write their reflection. Without motivation, some of my pupils started to lose
interest in writing the reflection. However eight of my respondents lost interest in
writing reflections because level two reflection is too abstract for them. Justifying an
incident is not easy to them and I should give them more examples. However,
because of time constraints, the examples and the guidance that I had given to them
is limited. Thus, if I want to continue this research in other schools, I think I will
need to use the time after school to train my pupils reflective thinking.
According to the results, I am very satisfied as they started from zero and
now they can produce a good quality level one reflection. Although the research took
about four weeks, the cooperation that was given by my respondents helped me to
complete this research. In my opinion, introducing reflective writing to Year Three
pupils is very good training for developing their creative and critical thinking.
57

WHAT I LEARNT?

After going through two cycles for my action research, because of time
constraint, my respondents still cannot construct the reflection which can help to
improve my teaching quality. I need more time to train them to think critically and
creatively as all of them had mastered the basic domain (level one) of reflective
writing.
The main reason is they cannot justify the activities carried out in class and
they cannot think or realised about the weaknesses of my teaching. They can just
write about the incidents briefly and they did not provide explanation such as the
reason why teacher became angry and scolded them. In my point of view, my
respondents were still very nave as they are still young and immature. Through Mr
Conteng, I believe that reflective writing can help to develop their thinking skill and
develop their cognitive.
In addtion, Mr Conteng was very useful besides writing reflection in it. For
example, my pupils can refer to the notes and examples that they copied in Mr
Conteng while doing exercises or homework. In addition, they like to use Mr
Conteng as scrap book to do computation. In my opinion, Mr Conteng is a good
teaching and learning resources as pupils can write anything about Mathematics in it.
Thus, it is a good start for them to learn how to reflect and write their reflection as
reflective thinking is very vital for their future.
58

WHAT SHOULD I DO NEXT?

In my opinion, Mr. Conteng should be introduce to pupils since they are in
Year One because teacher start training pupils to copy down the notes. By referring
to my preliminary data, pupils usually do not have a particular book for them to copy
notes and do computation. In learning Mathematics, pupils will need to do a lot of
computation besides doing exercise in workbook. Furthermore, if pupils are used to
copy the notes in a note book, then they will start doing it for other subject too.
Copying down the notes is a good habit for pupils in helping them to optimise their
learning.
Meanwhile, teacher should help pupils to reflect and allow reflective writing
start as early as Year Three as they start to learn writing composition for other
subject. Thus, reflective writing can help them to develop their writing skill so that
they can improve faster and write better composition in Year Four. In my opinion, to
help pupils build interest in writing reflection, I will let pupils to write the reflection
base on their ability. Then, I will choose some good reflections and put them on the
board so that other pupils can read them. Besides, I will give them a small present or
token as reward for their good end product. In addition, I will show their reflection to
their parents so that their parent will know that their children have the ability in
thinking creatively and critically.
59

REFERENCES

Alice Orr. (2004). No more rejections: 50 Secrets to Writing a Manuscript. Ohio:
F+W Media.
Applebee, A.N., Langer, J.A. & Mullis, I.V. (1987). Learning to literate in America:
Reading, writing and reasoning. New Jersey: Priceton Educational Testing
Service.
Atkins, S. & Murphy, K. (1994). Reflective practice. Nursing Standard, 8(39), 49-54.
Bloom, B.S. (Ed.) (1956) Taxonomy of educational objectives: The classification of
educational goals: Handbook I, cognitive domain. New York ; Toronto:
Longmans, Green.
Brookhart, S.M. (1999). The art and science of classroom assessment: The missing
part of pedagogy. ASHE-ERIC Higher Education Report, 27(1). Washington,
DC: The George Washington University, Graduate School of Education and
Human Development.
Brooks, M., Frusco, E. & Grennon, J. (1983). Cognitive Level Matching.
Educational Leadership, 5(1983, 4-5.
Broshenka, D. & Castro, A.P. (1983). Methods of fact finding. Rome, Italy: Food &
Agriculture Organisation of the United States.
60

Corbin, J. & Strauss, A. (2008). Basics of qualitative research. Thousand Oaks, CA:
Sage.
Drake, B.M. & Amspaugh, L.B. (1994). What writing reveals in mathematics. Focus
on Learning Problem in Mathematics, 16(3), 43-50.
Hatton, N & Smith, D. (1995). Reflection in teacher education: towards definition
and implementation. Teacher and Teacher Education, 11(1), 33-49.
Hilsdon, J. (2006). Re-Thinking reflection. The Journal of Practice Teaching in
Health and Social Work, 6(1), 57-70.
Horning, A.S. (1997). Reflection and Revision: Intimacy in College Writing .
Composition Chronicle: Newsletter for Writing Teachers, 9(9), 4-7.
Kemmis, S. (1985). Action research and the politics of reflection. In D. Boud, R.
Keogh & D. Walker (Eds.), Reflection: Turning experience into learning.
London: Kogan Page.
McGinley, W. & Tierney, R.J. (1989). Traversing the topical landscape: Reading and
writing as ways of knowing. Written Communication, 6, 243-269.
McNamara, C. (1999). General guidelines for conducting interviews. Retrieved from
http:// http://208.42.83.77/evaluatn/intrview.htm
National Institute for Literacy. (2007). What content-area teacher should know about
adolescent literacy. Washington, DC: Author.
Proclus. & Morrow, G.R. (1992). A commentary on the first book of Euclids
Element. New Jersey,: Princeton University Press.
61

Pugalee, D.K. (1997). Connecting writing to Mathematics curriculum. Mathematics
Teacher, 90, 30-310.
Schn, D. (1991). The reflective practitioner. Aldershot: Ashgate Publishing Ltd.
Scriven, M. & Paul. (2004). Defining critical thinking. National Council for
Excellence in Critical Thinking. Retrieved from
http://www.criticalthinking.org/University/univclass/Defining.html
Southerland, S.A., Smith, M.U., & Cummins, C.L. (2000). What do you mean by
that? Using structured interview to access science understanding. In J.J.
Mintzes, J.H. Wandersee & J.P Novak (Eds.), Assessing science
understanding: A human constructivist view. Academic Press.
Southwest Educational Development Laboratory. (2000). Action + Reflection =
Learning. Technology Assistance Program, 3(2), 1-2
Trochim, W. M. K. (2006). Reliability & validity. Retrieved April 15, 2010 from
http://www.socialresearchmethods.net/kb/relandval.php
Walshe, R.D (1987). The learning power of writing. English Journal, 76(6), 22-27.
Woerkom, M. (2003). Critical reflection at work. Bridging individual and
organisational learning. PhD Thesis. Twente University: Ipskamp.
62

Appendix A
Format of Teachers Journal


Teachers Action Research Journal
Week :
Date :
Observation Results:





Action to be taken:





Comments/Remarks:
63

Appendix B
Teachers Journal Week 1 (Cycle One)


Teachers Action Research Journal
Week : One (Cycle One)
Date : 25 - 29/06/2012
Observation Results:
Respondents used {Mr Conteng to jot down notes and answer a few
example questions.
Respondents wrote reflection in Mr Conteng but all of them did not look
back their notes in Mr Conteng while writing reflection.
They did not mention what skill have they learned and activities they had done.


Action to be taken:
Guide them to write proper reflection with three questions:
1) What mathematics skill have you learned today?
2) What activities have you done today?
3) How do you feel about today lesson?
Always remind them to look back their Mr Conteng while doing reflection.

Comments/Remarks:
Respondents still do not know how to do reflection.
Respondents thinking skill / reflection skill need to be trained.
64

Appendix C
Teachers Journal Week 2 (Cycle One)

Teachers Action Research Journal
Week : Two (Cycle One)
Date : 02 - 06/07/2012
Observation Results:
Respondents improved a lot in their reflection writing by referring to the three
questions given.
Respondents can write proper reflection and write out the Mathematics skill
learned for that day.
Respondents fully use Mr Conteng in learning Mathematics for my lesson.


Action to be taken:
Interview three of the respondents to get some feedback.



Comments/Remarks:
Respondents cognitive are still immature and they need guidance such as
questioning to improve their thinking skill.
Two of the respondents does not show interested in writing reflection.
65

Appendix D
Teachers Journal Week 3 (Cycle Two)


Teachers Action Research Journal
Week : Three (Cycle Two)
Date : 09 - 13/07/2012
Observation Results:
Respondents write out a better level one reflection as they write the incident
with more detail and information.
However, they still could not write a level two reflections as teacher already
explain to them how to write level two reflection.
However, Respondent A and B can write showed improvement in their
reflective writing.


Action to be taken:
Guide them to write level two reflection with three questions:
1) Do u like today lesson? Why?
2) Do you like the activity for consolidation? Why?
3) How do you feel about teachers teaching skill?

Comments/Remarks:
They have improved their thinking skill but they still need guidance for higher
level reflection.

66

Appendix E
Teachers Journal Week 4 (Cycle Two)

Teachers Action Research Journal
Week : Three (Cycle Two)
Date : 16 - 20/07/2012
Observation Results:
Respondents still unable to give reasoning although teacher have given the
example and guidance questions.
From their body language such as scratching head while thinking and staring at
Mr Conteng, I can see that they cannot give reason for the guidance question.
When I asked them why scratching head and staring at Mr Conteng, they
smiled to me.

Action to be taken:
Interview three of the respondents to get some feedback.




Comments/Remarks:
Respondents need longer period to improve their thinking skill. They need more
examples for writing higher level reflection.