Home' Teacher : November 2010 Contents LOOKING INTO PRACTICE 19
in order to teach; knowledge of curriculum;
knowledge of schools and other contexts;
knowledge of students; and knowledge of
educational ends, purposes and values.
Barnhoorn's article emphasises the
importance of a couple of these domains.
Firstly, she addresses knowledge of peda-
gogy. She recognises that discussion can be
of great value to students, but it needs to be
implemented in a very specific way in order
for it to culminate in meaningful learning
for the students in her class.
Secondly, she addresses knowledge of
students. It's clear that Barnhoorn knows
her students well. She recognises when
students who don't usually participate are
having a go and acknowledges the need to
adapt a teaching procedure so that it works
for the students in her classroom. It's one
thing to implement something you've learnt
at a professional development session, but
quite another to consider when it will be
most appropriate to use it, what you need
to change before you do and which content
it's most suited to explaining.
Finally, Barnhoorn is working with
knowledge of specific educational ends and
purposes as she effectively incorporates the
fishbowl activity into her teaching as a way
of preparing the students for a test and finds
that more students are able to attempt a spe-
cific style of question. This would suggest
that in venturing out of her comfort zone,
Barnhoorn has been able to encourage her
students to do the same.
In 'Re-evaluating risk and exploring
educational alternatives,' Mike Brown and
Deborah Fraser refer to a comment about
teachers they once heard, 'Some only have
a hammer in their toolbox and they spend
their career looking for the right nail to bash
whilst others see different issues/questions
and will select the appropriate tool for the
task.' Barnhoorn shows that the search for
the correct tool is not a simple journey, but
one that requires creativity, persistence
and a willingness to step well beyond what
we as teachers know to be comfortable.
Hopefully, this journey provides the inspira-
tion for teachers to accept challenges, tackle
them and then reflect on their own journey,
as Barnhoorn has done, and come to realise
the true value of what they have achieved. T
Stephen Keast is a scie nce education
lecturer in the Faculty of Educ ation at
Mon a sh Unive rsity. His research and
teaching interests are based on under-
standing and developing teacher profes-
sion al wisdom, and its disse min ation to
teachers through effective professional
development. He was a secondary school
teacher for 15 years.
Rebecc a Coope r is a researcher in
the Faculty of Educ ation at Monash
University. She has published on the links
between the goals of teache r educ ation
and the challenges of teaching pre - service
Brown , M. & Fraser, D. (2009).
Re- evaluating risk and exploring educa-
tion al alternatives. Journal of Adventure
Education and Outdoor Lear ning. 9(1):
Shulman, L. (1986). Those who under-
stand: Knowledge growth in teaching.
Educational Researche r. 15(2): 4-14.
Shulman, L. (1987). Knowledge and
teaching: Foundations of the ne w refor m.
Har vard Educational Review. 57(1): 1-22.
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