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ERIC Number: EJ1090848
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2016-Mar
Pages: 14
Abstractor: As Provided
ISSN: ISSN-1362-1688
"Tiny Talks" between Colleagues: Brief Narratives as Mediation in Teacher Development
Zoshak, Rebecca
Language Teaching Research, v20 n2 p209-222 Mar 2016
During my third semester as a student pursuing a Masters in Teaching English as a Second Language (TESL)--which was also my second semester as an ESL teacher--I was encouraged by a professor of a graduate seminar to think outside the box about professional development (PD). After all, inquiry-based approaches to PD and teacher education emphasize reflection and collaboration instead of relying solely on "traditional" methods that tend to favor theory over practice and can result in "fact-cramming" (Warford, 2011). This challenge led me to ponder those quick moments of time that teachers spend walking and talking: between classes, on the way to their cars, catching up before a meeting. Could these short moments and the brief conversations that occur therein provide opportunities for serious reflection for a novice teacher? This project introduces "tiny talks" as instances of narrative as mediation by examining four conversations between two colleagues (both teacher-students, but with different levels of teaching experience) and four individual reflections by the novice teacher, which followed each conversation. A grounded content analysis identified the most salient elements of the "tiny talks" (charged emotional language, wrestling with dual identities, and connecting theoretical concepts from seminars with teaching in the classroom) and revealed how the "tiny talks" project functioned as a mediational tool in transforming a change in what I thought and facilitating progress in how I came to think about my role as a teacher-student and both being and becoming a teacher. While a powerful benefit of the "tiny talks" and the reflection it fosters is the casual nature of the interactions, possible applications to teacher education and professional development are discussed.
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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