Preparing pre-service teachers for professional engagement through place/community pedagogies and partnerships

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Australian Journal of Teacher Education, ISSN: 0313-5373, Vol: 41, Issue: 11, Page: 44-60

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Monica M. Green
Edith Cowan University
Social Sciences; teacher education; student teacher; fieldwork; place and community pedagogies; Curriculum and Instruction; Educational Methods; Higher Education and Teaching; Other Teacher Education and Professional Development
article description
There is an expectation that Australian teachers engage professionally in all aspects of teaching and learning, including engagement with teaching networks and broader communities. This paper reports on a partnership between a teacher educator and an environmental educator who set out to expand pre-service teachers' professional knowledge, engagement and practice in an undergraduate Bachelor of Education (primary) course. The paper reports on a study about teacher education students' perspectives of fieldwork-based learning and its potential to inform students' future engagement with the broader school community. Using a conceptual framework of place- and community based education, the study examined data from an electronic survey and student teacher fieldwork reflections to better understand how pre-service teachers interpret the benefits of working with local schools, and communitybased representatives. Findings suggest pre-service teachers' professional engagement was significantly enhanced as a consequence of partnership fieldwork. The implications for teacher education and future teacher practice are discussed.