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ERIC Number: ED521713
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 2010
Pages: 280
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: 0
ISBN: ISBN-978-1-1242-0564-9
The Relational Web in Teaching and Learning: Connections, Disconnections and the Central Relational Paradox in Schools
Stieha, Vicki
ProQuest LLC, Ph.D. Dissertation, University of Cincinnati
Using relational and action oriented qualitative modes of inquiry (Cochran-Smith & Lytle, 2009; Gilligan, Spencer, Weinberg, & Bertsch, 2003; Raider-Roth, 2005), this research explores the trajectory of five veteran teachers' practice over two years. The participants were part of a group of teachers involved in an intensive Summer Teachers Institute and a teacher inquiry community who explored collaborative text study practices and as well as extended reflection on teaching and learning. Voice centered analysis of interviews and participants' reflective writing reveal the ways that teachers' relationships within the school both support and impede their application of content and pedagogical learning from teacher professional development into their practice. The work reveals the way that teachers deliberate the parts of themselves as teachers that they can safely bring into their relationship with the school in order to maintain that relationship, illustrating the central relational paradox (Gilligan, 1982, 1996; Miller & Stiver, 1997) between the teacher and the school. Rooted in the relational psychology, and building on established understandings of the essential relationships for teaching and learning (Hawkins, 1974; Pianta, 1999; Raider-Roth, 2005; Rodgers & Raider-Roth, 2006), this study deepens our understanding of the relational dynamics involved in teachers' enacted practices, resistance, and resilience. It posits a relational web to illustrate how these relational dynamics, and the key relationship between teacher and school, can trigger feelings of vulnerability, thwart pedagogical innovation, and interfere with the teacher's ability to be present to her teaching and her students' learning (Rodgers & Raider-Roth, 2006). Its findings contribute to the body of professional development literature as the importance of the context of the school itself complicates our current understandings of "effective" teacher professional development. Finally, adding to the relational literature, the work introduces the concept of "destabilization," which resides in the voice of the individual, as a dynamic indicator of the central relational paradox. [The dissertation citations contained here are published with the permission of ProQuest LLC. Further reproduction is prohibited without permission. Copies of dissertations may be obtained by Telephone (800) 1-800-521-0600. Web page:]
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Publication Type: Dissertations/Theses - Doctoral Dissertations
Education Level: Higher Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A