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ACTS Newsletter February 2011 Welcome Scottish Chartered Teachers as Researchers Modern Languages and Curriculum for Excellence An International Education for pupils with Additional Support Needs Writing a report for a College of Teachers diploma Gift Aid Contact ACTS

Welcome to the February 2011 edition of the ACTS Newsletter As we approach our second AGM, we can look back on the last year with a mixture of sadness but also immense pride. The sudden loss of Annie McSeveney and her vision and intellect could have seen ACTS flounder, but part of Annie’s character was habitually to empower those around her. So through the support of members of ACTS, the committee have been able to find ways to take forward the aims and principles of ACTS: the ACTS Conference and the successful launch of the Teachers as Researchers series are visible signs of this. And members of ACTS are well-placed to demonstrate to those who have the responsibility for providing the best possible opportunities for our young people why maintaining access to Chartered Teacher is one “best value” strategy they must retain.

Scottish Chartered Teachers as Researchers Tony Luby is a Chartered Teacher based at St Joseph’s Primary, Aberdeen This article originally appeared in Education Today vol.4 issue 4 December 2010 and is reproduced with kind permission of the journal and author. Introduction The first trickle of chartered teachers appeared on the educational scene in Scotland in 2005 and recently, February 2010, a significant milestone was achieved with the award of chartered teacher status to the 1,000th recipient. To date, though, the impact of chartered teachers has been mixed with, on the one hand, policy makers seeking opportunities to praise but, on the other hand, practitioners questioning the value of such awards. Admittedly, finance has a large role to play in this lukewarm reception. A substantial amount of Scottish Government money has been invested in this innovation with chartered teachers receiving a £7000 pa pay rise compared with their colleagues at the top of the pay scale. Perhaps, inevitably, this has led to policy makers being reluctant to view this investment unfavourably. Anecdotally, many experienced and successful teachers have been either unable or unwilling to invest the £6-7,000 that is required to complete the various Master's programmes leading to the award of chartered teacher status; and this may have provoked a somewhat jaundiced view of the whole initiative.


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Nonetheless, the honeymoon period is now over as chartered teachers are sufficient in number to make a recognisable impact on Scottish education. But what kind of impact should this be? I should like to focus on two particular areas - collegiality and research. With regard to collegiality the Standard for Chartered Teacher (1.4) indicates that a chartered teacher should be “…committed to influencing the development of teaching and learning, and to strengthening partnerships with other professional groups, parents and other agencies, as a member of wider professional community” (The Scottish Government, 2009, p3). And with respect to research the Standard for Chartered Teacher (4.1.2) intimates that a chartered teacher should “critically evaluate educational policy and research publications in relation to the current debates in the educational and wider community; and engage with others in the critical discussion of educational policy and practice” (The Scottish Government, 2009, p7). This focus on ‘strengthening partnerships’ and ‘engaging with others’ suggests that chartered teachers should undertake educational activities that are transformative both for themselves and for others. What does this mean for chartered teachers with regard to research?

The majority of newly appointed chartered teachers have undertaken small-scale research projects as part of their Master’s degree studies. This research has had a transformative effect upon them in that it has contributed to their acquisition of a new status within the teaching profession and, hopefully, the knowledge gleaned has been of benefit to the participants within their research projects. However, what about the ‘wider professional community’? To what extent have they benefited? Unfortunately, “hardly at all” is the conclusion to be drawn from the most recent meeting (May 2010) of the Committee of the Association of Chartered Teachers Scotland (ACTS). At this meeting a senior manager from one of the Scottish universities pointed out that the dissertations and reports produced by chartered teachers remain in a locked cupboard and are not even available within the university library. Further discussion revealed that this experience is not unique although the most common practice appears to be that the dissertations are placed in the reference section of the university library. Clearly, this does not constitute ‘engaging with others’ or ‘strengthening partnerships.’

To remedy this, I believe that chartered teachers have to move away from an understanding of research-as-knowledge to that of research-as-transformation.


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Generally speaking, research is defined as a systematic approach to furthering knowledge e.g. Gliner & Morgan (2000, p4) posit “What is research? Many definitions have been given, including a systematic method of gaining new information…” A similar view is proposed by others including Verma & Mallick (1999) although, significantly, they concede that “there is no universally accepted meaning of research” (p2). And this is a significant concession. Arguably, chartered teachers tend to assume that research is an activity that concludes with the production of new knowledge – a dissertation, thesis or report. And then it is over. If the work remains on a library shelf – fine – is that not where it is meant to be? Well, yes and no. “Yes,” in that it should be on a university library shelf as an indication of its quality and the willingness of the university to make it available to others. But “no” in that the production of a research report is only the beginning of a process and not the end.

A similar view is adopted by Brew (2001, p20) who was concerned that “...academic research (is) in a state of disarray.” Brew sought clarification from senior researchers in Australia who had been undertaking research for a number of years and who are distinguished by their achievement in attaining large research grants and/or their number of publications. In order to attain an overall perspective these senior researchers were drawn from the disciplines of ‘science and technology,’ ‘social sciences’ and the ‘humanities.’ From her ‘useful’ study1 Brew (2001) identifies four ‘variations’ in the way which such researchers think about the concept of ‘research’ i.e. 

Trading variation in which ‘research is essentially a social phenomenon’ akin to “…a village fair where research outputs (publications, research grants) and ideas are commodities which are exchanged.” (p25)

Domino variation in which “…research is talked about as if it were a series of separate tasks, events, activities, problems, experiments, ideas or questions, each of which is viewed as distinct.” (p24)


See Burnheim (2003, p309) who believes that “Brew’s typology of narratives… is a useful way of understanding different approaches to research.”


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Layer variation in which “reality is presented as a surface and the researcher is investigating or uncovering the phenomena, descriptions, explanations or meaning lying beneath that surface.” (p25)

Journey variation in which “research is interpreted as a personal journey of discovery, possibly leading to transformation.” (p25)

Clearly, then, research is a complex phenomenon that can be understood in a variety of ways: and two of these have particular relevance for chartered teachers. First of all, with the ‘trading variation’ researchers are socialised within a community of enquiry (Lave and Wenger, 1991) as they build up a portfolio of contacts, conference presentations, grant applications,

publications etc. For chartered teachers, then, there should be a growing

expectation that they will write articles for learned journals and both attend and present at conferences. The research proffered for the award of chartered teacher status should mark the entry of a chartered teacher into a community of enquiry comprising not only fellow chartered teachers but also academics, policy makers and others from the wider educational community. One can see this already taking place for some of the ACTS Committee members – as evidenced by the successful ACTS 2010 winter conference – but it is not so readily apparent for the large number of chartered teachers who, at present, are outwith the Association of Chartered Teachers Scotland. Secondly, Brew’s concept of ‘journey variation’ leads to a consideration of research-astransformation. Research-as-Transformation

Brew’s typification of research as ‘a personal journey of discovery possibly leading to transformation’ sums up the anecdotal comments of many chartered teachers upon completion of their award (Luby, 2004). Often they speak of gaining fresh insights and new understandings and of having a new appreciation of the worth of their teaching post. But does this continue once they have been in post for a few years as a chartered teacher? The early signs are not promising with anecdotal evidence backed up by the more authoritative


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evidence of Ingvarson (2008) with respect to the Australian ‘accomplished teachers’ initiative that “…it often turns out to be a dead-end or a sideline.”

Continuing with research in a collegiate fashion offers chartered teachers a means to avoid such a dead-end and to participate in an ongoing process of transformation. Literature about such a transformation abounds within the field of education research. Nisbet (2005) outlines a tripartite overview of education research over the last century that demonstrates the beginnings of education research as primarily psychological experiments and enquiries. These ‘academic theorists’ of the early C20th were superseded in the mid C20th by ‘expert consultants’ who received funding for research that was commissioned to bring educational policy and practice closer together. Then in the latter half of the C20th the ‘reflective practitioner’ and ‘teacher-researcher’ appeared on the educational scene as research came to be recognised as a fundamental element for educational practice. Using another typology Verma & Mallick (1999) identify these three stages as ‘pure / basic research,’ ‘applied / field research’ and ‘action research’ respectively. Whereas, Gage (2007, p155) affirms this threefold typology but labels them as antinaturalism,’ ‘interpritivism’ and ‘critical theory’.2

Drawing upon the above and also Carr (1986) one can construct a three-fold model of types of education research (see Figure 1 below). Figure 1 Model of education research Type >>>




The form of knowledge of education Empirical Interpretative


The nature of education

Instrumental Practical


The function of research


Communicative Emancipatory


See also Cohen, Manion and Morrison (2000, p3) who speak of the ‘three significant lenses of scientific/positivist methodologies, naturalistic and interpretive methodologies, and methodologies from critical theory.’


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Thus, according to Carr, Gage and Nisbet, among others, education research has developed such that it now encompasses three different but valid approaches. Firstly, a scientific type of education research that is founded on an empirical form of knowledge i.e. knowledge of education is furthered through the scientific method of drawing a general principle from a number of observed facts which are then checked by experiment. With such a type the nature of education is instrumental i.e. bringing about desirable educational outcomes such as pupils' acquisition of knowledge and skills. And this means that research has a technical function - to inform educational practitioners of such principles. This is the type of education research with which the majority of chartered teachers are most familiar. As required by national guidelines their Master's degree studies conclude with a work based project3 that requires identification of a school or an institutional problem. However, when solutions have been identified and the reports subsequently written up then there is a tendency to think that the research is completed. The other two types of education research, though, do not offer such a neat ending. The second interpretative type of education research is based on an interpretative form of knowledge i.e. knowledge of education is improved through a concern with explaining the meaning of educational practice and uses both objective and subjective evidence. With such a type the nature of education is communicative i.e. the exchange of information, ideas and feelings. And this means that research has a practical function: the consideration of such explanations as a basis for deliberations about what ought to be done in education. This is a more fluid type of education research in which it is necessary to engage with the ideas and feelings of others: and ideas and feelings are prone to change. But such a type of education research sits well with the requirement of the Standard for Chartered Teacher (1.4) that chartered teachers are active members of a wider professional community and are seeking to strengthen partnerships. The third action type of education research is based on a critical form of knowledge of education i.e. knowledge of education is furthered through critical self-reflection and the acquisition of self-knowledge. With such a type the nature of education is reflective i.e. concerned with reflecting upon factors that may distort one's assumptions, beliefs and understandings. And this means that research has an emancipatory function: to promote and 3

e.g. see &


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assist such critical self-reflection in order to free one from irrational beliefs and practices and so enhance the development of self-knowledge. This sounds fine in theory and correlates with the requirement of the Standard for Chartered Teacher (4.1.2) that chartered teachers participate in critical discussion of educational policy. But, in practice, when chartered teachers adopt such a critical stance they can find themselves accused of being disputatious and discover that their views are ill-received (Luby 2010). Paradoxically, though, this criticism offers an illuminating insight. To participate in such critical debate a chartered teacher requires a wealth of experience in both teaching and research. There needs to be a process of growth and transformation in which the chartered teacher gains experience of each type on the continuum of education research (Gage 2007): scientific, interpretative and action. Ultimately, the chartered teacher-as-researcher will exemplify Pring's concept of education as “...learning which in some way transforms how people see and value things, they understand and make sense of experience, how they can identify and


how key

problems... People become, in an important sense, different persons� (2000, p14).

Conclusion Some policy makers are blocking out the siren voices bewailing the lack of impact on the Scottish educational scene by the chartered teacher initiative. However, there is mounting anecdotal evidence that some chartered teachers are not fulfilling their potential. At this crucial point in its development the fledgling chartered teacher initiative should draw upon the rich literature of education research to develop a new momentum.

Chartered teachers are familiar with the scientific type of education research: but this research-as-knowledge has produced many work based projects and dissertations that are gathering dust on library shelves and in locked cupboards. It is time to embrace research-astransformation. Firstly, an interpretative type of education research, with its emphasis on collegiality, that will better enable chartered teachers to engage with the wider professional community. And then, secondly, an action type of education research, with its emphasis on criticality, in which chartered teachers develop the confidence to critique matters of educational policy and practice. 8

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Such a transformation is not an easy process but the alternative is stagnation

REFERENCES Brew, A. (2001). The Nature of Research: Inquiry in Academic Contexts. London: Routledge / Falmer.

Burnheim, C. (2003). The Nature of Research: Inquiry in Academic Contexts, book review. Australian Journal of Education 47(3) 309, 2003.

Carr, W. (1986). Theories of Theory and Practice. Journal of Philosophy of Education 20 (2) 177-186, 1986. Cohen, L, Manion, L, and Morrison, K. (2000). Research Methods in Education, 5th edition, London: Routledge / Falmer.

Gage, N. (2007). The paradigm wars and their aftermath,’ Chapter 11 of M Hammersley (Ed) Educational Research and Evidence-based Practice, Milton Keynes: The Open University, 2007 (originally published in Educational Researcher, 18 4-10, 1989).

Gliner, J A, and Morgan, G A. (2000). Research Methods in Applied Settings: An Integrated Approach to Design and Analysis. Mahwah NJ: Lawrence Erlbaum Associates.

Ingvarson, L. (2008). A clearer route with the Chartered Teacher scheme. Teaching Scotland issue 28. Edinburgh: General Teaching Council Scotland.

Lave, J, and Wenger, E. (1991). Situated learning: legitimate peripheral participation. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.

Luby, A. (2004). Fashioning a union of vision. The Times Educational Supplement Scotland, 09 January 2004.


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Luby, A. (2010). Chartered teachers meet their match. The Times Educational Supplement Scotland, 26 February 2010. Nisbet, J. (2005). What is educational research? Changing perspectives through the 20th century. Research Papers in Education 20(1) 25-44, 2005.

Pring, R. (2000). Philosophy of Educational Research. London: Continuum.

The Scottish Government. (2009). Standard for Chartered Teacher. Edinburgh: HMSO.

Verma, G K, and Mallick, K. (1999). Researching Education: Perspectives and Techniques. London: Falmer Press.


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Modern Languages and Curriculum for Excellence Interview with Isle Lombard, Crieff High School, by Jeanette Forbes, English Teacher at Crieff High School. Plans. Procedures. Protocol. Typical requests you might find on a teacher’s wish-list of What would make it easier to implement CfE. Reasonable requests, surely. Teachers want to be seen as professional practitioners with the independence of mind to make their own judgements on what is best for their own learners. At the same time, we need guidance and direction to give us the confidence of our convictions. In her recent article ‘Moving Towards a Curriculum for Excellence in Modern Languages’, Ilse Lombard cautions against an overly prescriptive framework for learning and teaching and highlights the need for reflection and trust. Ilse Lombard teaches German at Crieff High School. She holds the post of Teacher of Support in the Guidance Department and also teaches Personal and Social Education. Ilse is originally from South Africa and has been living in Britain for nearly 13 years now most of which, in Scotland. She started teaching in South Africa in 1979 and her subjects included English, first and second language, Afrikaans, first and second language and German. In 1994 she joined the National Ministry of Education as a curriculum advisor, a post which she held until she and her husband left the country. She completed an M.Ed in Curriculum Design and Development at the University of South Africa in 1998. Ilse is currently completing the third module of the Chartered Teacher course at the University of Dundee and has enjoyed the challenge of enhancing her teaching as a direct result of her study. I asked Ilse some questions on the practicality of CfE. In particular, does she think CfE has the balance right between the need for professional autonomy and accountability?


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Q Ilse, in your recent article Moving Towards a Curriculum for Excellence in Modern Languages you stress the importance of reflection – a practice endorsed by much contemporary pedagogy. Can you suggest practical and constructive ways of building reflection into the learning/teaching process?

A I think that teachers with a professional approach to their work will automatically reflect on their practice and change or enhance areas which they feel did not deliver the desired outcomes. Experience tells us that one cannot be prescriptive about this as teachers will see any formalising of the process as a workload issue and the danger will be that it becomes just another tick box exercise. In my experience, most teachers reflect on the work they have done in a given series of lessons and implement improvements where necessary.

Q Your article highlights the fact that ‘the implementation of CfE will rely heavily on trust in the ability of the practitioner to provide experiences for learners to achieve the outcomes.’ Can you explain the nature of this trust? Do you have trust in Scottish teachers that they will be able to deliver? Any reservations?

Teachers will have to be trusted to create the experiences which will support learners to achieve the outcomes. This relies upon teachers knowing their subject and having the ability to make that knowledge accessible to learners with differing abilities. Teachers need to focus throughout on the outcomes that need to be achieved. Schools will have to be well resourced and facilitated with well stocked libraries and access to the internet and Glow where teachers can go to find support and ideas for their subject area. The danger as I see it will be that a minority of teachers might not wholeheartedly buy into this new approach, mostly because they lack the confidence to do so and fear change. I believe that this is where managers and other colleagues will have to be supportive and help their colleagues along.

Q You stress the importance of engendering a collaborative ethos. Given staff cutbacks and time restrictions of the typical working week, do you see this as an achievable objective?


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Engendering a collaborative ethos will not be an easy undertaking. There are a variety of reasons why this is difficult to achieve. In secondary schools in particular, teachers can feel protective of their subject and want to take control over the content. Some may not take kindly to teachers from other departments providing inputs which might overlap with their own. Collaborative working is time consuming, particularly in the planning phase. In my experience, the basic premise for making this work is to start small, keep it simple, and expand over time. In our department, for example, we have had the Art teacher present a lesson on German artists and their work as a basis for working with German adjectives which are then used to describe the paintings. This is very simple and can be elaborated upon over time.

Q You refer to the fact that the new CfE expects all teachers to take responsibility for promoting and developing language and literacy. In a system where literacy is to be the responsibility of individual departments are you confident moderation will be implemented efficiently and effectively?

A The question that arises is how to create a practical methodology that will allow teachers across the school to moderate to a specified standard and, at the same time, one which is flexible enough to allow for subject specificity. We need to get the balance right.

Q Your involvement with The Finland Initiative has helped provide children and young people with a means of communicating directly with people from different cultures. Might the price of developing global citizens be a shift in focus away from local or national culture?

The emphasis in developing global citizens is on first and foremost valuing one’s own culture as a basis for valuing that of others. I believe that if you value your own culture, you will be more likely to respect those of other cultures. Global citizens are not people who have turned their backs on their own culture, but rather people who understand and value their own culture as well as that of others.

Isle’s article can be read in the Scottish Languages Review, Issue 22, Autumn 2010, 7-16 13

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An International Education for pupils with Additional Support Needs: An E-Twinning Approach John Barbour is a Chartered Teacher and Maths and Learning Support Teacher within Renfrewshire Council The development of young people as global citizens, able to play a full and active part in an increasingly interconnected world is a fundamental aspect of Scottish education and Global Citizenship is identified as a key “theme across learning” within A Curriculum for Excellence. Schools across Scotland are charged with fostering responsible citizenship skills within our pupils, at a local and global level, and with giving them an understanding of ‘the world and Scotland’s place in it’, as described within the new curriculum. While the most able pupils in our schools will enthusiastically involve themselves in the variety of global citizenship activities on offer, it is important that all pupils, including those with additional support needs, such as dyslexia, are given such opportunities.


development of suitable approaches to global citizenship education for pupils with a variety of learning barriers was the focus of a recent research project I undertook with a small group of S4 pupils. The project centred around a partnership with a school in Spain, using the British council run etwinning website ( with each pupil corresponding with a partner in Spain, comparing and contrasting their lives and learning about Spanish traditions and customs while researching and informing their Spanish partners about aspects of Scottish culture such as the life of Burns and typical Scottish foods. Their learning went further however and the pupils demonstrated an awareness of the pitfalls of cultural stereotyping and the portrayal of Scotland as, in the words of one, “all kilts and shortbread”, and were keen to give their partners an accurate picture of modern Scotland and its youth culture. 14

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The partnership project proved to be a successful means of developing international awareness amongst the pupil group. The fact that the pupils were communicating with a peer from another culture was in itself the single biggest motivator for my pupils. On the days when emails from their partners appeared in the inboxes you could hear the proverbial pin drop as they read their emails, and immediately set to writing their responses, requesting support as required. Similarily,when cultural information about Spain was uploaded by the Spanish partners to the etwinning website for their perusal, it was read with interest and without prompting, they set to researching and producing information about Scotland for their partner. The ICT based nature of etwinning is a major advantage for pupils with ASN, in particular for dyslexic pupils who are able to draft and re-draft their exchanges, access spellcheckers and obtain language support from the class teacher prior to sending their emails with confidence. The supported use of ICT has been established in previous research as one key to unlocking potential in young people with a variety of ASN, in particular dyslexia, and my own findings were a confirmation of that. Further approaches and support structures were also important such as structured templates outlining possible aspects of their personal lives and cultural topics for discussion and exchanging of information. Pupils were involved in regular cooperative learning tasks, which allowed them to deepen their understanding of the information gathered, and they worked collaboratively on the majority of tasks, sharing ideas and discussing their learning with their classmates, with teacher guidance. Giving pupils choice within their exchanges is fundamental. While the structured templates were provided as scaffolding, it was clear that pupils had very strong opinions about the sort of information they wished to exchange with their Spanish peers, in particular with regard to their personal lives. It is clear therefore that whilst the scaffolding is necessary as guidance, pupils need to be given the flexibility to make important choices for themselves in such partnership arrangements. Finally then, a partnership project such as this one, when carefully set up and managed, can be a highly successful means of developing international awareness amongst learners with ASN. Such projects can be developed at all school stages, with pupils of all abilities, and can be based on any topic, making it a truly interdisciplinary approach, a cornerstone of the new 15

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curriculum. It is vital however that adequate support is provided while at the same time letting the young people make choices in order that they have ownership of what they are doing. What is without doubt is that all pupils will be motivated by the opportunity to make a real live connection with peers from a different culture, increasing their understanding of themselves as young Scots, and of their place in the world, and forming friendships which can be maintained into their future lives. (Etwinning projects can be set up via the website


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Writing a report for a College of Teachers diploma Dr Leslie Robarts is This article originally appeared in Education Today vol.4 issue 4 December 2010 and is reproduced with kind permission of the journal and author.

Being a professional involves making choices that affect people’s lives. In the UK a bachelor’s degree and an initial teaching certificate no longer grant a perpetual licence to teach. Teachers have to keep up-to-date, and in doing so can take advantage of opportunities unique to their profession to reflect on what they do.

When you strive to improve your teaching by choosing new ways of working you go on a learning journey and as a result change who you are as a teacher. A learning journey is an expedition into the inner world of being a teacher. It is a voyage of discovery. A well-written report of that journey will gain a College of Teachers diploma.

What the diploma report must include The main structure for your report should be: 

what you perceived then, before beginning the journey;

and what you perceive now, after the journey.

Your report should take your reader from ‘this is what I perceived then’ to ‘this is what I perceive now, after the journey’. It will explain ‘what I recognized, what I willed, and how I acted’.

Do not write in a cold, transactional way. Examine your feelings, carefully, in the report. Explain any problems that remain unresolved, or give an account of how you resolved 17

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everything. Show how you have dealt with fresh thinking. Reporting on your learning journey involves explaining how you assessed needs and then harnessed and utilized emotions and demands made on you, and how colleagues and pupils reacted during your journey.

Write about your hopes for pupils. Be honest about what you consider to be worthwhile risks, showing your understanding of those risks. Keep your writing focused on you by using the first person singular (“I”). “I” should help enliven your account.

At the beginning of the learning journey Explore the reasons why you are taking your particular learning journey.

How did colleagues react to what you hoped to do and what you then did? Remember: an important perspective in your report is how the learning journey impacted on colleagues, as well as pupils.

Explain your freedom, or lack of it, to think and act. Did your colleagues and pupils place constraints on your course of action?

During the learning journey Interpret, don’t just describe. Interpretation of what has happened during your learning journey, and its effects, gives authenticity to your report.

Avoid jargon and detailed description of processes, measurements and ratios. If measured results are central to your success as a teacher, they need interpretation in terms of their effect on you the teacher and also on pupils and on colleagues.

Within the College’s word-limits, enjoy writing about what you have done for your pupils. Mention any moments among your pupils and colleagues of surprise and delight. Explain if you felt, for example, charismatic or helpless, confused or quick minded, agonized or joyful.

Explain the reasons behind any negotiating you had to do.


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At the end of the learning journey By the end of your journey something somehow will have changed, perhaps for the better. Write what that ‘something’ was and what has changed in you the teacher? This kind of analysis is what the College calls reflection.

Reflect on (think and write about) any intellectual insights you have gained. Perhaps you have acquired fresh understanding of teaching and how you, your pupils and other teachers respond to each other.

Reflection means seeing validity in matters that are simultaneously complex yet interconnected and which may be transformative and revelatory. These kinds of insights, essential for a College of Teachers higher-level diploma, affirm your vocation as a teacher.

Think about how your pupils and colleagues consider you as a teacher now that this stage of your journey is over.

Judge the climate of acceptance or animosity before and after your chosen activity with pupils. How has what you have done enriched your sense of being a teacher?

Do not make assertions that cannot be demonstrated. Writing “I now feel much more confident” is unhelpful. To provide meaning explain how growing confidence has influenced your teaching, pupils, colleagues, and institution.

Write truthfully about the quality of your teaching at the beginning, during, and at the end of the journey. If you feel relieved that the project is over, explain your response. There is no shame in not achieving everything you had hoped for.

When you have written your report, check that you have explained what needed your attention, what you decided to do and how you acted. You must describe the thinking behind the choices you made. At the end of the journey you should be wiser, and recording growth in wisdom is what the learning journey report is all about.


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As a result of your learning journey you should have gained greater self-knowledge as a teacher and as a person, so reflect on this in your report. ____________________________________________

Warning notes:


Colourful diagrams that show a 22 per cent rise in some measurable activity may convey numerical information but, unless you explain, they will not inform readers what this rise means to the individuals concerned, either to the measured or, above all, to you the measurer.


You will not have been on a learning journey when you obtain findings that support your original position. For example, if you chose as your learning focus improved attainment in mathematics among 15-year old pupils, and to achieve this you concentrate on algebra and then report that mathematical progress has been made, there has been no personal learning journey. This is because the pupils, and not you, went on the journey.


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ACTS Newsletter 09 Feb 2011  

ACTS Newsletter 09 Feb 2011

ACTS Newsletter 09 Feb 2011  

ACTS Newsletter 09 Feb 2011