A qualitative case study in France of six 10th second grade classes using TI-Nspire handhelds with Computer Algebra System (CAS) found that:
-Teachers in the project developed an effective model for pedagogical resource in the TI-Nspire environment, including a .TNS file in combination with a unit-based pupil worksheet, a teacher sheet and a scenario for use, explaining the possible use of ICT.
-The document structure served as a local temporary record of the activities being performed in class, thus supporting teaching, assessment and research
-Collaboration was essential to develop learning progressions and learning activities, by adapting the shared resources.
-Collaboration is supported by an online shared workspace for teachers.
Using one such learning activity in geometry:
-Pupils were observed to become engaged in the assignment and remained engaged for the full two hours of the session
-Cognitive complexity of the same learning activity had been underestimated by its designers
-Pupils did not spontaneously examine different approaches to the problem, but required the teacher to highlight relationships
Student opinion surveys showed:
-Over 96% of students had a computer at home, and 75% used it daily, and amongst the small part of pupils knowing dynamical geometry, most had experience with cabri. But they still cited as advantageous the extreme portability and dynamic applications of TI-Nspire.
-Regular in-class use of TI-Nspire facilitated ease in mastering the tool, and difficulties of use were rapidly overcome.
-As the year progressed, the calculator was seen more as a tool available in the class
-As the year progressed, student emphasis was far more on the possibilities for symbolic calculation and new potentials for problem solving, rather than the features of the device.