The Influence of Community Work on Student Teachers Role Concept.Report as inadecuate

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This is an account of student teachers' role concept based on the writings of 26 student teachers who completed their practical training in East London. Student teachers participated in a 13-week course of teaching practice combined with community work. Typical fears of these student were related to their ability: (1) to negotiate their circumstances; (2) to meet the grade; (3) to prevent discontinuity in their classrooms; and (4) to not get lost. Salient issues in student writings included: (1) communication and the national curriculum; (2) communication and racial and cultural diversity; (3) sexism, including equal opportunities; (4) urban regeneration; (5) school/community links; (6) crime; (7) finance; (8) paperwork; and (9) "burn-out." Students' first impressions were of the environment and people. School and community were equally prominent aspects of student writing, but concerns about teaching held greater weight. Results suggest that community work enhances teacher performance. This work allows student teachers to develop an awareness of the school in community context. This in turn helps them put self-critical tendencies about their teaching in perspective as they learn to better understand the limits of their practice. Contains three references. (JW)

Descriptors: Education Majors, Foreign Countries, Higher Education, Partnerships in Education, School Community Relationship, Student Attitudes, Student Teaching, Teacher Education, Teacher Education Curriculum, Teacher Role, Teaching Experience

Author: Clayton, Pat


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