The methodology step of SET Lab has begun and I am surveying numerous people from our school community. My STEM class, where I teach my entrepreneurship unit, has students from kindergarten to 5th grade who will all be asked to participate. Plus, I’ll be asking the parent(s) or guardians of each student to partake as well. If you are just joining this research journey on perceptions of elementary entrepreneurship, read my prior posts about my SET Lab action research here.
I am challenged with determining an unbiased way of collecting data while still being cognizant of people’s time, student’s ability to read and write, and participation rates. To address these challenges, I have tried to create a mixture of just the right ways and amount of response options. I have multiple choice, rating scales and open ended questions. I have worded options in a positive, neutral, and negative way. Many of the questions I’ve had to think about how they would be similar content for a parent and a student, while being sure the student will still understand what the question is asking. In order to support this, a volunteer will conference with the younger students in small groups to ask questions and record answers.
For data collection, while I will definitely have qualitative, observational data, I also want to have quantitative data to look at numbers alongside my notes and observations. To gather this data, I am having a volunteer take field notes of three key stages of the entrepreneur unit, business development, product production, and sales. Then, I have developed questionnaires that can accurately and without bias capture student’s and parent’s perceptions of the entrepreneurial unit. The questionnaire uses rating scales, multiple choice, open ended questions and other question formats to properly and quickly survey participants. All of my questions are based around the perceptions people (students and parents) have of teaching entrepreneurship. One example of a question for both parents and students is “Do you think the entrepreneurial unit should be continued in the elementary school experience?” Then there is a Likert scale underneath for the participant to circle their agreement level. I will use about 100 students in grade 1–5 and their parents as participants. I look forward to the analysis portion ahead!