Cover: Designing classrooms that work : conception and pilot study

Designing classrooms that work : conception and pilot study

Published 1997

by Cathy Stasz

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Reports the results of a six-week "mini-sabbatical" for high school teachers and teacher-trainers that was designed to give teachers the tools they need to define curriculum and instruction in school-to-work programs. Although time-consuming to organize, the program was determined to be feasible to implement. Teachers were able to learn key concepts and incorporate them into the design and delivery of their curriculum units. Lessons learned include the following: Teachers need more assistance in developing student assessments. They also need help in relinquishing control over classroom processes and becoming "coaches" for students proceeding on their own. Teacher collaboration is an important catalyst for learning; such collaboration can provide insights about how to design collaborative work for students. Since instructional goals include generic skills and work-based learning in addition to the basic subject matter, teachers must incorporate the social context of work in the classroom, which requires planning for more-varied and unpredictable classroom activities. Finally, industry experience is not sufficient for developing work-related criteria--even teachers with relevant work experience may need assistance in identifying authentic problems and transforming them into an effective curriculum.

Originally published in: National Center for Research in Vocational Education.

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