03 SES 12, Teacher Collaboration for Learning and Innovation
For several year now, teacher collaboration is considered to be important for innovation and improvement of schools. It facilitates meaningful and effective learning of teachers (Timperley, Wilson, Barrar & Fung, 2007) and it enables sustainable developments in schools (Hopkins, 2001). Collaboration, however, is not straightforward. As Little (1990) showed, interaction of teachers is not the same as meaningful collaboration. Teacher interaction can range from ‘story-telling’ through ‘help’ and ‘sharing’ all the way to ‘joint work’. The kind of interaction will impact the benefits of the collaboration. In this symposium we explore different forms of teacher collaboration in different national contexts (The Netherlands, Belgium, England and Portugal). By doing so we want to explore the general and specific principles of teacher collaboration across national and sector contexts. The first paper form the Netherlands is aimed at a meta-analysis of several studies into a specific form of collaboration – Teacher Design Teams (TDTs). By comparing studies form varying contexts it tries to come to generalizable conclusions on collaborative curriculum design across contexts. The second paper form Belgium explores TDTs of teacher educators as a strategy of professional development for ICT use. It looks at factors the impact the collaboration of the teacher educators. The third paper, from England, looks into a different kind of collaboration - various forms of one-to-one partnerships that are often applied in schools. The paper examines seemingly similar collaboration process of observations and reflections on actual teaching practice by different kind of pairs of participants. They conclude that the experiences and results of the different kind of pairs are, however, quite different. Finally, the fourth paper from Portugal investigates collaboration of teachers with university staff in order to solve a problem and come to curriculum innovation. This study notices a variance in the intensity of the collaboration in the team and also issues connected to the difference between collaboration and contrived collegiality in a team. By exploring teacher collaboration from various perspectives we wish to come to conclusions about the sense of collaboration and the conditions that influence and drive it. Hopkins, D. (2001). School improvement for real: educational improvement for real. London: Routledge Falmer. Little, J. W. (1990). The Presistence of privacy: autonomy and initiative in teachers’ professional relations. Teacher college records, 91(4), 509-536. Timperley, H., Wilson, A., Barrar, H., & Fung, I. (2007). Teacher Professional Learning and Development: Best Evidence Synthesis Iteration. Wellington, New Zealand: Ministry of Education
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