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Edited by Aaron J. Sickel and Stephen B. Witzig

The improvement of science education is a common goal worldwide. Countries not only seek to increase the number of individuals pursuing careers in science, but to improve scientific literacy among the general population. As the teacher is one of the greatest influences on student learning, a focus on the preparation of science teachers is essential in achieving these outcomes. A critical component of science teacher education is the methods course, where pedagogy and content coalesce. It is here that future science teachers begin to focus simultaneously on the knowledge, dispositions and skills for teaching secondary science in meaningful and effective ways. This book provides a comparison of secondary science methods courses from teacher education programs all over the world. Each chapter provides detailed descriptions of the national context, course design, teaching strategies, and assessments used within a particular science methods course, and is written by teacher educators who actively research science teacher education. The final chapter provides a synthesis of common themes and unique features across contexts, and offers directions for future research on science methods courses. This book offers a unique combination of ‘behind the scenes’ thinking for secondary science methods course designs along with practical teaching and assessment strategies, and will be a useful resource for teacher educators in a variety of international contexts.

Developing and Supporting Critically Reflective Teachers

Diverse Perspectives in the Twenty-First Century

Edited by Frank Hernandez and Rachel Endo

This collection centres the diverse narrative experiences of six early-career US teachers who identify as critically reflective practitioners. The contributors cogently demonstrate how teachers with critically reflective mindsets take active steps to ensure that they are cognizant of how their intersecting social identities impact how they arrive at making different types of decisions (big and small), interact with students from varied backgrounds, and negotiate competing demands and expectations in and out of their classrooms.
The contributors have carefully thought about how learning and teaching are complex processes that involve significant ethical, moral, and social responsibilities. While they do not offer easy answers to the complex challenges that teachers negotiate on a daily basis, their willingness to share their concerns, experiences, and lesson learned offer timely perspectives about the possibilities and promise of using critical reflection as a means to challenge and close persistent academic, equity, and opportunity gaps that disproportionately and persistently impact students from underserved populations.
The editors offer strategies for developing and supporting critically reflective teachers with a focus on transforming PK-12 and teacher education through an equity-centric lens. They contend that aspiring and earlier-career teachers greatly benefit from employing critical reflection in their daily lives to not only survive but to also thrive in an increasingly complex sociopolitical climate. Additional resources and guiding questions are included with specific foci on teacher educators and other major decision-makers in PK-12 education who are directly involved with the education, professional development, and socialization of early-career teachers.

Experiments in Agency

A Global Partnership to Transform Teacher Research


Edited by Supriya Baily, Farnoosh Shahrokhi and Tami Carsillo

This book is about teacher agency and leadership, but it is also an experiment in shifting the balance of power in research and writing. It is about making accessible the process of academic publishing in a way that capitalizes on the knowledge of people in diverse contexts and with novice eyes and is an experiment in sharing academic writing between master teachers and doctoral students. It is also a book on the power of action research and the belief we have as teacher educators about the transformative power of teachers in their own classrooms. Pairing master teachers from ten countries who were part of the Teaching Excellence and Achievement Program with graduate students, this book provides a framework to decolonize research practices in an effort to re-envision research methodologies on a global scale. The book also provides a tangible way to see how research processes support local transformation, and direct engagement of those at the margins to play a greater role in the production of scholarly knowledge. The cross-national scope of this book, with authors working in classrooms in countries as diverse as Turkey, Chile, and Bangladesh coupled work of novice US-based scholars to engage in the conceptualizing, researching, data analysis and writing of chapters speaks to the importance of new voices in the field of research. Additionally, the combination of teacher research projects in the classroom juxtaposed with chapters that speak to the process of teacher research in a global context provides both theoretical and empirical foundations for teacher research.

From Martyrs to Murderers

Images of Teachers and Teaching in Hollywood Films


Robert L. Dahlgren

In From Martyrs to Murderers, the author explores the connections between the dark, unflattering representations of public schools, teachers and teaching in popular Hollywood films and the conservative attacks on public education that have culminated in a generation of neo-liberal standards reform measures. The author’s analysis is based on a survey of 60 movies that feature significant interactions between public school teachers and their students. This study employed a textual analysis method involving viewing the films alongside original script material, which reveals that the narratives involving public schools during the late 20th century and early 21st century are distinct from those involving other types of schools or eras. Rather than the romantic figures of earlier portraits, such as Eve Arden’s beloved Our Miss Brooks in the 1940s and 1950s radio and television serial, these teachers are consistently portrayed as negative archetypes, thus providing a rationale for the school reform agenda of the 1980s. The sheer repetition of these damaging images in Hollywood products of the period made the American public more susceptible to the deceptive arguments outlined in A Nation at Risk, the seminal 1983 report that provided the blueprint for the standards reform movement that has dominated education policy for the past generation. This work thus develops upon the critical perspectives of educational historians and social studies educators who have probed this turning point in the history of American schooling. It also offers an alternative means of viewing the reality of life in the nation’s public institutions.

Out-of-Field Teaching Practices

What Educational Leaders Need to Know

Anna Elizabeth du Plessis

Society perceives the role of school leaders as ‘fixers’. Yet the author poses some confronting questions: can they fix or manage the out-of-field phenomenon without having in-depth knowledge and understanding? Can educators teach the next generation of teachers and school leaders without appreciating the realities of the workplace? Can policymakers develop effective policies without a deeper understanding of the workforce issues that influence quality education beyond the obvious issues?
Many dilemmas face today’s teaching workforce and workplaces. The book takes the reader on a journey as experienced in real life by teachers and school leaders. It aims an extreme global focus on the quality of education and on governments’ achievements in providing opportunities to prepare the next generation of students for their future.
The author’s assessment exposes more concerns than assurances.
Anna du Plessis’ academic career includes more than 25 years of classroom experience across three countries. Her journey in leadership positions started during her fourth year of teaching. Her compassion for teachers, school leaders and students stimulated a search for a deeper understanding of the lifeworld and challenges facing educational practitioners.
The objective in this book is to share information that will improve education systems, strategies, decisions, policies and actions. Readers of this book might be parents, student teachers, prospective school leaders, educational directors, policymakers or teacher educators.
Only knowing and understanding can inform well-directed decisions.

Edited by Ian M. Kinchin and Naomi E. Winstone

Pedagogic Frailty and Resilience in the University presents a theoretical model and a practical tool to support the professional development of reflective university teachers. It can be used to highlight links to key issues in higher education. Pedagogic frailty exists where the quality of interaction between elements in the evolving teaching environment succumbs to cumulative pressures that eventually inhibit the capacity to develop teaching practice. Indicators of frailty can be observed at different resolutions, from the individual, to the departmental or the institutional.
Chapters are written by experts in their respective fields who critique the frailty model from the perspectives of their own research. This will help readers to make practical links between established bodies of research literature and the concept of frailty, and to form a coherent and integrated view of higher education. This can then be explored and developed by individuals, departments or institutions to inform and evaluate their own enhancement programmes. This may support the development of greater resilience to the demands of the teaching environment. In comparison with other commonly used terms, we have found that the term ‘frailty’ has improved resonance with the experiences of colleagues across the disciplines in higher education, and elicits a personal (sometimes emotional) response to their professional situation that encourages positive dialogue, debate and reflection that may lead to the enhancement of university teaching.
This book offers a particular route through the fractured discourses of higher education pedagogy, creating a coherent and cohesive perspective of the field that may illuminate the experiences and observations of colleagues within the profession.

Cover photo: Ian M. Kinchin

Quality Learning

Teachers Changing Their Practice


Edited by Kathy Smith and J. John Loughran

When teachers are supported to work together in ways that allow them to deepen knowledge of their professional practice, the understandings that emerge from their conversations about quality learning and teaching demonstrate a high level of expertise. Yet such professional knowledge is often deeply embedded within each teacher’s everyday teaching; the tacit knowledge that determines how and why they attend to student learning in certain ways. This book captures the professional knowledge of teachers that developed as the result of an ongoing process of school based change, where teachers began to work differently because they began to think differently about the learning that mattered for their students in their school. The explication of their knowledge of practice became possible due to the ongoing support they received from their school leadership—in most part because leadership trusted them as professionals to responsibly lead student learning. Within this culture of trust and valued collaboration, working alongside external critical friends who supported their professional learning, the teachers engaged in regular, thought provoking and interactive professional dialogue. Together they exposed and challenged each other’s thinking and beliefs about learning and teaching, captured and examined each other’s practice and, ultimately articulated and extended their professional knowledge. The insights about this collaborative learning process and the emergent knowledge and understandings teachers develop about the interactive relationship between learning and teaching, has much to contribute to educational discourse beyond the school setting. Some of that knowledge and the way it looks in practice is shared in this book.

Edited by Michelle J. Bellino and James H. Williams

How do schools protect young people and call on the youngest citizens to respond to violent conflict and division operating outside, and sometimes within, school walls? What kinds of curricular representations of conflict contribute to the construction of national identity, and what kinds of encounters challenge presumed boundaries between us and them? Through contemporary and historical case studies—drawn from Cambodia, Egypt, Northern Ireland, Peru, and Rwanda, among others—this collection explores how societies experiencing armed conflict and its aftermath imagine education as a space for forging collective identity, peace and stability, and national citizenship. In some contexts, the erasure of conflict and the homogenization of difference are central to shaping national identities and attitudes. In other cases, collective memory of conflict functions as a central organizing frame through which citizenship and national identity are (re)constructed, with embedded messages about who belongs and how social belonging is achieved. The essays in this volume illuminate varied and complex inter-relationships between education, conflict, and national identity, while accounting for ways in which policymakers, teachers, youth, and community members replicate, resist, and transform conflict through everyday interactions in educational spaces.

Reforming Teaching and Teacher Education

Bright Prospects for Active Schools

Edited by Eija Kimonen and Raimo Nevalainen

What are the prerequisites for reforming education, and how can these reforms be seen in school development and culture? How should teacher education support this reform process? What are the principles and practices underlying the functioning of the schools of tomorrow? These questions are examined in this unique volume.
The authors in this book argue that the central function of teacher education and education in general is to respond to the challenges brought on by the twenty-first century. According to this approach, the competencies and skills needed in the future are not merely a new addition to school activities, but rather something requiring a comprehensive reform of school culture encompassing teacher education, curricula, and teaching methods. Such a fundamental process of change in the action and thinking models used by schools would be an effort to achieve a complete transformation, the result of which would be schools developing into organizations that are both creative and imbued with a strong sense of community. A central attribute is that the creation of new knowledge is not just restricted to the classroom but also takes place in out-of-school environments. This would link learning to its natural context, eventually leading to an ideal instruction that is actively problem oriented, holistic, and life centered.
This reform-minded volume is divided into three parts. The first part focuses on the reform processes in teacher education, the second on the reforms of pedagogics at schools and teacher education institutions, and the third on the processes of reculturing schools. New prospects for active schools in the United States and Europe, as well as in Japan and China, are discussed.

Self-Narrative and Pedagogy

Stories of Experience within Teaching and Learning


Edited by Mike Hayler and Jess Moriarty

In this book, teachers from a variety of backgrounds reflect upon their journeys into and within teaching to discuss the impact of their diverse experiences on the ways in which they teach. The authors adopt a variety of autoethnographic approaches in telling stories of transition and profound transformation as they each discuss how certain events in their lives have shaped their professional identities and methods of teaching. In telling their stories they also tell stories of the culture and process of education. This offers the opportunity to consider the narratives as examples of how individuals and groups respond in different ways to institutional and national policies on education. In these chapters, the authors offer illumination from a number of perspectives, of how practitioners of education make meaning of their lives and work in our changing times.
By capturing these personal stories, this book will inform and support readers who are studying to become teachers and those already working in education by developing their understanding and empathy with the role.
Autoethnography can develop self-knowledge and understanding in the reader and writer of such texts, offering unique insights and individual ways of being that will benefit students and staff in a range of educational settings. This book values the telling and sharing of stories as a strategy for enabling teachers to learn from one another and help them to feel more supported.
The book will be useful for teachers and teacher educators, students of education, and all researchers interested in autoethnography and self-narrative.