ERIC Number: ED384598
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 1995-Apr
Reference Count: N/A
Reconciling the Moral and Technical Dimensions of Teaching: Moving beyond Notions of Good and Bad Pedagogy.
Cutforth, Nicholas J.
This paper reports on an ethnographic exploration of the teaching style and methods of a junior high physical education instructor serving predominantly African American students in an economically disadvantaged Chicago, Illinois neighborhood. Prior to her reassignment, the instructor in question was exceptionally popular among students, despite a reputation as a strict authoritarian. Examples of classroom events and dialogue are used to illustrate the teacher's role as disciplinarian, as caring adult, and as friend to students. It is found that strict discipline was the teacher's primary means of expressing her caring for and devotion to her students. While her classroom behavior was reported to be rarely friendly or affectionate, students found her to be warm and approachable when encountered outside the gym. It is argued that while the teacher's emphasis on authority and regimentation over student empowerment and expression went against many currently popular models of classroom management, the importance of discipline in her curriculum was well appreciated by students and others in the community. Viewing her teaching methods within the context of a culture and community which provide students with relatively few lessons and models in self-control and discipline, her pedagogical methods when seen situationally are found to be both valid and effective. (Contains 16 references.) (PB)
Descriptors: Black Students, Classroom Communication, Classroom Techniques, Cultural Context, Discipline, Economically Disadvantaged, Ethnography, Junior High Schools, Physical Education, Physical Education Teachers, Teacher Effectiveness, Teacher Role, Teacher Student Relationship, Teaching Methods, Teaching Styles, Urban Education, Urban Schools
Publication Type: Speeches/Meeting Papers; Reports - Research
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A