Peer-learning between pre-service teachers: embracing Lesson Study

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Abstract

Purpose – The purpose of this paper is to explore a model of Lesson Study owned entirely by pre-service teachers (PSTs), conveying its potential to facilitate mutual spaces of learning between peers beyond formal hierarchical relationships with expert teachers. Fuller’s (1969) conceptual framework of teacher development informed the study, consisting of self, task and impact “phases of concern”.

Design/methodology/approach – Participants were secondary physical education PSTs (n=17), completing a university-led postgraduate certificate in education course. Action research methodology was adopted during school placements, when PSTs engaged in Lesson Study with peers. Data obtained through a group discussion board, individual questionnaires and interviews, were subjected
to inductive analysis, with key patterns compared to locate themes.
Findings – All PSTs felt Lesson Study contributed positively to their training, reinforcing perceived benefits of cycles of action for planning, observing a lesson, reviewing and adapting the plan before re-teaching the revised plan. Findings reveal increased confidence in reducing self and task concerns through four emergent themes: acquiring content and pedagogical knowledge; developing the planning process; understanding individual learners’ needs; and embedding reflective practice. Mutually supportive peer-learning environments created pedagogic space beyond formal mentoring processes, augmenting learning to teach and the understanding of learners’ needs.

Research limitations/implications – Endorsement of Lesson Study by PSTs as a method of engaging in a positive peer-learning climate suggests the workability of this model.
Originality/value – Findings contribute to existing literature exploring the effectiveness and impact of Lesson Study within initial teacher education.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)343-361
Number of pages19
JournalInternational Journal for Lesson and Learning Studies
Volume4
Issue number4
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 6 Oct 2015

Keywords

  • Initial teacher education
  • Lesson Study
  • Pedagogic space
  • Peer-learning
  • Physical education

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