ERIC Number: ED428073
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1999-Feb
Cultivating an Inquiry Oriented Professional Development School: The Mentor Teachers' Experience at Mountainside Elementary School.
Silva, Diane Yendol
This study examined the work of six mentor teachers participating in an elementary-level Professional Development School (PDS). Over 18 months, the researcher collected qualitative data using a descriptive case study method. Data collection included journal entries written by mentors and interns, field notes, interviews, e-mail, meeting minutes, and transcripts from PDS meetings. The unit of analysis was the mentor teacher who worked within the newly formed PDS. Each teacher participated in two or three semi-structured interviews focusing on biographical information, experiences as a mentor in the PDS, and problems and possibilities for the PDS. Data analysis investigated three overlapping phases of teacher work toward a PDS (conceptualization, teacher as teacher educator, and teacher as researcher). Results suggest that in the conceptualization phase, teachers were not committed to the renewal piece of the vision, were not always comfortable using their voices, and valued and protected their comfortable ways of doing business. In the teacher as teacher educator phase, teachers' work changed in meaningful ways as they incorporated interns into the classroom. Teachers grew professionally as they dialogued with interns and assumed the role of teacher educator. In the final phase, researchers are still trying to determine how inquiry will be appraised by teachers and whether inquiry will eventually become part of what they do as teachers and teacher educators. (Contains 25 references.) (SM)
Descriptors: College School Cooperation, Elementary Education, Elementary School Teachers, Higher Education, Mentors, Partnerships in Education, Preservice Teacher Education, Professional Development Schools, Student Teachers, Student Teaching, Teacher Collaboration, Teacher Researchers, Teacher Role
Publication Type: Reports - Descriptive; Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Note: Paper presented at the Association of Teacher Educators (Chicago, IL, February 12-16, 1999).