Telling Tales Out of School: Sharing the Stories of Beginning Teachers
This chapter introduces the book’s theme: the experiences of beginning teachers and how these can be read and understood. It situates the book in related literature and research, describing major issues reported recently. The chapter provides a rationale for studying and explaining beginning teachers’ experiences. While retention rates in many areas are improving for beginning teachers, the first year journeys are often problematic and challenging. It would appear, then, that understanding beginning teachers’ challenges and experiences will help teacher educators and school leaders to better support these teachers. The chapter indicates how the data in this book derive from the authors’ research in beginning teaching, and describes the underpinning research projects. It asserts the need to provide an outlet for beginning teachers’ compelling stories. A discussion then follows about presenting beginning teacher research findings as a sequence of synthesised narratives. These narratives constitute fictionalised research accounts. Our reasons for presenting the data thus are discussed; the chapter describes the process and methods used to derive these stories and implications. We argue for the evocative power of story to engage readers in beginning teachers’ trials and successes.
KeywordsTeacher Educator Teacher Education Programme Professional Learning School Leader Cover Story
Thanks to Anne Campbell for her input regarding fictionalising stories of practice.
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