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Severson metrostate. In addition to completing required coursework, the following are among the requirements for program completion and Minnesota grades Tier 3 licensure:. In addition to the course shown, requirements include: 1 a Urban Teacher Program-approved Ethnic Studies course 4 credits or prior ethnic studies competency, and 2 at least 12 credits of coursework in the subject area of licensure that has been transferred in or taken at Metro State. This course is designed for graduate level study and conducted in seminar format. The purpose is to explore the impact of successful teaching of diverse students in urban classrooms.

Students in the seminar will examine issues related to urban education mirrored in research, theory, and practice while looking at instructional approaches as reflected in the Standards of Effective Practice. Topics will include but not exclusive to multicultural competencies, curriculum transformation, and teacher dispositions. In addition, students will come to understand the role of the students' family, culture, social class, and ethnicity.

Full course description for Principles of Urban Education. Any subject area courses needed to meet state licensure standards for this content area that haven't been met as determined by a School of Urban Ed transcript review based on the courses needed for the BS English for Teaching major that meet licenure content standards must also be completed.

This course explores advanced theory and practice to support the use of assessment as a tool to guide the planning, development and implementation of curriculum and instruction. Participants will examine theories and research related to principles of learning, motivation, and multiple knowledge and skill sets. Participants will gain practical experience designing short and long term learner outcomes and the use of various assessment tools and approaches.

Teacher candidates will gain skills at identifying areas of student mastery and indicating areas of future learning. Topics include standards-based instruction, formative and summative assessment, standardized testing, validity, reliability, bias, rubrics, portfolio-based assessment, performance-based assessment and communicating with families. State and national standards and performance criteria for the evaluation of teaching will also be reviewed.

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Clinical field experience hours are part of the course requirements. This course provides advanced theory and practice regarding common methods of differentiating instruction for urban middle school and high school classrooms. Post-baccalaureate urban teacher candidates learn how to create developmentally appropriate and culturally relevant unit and lesson plans that attend to the various abilities, needs, cultures, experiences, and interests of urban students while also meeting district and state standards for learning and making interdisciplinary connections.

Foundational understanding of the diverse learning styles and developmental characteristics of young adolescent and adolescent learners forms the basis upon which appropriate plans are developed and methods are employed. The inter-relationships between standards, assessment, curriculum and instruction are examined in promoting high achievement for each urban learner. Teacher candidates examine current trends and research in urban middle school and high school education along with the….


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This practicum is designed to give urban teacher candidates the opportunity to document and reflect upon at least 40 hours practical clinical experience working with diverse youth in an urban middle school or high school. Most of the field experience hours will be determined by field-based assignments required in other Education courses. Included with these experiences, urban teacher candidates practice using diagnostic assessment to guide their instructional planning of at least three lessons for a small group of students needing help to improve their reading or mathematics literacy.

Successful completion of this practicum is a prerequisite for student teaching.

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Requirements include attendance and participation in periodic seminars to help prospective urban teacher candidates reflect upon their field experiences, and prepare for future clinical field experiences including student teaching. Full course description for Urban Teaching Practicum and Seminar. This course reviews advanced theory and practice to support the education of exceptional urban and diverse learners in grades The course will address what teachers should know about exceptional learners, including students with disabilities and students with special gifts and talents.

The responsibilities of general education teachers in service to students with special needs who are included in the mainstreamed classroom will also be examined, and practice will be provided for developing lesson plans and assessments that meet the needs of students with exceptionalities. Special education law and collaboration with special education staff will be discussed in the context of reviewing current research, issues and best practices for pre- and post-special education service needs of exceptional learners in urban public schools.

This course explores advanced theory and practice to support academic literacy among urban learners in secondary classrooms. First, through readings, discursive presentations, and applied exercises, participants in this course will acquire techniques to assist struggling readers and writers. Alongside these skills, course participants will learn how to engage secondary urban learners in assuming responsibility for literacy self-development.

Third, the course will include review and development of a variety of materials to teach diverse middle and high school students whose reading and developmental levels vary widely. This course examines current theory and research on the relationship between classroom management and academic achievement to prepare prospective urban teachers for facilitating student learning in a positive classroom environment. Students will gain understanding of individual and group motivation and behavior to create learning environments that encourage positive social interaction, active engagement in learning, and self motivation.

Students will also gain understanding of how factors in students' environment outside of school may influence the classroom learning environment. A portion of this course will explore the influence of the use and misuse of drugs, and management strategies for atypical behaviors….

This course explores historical, cultural, sociological, and philosophical foundations of education in the United States with an express focus on urban education principles and practices. The metropolitan community is used as a resource for learning about the educational strengths and challenges faced by diverse groups. Students will gain understanding of the contributions and lifestyles of various racial, cultural, and economic groups in our society, including an emphasis on Minnesota-based American Indian culture, history, and tribal government.

Core concepts include democracy and education, educational equity for all students, and historical as well as contemporary relationships between school and society. Emphasis is on issues of power and the educational segregation and attempted de-culturalization of historically marginalized groups. Resilience and persistent struggles for equal educational opportunity in the face of oppression are also emphasized from diverse cultural….

This course includes an examination of theory, research, and practice regarding the process of second language acquisition and various strategies for teaching English Language Learners ELL subject matter content in urban K classrooms. Prospective and current urban teachers will learn how to modify mainstream course materials and instructional strategies so that ELL students can engage in course content while simultaneously developing their English language skills. Course activities and expectations include demonstrating teaching strategies; developing lesson modifications; evaluating textbooks and other materials and resources available in the field; and examining issues in testing students of limited English proficiency for placement, diagnosis, exit, and evaluation.

There is a requirement of a hour field experience in urban setting involving classroom participant-observations and working with an ELL student. In this course, future teachers learn best practices for how to teach urban middle and high school students how to write and make oral presentations.

Topics include: sentence and paragraph construction; genres of writing; how audience, purpose and situation guide writing and speeches; assessment and revision; engaging middle and high school writers; assisting English Language Learners; and technological tools for written and speech communications. Teacher candidates learn how to respond constructively to the writing and oral presentations of urban learners.

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As for the conflicting relationships between teachers and the government, some methodological and ethical considerations helped the research team to enter the classrooms. For instance, as this observation project forms part of a broader ethnographic study in the region around ten months, in total , observations took place only in the last phase of the fieldwork between May and June of In previous visits to schools, researchers worked on building trusting relationships with school community members.


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  • Likewise, the participation of teachers in the project was voluntary and involved preliminary discussions with each of them during which researchers shared a short document containing all the details of the observation process e. Finally, all classroom observers were undergraduates from a Normal School from one of the municipalities. Normal schools operate like primary and secondary educational institutions that offer two additional years of vocational training for students who want to be certified as teachers at basic and medium levels of education.

    The observation team was comprised of four female and two male students in the last years of their training to become professional teachers. The lack of gender balance in the observation team reflects the feminised status of the teaching profession in the country, as there were more female candidates available to make up the team. The entire recruitment process of the observation team took place with the support of the managers of the Normal School vocational training programme, and it was agreed that teacher training students participating in the project would get credits for some of the practice hour requirements needed to get their professional degree.

    In the empirical exercise, the research team was split into pairs, and each pair had the responsibility to observe the same subject in the three schools. Hence, one pair observed Maths lessons in all the three schools; another pair had to observe only Spanish lessons and so on. To create a sequence of non-structured events, each observer had a spreadsheet with spaces to fill out with general descriptions of what was happening in the classroom with time spans of five minutes. As each lesson was programmed to take 50 minutes, the expectation was to collect around ten descriptions of events per session.

    The instruction for observers was to meet after each session to compare their notes to generate one single form of events per session. Figure 1 and Figure 2 below show in detail the distribution of the descriptions of classroom events in the different schools per three observed subjects. The resulting categories stemmed from an iterative exercise that consisted of testing and refining such codes until their saturation Schreier, Notes: Categories preceded by a denial not describe situations in which there was an event to which the teacher did not react.

    For example, not-disciplining describes an event in which students were misbehaving, and the teacher did nothing about it. Source: Research database. Elaboration of the authors. Note: Categories preceded by a denial not , describe situations in which there was an ongoing issue and yet the student did not react.

    For example, not active participation means that there was a class event in which teachers asked a question to the class that students did not answer. There is also a distinction between classroom events reflecting bad behaviour and disrespect to the teacher. In the coding frame, the former accounts for episodes in which students were exhibiting aggressive behaviour towards their peers. Both graphs reveal some patterns. For instance, most teachers spend their time either lecturing or giving instructions Figure 1.

    Particularly in the case of maths, teachers also spend an important part of their time disciplining students. From the perspective of students Figure 2 , two categories that stand out are bad behaviour and disrespect to the teacher , both of which refer to a negative attitude expressed by students during class time. Students also showed signs of active participation which are evidence of some level of their engagement during the class. Together, both graphs show relevant relational dynamics for this study.

    For instance, expressions of good behaviour seem to go together with the use of class dynamics by teachers, and with teachers making reference to the content of the last session or devoting time to giving instructions on class contents and assessments. Then again, disrespectful attitudes towards the teachers tend to be more present in settings where teachers do not react by disciplining students. At the same time, lecturing time seems to discourage the active participation of students, a category that shows a positive relationship with higher frequencies of events representing teachers answering questions.

    This stage aims to identify greater descriptors of class dynamics, emphasising the most frequent class events. Table 2 provides a general description of the results of this stage, now informed by a content analysis Boyatzis, The number of nodes, in this case, means the number of quotes or descriptors that saturated each category according to the transcripts of team conversations using Nvivo.

    In the rest of this document, all phrases cited as quotes are excerpts from conversations and interviews. Observers were mostly interested in discussing teaching methods how teachers deliver information. One category that seems related to effective learning is the way in which teachers encourage, or not, participation. However, they also found exceptions to this dynamic, as illustrated by the next quote, included here, because it conveys a notion of good practice according to educators the observers themselves in the region:. She gave examples from day-to-day life in the classroom as well as some related to the day-to-day lives of the students.

    By these means, students were participating during almost the entire class and asked her questions, and she asked questions back […]. It was a little more dynamic because they were all interacting with each other. However, this is not representative of most classrooms. In fact, it is more frequent to see limited student engagement in classroom activities, including, for example, a reluctance to submit homework or to answer questions asked by teachers.

    One of the main challenges related to this is the predominant problem of poor discipline, which undermines teaching-learning dynamics. From discussions with observers, disciplinary issues often emerge as a result of students exhibiting anxiety to leave the room or as a reaction to particular situations that they use to disrupt order:.

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    The teacher was trying to gain back control, but sincerely, in that case, it was almost impossible. It was the last hour […] Students said that it was hot, they were hungry, sleepy [and] were worried about lunch. There was a lot of disorder at the moment in which students were paying pesos 10 [for copies of material], Students jumped around. From these quotes, it is evident that the physical or environmental conditions can be factors of disruption. For instance, students are hungry or feel uncomfortable with the conditions of the classroom e. Both situations seem to exceed the possibilities of teachers to keep students engaged.

    Also, the situation of a teacher collecting money for copies shows how the school failing to supply materials can have a negative impact on class dynamics e. Another relevant element linked to this discussion is the way teachers discipline their students, and how opportune they are.

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    He did not run into any complications […] he simply told them that he still had to decide on their final grade […] [the] students walked around the room and stayed still at their desks. Things do not go bad because immediately after the teacher corrects them and if [they look for] a way to sabotage [the class] she scolds them. The strategies used by educators to persuade students to modify their attitudes deserve further consideration.

    Some teachers ignore students. Some teachers threaten students with bad grades. In contrast, in one specific case, lesson observers reported constant levels of good behaviour and student engagement. One last element that is worth mentioning is the great number of class interruptions occurring in these particular schools. Lesson observers noted, for example, the occurrence of extracurricular activities during class time e. In one school, observers noticed how the number of early school meetings of the whole school community on the football pitch negatively affected class time.

    These meetings occurred weekly, meaning that children lost at least half an hour of a particular class every week. In this last stage, the instruction for all the observation team was to identify, for each subject, the three events that better summarised what they saw in each classroom and to conduct interviews with teachers to explore those specific observations with them. The questions posed by the observers introduce interesting elements for reflection.

    The observation teams were instructed to identify the type of class events that most caught attention. An evident focus of their concern is discipline in classrooms and the need to encourage class dynamics and participation. It is also worth mentioning that four of the nine interviewed teachers received an explicit mention from the observers about their good teaching practices.

    However, in these four cases, the interviewers also referred to the behaviour of students and how teachers need to do something about it. In the sole case where the educator received only positive comments on her skills in maintaining control over her group, she did not hesitate to point out that the group observed was one in which she had already built a long-standing relationship after working with them for many years.

    That was her way of clarifying that this was not the norm. So why do children show certain attitudes and behaviours? The following two interview excerpts exemplify these situations and highlight relevant elements related to them. Teacher T : In the last hours of the day we have to do this because sometimes they feel overwhelmed, they become desperate, but during the first hours they do wait for the bell […] the last hours in school are a little traumatic. First, we see the heat […] Ventilation is not completely working […] They should be having their breakfast around half past six [in the morning].

    Moreover, during the observations, session observers mentioned some episodes in which the teacher had to collect money from students to pay for copies of written material. Observation team OT : For us, the students, [English as a second language] is not a priority subject. However […] one of the recommendations we [woud like to share with] you, is to use more didactic materials and more ludic activities to wake up their motivation and participation.

    Teacher T : the thing is that we lack didactical material, so we have to [buy it] and sometimes this is from our own pockets. Interviews also revealed that some strategies used by schools to prevent internal problems create other challenges. Consider, for instance, the following response from one of the interviewed teachers, when asked about discipline in his classroom:. Teacher T : Well, hmm […] I think that I have already commented at one point that you chose one of the hardest groups we have in 10 th grade. That was not the first time that teachers referred to groups as being problematic as compared to other groups.

    In informal conversations with school coordinators, they explained to the research team that students are split into groups from the first year of secondary school according to criteria such as their age. Nonetheless, apparently, some groups of students systematically lag behind, partly because they become stigmatised as the children that are harder to teach.

    Educators also mentioned issues that we will typify as external to the school. For instance, the lack of support from parents and the general socio-economic conditions of families in shaping attitudes in students considering that many of these children live with relatives other than their parents :. Observation team OT : Why do you think that the students show such a lack of interest in the English class? Teacher T : About that, we need to be very clear in mentioning that the problem that affects students in all senses today is the actual education they receive from their parents.

    There we find apathy and the [origins of] the lack of respect. We no longer have students with real values. The following quotes summarise the most recurring views on this issue:. There are a lot of positive things, for instance, in the area of English language we have received support from the government […]. The students themselves show themselves to be reciprocally motivated towards the English language, but, for instance, I have a class with 40 motivated students, and I think that such a number is too high to work in the way it should be done.

    The education policy has driven quality down […] because of [the efforts to grant] access [to education], secondly because some kids are forced to come to school so [their household] can claim [the subsidy] for [Familias en Accion]. I think that education has been affected by the issuance of [decree] [in ] that refers to the process of [grades] re-try, re-try and re-try […] I know that we have to help the student but we should not make things that easy.

    Back in [the 70s] parents were more devoted [to their children] while today they only bring them comfort […]. These quotes reinforce previous arguments given by teachers - such as the shift in values among generations - and introduces new elements into the discussion. One of these is the duality between access and quality, which is a common argument in policy discussions. A second element corresponds to the no children left behind culture 12 and the way it diminishes the incentives to study hard - according to educators.

    In the third place, educators refer to the way in which other government initiatives to counteract poverty - such as conditioned cash transfers - has modified parent-teacher relations. In the past, educators would argue, parents respected more the authority and the role of teachers. Today, teachers note, parents have other incentives such as having access to state subsidies. This article provides a brief overview of classroom observation techniques as a hallmark in education quality debates. The discussion in the first sections highlights a paradox surrounding the implementation of mainstream observation techniques in the context of the professional development of educators; in the eagerness of promoting more effective teaching practices at schools, policymakers and practitioners end sponsoring standardised tools that contribute to a decline in the creativity and innovation of teachers in classrooms.

    The paper aims to make progress in the design of classroom observation tools that contribute better to real improvements in teaching and learning practices at schools. To achieve such a goal, the structure and agency debate applied to educational research suggests that classroom observation techniques should place an important focus on the reflexivity of educational actors. The implementation of a new proposal to CoC helped researchers to become aware of factors that potentially shape teacher-student interactions in the observed classrooms.

    Some teachers do their best with the scarce resources they have.


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    Some others express their frustration and hence do little to become more active educators. Schools have initiatives to deal with problematic students, such as grouping students by age a variable that is often correlated with levels of engagement of students , which sometimes ends generating stigmas e. Secondly, combining sources of information allows building hypotheses about the potential structural forces acting upon teachers and students at the research site.

    Such argument also finds support in the fact that families seem to be more enthusiastic about the compensation for sending their children to school rather than about actually fostering their learning processes by establishing, for example, good relationships with teachers. The previous situations and conditions, added to the lack of basic requirements e.

    What is more interesting here is, however, acknowledging the potential of a simple, but ontologically well equipped, tool, as the CoC, in providing valuable knowledge for researcher and policymakers about the real challenges of education policy in a country or society. One advantage of this methodology is that can still provide valuable information to policymakers to keep records of class dynamics something that the NeoLiberal education agency demands them - Ball and Olmedo, , but without narrowing the scope excessively deterring the study of the structural features of education policies at work.

    Archer, M. Social origins of educational systems. London: Routledge, Aud, E. Comparative Education , London: Routledge, v. Ball, S. The teachers soul and the terrors of performativity. Journal of Education Policy , London: Routledge, v. Care of the self, resistance and subjectivity under neoliberal governmentalities. Critical Studies in Education , Melbourne: Routledge, v. Barber, M. Barrera-Osorio, F. In: Montenegro, A. Equidad y movilidad social. Boyatzis, R. Transforming qualitative data : thematic analysis and code development. Thousand Oaks: Sage, Bruns, B.

    Inside the classroom in Latin America and the Caribbean. In: Bruns, B. Great teachers : how to raise teacher quality and student learning in Latin America and the Caribbean. Cajiao, F. Fortalecimiento institucional y liderazgo educativo. Cifuentes, C. Clegg, S. Evidence-based practice in educational research: a critical realist critique of systematic review. Coffield, F. Why the McKinsey reports will not improve school systems.

    Gindin, J.