I am away from the computer today.
Alternate title, A Few Moments With The Teacher’s College (Columbia) Record. Many educators are told what to think at this institution before they are released into the wild, so it is of some importance. Jim Fedako first raised our awareness–and what could be more important than that!—of this site. Here are some of the featured articles.
This magazine may be the best argument for homeschooling you will ever discover. Here are a few articles culled from recent entries.
Background/Context: The ideas of teaching as salvation and teacher-as-martyr are not new concepts. Prior research, however, has largely failed to explore the historical and cultural religious roots that continue to inform the ways in which teachers are constructed. That is, though prior work has engaged with thinking about religion and thinking about teachers as saviors, little work has been done to uncover the hidden curriculum of teaching that positions teachers as versions of Christ in the public school classroom…
Findings/Results: We illustrate that although we think of teaching as a secular activity and assume that religion has been expunged from public, including teacher, education, the sediments of religion remain present in how the teacher learns to imagine, construct, and enact his or her work as teacher as savior and martyr.
Shorter summary: “I’m not too fond of religion, but I am a god to my students.”
Background/Context: Critical education studies tries to make sense of the relationship between education and differential power in an unequal society and to what degree schools impact the social order. A premise in this field is that a fundamental aim of critical education is exposing unequal social, cultural, and economic power relations and engaging in social action that transcends the setting of the classroom and school. Counterhegemonic schools are thus generally characterized by an aspiration to be meaningful beyond the school community and a commitment to social transformation…
Conclusions: Many obstacles stand between a counterhegemonic school and being socially meaningful, including sociohistorical and political factors. No less important, however, are the broader structural aspects to creating a space in which transformative schools can succeed. Although bottom-up attempts may push hegemonic forms to incorporate certain aspects of their vision, they cannot have meaningful and widespread impact if unaccompanied by broad support and action at the policy level and if they do not become organic parts of a larger transformative agenda.
Shorter summary: “Not all schools and not all kids are the same.”
Background: Inspired by various conceptualizations of both cultural diversity and cross-role partnership, this discussion challenges the assumption that holds sway in many people’s minds: Differences primarily divide us. The context for this argument is a program that pairs undergraduate students and faculty members in semester-long partnerships to explore and revise pedagogical practices…[Emphasis added]
Research Design: Through systematically documented reflective practice, I draw on audiorecorded conversations, mid- and end-of-semester feedback, and follow-up interviews with student and faculty participants in the program, as well as on my own reflective notes and less formal communication with participants, to identify the ways in which these faculty and students conceptualize differences as resources for learning…
Conclusions/Recommendations: Higher education needs to create more opportunities for students and faculty to engage in dialogue across various kinds of difference…
Shorter summary: “I like when students and teachers talk.”
Article 4 Postmodern Test Theory
…Conclusions/Recommendations: The model-based reasoning that characterizes test theory is useful not because it measures extant traits defined and evidenced in the same way for all students, but because it helps us organize our thinking, marshal and interpret evidence, and communicate our inferences and their grounding to others. A skeptical attitude about models in assessment makes our uses of them more flexible, more powerful, and, ultimately, more effective at meeting and fulfilling the aims of education than they would be if we believed that they accurately captured the totality of the phenomenon. Our understandings of students’ learning and programs’ effects are enriched by multiple perspectives and diverse sources of evidence, some new or previously neglected but others with familiar (albeit reconceived) forms.
Shorter summary: “Tests tell us which kids are doing well and which poor, but I don’t like this.”