Do as we do and not as we say: Teacher educators supporting student teachers to learn on teaching practice

Chambers, F. C. and Armour, K. M. (2011) Do as we do and not as we say: Teacher educators supporting student teachers to learn on teaching practice. pp. 527-544. ISSN 13573322 (ISSN)

[img] Text
Chambers and Armour 2011.pdf

Download (333kB)
Official URL:


This paper reports data from a larger study into the ways in which Physical Education Teacher Education (PETE) students engaged in professional learning during teaching practice (TP) in Ireland. The study comprised one umbrella case study of Greendale University, schools and PETE students that consisted of five individual cases: tetrads of PETE student teacher, cooperating teacher (CT), University tutor (UT) and School Principal (SP). Each tetrad was defined as a unique community of practice located within the wider structures of school, education and university policies on teacher education. Data were collected over one academic year using qualitative research methods and grounded theory as a systematic data analysis tool. Findings indicate that in each of the five cases, support for PETE student learning was, to some degree, dysfunctional. In particular, it became evident that there were two conflicting teacherlearning curricula in operation. The official curriculum, expressed in policy and by SPs, UTs and CTs (also referred to as mentors), valued a PETE student who cared for pupils, had a rich pedagogical content knowledge, knew how to plan for and assess pupils' learning, valued reflection, and was an active member of a community of practice. The unofficial but essentially more powerful enacted curriculum, encouraged PETE students to draw upon their own resources to learn pedagogical content knowledge in an isolated and unsupported manner. The data highlight the force of the unofficial curriculum and the ways in which PETE students were guided to the core of the dysfunctional community of practice by untrained CTs (mentors) and untrained UTs. PETE students in this study learned to survive in a largely unsupportive professional learning environment and, just as theories of social reproduction intimate, indicated that they would reproduce this practice with PETE students in their care in the future. The findings suggest that in cases similar to those studied, there is a need for teacher educators in Ireland, (in both universities and schools) to critically interrogate their personal practices and implicit theories of teacher education and to engage in training for their role. There is also evidence to suggest that PETE students in Ireland could benefit from the development of school-university partnerships that act as fundamental units of high quality professional learning. In the cases studied, this may have led to a stronger focus on the intended or official curriculum of TP, led by the revised maxim: 'Do as we say and as we do'. © 2011 Taylor & Francis.

Item Type: Article
Additional Information: Cited By :3; Export Date: 23 February 2015; Correspondence Address: Chambers, F. C.; School of Education, University College Cork, 1-2 Lucan Place, Western Rd, Cork, Ireland; email:; References: Amade-Escot, C., The contribution of two research programmes on teaching content: 'pedagogical content knowledge' and the 'didactics of physical education (2000) Journal of Teaching in Physical Education, 20, pp. 78-101; Barab, S.A., Barnett, M., Squire, K., Developing an empirical account of a community of practice: Characterizing the essential tensions (2002) The Journal of the Learning Sciences, 11 (4), pp. 489-542; Barab, S.A., Duffy, T.M., From practice fields to communities of practice (2000) Theoretical foundations of learning environments, pp. 25-55. , in: D. H. Jonassen & S. M. Land (Eds), (London, Lawrence Erlbaum); Bartholomew, J.I., Schooling teachers: The myth of the liberal college (1976) Explorations in the politics of school knowledge, pp. 114-124. , in: G. Whitty & M. Young (Eds), (Driffield, England, Nafferton); Becker, H., A school is a lousy place to learn anything in (1972) American Behavioral Scientist, 16, pp. 85-105; Begley, C.M., Triangulation of communication skills in qualitative research instruments (1996) Journal of Advanced Nursing, 24, pp. 688-693; Behets, D., Vergauwen, L., Learning to teach in the field (2006) The handbook of physical education, pp. 407-424. , in: D. Kirk, D. Macdonald & M. O'Sullivan (Eds), (London, Sage); Bishop, R., Freeing ourselves from neocolonial domination in research (2005) The Sage handbook of qualitative research, pp. 109-138. , in: N. K. Denzin & Y. S. Lincoln (Eds), (London, Sage); Byra, M., Post lesson conferencing strategies and preservice teachers reflective practices (1996) Journal of Teaching in Physical Education, 16, pp. 48-65; Cochran-Smith, M., 2005 presidential address: The new teacher education: For better for worse (2005) Educational Researcher, 34 (7), pp. 3-17; Darling-Hammond, L., (2006) Powerful teacher education: Lessons from exemplary programs, , (San Francisco, CA, Jossey-Bass); Eliot, T.S., (1961) Selected poems, , (London, Faber & Faber); Fenwick, T., (1999) Classifying alternate perspectives in experiential learning, ,, Available online at, (accessed 7 November 2005); Finlay, L., Outing' the researcher: The provenance, process, and practice of reflexivity (2002) Qualitative Health Research, 12, pp. 531-545; Ginsburg, M., (1988) Contradictions in teacher education and society: A critical analysis, , (New York, Falmer Press); Giroux, H., Teacher education and the ideology of social control (1980) Journal of Education, 162, pp. 5-27; Glaser, B.G., Strauss, A., (1967) The discovery of grounded theory: Strategies for qualitative research, , (Chicago, Aldine); Goffman, E., The presentation of self in everyday life (1959) Beyond communities of practice: Language power & social context, , in: D. Barton & K. Tusting (Eds), (London, Penguin); Hammersley, M., Gomm, R., Introduction (2000) Case study method, pp. 1-16. , in: R. Gomm, M. Hammersley & P. Foster (Eds), (London, Sage); Hardy, C., Preservice teachers' perceptions of learning to teach in a predominantly schoolbased teacher education programme (1999) Journal of Teaching in Physical Education, 18, pp. 175-198; Hargreaves, D.H., A capital theory of school effectiveness and improvement (2001) British Educational Research Journal, 27 (4), pp. 487-503; Harry, B., Sturges, K., Klinger, J., Mapping the process: An exemplar of process and challenge in grounded theory analysis (2005) Educational Researcher, 34 (2), pp. 3-13; Heaney, T., Learning to control democratically: Ethical questions in situated adult education (1995) Proceedings of the 36th Annual Adult Education Research Conference, pp. 147-152. , May 19-21, Edmonton, Alberta, University of Alberta; Kahan, D., Characteristics of and explanations for cooperating teachers immediate supervisory comments: A pilot study using the thinking-out-loud technique (1999) The Physical Educator, 56, pp. 126-137; Kay, W., Are mentors and trainees talking the same language? Understanding the tenets and requirements of the NCPE 2000 in relation to subject knowledge, content knowledge and teaching and learning in physical education (2004) British Journal of Teaching Physical Education, 35 (3), pp. 19-22; Kiely, E., (2005) The mentoring phenomenon in educating pre-service science teachers through schoolbased collaborative partnership, , Ph.D. thesis, Department of Physics (Limerick, University of Limerick); Kirk, D., McDonald, D., Situated learning in physical education (1998) Journal of Teaching in Physical Education, 17, pp. 376-387; Lave, J., Wenger, E., (1991) Situated learning and legitimate peripheral participation, , (Cambridge, Cambridge Press); Lincoln, Y.S., Guba, E.G., (1985) Naturalistic inquiry, , (New York, Sage); Mawer, M., (1996) Mentoring in physical education: Issues and insights, , (London, Falmer Press); Maynard, T., The student teacher and the school community of practice: A consideration of 'learning as participation (2001) Cambridge Journal of Education, 31 (1), pp. 39-52; McCullick, B.A., Practitioners perspectives on values, knowledge and skills needed by PETE participants (2001) Journal of Teaching in Physical Education, 21, pp. 35-56; McIntyre, D.J., Byrd, D.M., Foxx, S.M., Field and laboratory experiences (1996) Handbook of research on teacher education: A project of the association of teacher educators, pp. 171-193. , in: J. Sikula, T. J. Buttery & E. Guyton (Eds), (New York, Macmillan); McLaughlin, M.W., Talbert, J.E., (2001) Professional communities and the work of high school teaching, , (Chicago, IL, University of Chicago Press); Merriam, S.B., Courtenay, B., Baumgartner, L., On becoming a witch: Learning in a marginalized community of practice (2003) Adult Education Quarterly, 53, pp. 170-188; Mezirow, J., (1991) Transformative dimensions of adult learning, , (San Francisco, CA, Jossey-Bass); Minichiello, V., Aroni, R., Timewell, E., Alexander, L., (1995) In-depth interviewing, , (Melbourne, Australia, Longman); (1989) What teachers know and should be able to do, ,, National Board for Professional Teaching Standards, Available online at, (accessed 18 March 2008); Pidgeon, N., Henwood, K., Grounded theory (2004) Handbook of data analysis, , in: M. Hardy & A. Bryman (Eds), (London, Sage); Popkewitz, T., Ideology and social formation in teacher education (1985) Teaching and Teacher Education, 1, pp. 91-107; Putnam, R.D., (2000) Bowling alone: The collapse and revival of American community, , (New York, Simon & Schuster); Resnick, L., Situated rationalism: Biological and social preparation for learning (1994) Mapping the mind: Domain specificity in cognition and culture, pp. 474-493. , in: L. Hirschfeld & S. Gelman (Eds), (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press); Richardson, L., Writing: A method of inquiry (2000) Handbook of qualitative research, pp. 923-948. , in: N. K. Denzin & Y. S. Lincoln (Eds), (Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage); Rovegno, I., Teachers' knowledge construction (2003) Student learning in physical education, pp. 295-310. , in: S. J. Silverman & C. D. Ennis (Eds), (Champaign, IL, Human Kinetics); Siedentop, D., Tannehill, D., (2000) Developing teaching skills in physical education, , (Mountainview, CA, Mayfield Publishing Company); Strauss, A., Corbin, J., (1998) Basics of qualitative research: Techniques and procedures for developing grounded theory, , (London, Sage); Toma, J.D., How getting close to your subjects makes qualitative data better (2000) Theory into Practice, 39 (3), pp. 177-184; Tsangaridou, N., Siedentop, D., Reflective teaching: A literature review (1995) Quest, 47, pp. 212-237; van der Mars, H., Time and learning in physical education (2006) The handbook of physical Education, pp. 191-213. , in: M. O'Sullivan, D. MacDonald & D. Kirk (Eds), (London, Sage); Wenger, E., (1998) Communities of practice: Learning, meaning and indentity, , (Cambridge, Cambridge University Press); Williams, A., Soares, A., Sharing roles and responsibilities in initial teacher training: Perceptions of some key players (2002) Cambridge Journal of Education, 32 (1), pp. 91-107; Wubbels, T., Levy, J., Brekelmans, M., Paying attention to relationships (1997) Educational Leadership, 54 (7), pp. 82-86; Zukas, M., Pedagogic learning in the pedagogic workplace: Educators lifelong learning and learning futures (2006) International Journal of Pedagogies and Learning, 2 (3), pp. 71-80
Uncontrolled Keywords: Mentoring; Official and unofficial curriculum; Physical education; Professional learning; School-university relationship; Teaching practice
Depositing User: Colin Lowry
Date Deposited: 30 Nov 2015 17:20
Last Modified: 30 Nov 2015 17:21

Actions (login required)

View Item View Item


Downloads per month over past year