EDF 5807 week 1 becoming a teacher learning and

I acknowledge the Elders, families and forebears
of the Boonwurrung and Wurundjeri tribes
of the Kulin Nation who are the custodians of
University land for many centuries. I
acknowledge that the land on which we meet is
the place of age old ceremonies of celebration,
initiation and renewal and that the Kulin Nation
people's living culture has a unique role in the
life of this region
EDF 5807 Theory and practice of
learning and teaching
Ian Mitchell
Week 1 Becoming a teacher: learning
and teaching
Structure of this course
• It is a new course, replacing Dip Ed as our end
on qualification
• Masters level so subjects are 12 point –bigger
but you do fewer than in Dip Ed
• Based on 36 contact hours, but only 21 of
these are in lectures and tutorials
• Two workshops and on-line activities making
use of what is rapidly developing technology
Ian, Anita and Jenny as learners
• This involves us in some new pedagogy and
we will be learning how best to structure this
• There are no rats in teaching
• We will be getting feedback from you, but it is
certain that 2014 will have some refinements
• This is a standard feature of teaching that is
built into system expectations of teachers
Our professional learning teams and learning
• You will each be in a team of about 5 in your tute
• Each team will share a learning log where you will
share insights and ideas in a range of aspects of
teaching both in course time and, we hope, during
the practicum
• Teams will sometimes share their insights in tutorials
• We will contribute as appropriate
• You will run a microteach for your team in the week
3 workshop
Task 1 –analysing two videos
• There are videos from the classrooms of two
teachers researching how to develop their
students as “better” learners
• The first question provides one reason why we
are not offering these as models for you to
replicate in your practicum
• After this first task, we will return to this
footage with a more sophisticated lens in
week 3
One of my Big ideas
Teaching is complex and multi-faceted with a
range of interconnected skills.
In other words we challenge perceptions that it
is an innate and relatively simple operation
based around teacher telling and student
Becoming a teacher (Sullivan)
• Peter talks about the Science and Art of
• Science knowledge of teaching is typically
grounded in research on learning and teaching
• This is what I do!
Artistry in teaching
But classrooms are too complex and
unpredictable to reduce teaching to following
proven, singular ‘best’ approaches
Peter Corkill and Pythagoras patterns
• What was the dilemma that confronted peter when
Andrew noticed a pattern in the numbers?
• What were the risks that Peter took?
• In deciding to abandon his lesson plan and respond
to what happened when he did, Peter was displaying
aspects of the artistry of teaching
• Can artistry be documented, codified, taught?
• This is part of my research with teachers like Peter,
Bree and Sarah
Craft aspects of teaching
• Craft knowledge is commonly learnt under the
direction of an experienced practitioner
• It includes advice on how to deal with
common situations
• It is best learnt in situ
• Classroom management has significant
elements of craft knowledge
Teaching is complex
There are many core skills of teaching:
-generating interest, motivation and
-classroom leadership and management
-promoting quality learning and building
quality learners for a rapidly changing world
Core skills of teaching (cont.)
-being responsive to unexpected events
-pastoral care
-solving classroom problems
-using ICTs to enrich pedagogy
Teachers use different classroom practices and
each of these involves a different set of skills
• Note giving/taking
• Group work
• Class discussion
• Drill and Practice
• Text reading
• Practical work
• Problem solving tasks
• Research tasks
How many of these can we teach
By week 4?
By week 6?
This semester?
In this course?
Blended learning 3
Next week I hope to shoot some sessions of
about 15 minutes each of some skills of teaching
that I cannot deal with in these lectures:
• Group work
• Generating interest/need to know
• Roles of Teacher questions
Probably Wednesday morning, I would prefer to
do this with a group of 8-10 of you
Online task
• I plan to video segments of 15-20 minutes on
some teaching skills I cannot fit into our
• I would prefer to do these with some
volunteer students so it is interactive
• I cannot close on the date today, but I am
thinking of Wednesday morning nest week
Big Idea 2
Becoming a teacher is a journey that takes years
and is based on reflection, willingness to try new
approaches and, critically a willingness to
problematize your practice –to not accept
superficial signs of success such as students
apparently being on task but to drill beneath this
to check what, if and how students are learning
How can we begin to address all the many
aspects of teaching?
It is very dependent on you to
• Read widely
• Share
• Reflect
• Try approaches a little outside your comfort
• Problematize your practice
Teacher’s classroom behaviours flow from their
beliefs about learning and how understandings
are constructed (epistemological beliefs)
In these two role plays what can you infer about
differences in the teachers epistemological
Role plays
• Context A: Historical discussion introducing
To Kill a Mockingbird
• Context B: Discussion of the final digit of 75
28th February 2011
Presentation title
History teacher
Maths teacher
Barnes 1975, two types of teacher beliefs and values
Believe knowledge to exist in the
form of public domains which
include content and criteria for
Perceives the teacher’s task to be
the evaluation and correction of
the learner’s performance
according to the criteria of which
he (sic) is the guardian
28th February 2011
Believes knowledge is
constructed by the learner
2.Perceives the teacher’s task to be
the setting up of a dialogue in which
the learner can reshape his
knowledge through interaction
Presentation title
Ideas from this lecture, Barnes 1975, 2 types of teacher
beliefs and values
3.Perceives the learner as an
uninformed acolyte
28th February 2011
3.Perceives the learner as
already possessing relevant
knowledge and the means of
reshaping that knowledge
Presentation title
Barnes did not intend a dichotomy and this
exercise is not intended to set up a dichotomy
Teacher beliefs/values and teacher behaviours
• Several studies suggest (Levinson and
Turner, 2002; Putnam and Borko 1997;
Hildebrand, 2007; Ratcliffe, 2007;
Pajares, 1992; Loughran, 2002;) there is a
strong link between beliefs, values and
behaviour in the classroom
What will you be attending to in your
Gomez (2013) found that a critical element of
what teachers did in the classroom came from
what they were attending to as important –
what she called their epistemological beliefs
This caused me to reflect on how this developed
during my teaching career
• Students would make connections to daily life
hence I encouraged students to make such links
and gave them serious class time and learnt to
capitalise on such incidents
• My unit had a coherent narrative where
understandings of concepts would build over
different activities hence I was looking for links to
key ideas but it did not occur to me to get
students thinking about how different activities
might be connected by the same idea
• Students need to experience success hence
look for opportunities to give genuine praise
• Students should be engaged with ideas, not
just completing tasks so encourage lateral
questions and give them respect
• Students should enjoy my lessons, so tell
engaging stories and build mutually respectful
relationships with students
1982: exposure to research on children’s prior
• Students need to reflect on and share their own
ideas hence I needed to run discussions where I used
delayed judgement (Barnes) and extended wait time
(Budd-Rowe, 1974)
• Students need to reflect on changes to their ideas
and this did not happen in a single incident hence I
needed to get at key ideas in multiple ways
• Both of the above meant that I needed to promote
and value talk that was tentative, exploratory and
So what will you be attending to and how might
this develop over your practicum experiences
Surface v Deep Processing
This model describes two different
approaches to learning. It focuses on
what the learner wants to achieve.
Focus is on what is need to complete the
Focus is on what is needed to gain rich
understanding of this content.
1. concentrating on the concrete and
literal aspects of tasks/ideas - the
actual words used
searching for underlying meanings and
reasons as well as aspects which are
2. Seeking only to get the task done –
'what to do'
Seeking to understand the task – 'why
does this work?'
3. finding answers by semantic and
contextual clues in text
constructing answers by building
understanding of text
4. is happy to remain totally dependent on seeking to complete tasks as
the teacher, seeking advice on every
independently as possible, seeking
step; irritated by reasons for steps
reasons for steps
• many school tasks leave students with little
alternative to surface processing: “practice
• Using very deep processing may not
necessarily be best in a school context.
• Surface processing is very different from no
Big idea 3
What you are attending to in the lesson plays a
key role in how you teach, a key part of your
journey to becoming a teacher is thinking
explicitly about what you value in building a
good classroom and hence what you are
attending to as evidence of success or failure.
Big Idea 4
Students can be on task, but engaged in low
quality learning; in part this depends on the
nature of the task you have set. Quality teaching
stimulates and supports quality learning and an
important part of quality teaching is setting
tasks that require and stimulate quality learning
Aspects of quality learning
Decision making
Risk taking
Working collaboratively
Aspects of quality learning that can be stimulated or required by
• Looks for key ideas
• Checks personal understanding
• Builds the richest possible meaning for a piece of content
• Plans or reflects on the overall strategy –does not just dive in
• Checks the purpose of the task
• Considers the reasons behind suggested actions
• Considers alternative approaches
• Links different ideas, activities and/or lessons
• Links ideas in different topics or subjects
• Links school to outside life
• Retrieves and links schoolwork to relevant prior views
• Restructures existing ideas as needed
• Reflects on what has been learnt in a lesson, topic or term
• Reflects on what can be learnt from a piece of assessment or feedback
• Reflects on how they tackled a task
• Reflects on better ways to learn in the future
Decision making
• About what to do or explore including the appropriate level of challenge
• About how to manage their time
• About how to present work
Risk taking
• Takes risks in creative tasks
• Makes a prediction or informed guess
Working collaboratively
• Engages in collaborative planning and working in small groups
The project for Enhancing Effective learning
• This is a 28 year long project involving
teachers researching how to improve how
their students are learning
• It maps well onto lenses such as deep
processing and Bloom
• The PEEL database is a rich resource of ideas
for stimulating and sustaining quality learning
PLT team task 2 –exploring a classroom practice
• Getting started/generating a need to know
• Drill and practice (which sounds boring
because it so often is)
• Group work
• Class Discussion
• Understanding ‘other” text material
• There are three starter articles loaded on
Moodle, but we encourage you to graze!
• Keep your classroom practice in every search,
but add one or two of the other suggested
search fields at a time.
Bloom’s taxonomy of the cognitive domain
• Bloom et al set out to clarify and codify fuzzy
phrases such as 'really understand'.
• Each level (except Application) is broken up into a
finer structure, this finer structure is less likely to
be useful to busy teachers.
• Some levels apply more in some domains than
• There is now a revised version, but the
differences are small and the older version is
more widely used
Blooms levels of thinking
Knowledge The emphasis is on remembering previously seen content with no or only
relatively minor changes.
Comprehension A grasp of the meaning and intent of the material; using abstractions
in familiar situations.
Application Selecting and applying the appropriate generalizations in a new, unfamiliar
Analysis Breaking material down into its components and identifying the relationships
between them.
Synthesis Combining components into a new, original whole.
Evaluation Making judgements using specific criteria about the value or worth of
ideas, creative work, solutions, plans etc.

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