Source: Journal of Technology and Teacher Education Volume 24, Number 1, January 2016, pages 5-35.
In this article, the author discusses the importance of conceptualizing place and space in teacher professional development intervention research.
This article draws on data that was collected during a two-year study that followed 12 secondary English teachers who taught in a single school district, Stone Creek County, located in the rural southeastern United States. Using a cultural historical activity theory framework, the author discusses how the cultural and historical aspects of the place and context in which the teachers taught mediated the teachers’ understandings of the affordances of incorporating critical digital literacies into their classroom teaching.
Findings suggest introducing new tools into the rural setting helped influence teachers’ identity in their role as professional educators. The professional development intervention helped the teachers develop a greater sense of agency and purpose within their rural context. Actively drawing on the teachers’ insider knowledge as life-long residents in the setting helped the teachers develop a more agentive stance to toward teaching and learning with digital tools.
Further, the teachers were able to become more powerful advocates for their students with regards to both students’ access to digital technologies and by providing further opportunities in the classroom for students to bring in their everyday and local knowledge through digital technologies.