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Co-teaching: Benefits, Problems, Solutions “When one teaches, two learn” “I can't say it works everywhere but it works for me and I wouldn't have it any other way. Is it easy? NOPE! It took a lot of hard work, relationship building and there were snags along the way but so far it is working!” “I have a good friend and we share all the time. She rocks at assessment I rock at presentation. We meld our lessons and constantly trade information and lesson plans. What comes out in the end is great lessons and great assessment.”  2 native English speaking teachers (2006)

This paper will explore the collaboration and relationship between Native English Speaking teachers (NESTs) and Korean English teachers (NNESTs). It isn’t always easy but with a little knowledge, most teachers can adapt and succeed as co-teachers. Two heads are definitely better than one!

1. Why co-teach? There are significant benefits to co-teaching which have been researched and validated. The benefits include those for both teachers and students. Co-Teaching Benefits  better student to teacher ratio and more individual attention (especially helpful to lower level students.).  a wider use of instructional techniques, to better student learning  more and better critical, planning and reflective practices by teachers  social skills improvement / better classroom management.  a more “community” oriented classroom  increased score results.

Benefits for Teachers  Teacher training in-house. The Korean English Teacher betters their own language skills while teaching.  Both teachers develop new instructional techniques while teaching and sharing.


 New teachers can be given guidance and mentoring.  Effective modeling for students.  NESTs > less cultural adaptation.

2.

The 4 “Knows” of Successful of Co-Teaching: •

Know Yourself - Teachers that know their own teaching style, their own beliefs and teaching philosophy are more successful at co-teaching.

Know your co-teacher - Teachers who spend time to get to know each other BOTH socially and professionally, have more success at coteaching.

Know your students - Co-teachers should discuss students regularly and this will allow a common point of reference on which to build a successful relationship.

Know your “stuff”- Teachers who are motivated to grow professionally and who make a concerted effort to learn on the job are more likely to be successful at co-teaching. Keefe, Moore, Duff, (2004)

3.

The Personal Qualities of a Successful Co-Teacher  Professional Respect / Rapport: Sharing and helping each other.  Adaptability: Able to change, accept criticism and feedback  Belief in Inclusion: counts.

student centered philosophy, every student

 Humor: don’t sweat the small stuff! It’s cross cultural! Sturman, (1992)

4.

What things should co-teachers do

The first thing co-teachers need to do (above and beyond getting to know each other) is to discuss their roles and responsibilities in their classroom. Each coteacher should fill out the S.H.A.R.E. co-teaching questionnaire individually (see the appendix) and then allow their co-teacher to read their thoughts. Finally, discuss together and go through each item individually.


The 3 Keys to Co-teaching: Planning / Disposition / Evaluation 1 ) Co-teachers need to plan regularly together (Sileo, 2003). Planning is crucial to any successful co-teaching. You should set up a weekly planning session or if that isn’t possible, plan and communicate through email or messenger. 2) A teacher’s “personality” should be one that is flexible and good social skills are a primary feature of successful co-teaching questionnaire. Be prepared to “wear several hats” and to adapt your personality for each co-teacher. 3) Teachers with similar teaching philosophies and beliefs are also highly successful (see the Stages of Co-teaching diagram). This also goes for beliefs regarding evaluation (how, how often, type).

3 Warning Signs to look out for….. If you are co-teaching and the following situations seem familiar, you should be taking steps to change things. This might include talking to your co-teacher(s) and school administration or taking your concerns to your district supervisor. 1. The foreign expert. Foreign teachers are viewed as “all knowing”. This creates an imbalance in the classroom and eventually resentment. There must be a shared power in the classroom. There is no expert or rather, a Native expert and a Foreign expert. Each have their particular skills and experience and relevance. 2. The “walking tape recorder”. In this case, the Korean teacher feels that the foreign teacher lacks instructional skills and uses the NEST as a kind of puppet, only good for pronunciation and laughter, cultural communication. 3. The “token foreigner”. Here, the NEST is only there to give the school pride as being progressive. They aren’t used as teachers. They are just a symbol of being “international” and progressive. (P. Struman, 1992)


A Teacher’s Model for Co-Teaching I.

THE CORNERSTONE: A PHILOSOPHICAL BASIS The members of successful co-teaching teams share several common beliefs that constitute a philosophy or a system of principles that guide their practice.

II.

INDIVIDUAL PREREQUISITES Individual teachers voluntarily bring certain characteristics, knowledge, and skills to the co-teaching situation. A. B. C. D.

III.

Co-teachers have personal characteristics that enable them to work effectively with another adult. Co-teachers have sets of common knowledge and skills. Co-teachers have discipline-specific knowledge and skills. Co-teaching is voluntary (NOTE: This teacher perception is not recommended practice for long-term program success).

THE PROFESSIONAL RELATIONSHIP Co-teachers have unique professional relationships. A. B.

IV.

The professional relationship is built on parity, communication, respect, and trust. Co-teachers make a commitment to building and maintaining their professional relationship.

CLASSROOM DYNAMICS The interactions in a co-taught classroom are unique to this teaching arrangement. A. Co-teachers clearly define classroom roles and responsibilities. B. Co-teachers’ instructional interactions reflect their professional relationship. C. Co-teachers successfully maintain the instructional flow of the whole class by providing support to individual students. D. The curriculum in co-taught classes explicitly addresses academic, developmental, compensatory, and life skills and reflects the needs of students in the class. E. Co-teachers monitor their efforts.

V.

EXTERNAL SUPPORTS External support facilitates successful co-teaching. A. B.

Administrators support co-teaching Appropriate professional development activities enhance co-teaching.


Co-teaching Types and Instances 1.

One Teach, One Observe. One of the advantages in co-teaching is that more detailed observation of students engaged in the learning process can occur. With this approach, for example, co-teachers can decide in advance what types of specific observational information to gather during instruction and can agree on a system for gathering the data. Afterward, the teachers should analyze the information together.

WHEN TO USE • In new co-teaching situations • When questions arise about students • To check student progress • To compare target students to others in class AMOUNT OF PLANNING • Low 2. Station Teaching. In this co-teaching approach, teachers divide content and students. Each teacher then teaches the content to one group and subsequently repeats the instruction for the other group. If appropriate, a third "station" could give students an opportunity to work independently. WHEN TO USE • When content is complex but not hierarchical • In lessons in which part of planned instruction is review • When several topics comprise instruction AMOUNT OF PLANNING • Medium 3.

Parallel Teaching. On occasion, students' learning would be greatly facilitated if they just had more supervision by the teacher or more opportunity to respond. In parallel teaching, the teachers are both teaching the same information, but they divide the class group and do so simultaneously.

WHEN TO USE • When a lower adult-student ratio is needed to improve instructional efficiency • To foster student participation in discussions • For activities such as drill and practice, re-teaching, and test review AMOUNT OF PLANNING • Medium 4.

Alternative Teaching: In most class groups, occasions arise in which several students need specialized attention. In alternative teaching, one


teacher takes responsibility for the large group while the other works with a smaller group. WHEN TO USE • In situations where students’ mastery of concepts taught or about to be taught varies tremendously • When extremely high levels of mastery are expected for all students • When enrichment is desired • When some students are working in a parallel curriculum AMOUNT OF PLANNING • High 5.

Teaming: In team teaching, both teachers are delivering the same instruction at the same time. Some teachers refer to this as having “one brain in two bodies.” Others call it “tag team teaching.” Most co-teachers consider this approach the most complex but satisfying way to co-teach, but it is the approach that is most dependent on teachers’ styles.

WHEN TO USE • When two heads are better than one or experience is comparable or complementary • The teachers have a high sense of comfort and compatibility • During a lesson in which instructional conversation is appropriate • When a goal of instruction is to demonstrate some type of interaction to students AMOUNT OF PLANNING • High 6. One Teach, One Assist. In a second approach to co-teaching, one person would keep primary responsibility for teaching while the other professional circulated through the room providing unobtrusive assistance to students as needed. WHEN TO USE • When the lesson lends itself to delivery by one teacher • When one teacher has particular expertise for the lesson • In new co-teaching situations--to get to know each other • In lessons stressing a process in which student work needs close monitoring AMOUNT OF PLANNING • Low


BIBLIOGRAPHY AND REFERENCE MATERIALS ON CO-TEACHING Adams, L., Cessna, K., & Friend, M. (1993). Effectiveness indicators of collaboration in special education/general education co-teaching: Final report. Denver: Colorado Department of Education. Bauwens, J. & Hourcade, J. J. (1991). Making co-teaching a mainstreaming strategy. Preventing School Failure, 35, (4), 19-24. Cook, L., & Friend, M. (1995). Co-teaching: Guidelines for creating effective practices. Focus on Exceptional Children, 28(3), 1-16. Dieker, Lisa, (2003) An Introduction to Cooperative Teaching, University of Central Florida. Friend, M., Reising, M., & Cook, L. (1993). Co-teaching: An overview of the past, a glimpse at the present, and considerations for the future. Preventing School Failure, 37(4), 6-10. Gately, S., Gately, F., (2001), Understanding Co-teaching Components, Journal of Teaching Exceptional Children, 2 (3) 41-47 Keefe, Moore, Duff (2004), The 4 “Knows” of Collaborative Teaching, Journal of Teaching Exceptional Children, 4(3), 36-41 Sileo, J. M. (2003). Co-teaching: Rationale for best practices. Journal of AsiaPacific Special Education, 3(1), 17-26. Sturman, P., (1992), Team Teaching: A case study from Japan, Collaborative Language Learning and Teaching, Cambridge University Press, Nunan, D., 141161 Walther-Thomas, C. , (1997) Co-Teaching Experiences: The Benefits and Problems That Teachers and Principals Report Over Time, Journal of Learning Disabilities (Please see my Research folder at http://mediafire.com/eflclassroom for these articles and many, many more on co-teaching. You might also look at my co-teaching recommendations for the ETIS program. Further, the Professional Development page on EFL Classroom 2.0 http://eflclassroom.com offers further material. Please check the forums there for many discussions on co-teaching). You might also find useful – http://setiteachers.ning.com . Please find the co-teaching discussion there.


Appendix


Co-teaching survey: Seoul Metropolitan Office of Education Native Speaking English Teachers CIRCLE THE CORRECT ANSWER 1. 2. 3.

I can easily read the nonverbal cues

RARELY SOMETIMES USUALLY ALWAYS

of my co-teaching partner. I feel comfortable moving freely about

RARELY SOMETIMES USUALLY ALWAYS

the space in the co-taught classroom.

I understand the curriculum standards with respect to the content area in the classroom.

RARELY SOMETIMES USUALLY ALWAYS 4.

Both teachers in the classroom agree on

RARELY SOMETIMES USUALLY ALWAYS

the goals of the classroom 5.

Planning can be spontaneous, with changes occurring during the instructional lesson

RARELY SOMETIMES USUALLY ALWAYS 6. 7. 8. 9.

I often present lessons in the co-taught

RARELY SOMETIMES USUALLY ALWAYS

class Classroom rules and routines have been

RARELY SOMETIMES USUALLY ALWAYS

jointly developed. Many measures are used for grading

RARELY SOMETIMES USUALLY ALWAYS

students.

RARELY SOMETIMES USUALLY ALWAYS

Humor is often used in the classroom.

10. All materials are shared in the classroom.

RARELY SOMETIMES USUALLY ALWAYS

11. I am familiar with the methods and materials needed to teach the curriculum.

RARELY SOMETIMES USUALLY ALWAYS 12. Modifications of goals for different level students are incorporated into this class. 13.

RARELY SOMETIMES USUALLY ALWAYS

Planning for classes is the shared responsibility of both teachers.

RARELY SOMETIMES USUALLY ALWAYS

The "chalk" passes freely between the 14.

two teachers.

RARELY SOMETIMES USUALLY ALWAYS

15. A variety of classroom management techniques is used to enhance learning

16. Communication is open and honest. 17. 18.

RARELY SOMETIMES USUALLY ALWAYS

RARELY SOMETIMES USUALLY ALWAYS

There is fluid (changing) positioning of teachers in the classroom

RARELY SOMETIMES USUALLY ALWAYS

I feel confident in my knowledge of the curriculum content

19. The administration encourages and

RARELY SOMETIMES USUALLY ALWAYS


supports both teachers and co-teaching. 20.

RARELY SOMETIMES USUALLY ALWAYS

Both teachers share curriculum resources; audio-video, books, tests, blackline masters

RARELY SOMETIMES USUALLY ALWAYS

21. Students accept both teachers as equal partners in the learning process 22. 23. 24 25.

RARELY SOMETIMES USUALLY ALWAYS

Time is allotted (or found) for common planning.

RARELY SOMETIMES USUALLY ALWAYS

Behavior management is the shared responsibility of both teachers.

RARELY SOMETIMES USUALLY ALWAYS

I feel happy about my relationship with my co-teacher

RARELY SOMETIMES USUALLY ALWAYS

We hold meetings and give honest feedback about lessons

SCORING: RARELY = 1 ALWAYS= 4

RARELY SOMETIMES USUALLY ALWAYS SOMETIMES = 2

USUALLY = 3

< 50 = a poor co-teaching relationship 51 – 75 = a satisfactory (but in need of improvement) co-teaching relationship 76 – 100 = a healthy co-teaching relationship Discuss afterwards with your co-teaching partner. What differences did you see? How can you improve those parts of your relationship? State your future co-teaching goal

** In the future I plan on ___________________________________________

to achieve a better co-teaching relationship.


Co-teaching in EFL - general guidelines