Clarke, D., Roche, A., Wilkie, K., Wright, V., Brown, J., Downton, A., Horne, M., Knight, R., McDonough, A., Sexton, M. & Worrall, C. (2013). Demonstration lessons in mathematics education: Teachers' observation foci and intended changes in practice. Mathematics Education Research Journal,25(2), 207-230. Netherlands: Springer Netherlands. Retrieved from https://doi.org/10.1007/s13394-012-0058-z
As part of a teacher professional learning project in mathematics education, university mathematics educators taught demonstration lessons in project primary schools. These lessons were part of a “pre-brief, teaching, and debrief” process, in which up to eight teachers observed each lesson. Using brief questionnaires completed in advance of the lesson, during the lesson, following the debrief, and several weeks later, data were collected on teachers’ intended and actual observation foci and any anticipated changes in their beliefs and practices arising from the experience. There were several common themes in teachers’ intended observations, including a focus on questioning, catering for individual differences, and building student engagement. As evident in other research, teachers’ intended and actual observations gave greater attention to teacher actions and decision making than to student learning and thinking. In this paper, we situate demonstration lessons within teacher professional learning models, describe the features of our model, summarise teacher data, and discuss issues arising from our work.
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