ERIC Number: ED335674
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1991-Mar
Reference Count: N/A
Things Better Shared over Coffee: Tales of Teaching To Learn.
A study examined how novice instructors become professional writing teachers. Subjects, 7 men and 13 women each teaching 1 section of regular freshman composition and 1 developmental writing class, participated in a weekly seminar designed to provide a "comfort zone" to which they could bring their questions about teaching and discuss their triumphs and failures of the week. Data consisted of tape recordings of the weekly 2-hour seminars and the subjects' journals. Data were analyzed using William Labov's scheme for analyzing the structure of what he calls "natural narratives." Four of the narrative episodes were selected for detailed analysis. Results indicated that these narrative events permitted teachers to confront openly and cooperatively challenges they faced daily as teachers in a large urban university striking in its cultural diversity, and that the communal value of storytelling has the power to articulate values as well as engage and bond members in a group. Findings suggest that retelling of personal anecdotes by teachers was a most purposeful kind of activity that used storytelling to shape and give meaning to their experiences as teachers. (Extensive selections from the transcriptions of seminar discussions are included; 20 references are attached.) (RS)
Publication Type: Speeches/Meeting Papers; Reports - Descriptive
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers: collaborative Inquiry; Retelling
Note: Paper presented at the Annual Meeting of the Conference on College Composition and Communication (42nd, Boston, MA, March 21-23, 1991).