Teachers' reflective perspectives as they implement a new program
Murphey, Ann Altmayer
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The purpose of this study was to describe the perspectives of teachers as they implemented a new program. A grounded theory approach was used to determine teachers’ perspectives on change as they participated in an innovation in the form of a new program, characteristics of teachers’ reflection as they participated in the change process, and how participation in reflective activities affected their behaviors in the classroom. Face to face interviews were conducted and planning/reflection group meetings were observed. Audiotapes of interviews and meetings were transcribed and were examined along with journals kept by the participants. Codes were noted, and categories were established, all guided by the theoretical framework of symbolic interactionism. Constant comparative analysis was used to move the researcher from descriptive findings toward theoretical discussion grounded in the data. Implications for further research, and for supervisors and staff developers were suggested. Findings of this study indicated that perspectives of teachers change as they implement a new program. As teachers begin a new program, they seek for ways to hold on to their former methods of teaching. Time is a major concern for teachers as they begin a new program, but becomes less of a problem as they begin to change. Teachers desire support that is continuous and collaborative as they learn to implement a new program. Teachers’ levels of reflection increase as they participate in the change process, and teachers reflect at deeper levels when questioned by a skilled facilitator.