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Teachers As Researchers | The Highest Level Of Professional Advancement

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Teachers As Researchers

Teachers As Researchers | The Highest Level Of Professional Advancement: With a focus on learning from their own classroom practices as well as their students’ classroom experiences, teacher researchers are also innovators and curriculum developers.

Every morning, when they enter their classrooms, teacher researchers pause and ask themselves, “What will my kids teach me today?” That question is answered by listening and watching their engage students in authentic work; collecting work samples.

Also, photographs and transcripts to record what their students say and to do; and using that details to evolve their practice even though they celebrate and support the opinions and experiences of a children those who teach.

In this way, teacher researchers are inventors, curriculum drivers, agents to school reform, and directors of their very own professional development.

Teachers As Researchers | The Highest Level Of Professional Advancement

Teachers As Researchers

Inspiring And Advancing

During my time as a PhD student, I worked with Jane Hansen, a professor of Virginia and a member of the Reading Hall of Fame, on the Learning to Write Across the Curricular Teacher Researcher Team.

For many years, I chose a piece of student writing who resonated to me before our teacher research team sessions. As a teacher and writer, I’d be left wondering, “What can I learn from in this young author?” and “What could I do next to help her grow?” A one-pager would be the best way for me to express these thoughts.

My immediate educational experience was reflected in the substance of that one-pager. Everyone brought a one-pager to our group meetings and discussed their thoughts with the rest of the team. We had weekly meetings lasting about an hour and a half. Having an innate drive to progress, we took our time and work together seriously.

Having a diverse group of people on your teacher research team is critical to its success. Our 6 to 8 group was diverse in age, gender, experience, grades, & content areas each year. The term “difference” was added to the group’s lexicon.

A fresh vocabulary and frameworks that our colleagues used to describe their experiences helped us think about our own roles as teachers in a different way. As teachers, we have the challenging task of getting to know our pupils as people and allowing them to develop in their own ways.

Teachers’ thoughts and feelings need to be heard and supported. A place to lean and a place to explore & expand are what teacher research groups do.

Taking Advantage Of The Source Of Our Strength

As you spend time in the classroom with your pupils, you begin to understand that they have a wealth of knowledge to share with you.

The task that is being done in your room will astound you once you begin to listen & record what they are saying. Because of your awe, you begin to structure your classroom in a more deliberate way to fit the requirements of your kids.

With the new structure in place, your pupils’ learning becomes more intense as well as exceeding your expectations. When you get down in your own teacher investigation team and discuss your findings and thoughts with them, the power of being such a teacher researcher becomes even more clear and potent.

This year, I challenge you should join (or possibly form) a teacher research group. Allow your classroom experiences, questions in your thoughts, and team support to create your most potent professional development.

After all, a most effective curriculum is the one which follows the kids, and the most successful pro development is the one that comes from the discussions in your classroom.

The Ideal Resources | Teachers As Researchers

As a teacher researcher, I rely on three main resources.

My spiral notebook is my first piece of equipment. This notebook serves as a place for me to jot down ideas and observations while I meet with students. Every night before I go to bed, I pore over my notes and make a strategy for the next day.

My iPhone serves as my secondary tool. I take images and films of my students’ writing assignments, projects, and engineering marvels throughout the day.

I regularly talk to them since they are so open about sharing their creative ideas. Often, these images are shared with my parents via my blog and my spiral notebook. Whenever I present at conventions or write on my practice, I incorporate them into my presentations.

I also utilize them when presenting the work my students produce in our research team sessions. Visuals are an expression of our classroom’s progress.

My teacher research group is my third and most crucial instrument. In the classroom, my colleagues are a good listener and a support network for all of my thoughts and ideas.

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