Building a teacher learning network: For developing the capability to teach for learning

Mun Ling FUNG-LO

Research output: Contribution to conferencePapers

Abstract

In this presentation, I will report on a network of learning that connects teachers and researchers for the main purpose of improving student learning and analyze the critical conditions that support its development. The term teachers' professional development, and what teachers' should have learnt as a result, may be interpreted in many different ways. The network that I will describe focuses on one specific aspect of teachers' work: helping students to learn specific objects of learning, and so, here, teachers' professional development means the enhancement of teachers' capability to teach for better student learning. It takes place through an arrangement called 'Learning Study' that takes its inspiration from Japanese lesson studies and teaching studies in China, and derives its conceptual framework from the Variation Theory. Through a series of projects over the last six years, our research team in Hong Kong has supported over 200 schools in developing over 260 Learning Studies, with a direct involvement of over 1000 teachers. Although the main aim of the Learning Study is to improve student learning, in the process, it is found that the Learning Study has become a platform for professional learning of all who participated, i.e. students, teachers and researchers. The Learning Study team facilitates the development of a network of learning in schools and across schools by working simultaneously at three levels, firstly, the students' learning; secondly, the teachers' learning; thirdly, the researchers' learning. The network has now grown beyond Hong Kong and is connecting up with many other teacher research groups all over the world through the World Association of Lesson Studies and a web forum. One important achievement of this network is the development of the knowledge base of teaching by teachers themselves. Some critical factors that have an impact on this network will also be discussed.
Original languageEnglish
Publication statusPublished - 2009

Citation

Lo, M. L. (2009, August). Building a teacher learning network: For developing the capability to teach for learning. Paper presented at the 13th Biennial Conference: EARLI 2009: Fostering Communities of Learners, Amsterdam, The Netherlands.

Keywords

  • Continuing professional development in teachers
  • Phenomenography and variation theory
  • Collaborative learning

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