Learning Together: Practice-Centred Professional Development to Enhance Mathematics Instruction

Donna Gee, Jerita Whaley

Abstract


Elementary teachers were involved in a two-year grant focused on professional development using lesson study to increase their understanding of mathematics content and effective mathematics pedagogy. The primary research questions focused on how elementary teachers described their professional growth after being involved in a professional learning community and how they described the impact the program had on their teaching of mathematics. Case study methodology provided the tools for researchers to study complex phenomena within a professional learning community setting. Collected data included teacher reflections, individual teacher discussions of video taped segments of their teaching, and interviews of selected teachers focused on the lesson study process. Data indicated the participants valued the importance of collaboration and a change in practice through a focus on student discourse, student thinking, and questioning strategies. The majority of teachers demonstrated the change in practice; however, not all teachers demonstrated such growth.


Keywords


lesson study . professional development . mathematical knowledge for teaching . professional learning communities . teacher knowledge of mathematics pedagogy

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References


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