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Presented and produced by Seán Delaney

On this week's podcast I discuss several matters related to teacher education with Professor Ian Menter from Oxford University's Department of Education. The topics we discuss are the following:

  • The Teacher Education Groups study of teacher education policy across the Republic of Ireland, Northern Ireland, England, Scotland and Wales.
  • How England is an outlier in attempts to weaken the link between universities and schools in teacher education.
  • Work he’s doing in Ireland with the National Institute for Studies in Education (NISE) based on collaboration across the three teacher education institutions based there.
  • His overview of developments in teacher education across the five nations.
  • The Teach First model of teacher education and its impact on the wider system.
  • Teacher retention and teacher burn-out
  • Evidence-based Teaching: Trials conducted by the Educational Endowment Foundation. The work of the Chartered College of Teaching in England, which has a remit similar to that of Teaching Councils elsewhere; its CEO, Alison Peacock, is committed to evidence-based teaching.
  • How teachers can develop research literacy through their initial teacher education courses and through continuing professional development that is oriented towards evidence-based inquiry.
  • A tendency for post-holders in schools to be “research leads” – people who overview what is happening in school in terms of research and development, who seek outside research that could inform practice and who liaise with universities on research. In some cases there may be research committees in schools.
  • How these ideas can be traced back to the writings of John Dewey and Lawrence Stenhouse – the latter was writing about the “teacher as researcher” in 1975.
  • An increased range of publications now in which research is published for a teacher readership.
  • The need to fund longitudinal research studies into how teachers learn teaching and independent, large-scale studies into teaching and teacher education to inform practice and policy.
  • Envisages greater interaction between the practice, policy and research communities
  • Teachers as researchers
  • Economic (preparing for the workforce), citizenship (engage in community and political system) and cultural (ideas, history to have a sense of the meaning of the world around us) have been the historical purposes of education. Different forces operate behind each of the aims and the balance among them can vary.
  • Research training schools in Finland, linked to universities could be explored more systematically elsewhere.
  • Teacher as a researcher v teacher as a reflective practitioner: Phases on a four-point continuum:
    • Effective teacher
    • Reflective teacher
    • Inquiring teacher and
    • Transformative teacher
  • The kind of initial preparation needed for future primary teachers
  • Difficulties in assessing a student teacher’s preparedness for success in the classroom.
  • Comparison between difficulties in evaluating a teacher’s potential and evaluating potential elite players in sports.
  • His views on having common standards for teachers – benefits and limitations
  • How he came to begin his career as a primary school teacher – the intellectual, emotional and personal challenges of teaching
  • Making the transition from being a teacher to being a teacher educator
  • What schools are for (and not for)
  • A teacher who had a significant impact on him
  • Favourite writers on education: C Wright Mills The Sociological Imagination, which is about the relationship between personal experience and problems in society. Paolo Freire on education for liberation and education for democracy.

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Presented and produced by Seán Delaney

On this week's programme I discuss how research can inform teaching with Professor Chris Brown from Durham University's School of Education. Professor Brown discusses his work with teachers in professional learning networks, how teachers can apply research in their schools, and the barriers to doing so.

Among the topics discussed are the following:

  • How frequently do teachers consult research to solve problems of teaching?
  • The need to draw first on teachers’ knowledge and experience
  • How does research add to, challenge or deepen teachers’ knowledge?
  • The importance of teachers collaboratively engaging with and looking at research
  • Having an “evidence champion” in a school and partnerships with higher education institutions
  • The quality of research available to teachers (original, significant, robust methods)
  • Different kinds of research (Stokes’s quadrant)
  • Carol Weiss and instrumental research use, conceptual research use and symbolic research use (9’22” – 10’08")
  • Drawing on research to develop theories of action
  • Teachers’ access to published research
  • Networks of teachers and effective change management (17’36). The focus of the four whole-day workshops each year is:
    1. Vision and engagement with research
    2. Trialling
    3. Change Management
    4. Impact
  • Leadership and degree centrality (24’53”)
  • Evaluating “best practice” (27’58”)
  • Areas of research that have been particularly helpful in informing teachers’ practice (30’26”)
  • Factors that influence what and how research influences policy (31’49”)
  • Professional Learning Networks (34’45”)
  • The role played by encouragement, trust, social influence, and innovation in promoting research-informed practice (35’59”)
  • Avoiding edu-myths or other dead-ends in research (39’39”)
  • What are schools for (40’51”)
  • A teacher who had a significant impact on him (42’17”)
  • What inspires him (43’17”)

Among the people named by Chris Brown in the course of the interview are Stephen Ball, Jean Baudrillard, Alan Daly, Jim Spillane and Carol Weiss, some of whom have appeared on previous episodes of Inside Education: Ball, Spillane.

The paper that I reported on in the research section is Fan, H., Xu, J., Cai, Z., He, J & Fan, X. (2017). Homework and students' achievement in math and science: A 30-year meta-analysis, 1986-2015.

 

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Presented and produced by Seán Delaney

Theme tune: David Vesey

My guest on the programme this week is my colleague in Marino Institute of Education and the person behind the social media identity, Little Miss Teacher. She is Clara Fiorentini and we talk about play, literacy, phonics, early years education and much more. Here are the topics we discuss and the times at which they appear.  

  • Why she started posting on social media (1’33”)
  • Her thoughts on the new language curriculum and her interest in literacy, especially early literacy (7’00” and 24’11”))
  • A typical day in her classroom (with a focus on literacy activities)
  • Different kinds of play 12’03”
  • The kind of stories she used in her teaching (14’35”)
  • Phonics and literacy instruction (16’22”)
  • Literacy in more senior classes (21’42”)
  • The phonics programme she participated in developing, Sounds Like Phonics (23’46”)
  • Her approach to teaching (26’48”)
  • Returning to study for a master’s degree in children’s literature (29’50”)
  • What schools are for 33’41”
  • A teacher who had a significant impact on her (34’48”)
  • Who inspires her (39’13”)

Among the resources and materials mentioned by Clara were the following:

Farmer Duck by Martin Waddell

Goodnight Mr Tom by Michell Magorian

David Walliams

The book with no pictures by BJ Novak

Rita Pierson – Ted Talk – Every child deserves a champion

Jen Jones on picture books

 

My recommendation:

Podcast: Speak-Up Storytelling with Matthew and Elysha Dicks

Book: Storyworthy: Engage, teach, persuade and change your life through the power of storytelling by Matthew Dicks

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Presented and produced by Seán Delaney

Theme tune by David Vesey

On this week's programme I bring you the second part of my interview with Professor Lin Goodwin from the Faculty of Education at the University of Hong Kong. We continue the discussion we began on last week's programme about mentoring and progress onto other topics. Among the matters discussed this week are:

  • How to recognise when the moment is right for mentor input
  • What trends she perceives in the future of mentoring
  • Rounds as a practice in teacher education
  • Her work as Dean
  • How she uses her teaching skills in her work as Dean
  • Looking at education and teaching across cultures
  • Ruth Wong
  • Who and what inspires her

When I asked A. Lin Goodwin for her favourite book about education, she nominated, The Spirit Catches You and You Fall Down, a book that was also recommended by Karen Hammerness when I spoke to her.

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Presented and produced by Seán Delaney

Theme tune by David Vesey

On this week's programme I interview Professor A. Lin Goodwin, Dean of the Faculty of Education at the University of Hong Kong and formerly of Teachers College, Columbia University about mentoring and teaching. Among the topics we discuss are the following:

  • What mentoring is and is not
  • Everyone can be a mentor but people need to learn to mentor
  • Her experiences of being mentored by Celia Genishi
  • The kind of honesty that mentors need to have
  • The kind of feedback that is helpful
  • Skills and behaviours of mentors
  • Mentoring future researchers
  • Mentoring future teachers
  • Mentors learning from mentees
  • Letting mentees make mistakes
  • Problems if a mentor is reluctant to give candid feedback
  • Why having a framework or a mindset is better than having a formula for giving feedback
  • Getting away from looking at teaching dichotomously
  • Mentors for different occasions
  • Reluctant mentees
  • Some moments are more productive for mentoring than others

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Presented and produced by Seán Delaney

Theme tune by David Vesey

This week on the programme I speak to Colm Byrne who graduated as a primary teacher from Marino Institute of Education in 2003 and two colleagues Sophen and Sowuen from Cambodia about education in Cambodia. They all work for the non governmental organisation See Beyond Borders. Among the topics we discuss are the following:

  • How Colm Byrne went to live and work in Cambodia
  • The state of education in Cambodia
  • Why teachers matter more than buildings at this time
  • Learning English in Cambodia
  • Children dropping out of school after second class
  • Support from the INTO, Irish Aid and Horseware
  • Horseware

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Presented and produced by Seán Delaney

Theme tune by David Vesey

On this week's programme I bring you more from my interview with Professor Gert Biesta, who is Professor of Public Education at Maynooth University. What comes through in everything he says is the respect and love he has for teaching. Among the wide range of topics we discuss are the following:

  • Who he writes for when he writes about education
  • Speaking and thinking about education in an educational way
  • How philosophy can inform the practice of teachers
  • Designing and teaching a module on philosophy for future teachers
  • The importance of asking good questions
  • The relevance of Kierkegaard and “Double truth giving” in teaching
  • Teaching for the possibility of being taught
  • John Dewey’s critique of the modern scientific world view
  • PE teachers who had a significant impact on him
  • Why schools should surprise
  • What inspires him

The book he is currently reading is in German and it is Allgemeine Pädagogik by Dietrich Benner. He also referred to the work of Homer Lane, whose most famous book is Talks to Parents and Teachers. He also referred to the book, Beyond the Present and the Particular by Charles H. Bailey.

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Presented and produced by Seán Delaney

Theme tune by David Vesey

On this week's programme I speak to Gert Biesta who is Professor of Public Education at Maynooth University. Among the topics we discuss on the programme are:

  • Why he took up a position in Ireland
  • The work of the Centre for Public Education and Pedagogy at Maynooth University
  • How he’ll get to know the Irish education system
  • How teacher education in Ireland differs from teacher education in England
  • The emergence of a competitive mindset in education across countries
  • What good education is in an age of measurement
  • Balancing three purposes of education
  • The place of equity, diversity and social justice in education
  • Implications of the disappearance of teaching and the rise of learning over the last 25 years
  • The gift of teaching

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Presented and produced by Seán Delaney

Theme tune David Vesey

On this week's programme I speak to two teacher educators, Anja Swennen from the University of Amsterdam and Professor Kay Livingston from the University of Glasgow. Kay Livingston talks about innovative teaching with specific reference to a cross-European research study she is conducting with colleagues in her Research Development Community of the Association of Teacher Education in Europe. Anja Swennen continues the discussion which was begun on last week's programme and among the topics discussed are the following:

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Presented and produced by Seán Delaney

Theme music by David Vesey

On this week's programme I discuss teacher education with Anja Swennen from the VU University, Amsterdam. I met up with her at the annual conference of the Association for Teacher Education of Europe in Gavle, Sweden in August 2018. Among the topics we discuss in this part of the interview are the following:

  • Jean Murray’s idea of first-order and second-order practitioner
  • The move from expert teacher to novice teacher educator
  • Recruiting a teacher educator
  • The curriculum for a course in Teacher Education
  • Preparing for registration as a Teacher Educator in the Netherlands
  • Identity of Teacher Educators (Subject specialist; pedagogue; a teacher in higher education; researcher; and teacher)
  • Teacher Educators and researching practice and research in schools
  • How history of education can help teachers understand their work

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