ERIC Number: ED352110
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1992-May-4
Jackson County Teachers and the Combined Classroom Experience: A Naturalistic Inquiry of Combination Classroom Teachers.
Cobham, Christina A.
Seven combined or multi-grade classes, ranging from grades 2 to 5, were the focus of a qualitative, naturalistic inquiry. In each of the four elementary schools visited for the study, the decision to have combined classes had been made shortly before school started for administrative reasons. The study sought to determine the manner in which the teachers organized their combined classes, the nature of teachers' feelings about this organization, and factors that contributed to making combination classes a positive experience for the teachers. Data were collected by means of observations and interviews of the seven participating teachers. The major organizational decisions for all teachers concerned when and how to combine instruction. Those teachers who were most satisfied with their instructional organization were also most satisfied with their combination classroom experiences. Factors that affected the manner in which the teachers organized their classrooms were their county's individualized teaching philosophy, the teachers' varying views of mandated curricula, and the atmosphere of the school and surrounding community. To make combined classrooms a positive experience, the teachers recommended: (1) open communication among administrators, teachers, and parents; (2) approaching the class as a community of learners; and (3) employing innovative teaching methods and original thematic and integrated units. A literature review is included. (AC)
Publication Type: Reports - Research
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A