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ERIC Number: EJ973433
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2012-Jan
Pages: 45
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: 81
ISSN: ISSN-0007-8204
Living the Poet's Life: Using an Aesthetic Approach to Poetry to Enhance Preservice Teachers' Poetry Experiences and Dispositions
Certo, Janine L.; Apol, Laura; Wibbens, Erin; Hawkins, Lisa K.
English Education, v44 n2 p102-146 Jan 2012
In this article, we argue that preservice teachers have limited experience reading and writing poetry, and that if they are to teach poetry in meaningful ways to their future students, they need to have compelling experiences with poetry in teacher education--ones that take into account their former experiences and incoming dispositions and that invite them to begin to live "the life of a poet." We designed a poetry course for 23 junior and senior elementary, middle school, and secondary school English language arts majors to provide them with such a set of experiences. Although incoming preservice teachers reported limited, often negative, previous experiences with poetry, we found that using what we came to call an "aesthetic approach" improved both their experiences with and their dispositions toward reading, writing, and performing poetry. Using a qualitative research design, we drew on Boyer's notion of the scholarship of teaching (1990) to address three research questions: (1) What are preservice teachers' perceptions of past experiences with poetry? (2) What dispositions (that is, attitudes and habits) toward poetry reading, writing, and performance do preservice teachers have? (3) How can an aesthetic approach enhance preservice teachers' experiences with and dispositions toward poetry? Based on this research, we recommend that teacher education not only include substantive coursework on the topic of poetry, but that the pedagogy of such a course approximate, to the extent possible, practicing poets' engagement with the genre. (Contains 1 figure.)
National Council of Teachers of English. 1111 West Kenyon Road, Urbana, IL 61801-1096. Tel: 877-369-6283; Tel: 217-328-3870; Web site:
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Evaluative
Education Level: Higher Education; Postsecondary Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: Michigan