Video-Enhanced Training to Support Professional Development in Elementary Science Teaching: A Beginning Teacher’s Experience

January, 2018

Source: Contemporary Issues in Technology and Teacher Education, 18(1), 102-124. (2018)
(Reviewed by the Portal Team)

The purpose of this study was to understand the experience of a female beginning elementary school teacher participating in a training program aimed at supporting her professional development through the use of video.

The authors conducted a single-case study.
The participant was a female beginning elementary school teacher in Quebec, Canada.
The beginning teacher had completed her initial teacher training and obtained her teaching certificate in 2015. The participant had subsequently taught various groups of pupils at three different schools.

The authors observed the beginning teacher giving a science lesson and conducted two interviews with her, involving self-confrontation, at 1-week intervals.

The findings show that the beginning teacher was constantly concerned about her pupils’ learning and engagement in classroom activities, particularly in science. From the very start of the training process, the participant was concerned about her pupils’ engagement in the learning tasks.
Over the course of this training program, the participant continued to be concerned about her pupils’ learning. However, she became increasingly focused on the importance of using activities that led to deeper learning by allowing pupils to truly become cognitively engaged and take charge of the learning task. By the end of this training process, the beginning teacher became concerned with ensuring that the teaching activities she was using with her pupils in science.

Furthermore, the participant repeatedly referred to the tension she felt between her desire to teach in a way that was consistent with her conception of teaching, while also meeting the demands of the school setting and her colleagues. Thus, although the beginning teacher was constantly seeking to become a better teacher, she also experienced strong emotions and a sense of insecurity regarding the teaching activities she was using with the pupils.

The authors found that the trainers’ questions, along with the viewing of the video excerpts, allowed her to acquire new learning. Accessing new resources suggested by the trainers allowed the participant to meet her more specific professional development goals.

The authors conclude that the findings showed that this type of program can have benefits for the participants’ professional development. By focusing on the beginning teachers’ concerns and expectations, such programs can help them integrate new knowledge into their frame of reference and apply it in a concrete way in the classroom. 

Updated: Jun. 13, 2018