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ERIC Number: EJ1088284
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2016-Mar
Pages: 29
Abstractor: As Provided
ISSN: ISSN-0022-4308
Learning from One's Own Teaching: New Science Teachers Analyzing Their Practice through Classroom Observation Cycles
Ceven McNally, Jennifer
Journal of Research in Science Teaching, v53 n3 p473-501 Mar 2016
The first three years of science teachers' careers is an especially formative period, yet there remains only a limited literature base to support teacher educators who work with this population. Teachers in the induction phase benefit from professional development experiences that support them as they continue to learn about teaching by analyzing their own teaching experiences. The context of this qualitative study is the implementation of video recorded classroom observations within an established distance mentoring program, e-Mentoring for Student Success (eMSS; Jaffe et al. [2006] "Online professional development for teachers," Cambridge, MA: Harvard Education Press). These observations were designed to include a cycle of three activities: a pre-observation discussion in which the mentor--mentee pair set a focus for the observation, the sharing of a video recording of a short classroom episode, and a post-observation discussion in which mentor and mentee analyzed evidence from the video in light of the observation focus and determined an action plan of next steps for the new teacher to implement. Studying the dynamic interactions between mentors and mentees as they inquired into specific aspects of teaching and analyzed evidence from the classroom episode helped to identify the conditions that supported such collaboration and the impacts it had on mentees' professional growth. Findings from this study indicate that observation cycles conducted with a disciplined inquiry stance help mentors and mentees to focus on concrete evidence, analyze a hypothesis about the impacts of teacher actions on student learning, and collaboratively evaluate instruction and determine instructional next steps. For science teacher educators who work with teachers in their induction years, this study suggests that observation cycles are an important activity to support teachers as they learn from the act of teaching, and can be incorporated into a mentoring program, whether it occurs at a distance or face-to-face.
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: Higher Education; Postsecondary Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Grant or Contract Numbers: N/A