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Educational action research

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My presentation at the British Educational Research Association's (BERA) International Conference, University of Warwick, 1-4 September 2010. This was part of practitioner research in physical …

My presentation at the British Educational Research Association's (BERA) International Conference, University of Warwick, 1-4 September 2010. This was part of practitioner research in physical education symposium.

Published in: Education

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  • The main physical education teacher was described by Whitehead and Hendry as “dominant competitive, aggressive, not-too-bright individual … (the) companionable ‘man (sic) of action’, but not someone with whom to engage in professional dialogue”
  • the classrooms of my early career had been private places where the only valued contribution had been mine or my colleagues’
  • Using a process described as “research on self” (Armour, 2006, p. 471) I adopted a non-traditional approach to teaching and learning as a result of my self-reflections.
  • I was a clone of my teachers and had, in Elliott’s opinion, been subject to the “rapid socialisation into a redundant occupational culture and the obsolete practices it sustains” (p. 7).
  • My way out of this institutional socialisation was to explore alternatives to the ‘infallible expert model.’ (Elliott, 1991)
  • Traditional practice, as I have hinted at above, is not delimited only by the willingness of the practitioner to do something ‘outside the box’ but on the context in which they teach and the expectations that exist around student learning in their school.
  • However, there are abstruse aspects of school life that pupils (and I would argue teachers) must master if they are to make their way through their formative education.
  • These institutional demands require pupils to adopt coping strategies - the chief of which is patience - for what Jackson called the four unpublicised features of school life: delay, denial, interruption, and social distraction.
  • The curriculum is a noticeable way through which the academic demands of the school are managed
  • Consequently I continue to de-privatise my classrooms, find new ways of locating myself and my practice within my new institution and conjoin the theories that I read and write with the practices that I employ as a teacher of teachers.