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Tep Vol 24-N1

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Teacher Education and Practice, a peer-refereed journal, is dedicated to the encouragement and the dissemination of research and scholarship related to professional education. The journal is concerned, in the broadest sense, with teacher preparation, practice and policy issues related to the teaching profession, as well as being concerned with learning in the school setting. The journal also serves as a forum for the exchange of diverse ideas and points of view within these purposes. As a forum, the journal offers a public space in which to critically examine current discourse and practice as well as engage in generative dialogue. Alternative forms of inquiry and representation are invited, and authors from a variety of backgrounds and diverse perspectives are encouraged to contribute. Teacher Education & Practice is published by Rowman & Littlefield.

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8 Articles

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Editorial: Our Obligation as Teacher Educators

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PATRICK M. JENLINK

To create the subjective conditions for a free society [it is] no longer sufficient to educate individuals to perform more or less happily the functions they are supposed to perform. . . . [We must also] educate men and women who are incapable of tolerating what is going on, who have really learned what is going on, has always been going on, and why, and who are educated to resist and to fight for a new way of life.

—Marcuse (1986, p. 6)

The special expertise of teachers is not the subject matter of the curriculum but the capacity to teach others how to learn this subject matter. And by extension, the special expertise of teacher education is not disciplinary knowledge but the capacity to teach others how to teach this knowledge effectively.

——Labaree (2004, p. 60)

As a society, we are confronted with social issues and problems today that are not new but have plagued society for decades. Keniston (1968), writing in Young Radicals, provides perhaps an appropriate metaphor for conceiving of preservice teacher today, speaking of the young radicals of that era: Their search was “to enumerate the problems of [a] changing, affluent, and violent society, a society that [had] barely begun to catch up with the dilemmas it [had] created . . . problems [that] lie deeper than a particular election result or a particular war” (p. 289). The preservice teacher of today faces no less a daunting challenge. Learning to teach at its best must be seen as being connected with the obligation of social responsibility and political agency (Giroux, 2003). Therein, the greater obligation of teacher educators today is to foster a kind of critical discourse that makes transparent and then sets about to change the existing order of teacher preparation toward one that is concerned with preparing young radicals to address the current tensions in our educational systems.

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Preparing Preservice Teachers for Instruction on English-Language Development With Video Lesson Modules

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PING LIU

ABSTRACT: This study explored the use of video lesson modules in a teaching methodology course to prepare preservice teachers for supporting the English-language development of pupils at K–8 schools. The basic material of a lesson module is a video lesson featuring instruction of an experienced classroom teacher in an English-language development setting of a local school district. A total of 112 preservice teachers, enrolled in a teaching methodology course of two consecutive semesters, participated in this study. After the participants used the lesson modules as part of the methodology course required in the credential program, they provided feedback by completing a survey. Both qualitative and quantitative data were collected to analyze the quality of utilizing the video lessons in preservice professional development. Results indicate that high reliability exists in the application of the materials for different groups of participants who admitted benefiting the most in application of English-language development instructional strategies.

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Strategies for Success: Links to Increased Mathematics Achievement Scores of English-Language Learners

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LISA PRAY

VESSELA ILIEVA

ABSTRACT: This research investigates the link between mathematic teachers’ use of English-language learner (ELL) strategies and the mathematics achievement of their students who are ELLs. Interviews and observations of mathematic teachers who taught ELLs were used to document instructional strategies use. The findings from the interviews and observations were then compared to ELLs’ mathematics achievement scores. Both visual and speech strategies were found to be statistically related to higher mathematic achievement of ELLs at the earliest levels of English-language proficiency.

This research seeks to identify the extent to which the use of English-language learner (ELL) instructional strategies in mathematics education influences the mathematics achievement of ELLs by comparing teachers’ use of ELL instructional strategies use to ELLs’ mathematics achievement scores. Nationally, enrollment of ELLs in public schools is rapidly growing (U.S. Census, 2000). It is estimated that more than 3 million school-age children have emerging English-language skills (U.S. Department of Education, 2006). This research took place in Utah, where the growth rate of ELL enrollment in public schools exceeds the national trend, ranking it first in percentage growth of culturally and linguistically diverse students (Goodwin, 2002; Hosp & Mulder, 2003; U.S. Census, 2000; Utah State Legislature, 2003).

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Infusing Science, Technology, and Society Into an Elementary Teacher Education Program: The Impact on Preservice Teachers

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MARY BETH HENNING

BARBARA R. PETERSON

KENNETH PAUL KING

ABSTRACT: In an effort to improve science and social studies instruction, preser-vice teachers developed original science, technology, and society units to teach in elementary and middle school classrooms during their clinical field experience. Data revealed that the preservice teachers fell into categories of being skeptics, open-minded instructors, or positively engaged leaders as they negotiated science, technology, and society curriculum requirements. In follow-up interviews after a full semester of student teaching, the categories held, thereby suggesting that preservice teachers’ dispositions have a strong influence on their approach to curriculum and instruction.

One of the key issues related to preparing elementary teachers to be effective teachers of science and social studies is finding ways to teach these subjects meaningfully. This concern is magnified when social studies and science are not always present in the delivered elementary school curriculum (Passe, 1999). As U.S. schools respond to mandates of the No Child Left Behind Act, reading and mathematics skills often become the curriculum and instructional focus. Meanwhile, national standards in social studies and science emphasize process skills in which students practice the skills of historians, social scientists, and scientists. Many state standards are content and skill laden. Teachers are placed in an environment with conflicting goals: the obligation to instruct the content of a district’s curriculum yet be constrained by the belief that little time is available for teaching science and social studies content. One way to respond to these concerns is through an implementation of more interdisciplinary curriculum, particularly through the framework of science, technology, and society (STS). STS has been identified by a number of authors (Bybee, 1987; Patrick & Remy, 1985; Yager, 1996) as an essential means of reforming science and social studies education. Nationally and locally, STS holds promise for enhancing the contemporary goals of science and social studies.

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The Predictive Validity of a Standardized Reading Test: Policy Issues for Teacher Education

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MARTIN J. WARD

CATHY A. POHAN

CARMEN RAMIREZ BOATRIGHT

CHRISTIE L. WARREN

ABSTRACT: The federal mandate for “highly qualified” teachers, along with heightened scrutiny of public education, has resulted in the development of state-mandated teacher certification examinations across the nation. Since teacher education programs in Texas are held accountable for the success rates of program completers on the Texas Examination of Educator Standards Pedagogy and Professional Responsibilities exam, most schools of education use the Texas Higher Education Assessment as a part of their admission requirements. In fact, many Texas colleges and universities require significantly higher Texas Higher Education Assessment scores for admission into teacher education than are required for general university admission. This study explores the relationship between performance scores on the reading portion of the Texas Higher Education Assessment and scores on the Texas Examination of Educator Standards Pedagogy and Professional Responsibilities exam. The findings have important implications for policymakers in teacher education.

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Actively Seeking Change: Mathematics Lesson Study for the Diverse U.S. Schools

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VESSELA ILIEVA

ABSTRACT: This qualitative study examined the experiences of three eighth-grade prealgebra teachers as they planned student sensitive lessons for their ethnoculturally diverse students. The teachers worked in a lesson study group with a diversity consultant, an ESL (English as a second language) teacher who had a variety of multicultural experiences from around the globe. The findings of the study indicated that this form of student-sensitive lesson study stimulated in-depth mathematical discussions among participants and prompted a reevaluation of the teachers’ mathematical knowledge and practice. The diversity consultant supported the mathematics teachers in understanding their role in communicating mathematical content in ways relevant to their ethnoculturally diverse students. The role of lesson activity context to students’ understanding and engagement and the need for closer attention to students’ academic English-language proficiency when planning instruction surfaced as important elements for planning student-sensitive mathematics lessons.

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An Investigation Into the Life Experiences and Beliefs of Teachers Exhibiting Highly Effective Classroom Management Behaviors

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CHUCK HOLT

PAULINE HARGROVE

SANDRA HARRIS

ABSTRACT: The purpose of this study was to investigate the life experiences and beliefs of highly effective teachers exhibiting effective classroom management. This study explores the beliefs, background, and experiences of exemplary teachers in the area of classroom management. The goal of this study was to develop a deeper understanding of how individuals become highly effective teachers and classroom managers. Findings from the study suggested that teachers with effective classroom management skills have the ability to build relationships with students and implement well-developed classroom procedures. They also exhibit a belief in the relational care of students. School experiences, family relationships, and spiritual background were factors identified in the development of these teachers.

W. E. B. DuBois (1949) wrote that “of all the civil rights for which the world has struggled and fought for 5,000 years, the right to learn is undoubtedly the most fundamental. . . . The freedom to learn . . . has been bought by bitter sacrifice” (pp. 230–231). In this era of high expectations for students, teaching and learning must be at its best. Jensen (1997) observed that since the brain is designed to learn for survival, it is very good at learning that which it perceives to be useful, practical, and real. Marzano (2003) has shown that teachers’ actions in their classrooms have twice the impact on student learning as do school policies regarding curriculum, assessment, staff collegiality, and community involvement.

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Book Review

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(Lanham, MD: Rowman & Littlefield Education, 2008), 133 pages, $29.95

GLORIA J. GRESHAM

A Guide to Teacher Evaluation: Structured Observations for All Evaluators, by Yamina Bouchamma, Mario Godin, and Charline Jenkins Godin, is based on three premises—namely, that teacher evaluation promotes student learning, increases teacher motivation, and is enhanced through the use of structured tools to guide decision making. The book supports the data collection phase of the clinical supervision model that emerged in the 1960s. According to Danielson and McGreal (2000), the clinical supervision model includes preconferencing with the teacher, observing in the classroom, and analyzing the data to conduct a postconference with the teacher. Teacher evaluation is widely mandated and implemented in schools across the globe in an effort to improve teaching and learning. Many departments of education provide systems for conducting these evaluations, and oftentimes, these systems involve formative and summative procedures to ensure quality and develop teachers professionally (Danielson & McGreal, 2000). Again and again, these systems as developed for school leaders are complicated and lack specificity, especially in the area of classroom observation and teacher interviews. Bouchamma, associate professor of Faculty of Education Sciences at Université Laval (Quebec City, Quebec, Canada), has published books and articles in the area of teacher evaluation, leadership issues, and intercultural schools. In this nonfiction book, she collaborates with Godin, vice principal at L’école Champlain (Moncton, New Brunswick, Canada), and Jenkins Godin, teacher at L’école Mathieu Martin (Dieppe, New Brunswick, Canada), in an attempt to remedy this lack of specificity by crafting 45 observation checklists school leaders with teacher input can employ in the data collection phase of teacher evaluation. The checklists are aligned to the Teacher Evaluation Program developed by the New Brunswick Department of Education in 1999, and according to the authors, their evaluation process is aligned to the model displayed in Charlotte Danielson’s 1996 Enhancing Professional Practice: A Framework for Teaching.

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