Urban Classroom (urban + classroom)

Distribution by Scientific Domains

Selected Abstracts

Listening to Students, Negotiating Beliefs: Preparing Teachers for Urban Classrooms

ABSTRACT Learning to teach in urban schools is difficult, particularly when prospective teachers come from different racial, ethnic and/or class backgrounds than their students. The task of urban-focused teacher education programs is to prepare prospective teachers to learn and enact practices that enable them to teach successfully in under-resourced districts that offer both opportunities and constraints. In this article, we report on a 2-year ethnographic study designed to investigate how new teachers enacted a listening stance in teaching that was introduced in their preparation program. Taking a listening stance implies entering a classroom with questions as well as answers, knowledge as well as a clear sense of the limitations of that knowledge (e.g., Cochran-Smith & Lytle, 1999; Lytle & Cochran-Smith, 1992; Schultz, 2003). The article focuses on how four teachers attempted to adopt a listening stance in their classroom practice, while also responding to the constraints of the standardized curriculum of their district. We conclude that the process of negotiating among teachers' beliefs, practices introduced in a teacher preparation program and district mandates is a critical practice for teachers to learn. We further suggest that in the current climate of high-stakes testing and mandated curriculum, explicit teaching of negotiation skills is likely to support more teachers to enter into and remain in classrooms. [source]

Individual and group meaning-making in an urban third grade classroom: Red fog, cold cans, and seeping vapor

Sherry Southerland
We examined third graders' understandings of condensation using an expanded notion of the Emergent Perspective, a reflexive consideration of individual and group meaning-making situated in the culture of the classroom. Data were collected from two small groups of students in an inquiry-based, urban classroom during a unit on the water cycle. Measures included conceptual pre-/posttests, interviews, written work, and discourse analyses of a science lesson. Although we identified the supportive role of the teacher's explicit assessments of children's ideas, within the small groups, the force that most potently shaped meaning-making was students' persuasive power, which was in part influenced by the rhetorical moves employed. Specifically, students' evaluative comments (a type of rhetorical move) about contributions of other group members seemed to be particularly persuasive in these groups. Evaluative comments, apart from students' academic status, were shown to be an important influence in not only social knowledge production but also in individual internalization. Our explanation focuses on the particular discursive practices as intellectual resources of urban students, but we are also mindful of the cognitive complexity of the material and the developmental abilities of the students. 2005 Wiley Periodicals, Inc. J Res Sci Teach 42: 1032,1061, 2005 [source]

The Role of Conversation in a Thematic Understanding of Literature

Catherine Cobb Morocco
Opportunities to discuss literature with peers are critical to students' development of literary understanding. Despite the importance of these discourse experiences, many middle-school students are not afforded these opportunities or the necessary teacher support in their English language arts classrooms. Based on a sociocultural perspective, we set out to examine the ways that middle-grades students, particularly those with disabilities, contribute to peer-led discussions and how their participation enables them to build toward textual understanding, social understanding, and understanding of literary discourse. We conducted an in-depth analysis of a verbatim transcription of a video-taped literacy lesson in an urban classroom. Drawing on that analysis, we describe the ways students participated in the literary discourse and the teacher practices that supported students' participation in this discourse. This analysis provides evidence that students with disabilities can acquire the discourse practices needed for interpreting challenging literature with their regular education peers. [source]

Constructed-response spelling and literacy development: an application in an urban classroom

Amy Lee-Vieira
The purpose of this study was to examine the effectiveness of constructed-response spelling procedures with disadvantaged children attending a public inner-city elementary school. Ten students of primarily Cape Verdean descent participated in the study as part of a classroom-wide implementation of constructed-response procedures. A multiple-treatment design was used to assess the effectiveness of the constructed-response strategy versus traditional spelling instruction. The dependent variable was the percent of words spelled correctly on weekly spelling tests. Results indicated that mean spelling scores were higher during both constructed-response conditions than during traditional instruction for 9 of the 10 students. The relationship between spelling proficiency and literacy development is discussed. Copyright 2006 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd. [source]

Confronting assumptions, biases, and stereotypes in preservice teachers' conceptualizations of science teaching through the use of book club

Felicia Moore Mensah
Abstract This study focuses on the structure and theoretical foundations of the book club for promoting multicultural understandings in science teacher education. The book club was defined as an informal, peer-directed group discussion that met regularly to discuss an ethnographic, multicultural text regarding issues pertinent to science teaching and learning in urban classrooms. Twenty-three preservice teachers (PSTs) enrolled in a 16-week elementary science methods course at a large urban university participated in the study. From the qualitative analyses of PSTs' written reflections and researcher journal notes, five themes which emphasize Individual, Collaborative, and Collective learning are presented. These findings highlight how the book club structure and theoretical foundation fostered critical, reflective inquiry and served as a method for effecting ideological change which is needed in order to embrace issues of diversity in urban science education. Implications for science teacher education concerning the relevancy of pedagogical strategies, the use of multiple theoretical perspectives, and the book club as a strategy in teacher education and urban education are discussed. 2009 Wiley Periodicals, Inc. J Res Sci Teach 46: 1041,1066, 2009 [source]