Constructions of Teacher Identity

3 things I learned

  1. I learned that teacher identity can be shaped not only by personal experience and view point, but also by external sources, such as curriculum, students, other teachers, administration, classroom, etc. It was interesting to understand that there are also policy discourses when it comes to the teacher identity: STF (in SK case), Education Act, Ministry of Education, Accountability policies, Standardized testing, Funding, Curriculum, Teacher training, School board policy, etc. This reminded me of the “No child left” policy. I knew that when this policy was enacted, the education system in America has been affected and shaped in so many different ways. But now I rethink about it, I believe that the teacher identity of most of – and I don’t think it’d hurt to say ‘every’ – teachers have been somehow changed/challenged/affected. I have been heard of several negative consequences of this, but I wonder if there’s any positive change has been made in teacher identity due to this policy?

 

  1. From today’s lecture, I realized that there are certain discourses when you think about the teacher profession. It may be positive or negative, but regardless, I think that the media plays a significant role in shaping these discourses. Moreover, I think that these discourses being prevalent in the society affects a lot, particularly when it comes to the expectations of teachers. Quite often, people expect the teachers to be always morally good, unbiased, accept everything, be able to teach anything and solve any problems that students have, be on call 24/7, etc. I’m not saying that we shouldn’t be this kind of teachers, but I think sometimes that it can be a burden for teachers to meet those expectations.

 

  1. From the class discussion, I realized that there is a rock-solid stereotype when you imagine the idea of teacher/teaching: A classroom with a blackboard at the front, students’ chairs and desks are lined up toward the blackboard, and the teacher is standing by the board with a chalk and students are sitting tight while taking notes. It is a very standardized setting of classroom image, and I think that the reason why this image of classroom became an ‘ideal’ or ‘norm’ is also because of the dominant discourses we have discussed above, and again, media has influenced a lot.

 

2 connections

  1. In my ECE325 class today, we also talked about our own teacher identity and what we think about the role of teachers. I came up with some idea of the role of teacher, including listener, supporter, facilitator, etc. But then, I realized that the teacher can also be a researcher, as well as documenter. In terms of being a researcher, it is important because it’ll broaden the area of professional development, enhance our understanding/knowledge in the subjects we teach, and teaching skills/ideas, etc. Being a documenter is also essential part of teacher because it can be used as a resource in supporting a child in academic/social/cognitive ways, and can be provided to their parents/care givers so that the child can be better supported at home as well.

 

  1. Today, I also thought about what makes a good teacher. Of course, a teacher should have enough academic knowledge to teach children. But I think more important aspect that a teacher needs is to being able to understand their students. Knowing their students equals to knowing how to support their students, which most likely, will lead to various positive results including cognitive/social/emotional/physical development, building strong relationships with students, as well as better academic standings achieved.

 

Question:

As mentioned above, I wonder if ‘no child left’ policy has led any positive influence on teacher identity? If so, how?

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