The Nature and the Understanding of the Kinds of Knowledge Involved in the Praxis of Teaching

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Our presentation deals with the different kinds of knowledge that are involved in the praxis of teachers' professional life. The teaching process involves automatically enacted activities, that emerge from teachers past experiences in educational situations (Gorodetsky & Barak 2004), and that incorporate beyond aspects of techne, cultural and value laden aspects. Explicit knowledge - e.g., theories and concepts - play a role in post acting reflections that lead to learning towards better understanding and formalizing the nature of the enacted activities and provide the grounds for possible deductions of future activities.
We suggest that meaningful learning regarding knowledge of practice is the expansion- extension of teachers’ horizons through weaving into the fabric of understanding wider/deeper/socially more suited/moral aspects (Engostrom 2004; Paavola et al. 2004). Even more, we will claim that knowledge of praxis is mainly characterized by horizontal growth on the dimensions of values and time rather than on the vertical dimension of abstractness. As education is a social construction the dimensions of values and time are the dominant features for critical evaluation of the compatibility of the newly constructed knowledge of activities with the needs of the specific educational community.
The study is based on our 4 years involvement in a school change project. It is a reflective study that followed after possible emerging changes in teachers' praxis. Specifically, we will discuss changes in the praxis of home room teachers from enacting an administrative stance towards becoming pedagogical school leaders.


Keywords: Teachers Praxis, Knowledge of Teaching, Horizontal Growth, Dimensions of Values and Time
Stream: Teacher Training and Professional Development
Presentation Type: 30 minute Paper Presentation in English
Paper: A paper has not yet been submitted.


Prof. Malka Gorodetsky

Professor of Education, Department of Education, Ben Gurion University
Beer Sheva, Israel

Involved in projects of school innovation and teachers professional development in service and pre-service. My emphasis is in understanding and formalizing the complexity of the teaching profession and map the different kinds of knowledge that are involved in this process. We have suggested the concept of an edge educational community to deal with the unique learning context that is the enable a community of practice to develop new knowledge towards change.

Judith Barak

Senior Lecturer, Teacher Education, Kaye College of Education
Beer Sheva, Israel

Involved in the development and implementation of new programs in teacher education. The implementation is followed up with research in collaboration with the first author (Malka Gorodetsky) in addition to involvement in action research with the peers in the College.

Ref: L09P0369