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The role of oral language in the practicum classroom Derksen, Harold Kenneth 1998

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THE ROLE OF ORAL LANGUAGE IN THE PRACTICUM CLASSROOM by HAROLD KENNETH DERKSEN B.A., Geography, Simon Fraser University, 1969 B.A., Sociology, Simon Fraser University, 1971 M.Ed., Language Arts, University of Victoria, 1990 A DISSERTATION SUBMITTED IN PARTIAL FULFILLMENT OF THE REQUIREMENTS FOR THE DEGREE OF DOCTOR OF PHILOSOPHY THE FACULTY OF GRADUATE STUDIES (Curriculum and Instruction) We accept this thesis as conforming to the required standard THE UNIVERSITY OF BRITISH COLUMBIA March, 1998 ©Harold Kenneth Derksen In presenting this thesis in partial fulfilment of the requirements for an advanced degree at the University of British Columbia, I agree that the Library shall make it freely available for reference and study. I further agree that permission for extensive copying of this thesis for scholarly purposes may be granted by the head of my department or by his or her representatives. It is understood that copying or publication of this thesis for financial gain shall not be allowed without my written permission. Department The University of British Columbia Vancouver, Canada DE-6 (2/88) 11 Abstract The purpose of this study was to investigate the praxis (theory and practice) of oral language by student teachers during their practicum. Specifically, this study identified and described the factors which 13 British Columbia student teachers perceived of as affecting the establishment of an orally interactive environment within their practicum classroom. Through the analysis of dialogue journals, interviews, and questionnaires, 24 factors in 5 categories were identified and described that affect the development of orally interactive teaching. The factors were grouped into categories of knowledge, position, expectations, structures, and assumptions. This study concludes that the identification of factors affecting orality in the practicum can assist teacher education programs and teachers to more effectively address the potential of orality as a medium for negotiation and meaning making in the classroom. iii TABLE OF CONTENTS A b s t r a c t 1 1 Table of Contents iii List of Tables v List of Figures vi Acknowledgments vii Chapter I. Introduction 1 1.1 Orality in the Classroom 2 1.2 Purposes of the Study 4 1.3 Definitions 5 1.4 Research Questions 6 1.5 Importance of this Study 7 1.6 Rationale 8 1.7 Conventions 9 1.8 Methodological Perspective 9 1.9 Limitations 14 Chapter II. Literature Review 16 2.1 Social Construction of Knowledge 17 2.2 Orality as the Social Construction of Knowledge in the Classroom 20 2.3 Historical Beginnings of Talking to Learn 22 2.4 Necessary Conditions for the Promotion of Orality 23 2.5 Orality as a Means to Learn 33 2.6 Perception as an avenue of Investigation 36 2.7 Modifying Student Teacher Perceptions 40 2.8 Conditions Affecting the Implementation of Orality 44 2.9 Special Conditions Affecting Orality in the Practicum 52 2.10 Investigating Orality 55 2.11 Setting the Stage 56 Chapter III. Methodology 58 3.1 Research Questions 58 3.2 Characteristics of this Investigation 59 3.3 Participants 65 3.4 Ethical Considerations 67 3.5 Data Types 67 3.6 Data Analysis .69 3.7 Validity and Reliability 73 Chapter IV. Results 76 4.1 Interview Analysis Results 76 4.2 Dialogue Journal Analysis Results 87 4.3 Factors, Categories, and Descriptors 90 4.4 Comment Distribution 93 4.5 Questionnaire Results 95 4.6 Folow-up Interview Results 104 Chapter V. Analysis and Interpretation 106 5.1 Knowledge 107 5.2 Student Teacher Position/Role 122 5.3 School Community Expectations 129 5.4 Structural Features 133 5.5 Assumptions 139 5.6 Validity and Reliability 148 5.7 Data Perspectives 149 Chapter VI. Conclusions 152 6.1 The Data Sources 152 6.2 The Findings 155 6.3 Implications for Teacher Education 158 6.4 Implications for Future Research 162 References 164 Appendix A Focus Questions 177 Appendix B Questionnaire 178 Appendix C East Kootenay Teacher Education Program Consent Form .. 179 Appendix D School District Consent Form 180 Appendix E Student Teacher Study Participation Consent 181 Appendix F Student Teacher Questionnaire Consent Form One 182 Appendix G Student Teacher Questionnaire Consent Form Two 183 Appendix H Ethics Approval Certificate 184 List of Tables Table 4.1 Tentative Clusters of Interview Comments 79 Table 4.2 Interview 'Outliers' 81 Table 4.3 Interview Responses grouped by Category and Factor 84 Table 4.4 Dialogue Journal Comments per Factor and Category 87 Table 4.5 Factors, Categories, and Descriptors 92 Table 4.6 Folow-up Interview Comments per Category 105 vi List of Figures Figure 3.1 Triangulation Schema 74 Figure 4.1 The Factors and Categories 91 Figure 4.2 Percentage of Interview Comments per Category 94 Figure 4.3 Percentage of Dialogue Journal Comments per Category . . . . 95 Figure 4.4 Pupils learn a great deal when speaking with each other 96 Figure 4.5 Colaborative tasks are not efficient 97 Figure 4.6 Teacher instruction is more effective than pupil colaboration 98 Figure 4.7 Colaboration is an effective communication skill that pupils should learn in school 98 Figure 4.8 Pupils in collaborative groups need continuous monitoring ... 99 Figure 4.9 Talk or speech is a child's most effective communication tool 100 Figure 4.10 Group work requires much prior preparation and teaching . . .100 Figure 4.11 Children's speech informs their writing 101 Figure 4.12 Potential group problems must be solved before hand 102 Figure 4.13 Colaborative tasks are effective 103 Figure 4.14 Compilation of questionnaire responses 104 vu Acknowledgments I wish to pay special recognition to my Supervisor, Dr. V. Froese. Throughout the planning and preparation of this research his courteous, diligent, yet gentle manner were often a source of encouragement and inspiration. The many e-mail conversations and meetings reflect positively on his sincerity and academic rigour. I also extend my thanks to the school district of Cranbrook Southeast (#5), the supervising committee members of Dr. M. Chapman and Dr. R. Carlisle, and the Education Department of Colege of the Rockies, an extension program of the University of Victoria. Without their support this research would not have been possible. The final word of thanks I offer to the students who were involved in this study. They participated voluntarily and have directly contributed to the promotion of oral language in the classroom. 1 Chapter 1 Introduction The Role of Oral Language in the Practicum Classroom School should be the place where we hear the full sound of the conversation of humankind (Booth, 1994, p. 248). A word is dead when it is said, some say. I say it just begins to live that day (Dickinson, 1961). In 'orally interactive' classrooms where orality is validated and fostered for negotiation and meaning-making, 'conversations of humankind' are often initiated by pupils and are directed at achieving some personal or group learning goals. Teacher talk in orally interactive classrooms tends to be encouraging, facilitating, and resourceful rather than presentational or authoritative. Teachers who employ 'orally interactive' teaching strategies encourage pupils to explore ideas through conversations thereby making words 'live.' From a Bakhtinian perspective a word is a 'two-sided act' determined equaly by the speaker and listener (Nystrand, Green, et al., 1993). Words live not in the speaker or listener but in the interaction, acting as an ideological bridge between conversants. In orally interactive classrooms spoken words are a shared territory and this underscores the importance of dialogue in knowledge construction (Cook-Gumperz & Gumperz, 1992). From a dialogical perspective, the discourse community of the classroom is an inter-subjective social phenomenon where meaning is neither in the utterance nor in the user, but in the interaction (Fernandez-Balboa & Marshall, 1994). For Vygotsky the value of oral interaction in the classroom lies in knowledge construction through discourse 2 (Berk, 1994), and for Bakhtin this is where context and cognition inter-penetrate each other (Nystrand, Green, et al.). Orality in the Classroom Orality is crucial in the classroom as all children, with few exceptions, speak a language when they come to school. The fact that children manage to acquire any one of more than 15,000 languages spoken around the world with ease and at a very young age should persuade us of the latent productivity of oral language (Buckley, 1992). Historically and individually oral language develops first and the long history of any human culture is in many ways defined as a history of its oral language (Olson, 1994). Orality in the classroom is crucial in that it is the one means by which most children have access to knowledge construction and meaning making. By utilizing orality for discovery, children are given a 'voice' in learning and for many children, this is their most effective language medium (Barnes, 1976; Halliday, 1973; Tough, 1976; Wels, 1986). Without oral interaction the discovery and accommodation of new ideas becomes artificial and transitory (Barnes, 1993; Booth, 1994; Vygotsky, 1962). Without student dialogue, teachers rather than learners shape and reshape ideas, construct patterns, and offer alternative explanations. Conversational involvement engages students in the kind of talk which requires inquiry and exploration. Access to dialogue enables students to express their own views, chalenge those of others, and most significantly, define for themselves what they think and understand. Oraly interactive classrooms provide pupils with time to verbalize ideas, to 'see' what their ideas 'sound' like. Socio-linguists suggest that conversation provides participants with 'rehearsal' time, a time to perfect or reshape ideas. 3 Simultaneously, knowledge construction in social environments alows for time to accommodate new ideas into inner thought (Berk, 1994; Cook-Gumperz & Gumperz, 1993; Nystrand, Green, et al, 1993; Vygotsky, 1962; Yaden, 1984). Orality is important in school because of its relationship to inner thought and its provision of a view for teachers, a 'window' as it were, into student learning and understanding (Wels & Chang-Wels, 1992). Socrates' comment that, 'thinking is the mind talking to itself suggests that oral language is not only a useful to describe the external manifestation of mental activity but also useful as a metaphor describing internal mental activity (Postman, 1995). In other words, talk dramatizes learning through dialogue and thus provides teachers with a more tangible and authentic view of student learning (Strachan, 1990). Orality is crucial in that its recognition in the classroom underscores the fundamentaly oral nature of humanity, for it is through speech that human beings are truly human (Cayley, 1987). Although many surrogate forms of language such as ideographs, phonetic writing, printing, telegraphy, photography, radio, movies, television, and computers have each transformed the world in their own way, in one way or another they have all utilized the visual symbols which are distanced from their origin as sounds (Postman, 1995). Speech reaffirms the essentially empathetic and participatory nature of human communication. Dialogue engages the emotions and encourages the mutual identification of speaker and listener. Spoken language engages us in an immediate, concrete, participatory, and emotionaly charged experience. 'Exploratory talk' which is evident in such orally interactive classrooms is re-constructive, alows for the rehearsal of ideas, and is characterized by its tentative, transitory nature (Barnes, 1993). 'Exploratory talk' which can be shared talk by 4 teachers and students, is characterized by hesitations, struggles to make sense, changes of direction, and uncertainty. This contrasts sharply with 'presentational talk' which is characterized by its logical, sequential, and planned delivery. 'Exploratory talk' increases students' opportunities to express thoughts and understandings. It is more concerned with conjecture and possibilities than reproductive understandings of information or correct answers. In such an exploratory environment evaluation focuses more on problem posing than problem solving, on the variety rather than the uniformity of understandings. Oraly interactive classrooms are characterized by a 'collaborative learning' atmosphere which traces its origin to social constructivist movements where students are viewed as active, participatory agents who collectively, along with their teachers, construct knowledge in holistic, meaning-centred ways (Brody, 1995). This is differentiated from cooperative learning where students remain individually accountable and group experiences are teacher designed. The content and strategies are chosen by teachers who also evaluate students' performance on given tasks. In 'collaborative learning' environments students may chalenge not only the content but also the pedagogical practice, resulting in direct consequences for the teacher. Thus the teacher in a 'collaborative learning' classroom becomes a co-participant in the learning and this may entail personal and collective struggles to create new knowledge and negotiate new meanings. Purpose of the Study This study intends to identify and describe factors which student teachers perceive as affecting the development of an orally interactive environment within the practicum classroom. Student teacher interviews, dialogue journals, questionnaires, and folow-up interviews will be analyzed to identify and describe 5 such factors with the intent that this identification and description will increase the validity and efficacy of oral interaction in the classroom and ultimately promote orality as a vital medium for constructing knowledge within the classroom (Berk, 1994). The identification and description of factors affecting pupil oral interactions in the classroom will provide strategic knowledge to guide teachers and teacher educators to more effectively promote oral language for the intellectual growth of pupils (Lazar, 1995; Shor, 1987). Student teacher perceptions are fundamental to such an investigation and may benefit most in that they are strategically positioned at the beginning of their careers. Definitions The term orality was initially used in connection with 'black' identity studies (Murray, 1970). In 1971 Ong and others employed the term orality to describe the characteristics of a society from which literate cultures emerge (Egan, 1986; Farrell, 1974, 1978, 1979). Later, orality was utilized to describe communication styles (James, 1980; Kochman, 1974; Masling, 1980), as a particular component of education (Ong, 1974), and also as a therapeutic drama technique for hyper-active children (Allan, 1977). In 1987, in a Canadian conference, orality was promoted as a vital component of human communication (Olson, 1987). At the conference, the effectiveness of orality, i.e., speaking and listening for knowledge construction was equated with literacy, i.e., reading and writing. As a medium of negotiation and meaning-making, orality is widely acknowledged to be the most fundamental, yet often overshadowed, language art (Teale, 1996). That oral language has and continues to occupy a fundamental position as a medium of communication in society gives increased impetus for the need and utility of the term orality (Buckley, 1992: Lakoff, 1982; Olson, 1994; Ong, 1992). Another earlier term, oracy (Wilkinson, 1965), intended to represent oral language facility equivalent to literacy has since 1983 been superseded by the use of orality. In published educational journals before 1983 orality appears in a ratio of one reference to orality for every two to oracy. Since 1983 orality appears in a ratio of almost four references to every one of oracy (pre 1982 orality/oracy ratio of titles-word use was 25/37; since 1983 that ratio is 140/40; ERIC 1966-82 & 1983-96). In this study orality is a positive term in its own right, without reference to literacy and refers to the use of speech for purpose of meaning making and knowledge construction. Although orality and literacy are autonomous and complementary, orality is particularly exemplary as a socio-linguistic means of knowledge construction (Bugarski, 1993; Vygotsky, 1962). Orality as a knowledge construction medium functions in a multiplicity of ways and is fundamental to human competence (Olson, 1994). Research Questions Questions are often an initial entry into academic inquiry and act as a means to narrow the investigation into an achievable format. The question this study began with was, "Can orality be utilized more within the classroom?" Because of the researcher's involvement in teacher education a subsequent question became, "Is the utilization of orality in the classroom a result of teacher education?" Considering the significance often attributed to the practicum within teacher education, a more specific question then became, "How does the practicum experience affect the utilization of orality within the classroom?" Recognizing that participant perspectives are very important when investigating 7 pedagogical practices, the data sources chosen for this study were those which would most clearly reveal student teacher perspectives. A most important step in modifying perspectives is to identify them and, therefore, the focal question for this study is, "What factors do student teachers perceive affect their ability to develop an orally interactive environment in the practicum classroom?" Importance of this Study The value of oral communication as a vehicle for learning is increasingly being recognized (Buckley, 1992; Hiebert, 1990; Barnes, 1993; Pierce & Gilles, 1993). Since the early 1990's many theoretical and practical studies, not to mention technological changes, have confirmed the increasing use and value of students verbalizing their understandings. As student teachers enter classrooms they recognize that the didactic, presentational instruction paradigms of the past are increasingly being replaced with interactive strategies. This study's importance results from its attempt to induce factors from successive and recursive examinations of student teacher data which affect oral interaction in their practicum classrooms. Student teachers' experience as pupils was and often continues to be dominated by teacher talk and individualized learning (Johnston, 1994; Lazar, 1995; Phelan & McLaughlin, 1995). The resulting belief systems with which they then enter teacher education programs are often not addressed and if they are, are often unsuccessfuly modified (Craig, 1994; Kagan, 1992). This study is important in identifying and describing factors which student teachers themselves believe affects the initiation, development, and maintenance of orally interactive approaches within the classroom. The data colected here is chosen to potentialy iluminate factors that influence student teacher behaviours in regards 8 to the praxis of orality. Professional development literature is replete with evidence extolling the virtues of such participant involvement within the change process (Craig, et al, 1994; Fullan, 1982; Joyce, et al., 1983). The data collection process used here recognizes the importance of such participant involvement in the change process and, therefore, the solicitation of student teacher perspectives on oral language praxis forms a primary focus for this inquiry. This study is important in that it identifies factors affecting oral interactions early in a teachers' career so that the potential effectiveness of oral interaction becomes part of a teachers' pedagogical repertoire during the formative stage. Intervention during teaching apprenticeships is appropriate and in addition, specific factors that emerge regarding oral interactions can become prescriptive for a more effective practicum curriculum (Zeichner, 1990). By revealing present student teacher perspectives of factors affecting oral interactions, this study identifies some essential components to be included in a curriculum for teacher education. One component is the promotion of oral language in the classroom as a potent knowledge construction medium. Once the perspectives of student teachers are identified, modification of preparatory and practicum curricula can occur. Identifying these factors also alows for base line documentation of classroom oral interactivity from which subsequent changes in student teacher perspectives toward increased classroom oral interaction can be ascertained. Rationale If the student teacher practicum is a most important component of teacher apprenticeship and if interactive teaching approaches are effective for classroom negotiation and meaning-making, then data generated from student teachers 9 during their practicum should provide sufficient evidence of the praxis of orality (theory and practice). Using an inductive-constructive approach it should be possible to generate and verify constructs which emerge from such student teacher data. If the factors which affect the facilitation of an orally interactive learning environment are identified and described, they can then become the catalyst for promoting orality within teacher education programs and subsequently within the regular classroom. Conventions The 'practicum' referred to in this study is composed of two six week periods of classroom practice which occur in the second year of a Teacher Education Program. During the practicum the student teacher 'practices' in a sponsor teachers' classroom and is supervised by a university faculty advisor. Typically the student teacher visits the classroom before the practicum begins to become familiar with the pupils and classroom management procedures. The practicum begins with a 50% to 60% weekly teaching load and ends with an 80% to 100% teaching load. The 'researcher' in this study served in the capacity of Language Arts instructor for all students in the program and supervisor for some of the student teachers in this study. When the word 'pupil' is used in this study it refers to the children in student teachers' classrooms; the word 'student' refers to the student teachers in the Teacher Education Program, the primary subjects and data sources for this study. Methodological Perspective The qualitative nature of this study suggests that an ethnographic model of investigation is most appropriate (Bogden & Biklen, 1982; Ely, et al., 1991; Goetz 10 & LeCompte, 1984). Goetz and LeCompte (1984) suggest that qualitative studies are characterized by their location on four assumptive continua. This perspective alows for a range of qualitative study types on inductive-deductive, generative-verificative, constructive-enumerative, and subjective-objective continua. Research design rationale. The model of four assumptive continua as developed by Goetz and LeCompte (1984) which locate inductive, generative, constructive and subjective investigations at opposite ends on respective continua from deductive, verificative, enumerative, and objective investigations provides a most useful paradigm for this study. First, this study is most appropriately described as an inductive investigation. Rather than matching data to predetermined theoretical constructs this study explains human behaviour based on an examination of the data already collected. As the investigation proceeded, data will be recursively examined to refine any emerging tentative clusters. From these tentative clusters, theoretical factors and categories can be determined. Secondly, by using more than one data source, this study locates itself predominantly at the generative rather than at the verificative end of the generative-verificative continua. Chunks of data are to be sorted and classified until factors and categories emerge. Theserfactors and categories are expected to have the potential to explain or subsume the data generated from individual student teachers. Thirdly, this study employs a more constructive rather than enumerative process as this investigation is aimed at developing categories that become apparent in the course of analyzing data (Goetz & LeCompte, 1984). The questionnaires, although more typical of an enumerative strategy, are 11 complementary but not fundamental to this investigation. The questionnaires were constructed and will be analyzed for the purpose of support or modification of the factors and categories which are expected to emerge from the interviews and dialogue journals. The questionnaire along with the dialogue journals and folow-up interviews are expected to validate the expected results through triangulation. Fourthly, this study may also be characterized as taking a subjective rather than objective stance (Goetz & LeCompte, 1984). The factors and categories which are expected to emerge from the participants' conceptualization of their own experiences and perspectives will form the basis of these constructs. Perspectives and experiences are the subjective reservoir from which these factors and categories are to be constructed and in addition, these constructs will be familiar to the student teachers due to their generative origin. In summary, this qualitative study is most clearly associated with an ethnographic position on the assumptive continua rather than experimental modes of inquiry (Bogden & Biklen, 1982; Ely, et al., 1991; Goetz & LeCompte, 1984). Furthermore, this study emulates ethnographic approaches in that it accommodates data as they occur rather than manipulating data to fit predetermined categories. Data source rationale. The single most important factor influencing the choice of data sources for this study was the researchers' desire to have student teachers reveal factors that they perceived to be influential in affecting the utilization of orally interactive strategies in their practicum classrooms. If student teachers' own beliefs and perspectives are elicited, the findings more authenticaly reflect student teacher 12 perspectives. This study deliberately utilized an approach which was participatory and discovery-oriented thus potentialy promoting change in pedagogical practice. If the use of more orally interactive strategies in the classroom by student teachers is the goal of this inquiry, then it would be counterproductive to have non-student sources of data provide evidence for the promotion of such practices. Data sources such as the researcher's own journal, the sponsor teacher's comments or reports, video tapes, and evaluations of teaching performance do not reflect student teachers' own perceptions and, therefore, they were not utilized. The second most important factor influencing the data sources used for this study was a concern with validity. Foremost in this concern was the attempt to collect data which through triangulation would verify constructs revealed. It was hoped in this way to enhance the scope, density, and clarity of factors and categories to be developed during this investigation. This concern with validity is the basis for the decision to use four different data sources, namely: the focused interview, the non-directed dialogue journal, the researcher-designed questionnaire, and the folow-up interview. Practicum rationale. This study was predicated on the perspective that although pre-practicum experiences influence student teachers' practice (Craig, et al., 1994; Zeichner, 1990) it is the practicum experience of teachers that continues to be regarded as the single most important feature of teacher education, especially by students (B.C.C.T., 1997; Johnston, 1994; McDermott, et al., 1995; Sellars, 1987). Although the value of the practicum is questioned by some (Sellars, 1987; Johnston, 1994; Zeichner, 1990), in the minds of most teacher education students, "the only real learning is in the practicum, the more experience the better, and the more experience the more learning" (Johnston, 13 1994, p. 199). Whether in fact the practicum is so effective or not, it appears that the experience of student teachers during their practicum has a significant influence on their subsequent teaching practice (Johnston, 1994; McDermott, et al., 1995; Watson, 1995; Zeichner, 1990). In light of the influence of the practicum on subsequent practice and the belief of student teachers that it performs such an important learning experience, a study of factors influencing the development of particular teacher behaviours would seem to be most appropriate. The methodological perspective developed here functions as a lens through which students view orality as tool for learning and communication. Because students act in ways which are indicative of their beliefs their perspectives are an important site for investigation and analysis. Finally, the approach taken here attempts to underscore the importance of oral language as a medium for study. Although many studies have been conducted on student teaching, relatively few have examined what actualy takes place during the practicum experience (Tabachnick & Zeichner, 1984). By identifying and describing factors which student teachers perceive as affecting their ability to develop, implement, and sustain more orally interactive teaching during their practicum, this study provides a benchmark for future teacher practice. From this base line of factors affecting orally interactive classroom practices an appropriate preparatory and practicum curriculum can be modeled, structured, and practiced. It is also expected that the identification of these factors will provide curriculum planners with sufficient data to develop an integrated, consistent, and comprehensive oral language curriculum within preparatory programs as wel as within the practicum itself. 14 Limitations The limitations ot a qualitative study of this nature are various. One of these limitations is that the 13 volunteer subjects from a class of 24 is a smal sample from which to extrapolate implications for the broader scope of teacher education. Another limitation is the researchers' eight month involvement in this specific teacher education program resulting in a partial awareness of the origins and development of the program. Program changes which occurred during its brief six year history may have had an affect on this study of which the researcher would not be aware. Such effects might include sponsor teacher attitudes to the program, past practicum experiences, direction and orientation of the program, and in particular, participant dispositions during the study's time frame. Although the validation of the findings with participants through folow-up interviews occurred, the researcher recognizes that as a researcher-supervisor-instructor the views expressed will be coloured by the researchers' personal perspectives. These views are also affected by the skill with which the researcher proceeded to conduct effective interviews, transcribe dialogue journals, and construct an effective questionnaire. Finally, it is recognized that although attempts were made to validate the findings through triangulation, ethnographic research is a theoretical approach designed to explain human behaviour and as such remains open to continued recursive analysis and interpretation. In summary, this study proposes that the effectiveness of knowledge construction is increased in a classroom where oral participation, collaboration, and negotiation of meaning are valued and fostered. Teaching and learning processes in such classrooms are not isolated from each other but are interactive and the vital medium linking teaching and learning is talk (Hiebert, 1990; Cook-15 Gumperz & Gumperz, 1993). The identification and description of factors which affect the participation, collaboration, and dialogical meaning construction in the classroom becomes a necessary first step in promoting an orally interactive teaching and learning environment. 16 Chapter 2 Literature Review The literature cited here is reviewed to support an investigation into factors which affect the development of orally interactive classroom environments. If the social construction of knowledge through dialogue is a viable mode of teaching and learning, then the promotion and use of orality in the classroom is an appropriate endeavor (Berk, 1994). A review of literature pertinent to orality includes addressing the beliefs and knowledge which student teachers hold, including an investigation into the intellectual construct of perception. Such a review is essential to provide evidence that the modification of perception, and therefore, practice is possible. A review of literature which proposes a model of teacher development alows for such appropriate expectations of practice and modifications of practice to be determined. Subsequently, specific factors affecting the development of an orally interactive practice can be identified. The literature examined here addresses the significance of oral interaction as a medium for the social construction of knowledge and the veracity of oral interactions as sites of knowledge construction. Folowing this, studies which address the nature of perception and modification of student teacher perceptions are reviewed. The final section considers literature which identifies factors that affect the promotion of oral interactivity in the classroom and specifically within the practicum classroom. In conclusion, a study of orality is reviewed to set the stage for the present investigation. 17 Social Construction of Knowledge The social construction of knowledge is increasingly recognized as a valid means of learning, yet Wels and Chang-Wels (1992) indicate that talk has received little attention and is most often treated as something teachers need to control. The social construction of knowledge is so important that Postman (1995) endorses it as the narrative which describes how we make the world known to ourselves, how we make ourselves known to the world, and how we clarify to others our knowledge about the world. Wels and Chang-Wels contend that the activities of individuals involved in the 'cultural apprenticeship' of human development and learning are essentially social and interactive. The study of language in schools, especially spoken language, cannot be ignored any longer and Wels and Chang-Wels (1992) contend that because many activities are essentially internal, talk becomes the crucial means to externalize thinking. However, it is one thing to rationalize the importance of talk and quite another to know how to operationalize talk in the classroom. Nystrand, Green, et al., (1993) contend that the way by which we know the world and the world knows us, points toward the importance of a collaborative or dialogical effort in learning as proposed by Vygotsky (1962). Nystrand, Green, et al., suggest that content and form co-mingle in the process of communication while the acoustical, symbolic, and lexical features of language simultaneously interact to form a 'bridge' of common understandings. Bruner (1978), Britton (1970), and Strachan (1990) promote the view that the social nature of learning is intrinsic to human development. Berk (1994) states 18 that a basic premise of Vygotsky's theory is that all human knowledge is jointly constructed through dialogue while human development and learning are intrinsically social and interactive, suggest Wels and Chang-Wels (1992). Golub and Reid (1989) expand this notion to suggest that learning occurs best when interaction is encouraged and in a text based on the metaphor of conversation, Ward (1997) supports the idea that humans are predisposed to learn in an interactive environment. According to Haliday (1973) this interaction is accomplished for seven different purposes or functions. These include language functioning for instrumental, regulatory, interactional, heuristic, personal, imaginative, and representational purposes. A competent communicator, according to Halliday, is one who has the ability to use the full range of language functions, in either medium, spoken or written. Although interactional language functions are identified, each of these functions are not discrete but act in concert with each other. A more complete explanation for the intrinsically social nature of human development is offered by a socio-linguistic perspective. Socio-linguists support the view that language and thought are interactive, that learning is conversational involvement, and that learning involves the social construction of meaning. From a socio-linguistic perspective, whether colaboration depends on spoken or written language, the human desire for representing thought becomes a most powerful catalyst for the social construction of meaning. 19 Egan (1987), Olson (1987), and Teale (1996) have suggested that orality is the foundation of literacy. Others have emphasized biological (Havelock, 1987), acoustical (Ong, 1992), historical (Havelock, 1976), or dialogical (de Castell, 1988) dimensions of orality's foundation of literacy. Hiebert (1990) asserts that in becoming literate, oral language is the beginning, middle and end. Whether or not these foundational perspectives can be verified, Olson (1994) suggests that neither literacy nor orality supersede each other. A more appropriate view is suggested by Bugarski (1993), in which orality and literacy are two complementary yet autonomous media that interact and overlap, with neither subservient to the other. It is this complementarity that enhances the utility of orality and literacy to benefit each other. While analysis and synthesis are exhibited by both literacy and orality, December (1993) and Olson (1994) suggest that speech is exemplary for its expressive, emotive, and participatory dimensions while writing is distinct in its lexical-linguistic and diaretic dimensions. Some suggest that the merit of literacy lies in decontextualization (Chisholm & Buettner, 1995), and the merit of orality lies in contextualization (Olson, 1994). Tannen (1985) disagrees and proposes that context is essential for both writers and speakers each utilizing techniques necessary to communicate effectively. However, the universality of speech and the facility with which people communicate through speech makes orality especially fruitful as an avenue for knowledge construction. Although characteristics of expression, emotion, and participation are common features of orality, Ong (1992) differentiates primary orality from 20 secondary orality, that is, orality resulting from the technological advances such radio and television. December (1993) makes a further distinction by observing that the invention of computers via the Internet promotes a third type of orality, tertiary orality, through computer-mediated communication. He suggests that tertiary orality re-creates the immediacy of pre-literate cultures with the augmentation of space and time independence. It is the contention here that the dialogical nature of human communication through literacy and orality rely heavily on the colaborative nature of human interaction. This dialogical imperative operates in spite of theoretical divisions of primary, secondary, or tertiary orality. This colaborative characteristic of humans is essential to communication and is foundational to the construction of knowledge. Recognition of the social nature of teaching and learning is a prerequisite to the promotion of orality as a knowledge construction medium in the classroom. Orality as the Social Construction of Knowledge in the Classroom In 1964, Pinnell and Jaggar (1991) report that a joint statement from several professional organizations in the United States, including the National Council of Teachers of English (NCTE), voiced concern about the minimal emphasis on speaking and listening in classrooms compared to reading and writing. In his editorial, Gambel (1997) voiced similar concerns of orality being neglected in Canadian elementary schools. Between 1964 and 1997, a variety of initiatives have occurred which affected oral language practice in the classroom. During the 1960s, reform 21 movements created child-centred curricula, resulting in numerous unique approaches to literacy learning, including oral language programs. However, according to Pinnell and Jaggar (1991), the back-to-the-basics movements of the 1970s and 1980s questioned this child-centred emphasis and focused instead on competency-based-instruction directed towards the identification of basic literacy skills. Although this included speaking and listening and although governmental and professional support was evident, Simmons (1996) suggests that the actual effect on orality in the classroom was minimal. The concern expressed by the NCTE in United States and Gambel (1997) in Canada is even more appropriate today. With the advent of computer-mediated communication, December (1993) maintains that the importance of orality will increase and that a recognition of its emotive, expressive, and participatory nature in current classrooms is imperative. Ward (1997), in her book on classroom conversations, refers to the present attempts to introduce talk and learning into the classroom as mere 'lip-service.' She contends that at the root of the problem are issues of control. Although having children talk in classrooms is advocated by Condon and Clyde (1996) they maintain that very little dialogue occurs and when it does occur, its effectiveness is not guaranteed. This view is also reiterated by Nystrand, Green, et al. (1993). Oral language is the most fundamental of the language arts and the basis from which literacy springs (Egan, 1987; Teale, 1996). Booth (1994), Olson (1987), and Ward (1997) concur that oral language is central to growth, development, and self-expression. By listening to children talk we get some idea 22 of how they are thinking, comments Ward (1997). Oral language is the primary medium through which the process of learning is carried out (Pinnell & Jaggar, 1991). Talk is the fundamental process for active learning (Hart & Smith, 1990) and talk is seen to be the central and constitutive part of every activity in teaching and learning (Wels & Chang-Wels, 1992). Children's resource for thinking is primarily their speech (Olson, 1987) and Gumperz and Cook-Gumperz (1992) suggest that learning is an interactive process that depends on the learner and teacher to create conversational involvement. Hiebert (1990) reviewed research that suggests social interaction has increased considerably in many classrooms as teachers recognize its effectiveness for literacy learning. The result, Hiebert maintains, is that the teacher's role becomes more incisive. In her study, Hiebert found that content knowledge or sequential accuracy did not vary as much in socially interactive classrooms as the quality of conversations. The most pronounced differences were children's social and affective perceptions. She concluded her study by suggesting that children who participate in classes that foster interaction as a means of learning appear to be acquiring a variety of important literacy and oral language proficiencies. Historical Beginnings of Talking to Learn Wilkinson (1965) coined the word 'oracy' in an attempt to lend emphasis to the importance of speaking and listening as a learning media. In contrast to literacy, 'oracy' was neglected in schools, Wilkinson maintained, and occupied a negative position in the classroom. Wilkinson's involvement with the 'National 23 Oracy Project' (Norman, 1992) was an attempt to reform the United Kingdom's schools to harness the potential of spoken language for learning. Another early advocate of talking to learn was Britton (1970), who suggested that uninterrupted student talk in smal groups helps develop well-articulated understandings. According to Britton, students who become involved in speech both as a spectators and participants are more proficient communicators. In 1975 Britton, Burgess, Martin, McLeod, and Rosen suggested that the relationship of talk to writing is central, being the most common and productive factor stimulating students' writing. Necessary Conditions for the Promotion of Orality The literature suggests that several conditions enhance the promotion of orality. The eight conditions referred to here are recursive and integral to the development of orally interactive classrooms. Orality is valued. One of the conditions for the success of orality in the classroom is the recognition of its value. Hart and Smith (1990) suggest that talk is the 'vital link' needed by individuals to discover their 'collective voices' for learning. Talk is the fundamental medium utilized by pupils for active learning and teachers are encouraged to form instructional environments that foster 'talking to learn' (Hart & Smith). This position is extended by Galey (1996) and Keithley (1992) who suggest that oral interactions give teachers a chance to return to the students' own voice. Within the classroom, Cook-Gumperz and Gumperz (1992) maintain that the construction of common understandings becomes productive when orally 24 interactive learning procedures are valued. Wels and Chang-Wels (1992) indicate that the value of oral interactions in the classroom are to be seen as the very 'essence of education.' When Barnes (1993) and Ward (1997) noted the contrasting quality and quantity of children's conversations in and out of school they pointed to the need for an investigation into developing more authentic oral experiences within the classroom. Fernandez-Balboa and Marshal (1994) suggest that children's conversations are not valued because most teachers still hold on to a 'depository' conception of education, where teachers are content-ful and students are content-deficient. In the United Kingdom, Martin, Wiliams, Wilding, Hemmings, and Medway (1974) found similar conceptions of students' conversations prevailing and wondered how those 'out-of-school' conversations could become a model for 'in-school' classroom dialogue. Gallas, Anton-Oldenburg, Balenger, Beseler, Griffin, Papenheimer, and Swaim (1996) suggest that peer interactions in the classroom be promoted to alow for the simultaneous development of cooperation, competition, and independence evident in 'out-of-school' conversations. Beyond demonstrating the delight of listening to language performed, Ward (1997) indicates that teachers need to become conversational partners with their students. In this manner the responsibility for learning is placed on students and, Barnes (1993) maintains, that they experience talk as valuable for accommodating and discovering new ideas. 25 Conversations 'out-of-school' are typically modeled in the home. Ward (1997) characterizes these home environments as those where children take an active role, where codes for oral interactions are explicit, where colaboration and negotiation are common, and where contributions from all family members, including children, are valued. Heath (1986) discovered that the type of interactivity in homes contrasts sharply with what occurs in many classrooms and when schools attempt to parallel home environments improved achievement is the result. Hart and Smith (1990) comment that in classrooms talk is often replaced by reading, in contrast to many homes where both are valued. Orality is unique. Another condition for the success of orality in the classroom is a recognition of its uniqueness. Egan (1987) proposes that orality is an energetic, not pre-literate or illiterate, yet distinctive way of learning and communicating. Teale (1996) maintains that oral language is unique in that it forms the 'indispensable foundation' upon which reading and writing are built. Egan believes that our failure to recognize the uniqueness of orality has negatively affected our achievement in literacy. The development of a readers' ear is a unique oral trait that readers can acquire to appreciate the power and beauty of words on the page (Lenz, 1992). Orality as an alternative teaching paradigm. The impetus for valuing the uniqueness of orality in the classroom resides with teachers. Gallas et al. (1996) suggest that the extent to which teachers structure and manipulate the pattern of speech events in classrooms directly influences the effectiveness of oral interactions. Britton (1970) indicates that teachers are the most influential agents 26 in promoting or discouraging exploratory talk through their management of speech events in the classroom. Similarly, Cook-Gumperz and Gumperz (1992) and Thomas-MacKinnon (1992) insist that the facilitation of conversational involvement within the classroom depends primarily on teachers. Although Condon and Clyde (1996) do not venture to suggest why, they comment that teachers rarely tap into such collaborative strategies. Although they do not promote orally interactive classrooms, Easthope, Maclean, and Easthope (1990) suggest that talk in the classroom is controled by the teacher. They state that talk occurs in three conventional forms: informing, directing, and eliciting responses. It is only in the third category where pupil participation is invited. Easthope et al. (1990) suggest that this is the most common paradigm, maintaining that it is used to keep control firmly in the 'teacher's mouth.' The verbal skills of inquiry, description, or debate are neglected in favour of control. The uniqueness of orality for teaching and learning remains largely unavailable to students because its utility hinges on teacher concerns with control. New skills of intervention and restraint are required to promote a more dialogical approach to teaching, and according to Shor (1987), need to be practiced diligently. Orality as exploratory talk. In many classrooms knowledge construction through 'exploratory talk' is not evident. Barnes (1993) identifies talk for negotiation and meaning-making as exploratory talk, which he contrasts with presentational talk, characteristic of teachers in many classrooms. Shor (1987) indicates that curriculum is a cooperative venture which should be characterized 27 by dialogical strategies that involve teachers and students. The participatory nature of learning for Shor means that students are responsive to and responsible for others within the learning environment. Lazar (1995), who characterizes pupil activities in presentational classrooms as primarily individualistic, speaks positively in favour of colaborative classrooms where pupils are engaged in exploratory or negotiated activities. Pupil talk in presentational classrooms lacks engagement, motivation, and authenticity. Interactions in such classrooms are characterized as market-commodity exchanges by Strachan (1990) or as educational 'ping-pong' activities, i.e., teacher questions, pupil responds, teacher evaluates response. Exploratory talk, as proposed by Barnes (1993), engages participants through problem posing rather than just problem solving. This requires genuine colaboration for problem setting, pursuing alternatives, formulating possibilities, and negotiating resolution rather than solution. Students involved in exploratory talk are able to utilize mental strategies not apparent nor developed in teacher dominated classrooms, suggests Egan (1987). By talking things through, Vygotsky (1962) suggests, pupils 'rehearse' knowledge. Through the interaction of outer and inner speech, cognitive thought processes shape and reshape thinking. Talking becomes the equivalent of 'thinking aloud.' 'Constructing knowledge together,' the title of a publication by Wels and Chang-Wels (1992), becomes the essence of education while dialogue becomes the means. Exploratory talk is most apparent when competent peers or teachers support pupils' tentative endeavors through appropriate intervention, modeling, 28 and restraint within a 'zone of proximal development' (Vygotsky, 1962). According to Vygotsky (1978) this support is integral to the development of 'mastering the social means of thought' which then becomes inner speech. The learning of intervention and restraint strategies on the part of teachers is imperative, yet Craig, Bright and Smith (1994) suggest that the need to model, demonstrate, and practice within teacher preparatory programs is significantly lacking. The extent to which exploratory talk is utilized in the classroom is directly influenced by the environment in which oral language occurs. Speech events in classrooms occur in patterned, rule-governed ways. To be successful in developing conversations, these patterns or rules must be monitored, signaled, and interpreted by all classroom members. Pupils can become effective participants in exploratory speech events, depending on their knowledge of the rules of conversation and teacher recognition of their value. In a pluralistic society, Cazden (1988) suggests that discourse among peers benefits them by developing relationships with an audience, scaffolding knowledge with others, developing logical reasoning skills, and encouraging exploratory talk. These benefits also include reducing the gap between home and school language and creating relationships across cultural groups thereby increasing pupils' potential for learning. Education as oral dialogue. The perspective that education is dialogue, as suggested by de Castell (1987), is not widely held and it would appear that there is little evidence for this view in the classrooms that Goodlad (1984) describes in his study. In his meta-analysis Hillocks (1986) found that the predominant form of 29 teaching, even though less effective in improving writing, continued to be presentational. Simmons (1996) found in his study of 66 student writers from Kindergarten to Grade 8 that none had spoken with each other about their own writing. When questioning a student about the purpose of the conferences, the student replied 'That's when the teacher shows us our mistakes'. Mutual construction of writing knowledge through oral interaction appeared not to be on the classroom agenda. If ones' current understanding of education includes the perspective that education is a dialogue, then Wels and Chang-Wels (1992) suggest that students and teachers require the construction of meaning through the medium of talk. Learners cannot just absorb information but must actively construct their own understandings of the world. Both Condon and Clyde (1996) and Ward (1997) suggest that conversation is one way to do this for talk is an inherently social act and instead of trying to minimize talk, Gallas et al. (1996) suggest that we 'orchestrate' it for knowledge construction purposes. Bianchi and Cullere (1996) advocate orality as a principal means of composition in schools alongside orality where the composing processes of reading and writing dominate. Educators need to welcome the variety of 'ways with words' that children bring to classrooms in order to legitimize their experiences and themselves as constructors of knowledge. Although Simmons (1996) cites numerous authors who advocate that children talk about their writing, he indicates that orally interactive classrooms are not sufficiently evident to alleviate existing concerns. 30 Teacher use of orality. Emery (1996) suggests that teachers as wel as students benefit from dialogical means of knowledge construction. As a means of critical reflection, oral dialogue is suggested as an alternative to traditional means of eliciting teachers' personal knowledge through journals. The potential for self-reflection and learning through oral dialogue is great due to teachers' awareness of personal knowledge, the promotion of exploration, and the extension of their knowledge and self-confidence. Orality as education in democracy. Fernandez-Balboa and Marshal (1994) contend that dialogue is integral to the development of democracy and, therefore, classrooms must become places where dialogue is fostered and practiced. They state that the characteristics of dialogue contrast sharply with the predominantly monological and unilateral forms of pedagogy observed in most classrooms. Fernandez-Balboa and Marshal hold that dialogue is a free act, which includes social, participatory, normative, propositional, ongoing, and transformative characteristics. They recommend that the benefits, the rights of the participants, and themes of conversation are worthwhile when implementing 'dialogical teaching' in the classroom. Of particular importance to this present study are the barriers to dialogue that Fernandez-Balboa and Marshall (1994) raise. These include traditional views (beliefs) of teaching and learning as top-down, individualistic, and competitive endeavors. Another barrier is the depiction of education as an exchange where teachers 'fill' pupils with information, where pupils are treated as objects rather than subjects. Fernandez-Balboa and Marshal also suggest that there are 31 psychological barriers to dialogue such as safety and stability, structural barriers of tradition, standardization, and accountability. The authors conclude that large enrolments and institutional resistance from administrators and peers be also considered as barriers to dialogue. As teachers play a significant role in the determining the parameters of dialogue in the classrooms, they must be prepared to overcome such barriers. According to Fernandez-Balboa and Marshal (1994), teacher education programs need to be designed to promote and model dialogical pedagogies. As teachers gain appropriate knowledge, vocabulary, and conceptual frameworks they become more able to articulate their professional experiences, exercise discretionary judgment, and participate in reconstructive action. For it is through dialogue that exploration and inquiry occur, says Strachan (1990). The multi-layered and multi-textured nature of dialogue alows teachers and students to define to themselves and others what they think and understand. A curriculum of orality. Oral language ability has and continues to be of interest to educators. Through longitudinal studies (Wells, 1986; Wels & Chang-Wells, 1992), journal articles (Buckley, 1992; Condon & Clyde, 1996; Gallas et al. 1996; Teale, 1996), and educational texts (Booth, 1994; Pierce & Gilles, 1993; Ward, 1997), renewed interest is expressed in the importance of oral language. Specific recommendations for the development, implementation, and maintenance of an oral language curriculum are often included. In Manitoba a Middle Years Language Arts Curriculum was introduced in 1985 which included smal group and oral skills (Lee & Bryant, 1991). In British 32 Columbia the Ministry of Education has shown specific interest in oral language by publishing a series of oral language 'enhancement' booklets (1988) folowed most recently by a booklet entitled 'Evaluating group communication across the curriculum' in 1995. Oral language also features significantly in the recent Language Arts Integrated Resource Package (IRP) where 5 out of 11 Prescribed Learning Outcomes directly address various aspects of orality (B.C.Ministry of Education, 1996). As recently as 1987, Olson convened a conference at the University of Toronto, titled "Literacy: The medium and the message." The purpose of the conference, according to Sinclair (1987) was to advance our understanding of both oral and written language, including their psychological and sociological effects. At the conference Olson (1987) most emphaticaly stated that orality 'is the core of all human competence.' In a longitudinal study under the auspices of the Toronto Board of Education, Wels and Chang-Wels (1992) conclude that it is through talk that tasks are negotiated, defined and evaluated, suggesting that the spoken word acts as the medium of exchange, i.e., currency, in classrooms. Talk is both the medium and the message and as Barnes (1993) says the means and goal of education. Wels and Chang-Wels (1992) propose that talk is the very 'essence of education' rather than a window through which one views other, seemingly more significant issues of teaching and learning. The cognitive benefits of orality have been promoted by Loban since the 1950s (Buckley, 1992). In a longitudinal study involving the measurement of 211 33 students, Loban suggests that oral language ability in primary grades is a significant predictor of success or failure in reading and writing in later grades. Students who scored highest in reading and writing in Grade 6 were similar to those who were notably powerful in their oral language in the primary grades. Orality as a Means to Learn Sorenson (1993) suggests that students are able to teach each other through talk. In an eighth grade literature course Sorenson set up three conditions as ground rules for discussion: courtesy, don't look at the teacher, and tolerate silence. To assist students in speaking and listening she provided a cue sheet and a self-evaluation form to be used during discussions. Sorenson made a connection for students between talking and writing by having them prepare for discussion through the use of 5-7 minutes of silent journal writing. These writings were in response to open-ended questions dealt with last day, teacher questions, and questions they would like answered. These function as potential entry points into the discussion. Finally, her students write a response to one or more of the ideas raised during the discussion. In an article addressing the issue of class discussions, Schaffer (1989) suggests that discussion questions must be of some interest to students; she labels these as 'interpretive questions.' Schaffer advocates significant 'wait time' for reflection before asking for student response. She also suggests that teachers keep records of who has spoken. Teachers must acknowledge children who speak, plan for closure, and recognize that students who speak least might need this activity most. 34 Keithley (1992) identified six activities that over 80% of his college composition classes found distinctively helpful to their development as writers. In all six instances speaking or listening were the key characteristics. Keithley concluded that the students' own voice, the acceptance of their own voice, and the connection between speaking and writing were the most significant factors influencing the improvement of their writing. In an attempt to integrate talk and writing, questioning and discussion, Bowser (1993) folowed her own conviction that conversation is an essential component of learning and that talk for learning should be used more effectively. Bowser concludes that re-structuring middle school classrooms for oral language is important and that she is still exploring the inclusion of talk in the classroom. Using her remedial students' writing class as subjects, Abbott (1989) discovered a 'talk-it-out' process was an effective pre-writing tool. Her discovery resulted from the awareness that her students all told better stories than they wrote. Believing that a connection existed between the writing process and talking, Abbott conjectured that given more opportunities to talk, remedial students' writing would also improve. She used audio-tapes to record students 'talking their essays' to prove her thesis and found that the students then used the tapes on their own to re-listen to their constructions. In addition, Abbott became convinced that silence in the remedial writing classroom was counter productive to composition. Dykstra (1994) suggests that students who have difficulty writing need to be made aware of a compositional framework they already have based on oral 35 language. Speaking and writing are two different ways of communicating but both have structure. Both have a centre of interest, use chaining of ideas, announce topics, and use a variety of genres. Dykstra concludes that the most significant difference between writing and speaking is that in writing one has time to reflect, to choose the most appropriate word, to condense, and to revise. In an article reviewing activities for the interactive classroom, Golub and Reid (1989) contend that three conditions are necessary for communication (writing or speaking) to occur; having something to say, having an audience, and getting feedback. Through the design of various communication activities, Golub and Reid structured talk as an integral part of classroom activities. They state that talk is needed to give order and meaning to events in our lives: through talk we reshape and develop our thoughts, and thought undergoes many changes as it turns into speech. Golub and Reid believe that it is through speech that thought finds its reality and form. Another approach which demonstrates pupil-teacher colaboration for knowledge construction is a model of dialogical teaching developed by Paulo Freire (Fernandez-Balboa & Marshall, 1994). This model recognizes all voices in the classroom to form the colaborative direction of inquiry. Teachers facilitate pupil inquiry rather than pupils folowing a predominantly teacher-directed:inquiry. Dialogicai pedagogy replaces monological pedagogy and is defined as a "free act, is sociaj, is inclusive, is participatory, is normative, is prepositional, is ongoing, is transformative, is anticipatory, is political" ( p. 174). 36 The problem for teachers is how to create a classroom environment where inner thought is made 'visible' through talk. Being able to talk does not guarantee that one is permitted to nor that one will be able to use spoken language effectively. It becomes incumbent on teachers to develop environments where talk is valued for both its social and cognitive contributions to learning. Potentialy Tsujumoto (1993) maintains, the classroom can become a place where making knowledge rather than studying existing knowledge occurs. It becomes imperative that teachers facilitate the development of classrooms where the best features of talk are evident. Fernandez-Balboa and Marshal (1994) contend that collaborative environments moderate pupil-teacher power relations, alow for less influence of the 'hidden' curriculum, and decrease the influence of the hierarchical power structures within schools. Through collaboration, the benefits of peer interactions can be effectively incorporated into the classroom curriculum. In order for more peer interactions to be incorporated into the classroom, the beliefs of student teachers require examination. However, the conception and study of beliefs is not as straight-forward as one would hope. One avenue through which to address student teacher beliefs is via perception. Perception as an Avenue of Investigation Few would argue that the beliefs teachers hold influence their behaviour in the classroom. Kagan (1992) maintains that teacher preparation programs cannot afford to ignore the beliefs of entering student teacher candidates. Yet studies 37 aimed at teacher beliefs have been scarce due most certainly to the difficulty of defining what beliefs are. Defining perception. Defining beliefs is a daunting task, as Pajares (1992) illustrates. After reading numerous studies of beliefs, Pajares observed that they most often overlap with definitions of knowledge. Beliefs are usually understood to include cognitive, affective, and behavioral components so that what teachers intend, say, and do, are based on their educational beliefs. To incorporate both knowledge and belief characteristics, Tabachnick and Zeichner (1984) contend that the term 'perception' is operationaly defensible as a research platform from which to investigate teachers' motivations to act. This does not include all beliefs or values because perception is defined specifically to a situation. Phelan and McLaughlin (1995) suggest that the idea of perception broadens the meaning of belief by including the aspect of action which is observable. Research findings reviewed by Pajares (1992), suggest that there is a strong relationship between teachers' perceptions (i.e., combination of knowledge and belief) and their planning, instructional decisions, and classroom practices. Like Kagan (1992), Pajares concludes that perception can be the single most important factor affecting teachers' decisions in the classroom. Rationale for a perceptual investigation. The rationale for using student teachers' perceptions of their own practice stems from a number of studies. Keithley (1992) questions the rarity of research that bases its conclusions on evidence of the learner's own observations. The strength of findings derived from students themselves as intimate observers of their own learning is logically 38 apparent. Craig et al. (1994) maintain that without participant involvement in their own professional development, student teacher learning is transitory. Tabachnick and Zeichner (1984) utilize this approach when they developed 13 individual student profiles based on the students' own perceptions of teaching. This approach is also folowed by Phelan and McLaughlin (1995) who indicate that the intent of their investigation was to examine patterns of teacher talk and practice from the teachers' own perspective rather than from a researchers' point of view. It becomes academicaly sound, therefore, to investigate factors which student teachers perceive (believe and know) affect their ability to facilitate oral strategies in the classroom. This study proposes that utilizing student teacher perceptions of practice is a worthy avenue of investigation, for it is their perceptions which motivate their intentions and subsequent actions. In anticipation of revealing what factors affect orality in the classroom, this study accepts perception as an operationaly useful research platform. Investigating student teacher beliefs. Examinations of beliefs are often neglected, Pajares (1992) claims and there is a need for more studies of student teacher perceptions of teaching through an investigation of their educational beliefs. He refers to the 'apprenticeship of observation' as being an entrenched collection of ideas about effective teaching and student behavior that are acquired during the many years of schooling prior to admission to teacher education programs. While many professional fields of inquiry such as medicine or law invite students into foreign arenas of practice, Pajares finds that student teachers, who are entering the familiar arenas of school often bring with them ideas which 39 are incompatible with successful teaching. Pajares also suggests that any study of teacher beliefs include an account of fundamental assumptions. One approach of identifying beliefs is through the use of metaphor. Mahlios and Maxson (1995) use the concept of metaphor to capture student teacher beliefs about schooling. By administering a six-part questionnaire titled "What was school like?" to 134 participants registered in their initial professional elementary education course, preferred metaphors were identified. The most preferred metaphors describing their elementary and secondary school experiences were those of 'family' (63%) or 'team' (27%) and although their memory of those experiences included 'family' (52%) and 'team' (24%) they also included metaphors of 'crowd' (18%) and 'prison' (12%). In addition the most common metaphor chosen to describe life was a 'tree' (31%) while childhood was most often described as a 'flower blossoming' (64%) or a 'bubbling spring' (14%). Important for this study are the preferred metaphors of school that strongly support an interactive approach to knowledge construction. The preferred metaphors of school identified as 'family' or 'team' imply preference for an interactive approach to learning. The aspect of nurturance implied in the metaphor of life as a 'tree' and the image of childhood as a 'blossoming flower' also support a major thesis of constructivist theory, that of guided interaction and the social construction of knowledge. Social interaction through talk provides an expedient vehicle to promote the development of classrooms where metaphors of 'family' and/or 'team' can become actual realities rather than just preferred ones. 40 Modifying Student Teacher Perceptions Although the identification of beliefs is a necessary step when examining classroom practice, the modification of beliefs is also required if they are incompatible with present teaching practices. Present teaching practices can be promoted through the modification of beliefs by utilizing constructivist methods of teaching, the modeling of teaching practices, and the use of interactive approaches in teacher education programs. Social-constructivist approach. Because beliefs are acquired through many years of 'apprenticeship of observation,' as Pajares (1992) suggests, they are difficult to modify or alter. Although teacher educators are aware of the influence of these acquired beliefs' over subsequent practice, Pajares contends they have failed to explore avenues to lessen that influence. This task is not easily accomplished: these beliefs are difficult to change, are formed early, and are wel entrenched by entrance to college. It seems that teacher education courses sometimes utilize behaviourist rather than social-constructivist approaches to modify such student teacher beliefs. Only one of forty-four studies that Brookhart and Freeman (1992) reviewed regarding perceptions investigated the knowledge of teacher candidates regarding their theoretical positions of teaching and learning. Only two out of forty-four studies attempted to identify misconceptions about teaching and learning based on constructivist theory. Brookhart and Freeman suggest that there is a need for much more research contrasting student teacher 41 predispositions toward behaviorist or constructivist theories of teaching and learning. Believing that the increased study of teacher beliefs is evidence of a research paradigm shift, Raymond and Santos (1995) used a contructivist methodology to study prospective teacher beliefs in a large university. They investigated beliefs by chalenging students about themselves as mathematics learners and to reflect on their knowing, doing, learning and teaching mathematics. Beliefs about self as a math student, about knowing, teaching, and doing mathematics became the categories for comparative analysis. Raymond and Santos conclude their study by suggesting that a descriptive analysis of perception can be used to answer descriptive questions. Secondly, and more importantly, they conclude that beliefs are more directly chalenged and modified when student teachers experience innovative pedagogy first hand. Having students construct their own beliefs through experience enables students to confront and chalenge their beliefs. Such constructivist processes, they believe, should be an integral part of teacher education. Craig et al. (1994) used constructivist processes in a reading methods course to chalenge student beliefs for the possibility of modifying their beliefs. They used student journals as a data source to track 106 students in 3 universities. For one semester students were asked to reflect on and record their thoughts, questions, and concerns related to language arts course work. Students wrote in their journals either once a week for 16 weeks or intermittently on eight different occasions. The instructors also wrote in journals and responded to 42 student journals after each entry. As Craig et al. suggest, journals were used to explore students' abilities to reflect, to explore beliefs and assumptions, to record reactions to modeling, and to evaluate the content reading of other related courses. Craig et al. conclude that only through participation in and practicing of activities related to reading methodology were student beliefs identified, questioned, and modified. Another constructivist approach was designed by Phelan and McLaughlin (1995). Their analysis included reading and re-reading individual student transcripts, identifying educational discourses, and noting teacher tendencies to question or accept pupil discourses. After analyzing each teacher's transcripts, they collated, compared, and contrasted the findings. Phelan and McLaughlin then returned to their respective data sets to examine how these discourses played out in the classroom. They identified two dominant discourses: self control and developmentaly appropriate practice. Their recommendations for teacher education include the need for baring of beliefs, discussion of the polyphony of discourses in education, and abandonment of discourses of certainty. Through modeling. Colaborative practices such as dialogical teaching that promote the use of peer interactions and exploratory talk in classrooms require demonstration or modeling before student teachers can implement them effectively. Dippo et al. (1991) suggest that student teacher pedagogical strategies reflect a lack of exposure because the way teaching and learning are talked about are seldom the way they are done in preparatory classrooms. 43 often choose dialogical metaphors of 'family' or 'team' when describing their preferred learning environment, they often choose teaching strategies that are much more didactic when designing lessons for their own pupils. In fact, Watson (1995) suggests that teachers are quite reluctant to move themselves from centre stage because that is what they predominantly see demonstrated. Lambdin and Preston (1995) maintain that the models and demonstrations student teachers observe in their teacher education programs contrasts sharply with the requirements of a more collaborative classroom. Interactive and dialogical teaching styles are effectively promoted when the modeling of such practices occurs in teacher education programs. Through interaction. In order to promote more interactive teaching within classrooms, student teachers require experiences that call to question assumptions and beliefs that they hold about teaching. Hiebert (1990) maintains that not many teachers have had the training to create classroom contexts that foster talk. Lambdin and Preston (1995) suggest that the best course to follow in modifying teaching practices is to experience new practices in a manner consistent with the new practices. Phelan and McLaughlin (1995) conducted a study with the purpose of examining the role of discourse practices in modifying teacher beliefs. They suggest that this be done through the sharing of stories, reading professional journals, and reading about teachers' lives. Mahlios and Maxson (1995) recommend that we modify student teacher practices by providing students with 44 feedback on their present beliefs through programs designed with an interactional component. Raymond and Santos (1995) maintain that students need to experience situations to develop the confidence they need to respond constructively when they teach. Student teachers' exposure to various interactive teaching models and personal experiences with interactive learning during their pre-practicum program is important. Johnston (1994) suggests that student teachers be involved in frequent discussions where the process of learning to teach is rich with interactions through talk and writing. With exposure to more interactive models and experiences within preparatory classrooms, Craig et al. (1994) insist that student teachers would be more confident and effective when implementing interactive strategies in their practicum classrooms. It is recognized that the many years of pre-practicum school experiences as wel as teacher education programs dominated by presentational pedagogies have established beliefs that are resistant to change. The suggestion here is that if orality is to be valued as a learning approach in the classroom, perceptions of its effectiveness will need to be modified. Altering these perceptions is most effectively realized if social constructivist approaches are modeled and experienced within teacher education programs. Conditions Affecting the Implementation of Orality Effective implementation of orally interactive strategies in the classroom is influenced by a number of conditions. One of these conditions is the creation of a 45 teacher development model which enables the determination of an optimum entry point for introducing changes in pedagogical practice. A teacher development model would alow for the systematic, appropriate introduction of orally interactive procedures into practicum classrooms. Other conditions affecting the implementation of orality include using smal groups, issues of ownership, viewing teachers as partners, the use of transmissive or transformative pedagogy, and the development of assessment procedures. A teacher development model. Most research in the 1960s and 1970s was concerned with the evolution of teacher skill examined through empirical studies, using large samples and quantitative, generalizable results. In the 1980s researchers began to generate more naturalistic studies of teacher development. These 'learning to teach' studies were qualitative in methodology and focused on smal samples. Kagan (1992) criticizes these studies for not revealing a common sequence or model of teacher development. Brookhart and Freeman (1992) support Kagan (1992) in their call for a 'learning-to-teach' model of teacher development. They believe that such a model would provide some direction for answering many questions. Their questions concerned how beliefs and orientations influence student teacher interpretations of teacher education and how these beliefs could be modified. Using Fuller's (1969) and Berliner's (1988) models of teacher development as a guide, Kagan (1992) inferred a new model of teacher development. Kagan maintained that during the initial stage of development, teacher concerns focus primarily on self; in the second stage, teachers focus mostly on 46 management; and in the third stage, teachers' focus more on pupil learning. McDermott, Gormley, Rothenberg, and Hammer (1995) elaborated on this model by embracing the idea that the initial focus of novices on self is a necessary and valuable stage, that knowledge of self and of pupils evolves simultaneously, that effective routines which integrate class management and instruction occur subsequently to a focus on self. In the final stages, student teachers begin to focus on pupil learning while continuing to maintain self-knowledge and management procedures. Kagan(1992) expands his notion of stages of teacher development by commenting that there is a need for more procedural and less theoretical knowledge with an increase in self-reflection and pupil interaction. He concludes his study with a contentious claim that questions the need for theory at any point in teacher development. The implications of a such 'learning-to-teach' model are significant for the implementation of an orally interactive curriculum. The introduction of such a curriculum is determined in large part by the 'developmental readiness' of a student teacher. When student teacher concerns for self and classroom management predominate, the introduction of orally interactive strategies in the practicum would be premature. However, the identification of student teacher perceptions of factors affecting oral interactions would provide an indication of student teacher 'readiness.' With a developmental model to guide teacher education the introduction of orally interactive strategies could be expected to be more appropriate during the later stages. The appropriateness of introducing 47 such interactive strategies would also depend on the extent of modeling and demonstrations in pre-practicum preparation courses. Using smal groups. A second condition affecting orality in the classroom is that its effectiveness is often determined by the organization of pupils into smal groups. Although smal groups are fundamentaly organized around the principle of orality, they do not necessarily result in academic achievement. McLaughlin (1989) wondered why classrooms that professed to emphasize orality were so unsuccessful. Being 'zealous' about classrooms where speaking, listening, reading, and writing are integrated, McLaughlin elaborated on some frustrations and possible suggestions for dealing with them. Chief among his recommendations were for teachers to be patient, tolerant, and to handle communication apprehension carefully. Convincing administrators and parents that listening and speaking are as important as reading and writing seemed to be a continuing chalenge. Not all talking is necessarily productive, Nystrand, Gamoran, and Heck (1993) found. Using eighth grade classrooms they found negative results for achievement in smal group literature discussions. Not willing to accept this finding, Nystrand et al. in a subsequent study observed smal group activities in 54 ninth grade classrooms and discovered that in only 29 out of 216 class sessions were smal group strategies actually used. Validation of students as thinkers, not just as group responders to teacher determined activities requires more than mere organization of pupils into smal groups. Nystrand et al. conclude that when smal groups achieved less it was because they were used ineffectively. 48 Ownership. Another condition affecting orality in the classroom is ownership. Using a continuum model to show levels of teacher control compared to student autonomy, Nystrand, Gamoran, and Heck (1993) found that only 11% of the smal groups promoted pupil ownership. They conclude that for group work to succeed teachers must design colaborative tasks that are engaging and cultivate student ownership. Using her own grade ten classrooms, Cintorino (1993) found that getting started, deciding who begins, exploring variations, keeping discussion moving, supporting each other, and dealing with conflict all emerged as indicators of quality of talk within a large group. What also seemed to occur as quality improved was a shift in focus from who was talking, to a focus on what the talking was about. Cintorino concluded that if pupils are alowed to make meaning for themselves, the opportunities for learning increases dramaticaly. Learning through talk became a major means of constructing knowledge and Cintorino says she will never again hold a monopoly on talk in the classroom. Her voice will be one among many thereby encouraging pupil empowerment and ownership of the tasks of teaching and learning. Teachers as partners. Another condition affecting orality in the classroom is the adoption of teacher-as-partner in learning. Exploratory conversations and dialogical teaching become a possibility when teachers become conversational partners who listen, alow time to speak, and talk about things they don't already know (Ward, 1997). Conversations in the classroom have enormous potential for stimulating learning as teachers 'move the big desk,' says Fawcett (1992) and 49 'give up the lectern,' says Watson (1995). To reduce the dominance of teacher talk and establish routines of negotiation and meaning making becomes the chalenge in establishing a colaborative classroom (Shor, 1987; Ward, 1997). As conversational partners, teachers need to develop strategies that promote restraint and listening on their part while the 'novice' i.e., pupil, speaks. Transformative versus transmissive pedagogy. Another condition affecting orality in the classroom is the pedagogical perspective adopted by educators. Beliefs about curriculum are poignantly illustrated when responding to pedagogical dilemmas developed by Berlak and Berlak (1981). Description of transmissive orientations as described by Miller and Sellar (1986) are particularly antithetical to orally interactive pedagogical practices. Lauritzen and Jaeger (1997) contrast the transmissive approaches with constructive pedagogy which they characterize as the inclusion of student voices from planning to assessment. The predominance of natural, authentic organizers, and facilitative teachers assisting students to construct their own knowledge are much more conducive to oral interaction. Lauritzen and Jaeger suggest that oral interactions are enhanced by an emphasis on learning through social interaction, recognizing students' prior knowledge, and the creation of meaningful contexts for learning. The tenets of constructivism highlighted by Lauritzen and Jaeger such as student-directed learning and open-ended instruction, lend support to oral interactivity. When teachers stand in front of the class and deliver their version of knowledge, Strachan (1990) suggests they do what learners need to do. 50 Teachers need to alow children to say what has made sense to them, they need to construct patterns, and reshape material to explain it in their own way. Through talking we enact what we are thinking, says Strachan. When teachers lecture they share what they have learned, not how they learned or what it means to learn. In this way they reinforce the commodity metaphor of learning, i.e., knowledge is something which can be given, taken, and contained. Encouragement for transformative pedagogies to permeate all discourses is apparent in new directions prescribed by the National Council of Teachers of Mathematics, Science, and English-Language Arts (Lambdin & Preston, 1995; Raymond & Santos, 1995). Teachers are instructed to relinquish their authoritative stance and encourage students to formulate and verify conjectures for themselves rather than rely on teachers or texts. Assessment. Another condition affecting the development of orality in the classroom is credibility. One avenue to increase credibility is through authentic assessment, yet in making oral language more prevalent in the classroom, assessment is often cited as the most difficult. This concern was echoed by Loban in the 1950s when he said that as long as oral language isflot evaluated it will remain unimportant (Buckley, 1992). Ward (1997) addresses this concern by suggesting four reasons for our incompetence in evaluating oral language: the lack of importance given to oral language, that no formal tests are available, that informal assessment is ignored because of its subjectivity, and that 'talking to learn' is not recognized. Addressing these concerns becomes necessary to raise the importance of orality in the classroom. 51 Although Ward (1997) includes a chapter in her book on issues in oral language evaluation, she does not address the very issues she raises. Much more specific methods to gather information such as holistic scoring paradigms and observational checklists require development. Hallidays' (1975) functions of language, which Ward (1997) mentions, could be utilized as organizers around which such efforts could be developed. Tests such as those developed by Underhil (1987), could be used to formalize results. In his text of spoken language tests, Underhil makes the point that oral testing is significantly different than other types of testing. In oral testing the marker and speaker are the most important components. The subjectivity of the participant actions is precisely what Underhil values and finds worth measuring. The aims of oral assessment, according to Underhil are proficiency, placement, diagnosis, and achievement. Included in his text are 12 test types and 20 elicitation techniques which assess oral language ability. The Ministry of Education in British Columbia has taken some initiative in this regard by developing rating scales to evaluate group communication skills (B.C. Ministry of Education, 1995). Using 5 categories of context, pupil performance is described in areas of physical, language, social, ideas, and awareness. These descriptors are intended as a broad framework for viewing listening and speaking development and provide a context for reporting, for support, and for developing a common language. 52 Special Conditions Affecting Orality in the Practicum Several conditions have a special influence during the practicum and, therefore, affect the development of an orally interactive environment in the classroom in a unique manner. They include conditions such as the influence of sponsor teachers, the communicative ability of the participants, the duration and quality of the practicum, and the prevailing public perceptions of student teaching. One of the most important conditions affecting the practicum experience is the sponsor teacher. Norman and Shapson (1989) suggest that the sponsor teacher is at the centre of factors influencing the development of a student teacher's classroom environment. They believe that the role of sponsor teacher should be more formalized to alow for the development and identification of master teachers who are most effective in the development of student teachers. Norman and Shapson believe the sponsor teacher is the key factor influencing a student teacher in developing an environment where new skills, attitudes, and a willingness to take risks are learned. These new skills, attitudes, and risk-taking are necessary if orally interactive learning environments are to be developed. Another condition influencing the practicum is the communicative ability of student teachers, pupils, and the sponsor teachers. Dippo et al. (1991) suggest that issues such as authority, methods of evaluation, and the use of texts all require skillful negotiations between the student teacher, sponsor, supervisor, and pupils. These negotiations often occur orally and are dependent on the ability of the participants to communicate effectively with each other. A recommendation Ludwig (1994) offers for practicum success is for sponsors and student teachers to 53 remain open to alternatives. Effective communication between those involved in the classroom is a necessary pre-condition for a successful orally interactive classroom. Improving the quality of the practicum is another condition affecting the practicum classroom. Although Zeichner (1990) contends that students and teachers at times link quality of experience with quantity, Johnston (1994) asserts that there is an urgent need to examine how practicum experiences contribute to 'learning how to teach.' Using interviews and observations of eight students in their last year of teacher education, Johnston questions the assumption that a simple relationship exists between the quantity of school experience and the quality of learning of student teachers. Rather than using a survey, she examines this assumption by acknowledging the perceptions of the student teachers themselves. Johnston concludes that learning to teach must be rich with interaction through talking and writing. Experience is not enough: practicum duration and practicum quality are not simply linked; it is the thought and subsequent action which determines its value. Zeichner (1990) suggests that the practicum learning process be improved by developing a specific curriculum. The beliefs of student teachers are another condition affecting the nature of the practicum experience. Johnston (1994) found that there was a dilemma between teaching the way students wanted to and what was required by the sponsor or class program. Johnston found that many student teachers' beliefs conflicted with practice. In order to benefit more adequately from the practicum these beliefs, which are resistant to change (Pajares, 1992), must be examined. 54 An additional condition which shapes student teacher praxis includes the publics' view of teachers. The portrayal of teachers as requiring charismatic personas to be successful is critiqued by Bailey (1988). Ungerlieder (1995) suggests that teachers and students are often portrayed in newspapers as 'failing the grade' and McQuade (1995) exhorts teachers to 'right' the story (pun intended) of what goes on in classrooms. Media portrayals such as these led the British Columbia Teachers Federation to launch a series of articles in the newspaper titled, 'Inventing Crisis' (1996), to dispel some of the myths commonly held by the public about education. Additional conditions that influence the classroom environment during the practicum include the professional qualities of sponsors, the planning abilities of student teachers, their instructional techniques, and their classroom management skills. Inclusion of specific attention to planning, teaching strategies, and management in student handbooks for the practicum underscores their importance (Colege of the Rockies, 1995-96; Okanagan University College, 1996-97; University of British Columbia, 1993-94). Numerous conditions influence the teaching and learning environments student teachers develop during their practicum. What works and why, knowledge of pupil interactions, and a realistic view of teaching in its full classroom/school context becomes readily apparent in the practicum classroom. In addition, duration and quality of the practicum, latent beliefs of the student teacher, and communicative ability of those involved influence the success of the practicum. 55 Finally, the quality of the practicum is particularly influenced by the sponsor teacher. Conditions affecting the implementation of orality in the classroom are most substantially influenced by a 'learning to teach' model developed by Kagan (1992). Student teacher readiness evident in concern for pupil learning can be a guide for introducing orally interactive strategies into the practicum curriculum. Until then, the model would suggest that student teacher attention and practicum supervision focus remain appropriately on the development of self-as-teacher and secondly, on management of pupils and routines. In addition, to effectively implement orally interactive teaching strategies the folowing issues need to be addressed: ownership, quality of smal group teaching, colaborative teaching, transformative pedagogy, and oral assessment procedures. Investigating Orality As a result of an inquiry into small group skills required of the Middle Years Language Arts Curriculum in Manitoba, Bryant and Lee (1991) designed an instrument to assess the extent to which oral language occurred in the Winnipeg School Division. This new curriculum emphasized oral interaction in the classroom which Bryant and Lee operationalized by examining performance in a group, oral skills, and articulation of ideas. Using teams of observers they sought to find out what was valuable about student work in groups and what could be the object of evaluation. Three categories of skills emerged as numerous lists and categories were devised to accommodate the various perspectives. Folowing several pilot runs, a 56 procedure and checklist were developed to measure the implementation effectiveness of the oral language component of this curriculum. The most valuable aspect of this project was that it provided a highly visible, concrete image of how interactive classrooms might function. It also underscored the importance of teaching individual and group oral response skills in the classroom and provided a useful, large-scale authentic assessment instrument. Setting the Stage This study intends to identify and describe factors which student teachers perceive of as having an affect on their ability to develop, implement, and maintain an orally interactive practicum classroom. In focusing on the perceptions of student teachers directly, this study purports to counter prescriptive views of teacher education. Kagan (1992) suggests teacher education programs accept student teachers where they are in their development. To ensure a more effective pre-service education Brookman and Freeman (1992), Craig et al. (1994), and Kagan (1992) suggest that we ask student teachers what their perceptions are and design our programs in developmentaly appropriate ways. It is imperative in promoting orally interactive strategies that the student teachers' developmental readiness be taken into account. The recursive nature of talk where each encounter rebounds and reverberates into other talk 'spaces' suggests that orality in the classroom is a viable avenue for research. This necessitates an investigation into the ways that children use talk in a variety of contexts within classrooms, where talk can be explored as an instructional device, an assessment tool, as a path to 57 understanding, or as a point of contact. Mahlios and Maxson (1995) suggest that an investigation into orality begins with the creation and promotion of teaching practices which foster exploratory conversations and promote dialogical teaching. Gallas, et al. (1996) suggest that to promote talk as a central part of classroom discourse we learn to 'orchestrate' talk by investigating how children use talk. To promote orality as a medium of learning in the classroom the researcher intends to heed the exhortations of Mahlios and Maxson (1995) and Gallas, et al. (1996) by investigating the perceptions of student teachers regarding factors affecting oral interactions in the practicum classroom. To promote orality effectively, this study adheres to Berk's (1994) suggestion that an investigation into factors affecting orality is most appropriate. Specifically, the purpose of this study is to investigate factors which apprentice teachers perceive of as affecting oral interaction. Such an investigation has the potential to influence both classroom practice and teacher education. 58 Chapter 3 Methodology The purpose of this study is to identify and describe factors which student teachers perceive as affecting the development of an orally interactive environment within their practicum classroom. Through the qualitative analysis of student teacher interviews, dialogue journals, questionnaires, and folow-up interviews, factors affecting orality are expected to emerge. Identifying and describing these factors is an initial step in promoting oral interactions within the classroom as a valid medium for constructing knowledge (Berk, 1994; Strachan, 1990). A secondary result of this identification and description is the provision of strategic knowledge enabling student teacher education programs to design programs where dialogue for intellectual growth is more effectively addressed as a valuable instructional strategy (Lazar, 1995; Shor, 1987). Research Questions Research questions are a crucial technique necessary for entry into an academic inquiry and act as a mechanism to narrow this investigation into an achievable enterprise. The initial question this study revolved around was, "Can orality be utilized more within the classroom?" Because of the researcher's involvement in teacher education a subsequent question, "Is the utilization of orality in the classroom a result of teacher education?" emerged. Considering the importance attributed to the practicum within teacher education a more specific question became, "How does the practicum experience influence the utilization of orality in the classroom?" Recognizing that participant perspectives are important 59 when investigating teaching practices, the data sources chosen for this study were selected to most clearly reveal student teacher perspectives. The identification of beliefs is an important step in changing them and, therefore, the focal question for this study is, "What factors do student teachers perceive affect their ability to develop an orally interactive environment in the practicum classroom?" Characteristics of this Investigation Paralleling the recursive refinement of questions designed to elicit data regarding orality in the classroom was the gradual emergence of an appropriate research design. Being persuaded that enumerative, verificative data counts are not to be taken at face value, this study sought out an alternative approach (Bogden & Biklen, 1982). The involvement of the researcher-instructor and the collection of data prior to formalizing a design format also suggests that a research design more congruent with the intentions of this investigation was required. That congruency was most evident in the research designs suggested by Bogden and Biklen, (1982), Ely et al. (1991), and Goetz and LeCompte (1991). These qualitative, ethnographic researchers suggested a variety of characteristics that are essential to this type of research and were congruent with the intentions of this investigation. Using the three approaches as a scaffold a number of common, fundamental characteristics appeared which describe the placement of this investigation more on the qualitative end of the four assumptive continua postulated by Goetz and LeCompte. Description. One characteristic of ethnographic research is the extensive amount of description included in reporting (Bogden & Biklen, 1982; Ely, et al., 60 1991; Goetz & LeCompte, 1984). This is sometimes referred to as 'thick' description (Bogden & Biklen, 1982) or as a 'collection of data' or 'phenomenon' (Goetz & LeCompte, 1991). Descriptions include details of data collection procedures, explanations of the role of the researcher, and a full portrayal of the setting. This particular investigation provides examples of comments made during the interviews and the dialogue journals, as wel as an analysis of responses to the questionnaires. Examples of responses to data-analysis are also given. In ethnographic research the researcher is the key instrument in collecting, analyzing, and reporting the findings. As such this design recognizes and includes the biases and perceptions of the researcher (Bogden & Biklen, 1982; Ely, et al. 1991; Goetz & LeCompte, 1984). Acting both externaly as researcher and internaly as instructor required the investigator to operate within that 'interface,' a role recognized and legitimized through ethnographic description (Goetz & LeCompte). Description of the setting is also integral to ethnographic research and includes descriptions which are naturalistic (Bogden & Biklen, 1982), subjective rather than objective (Goetz & LeCompte, 1984), and not artificial. Within ethnographic inquiry, meaning is not contrived or pre-defined (Ely, et al., 1991). Rather, the settings are taken as given and described as appropriately as possible, for example, classrooms, homes or restaurants (Ely, et al., 1991). Likewise the interviews occurred in a variety of settings at the students' convenience. The dialogue journals were written by students in non-contrived settings such as their classrooms, or offices, and homes whereas the rationale 61 and distribution of questionnaires occurred within a college classroom. However, the questionnaires were completed on students' own time (Goetz & LeCompte, 1984). Folow-up interviews involved volunteers who met at the student's and researchers' convenience approximately one year later. Inclusion of participant perspectives. A concern of this ethnographic research was to elicit the participants' perspectives as accurately and extensively as possible. This particular aspect of ethnographic design exerted much influence in guiding the data collection process and analysis. Concern with eliciting participant perspectives is supported by research into perspective modification (Kagan, 1992; Pajares, 1992). Although other data had been collected, it was the characteristic of participant perspectives which determined the inclusion or exclusion of data (Bogden & Biklen, 1982; Ely, et al., 1991; Goetz & Lecompte, 1984). In addition, the researcher deemed the perspectives of student teachers to be potentialy the most influential in determining some aspects of the curriculum in teacher education. Use of an inductive process. Utilization of an inductive approach to research analysis is another typically ethnographic characteristic where the formation of theory occurs after successive examinations of the data. In this investigation the recording of student teacher perspectives evident in the interviews, isolation of comments in the dialogue journals, and recording of questionnaire responses preceded their analysis. This process exemplifies inductive inquiry (Bogden & Biklen, 1982) and places it on the inductive end of the inductive-deductive assumptive continuum (Goetz & LeCdrtlpte, 1991). The 62 inductive nature of ethnographic research encourages the collection of the data before analysis occurs and the discovery of constructs after the data had been colected and analysis had begun (Ely, et al., 1991). Use of a constructive process. A further characteristic of ethnographic research is the construction of theoretical frameworks arising or emerging from the data. This investigation focused on constructing theoretical factors which emerged from an analysis of the interviews, dialogue journals, and questionnaires affecting oral interactivity in the classroom. These frameworks arose from constructive rather than enumerative activities (Goetz & LeCompte, 1984) and were colected in particular settings, namely, the practicum (Ely, et al. 1991). The intention of including an enumerative questionnaire was to support, elaborate, or modify the interpretation of factors which would result from the analysis of the interviews. It was the intention of the researcher that such an enumerative component would lend additional validity and reliability to the findings (Bogden & Biklen, 1982). Use of a generative process. Another characteristic of ethnographic research is the generative rather than verificative process directing data collection (Goetz & LeCompte, 1984). In this investigation the discovery of factors originated from an analysis of the data rather than an attempt to verify an hypothesis developed elsewhere. Ely et al. (1991) suggest that this process is holistic in design, not focused on narrow and specific items determined beforehand. The research question for this investigation proposes to identify factors affecting oral activity and participant perspectives are expected to generate these. 63 Use of a subjective process. A final essential characteristic of this ethnographic investigation is its subjectivity. The goal was to reconstruct factors and categories the participants themselves used to conceptualize their experiences (Goetz & LeCompte, 1984). Through recursive analysis of students' interviews, dialogue journals, and questionnaire responses, this investigation utilized a subjective rather than objective approach to construct conceptual categories and to explain data relationships (Ely, et al., 1991). As 'circles within circles,' conceptualizations formed here remain subjective, always re-constructing, always spiraling (Ely, et al.). Using the practicum. Choosing the practicum as the site for this investigation stems from the dearth of existent knowledge about the evolution of the 'learning-to-teach' process despite over four decades of empirical research (Kagan, 1992). There is very little understanding of how the practicum experience contributes to this process (Johnston, 1994). Perhaps this is because so little research has been done on what occurs during the practicum (Tabachnick & Zeichner, 1984). Since the practicum is a cardinal feature of most teacher education programs, it would seem to be a particularly appropriate vantage point from which to examine student teacher perspectives regarding oral interactivity. The practicum is also a critical venue from which to observe the success of student teachers integrating their pedagogical studies with the practical realities of the classroom (McDermott, et al., 1995). It is here where student teachers behave in ways which reflect what they believe and know. Students indicate that the practicum is the most crucial aspect of their teacher education (B.C.C.T., 1997; 64 Johnston, 1994; Tabachnick & Zeichner, 1984) and as such this study intends to explore this event to reveal those specific perceptions of factors which affect oral interactivity. Since improved practica experiences seem to be the goal of reform in teacher education (Goodlad, J. 1991; McDermott, et al., 1991), this investigation expects to provide a better understanding of the 'learning-to-teach' process and thereby, make the practicum more effective. The development of a specific curriculum for the practicum (Zeichner, 1990) through the implementation of orally interactive strategies may be such a fruitful and practical result. Using perception. Perceptions of student teachers are chosen as an entry point into this investigation of oral interaction due to their influence in controling teacher behaviour (Kagan, 1992; Pajares, 1992). The rarity of using perception as a basis for research into the effects of a teaching strategy is surprising considering the extent of their influence (Keithley, 1992). The strength of the connection between teachers' perceptions and their planning, instructional decisions, and classroom practices makes perception a pertinent entry point for pedagogical modification (Pajares, 1992). In addition, the use of students as observers of their own practice has significant potential for teacher development which this investigation intends to exploit (Johnston, 1994; Tabachnick & Zeichner, 1984). From a phenomenological perspective, the use of student teacher perceptions develops introspection as a potent strategy for revealing students' own understandings of factors affecting oral interactions (Bogden & Biklen, 1982). In anticipation of 65 revealing what those factors are, this study posits student teacher perceptions as an operationaly useful construct to investigate factors which affect oral interactions in the classroom. Participants The data for this qualitative study were colected from a core group of 24 (20 female; 4 male) student teachers in their final year of a two year East Kootenay Teacher Education Program (EKTEP) sponsored by the University of Victoria and located in the city of Cranbrook. Students ranged in age from 22 to 36 years of age and all except one were from English speaking backgrounds. Most had completed a two year college preparatory program prior to entering the teacher education program. Only two of the sample had completed degrees in another discipline prior to entering teacher education. The teacher education program consisted of a two-year program interspersed with classroom visitations, especially in the first year. Practicum components consists of 3 weeks at the end of the first year, folowed by 4 weeks in November to early December and 6 weeks in April to May of their second year. Students completing the program qualify for a four year Certificate of Education degree from the University of Victoria. Those wishing to complete their fifth year and qualify for a Bachelor of Education degree must do so at another centre in the province. Approximately one-third of the students do so; however, most register with local school districts as substitutes with the prospect of ful-time work in the future. 6 6 Sampling. The student sample for this investigation included 13 student volunteers from a core group of 24 student teachers in their second year of elementary teacher education. They included 10 out of a possible 12 students who were supervised by the researcher-instructor in two separate practica and three additional students not supervised by the researcher who were interested in participating. In the first practicum all six of the students being supervised by the researcher-instructor participated, were interviewed and submitted their dialogue journals. In the second term only four students out of a possible six offered to participate as two students withdrew from the teacher education program. Interestingly, three additional male students not being supervised by the researcher volunteered to participate in the study, participated in the interviews, and submitted their dialogue journals. Increasing the student numbers was difficult because of the distance of their practicum placements from the college. In addition, suspicions as to the value and purpose of research resulted in fewer participants than anticipated even though ethical research procedures had been folowed (See Appendix C). In the folow-up interviews the two students who had participated in the initial study agreed to discuss the findings and have their responses recorded. Their selection occurred for three reasons: they had participated in the original study, because of their geographical proximity to the researcher in another city, and their interest in the results of the investigation. 67 Ethical Considerations Ethical considerations for this investigation centred around four principles: protection of subject identities, respect of subjects, clarification and maintenance of contract obligations, and accurate reporting of data (Bogden & Biklen, 1982). Ethnographic research is an ethical endeavour and, as such, this investigation clearly indicated how conclusions were checked, how participants were involved, how data was collected, how results will be communicated, and for what purposes the data will be used (Ely, et al., 1991). Further ethical considerations are addressed through formal organizational, participant, questionnaire, and departmental consent forms (Appendix D). Data Types Although data such as observation reports, video-tapes, and final reports were collected, the focus of data collection narrowed during the later stages to reflect specifically the students' own perceptions. These data included interviews, student teacher dialogue journals, a questionnaire, and a folow-up interview. The materials were colected and organized into fall and spring terms to alow for the possibility of identifying differences from one term to another. The first source of data colected for this study was the post-practicum interviews of 40-50 minutes which were audio-taped, transcribed, and analyzed to identify factors that the student teachers perceive as affecting the development of orally interactive classrooms. Focus questions were constructed to provide student teachers with a variety of entry points into the 'conversation' concerning oral interactions in the classroom (See Appendix A). The interviews were held in 68 student homes, in offices, at the college, in my home, and in restaurants, and made use of a portable tape-recorder. In all there were 13 interviews, 6 with students (female) after their initial practicum and 7 with students (3 male; 4 female) after their final practicum; 3 students participated in both terms. Dialogue journals, recommended as a method of maintaining or developing a dialogue between the sponsor and student teacher during the practicum provided a second source of data for investigating oral interactions. The dialogue journals were unique in that the data represented by them records the perceptions of student teachers during their practica. Although these dialogue journals were read by both the sponsor teacher and the researcher, the researcher-instructors' purpose was to identify comments made which might reflect student teacher concerns regarding oral interactions in the classroom. It was expected that comments made in these journals would provide additional evidence to support, chalenge, or modify perceptions revealed in the interviews. In addition to the interviews and dialogue journals, an anonymous questionnaire was administered twice in the school year, once after each practicum. The 10 questionnaire statements were constructed to alow for responses on a Likert-type scale from strongly agree to strongly disagree (See Appendix B). This questionnaire was expected to yield information on student teacher perspectives regarding the value, concerns, and effectiveness of orally interactive classrooms as wel as any changes in perceptions that might occur from one practicum to another. Responses to these questionnaires, displayed in 69 graph form were expected to support, chalenge, or modify findings generated from the analysis of interviews transcripts. A fourth data source, the folow-up interview, was utilized to revisit the participants in order to 'check' the findings (Ely, et al. ,1991). These folow-up interviews were expected to confirm, refine, or perhaps adjust the findings from the analysis of the interviews. Along with their modification of findings these folow-up interviews lend credibility to the factors this study intends to identify. Data Collection Table 1 Subject Data Collection Characteristics (N=24) Interviews Dialogue journals Questionnaires Folow-up Interviews Term 1 Students 6 6 16 -Term 2 Students 7 7 6 -One year later - - 2 Thirteen interviews were conducted, 13 dialogue journals were collected, and a total of 22 questionnaires completed (See Table 1). The student teachers ranged in age from 22-35 years of age and were placed in classrooms that included Kindergarten to Grade 7 in 3 public and one private elementary school. Data Analysis In ethnographic research the analytic processes differs from other research models in that the types of data collected, the collection of data, and the analysis of data are often linked and overlap (Goetz & LeCompte, 1984). Recognizing the 70 difficulty of separating collection and analysis procedures in ethnographic research, this investigation viewed the three-stage schema suggested by Goetz & LeCompte (1984) as an effective paradigm to analyze data separately and still account for this interdependence. Stage one. In the first part of stage one the researcher theorized that during the interviews students would reveal explanations for the difficulties encountered when implementing more orally interactive strategies in the classroom. By asking focus questions the researcher expected that analytic categories would emerge in the interviews. This was accomplished by perceiving divisions that guided subsequent data collection and also provided a means to reduce data to manageable proportions. The interview responses will then be categorized after they are compared, contrasted, aggregated, and ordered. This will be folowed by establishing linkage or relationships between interview data and that from the dialogue journals and questionnaires. If the divisions perceived from the interview data appeared congruent or applicable to the other data, these speculations were accepted as valid. These divisions will then be explored as factors which affect oral interaction and they will be applied to the other data collected. In the second part of this first analytic stage, strategies for sequential selection which are open-ended and explore alternative explanations will be investigated. For example, negative-case selection, discrepant-case selection, theoretical sampling, and testing of theoretical implications will be utilized to reveal alternative explanations for factors affecting orality (Ely, et al., 1991; Goetz & LeCompte, 1984). In this study, negative-cases and discrepant-cases are 71 expected to become evident as student responses refer to differences in literacy and orality processes resulting in alternative explanations for factors affecting orality in the classroom. Also, as a result of the researchers involvement in preliminary sampling during the collection phase, some data not pertinent will be eliminated. Finally, the theoretical implications of using the interview data as a primary data source are expected to be verified using comments from the dialogue journals and questionnaire results. The 'fit' of divisions used for the interview data when analyzing the dialogue journal comments is expected to legitimize their definition. In the third part of this first stage, induction, constant comparison, typological analysis, enumeration, and standardized observational protocols provide useful ways to examine naturalistic data (Ely, et al., 1991; Goetz & LeCompte, 1984). Using analytic induction the researcher will scan the transcripts of the interview and the dialogue journal comments to develop categories, or relationships among categories and developed working typologies. Interview and dialogue journal comments, as wel as questionnaire responses will be compared to develop explanatory constructs of oral interactivity. It is expected that these explanations will fit into some typological framework, reflecting participant-designated constructs. Frequency enumeration of factors affecting orality are expected to provide some quality control and supplement the descriptive data after factors or categories are developed. Standardized observational protocols will not be utilized in this investigation because the factors and categories 72 generated will be the result of data analysis, not pre-determined frameworks which were used to guide subsequent observation. Stage two. In the second stage of analysis the focus is on handling, processing, and manipulating the data to generate constructs and discover patterns. This involves revisiting the initial proposal, reviewing the questions that shape the initial inquiry, and examining the varied audiences for whom this study is intended. This will be folowed by re-reading the data for the purpose of checking for completeness and for re-acquaintance with the data. Simultaneously, the researcher notes taken from the interviews are the beginnings of an outline of classifications that emerged. It is expected that a broad framework, with continuous modification, will emerge into which specific responses of oral interactivity will be added until all the data is accounted for. Stage three. Utilizing Goetz and LeComptes' (1984) third stage of analysis, the intention is to interpret and integrate the findings to facilitate understandings of data analysis beyond the immediate circumstances of the study. This involves more than mere description and includes consolidation or application of theory, including the use of metaphors or analogies, and the synthesis of results. The application of theory to constructs discovered in this investigation include those developed by Wels and Chang-Wels (1992) who regard orality as a viable means of knowledge construction. Application of theoretical concepts includes those developed by Bianchi and Cullere's (1996) perspective of different ways with words as wel as Olson's (1994) and Berk's (1994) notion that dialogue is a viable avenue of teaching and learning. Finally, Vygotsky's (1962) idea that 73 all mental activity is jointly constructed through dialogue and Bakhtin's (Nystrand, Green, et al., 1992) notion that words are shared territory are also supported. As the aim of this study is to create a new structure for the explanation of factors affecting orality in the classroom, the use of a metaphor will be explored to create linkages between practice and theory. As an analytic tool, metaphors based on conversational, orchestral, foundational, organic or biological processes will be explored to describe the interaction of pupils with each other and their teachers. Validity and Reliability Important to any investigation of human endeavour are concerns with validity and reliability, also referred to as, credibility, trustworthiness, transferability, dependability, confirmability or authenticity (Bogden & Biklen, 1982; Ely, et al., 1991; Goetz & LeCompte, 1984). Concerns with reliability and validity in this investigation will be addressed through the collection of a variety of data sources, triangulating data sources, clarification of the researcher's role, and the use of folow-up interviews. Validity. In choosing a variety of data sources this investigation seeks to increase external validity. Data sources such as interviews, dialogue journals, questionnaires, and folow-up interviews are collected for the purpose of providing alternative perspectives from which to view the theoretical constructs to be developed. The high priority placed on student perceptions in all data sources provides a common denominator for these alternative perspectives and provides external validity. 74 Internal validity in this investigation is addressed through the use of multiple data sources in a triangulatory relationship. Data from four different vantage points are utilized in this investigation: interviews recorded by the researcher, dialogue journals written by the students during the practicum, questionnaires, and the folow-up interviews added during analysis. The tentatively primary role given to the interview data and the secondary role given to dialogue journals, and questionnaire responses was determined on the basis of the direct or indirect role of the researcher. As such the primary interview data constructs are to be validated through triangulation with the dialogue journal, questionnaire data, and the folow-up interviews (See Figure 3.1). Figure 3.1 Triangulation schema The value of having three alternative perspectives to compare with the primary interview data is that they provide for a larger, multi-layered explanation for the agreement, disagreement or modification of factors to be identified. Reliability. One of the major tasks for naturalistic researchers to attain is external reliability, i.e., replication (Goetz & LeCompte, 1984). The involvement of the researcher and the relationship of researcher with participants complicates Dialogue Journals Questionnaires 75 this type of investigation. To increase external reliability, this investigation carefully describes the researcher's role and status, including the description of people who served as participants, and the context within which the data are gathered. Methods of data collection and analysis are also clearly identified and discussed to increase external reliability. Several strategies are suggested to increase internal reliability, three of which are utilized in this investigation: low-inference descriptors such as direct quotes, participant research assistance in the form of folow-up interviews, and mechanicaly recorded data (Goetz & LeCompte, 1984). This investigation views reliability as a 'fit' between data colected and what actualy occurs (Bogden & Biklen, 1982). The 'trustworthiness' of this data is enhanced through triangulation, use of multiple data sources, and the inclusion of folow-up measures (Ely, et al., 1991). The goal of identifying and describing the factors perceived by student teachers to be affecting the development of orally interactive classrooms is best served by using an ethnographic design. Identification and description requires a descriptive investigation (Raymond & Santos, 1995), and the data generated from the interviews, dialogue journals, questionnaires, and folow-up interviews are the descriptive foundation of this ethnographic study. The interdependence of data sources and analysis are also inextricably bound to concerns with ethics, reliability, and validity. 76 Chapter 4 Results The results reported here originate from stages one and two of the three-stage analytic process described in Chapter 3 (Goetz & LeCompte, 1984). The results of the third stage, interpretation and integration, are presented in Chapter 5. The results of the first analytic stage were determined by theorizing and sequencing responses. The results of the second analytic stage were derived from the application of general analytic procedures which occurred simultaneously with the handling, processing, and manipulation of data. This generated the constructs utilized and resulted in the discovery of particular patterns. By using such an approach links between data decisions, collection procedures, and analysis could be maintained. The two analytic stages were utilized initially on the interview data. Results of this analysis motivated the researcher to subsequently analyze the dialogue journals, questionnaires and folow-up interviews using a similar framework. Therefore, the interview results are reported here first, folowed by results of the analysis of the dialogue journals, questionnaires and folow-up interviews. Interview Analysis Results Typical of ethnographic research, constructs of factors which would affect oral interactions in the practicum arose only after data had been colected and analysis had begun. However, during the process of collection it appeared that certain themes were repeatedly raised. These constructs were especially apparent during the interviews which involved the subjects and researcher in 77 direct contact. This direct involvement led the researcher to view, at least tentatively, the interviews as a primary source of data. Emergence of factors. Theorizing that categories and relationships would emerge through manipulation of the data during the collection phase, analysis proceeded with stage one of this investigation. During the interview process student teacher responses to specific focus questions (See Appendix A) were notably more prolific and pertinent, that is, more directly concerned with oral interactivity in the classroom than the other questions. Of the eleven focus questions, two were identified as most pertinent to the central purpose of this investigation. They were: #3. "What are some difficulties in doing this?" i.e., changing the evaluation focus to include more orality. #7. "What are some concerns you have in attempting to initiate more student talk?" e.g., loss of control, use of time, lack of efficiency, etc. Although responses to all eleven focus questions were recorded, through comparison and contrast responses to two questions were perceived to be most pertinent to this investigation. Speculating that responses to these two focus questions (#3 and #7) would result in sufficient explanatory constructs alowed for the elimination of responses to the other less applicable focus questions. In addition, the more prolific and pertinent responses to these two questions prompted the researcher to treat them as the primary data source for this investigation. 78 As collection proceeded, the data confirmed the choice of questions #3 and #7 as key reservoirs from which constructs would most probably emerge. Through negative-case selection, the proposition of emerging factors permitted the elimination of responses to the other nine focus questions. Sampling of other data sources such as supervisor reports, video-tapes, and sponsor teacher reports were also rejected because student perception of factors was viewed as a key focus for this investigation. Using inductive procedures the resulting distillation of categories was possible while at the same time the larger picture was maintained (Ely, et al., 1991). This inductive procedure was sufficiently persuasive to alow for the clustering of student responses into 'meaning' units. Through sorting and matching, along with occasional re-structuring, the 'meaning' units of student responses emerged. These tentative typological groupings were continualy revisited and by removing, replacing, and re-inserting comments, enabled most interview responses to be accommodated. This tentative typology was then refined by using labels to describe the content of the groupings. Through discrepant-case analysis responses not accommodated were left to stand on their own to await for further re-examination. Much like manipulating simple toys, the mixing, matching, linking, comparing, and building of categories began to reveal typological constructs which seemed to affect oral interactions in the classroom. Repetitive themes of knowing how, gaining personal confidence, lack of experience, need for justification, and 7 9 concerns about time were utilized as labels around which responses were clustered. Once these labeled groupings accommodated many of the responses, a more detailed examination of each response occurred. This alowed for the refinement, elaboration, or modification of the clusters to more adequately account for more of the responses. The result was 14 groupings with tentative labels which accommodated most of the student responses (See Table 4.1). Table 4.1. Tentative Clusters of Interview Comments TERM 1 TERM 2 That learning through oral language occurs - a whole new way to learn -I hadn't thought about it -they haven't ever seen it work or seen the virtue -I haven't seen the tape recorder I've mostly experienced a class where we write and the teacher talks I've never even heard of the tape recorder thing Justifying-accounting for -even kids are motivated by letter grades -you would have to know why you're doing what you're doing and justify it -society values that and we can't change that easily -our society also values the concrete -we have to be accountable for what were doing -we have to justify what we're doing Taking risks-losing control - I don't know maybe control -I guess our fear is that they will get off topic -maybe its a fear of losing control -an upper level c lass who's never done this before will take advantage -when you think about it and let the reins go the fear of letting go blinds you far too much that holds most of us back -fear is a big one -grades need to be produced so why go out of the norm (risk) - we're covering our butts and the kids are going to be traditional teachers -some activities were risky Sponsor teacher concerns - my sponsor said there was a large amount of noise you tolerate -I asked her a couple of days before and she said -my sponsor asked me how I was going group the kids -its very important to find out what the ideals of the sponsor teacher are because if they want talk it will be much easier for you to foster 80 Observation anxieties -if you stick a mike in front of a child's face 1 noticed that a few kids are used to it but the majority of the c lass wasn't -you can't also insist that they always talk in front of a mike -as you need to perform at a specific level 1 always act differently under pressure of performance even in journals if you compare their marked c lass writing and their journals they're different. -1 think we all perform differently under pressure How to proceed with oral interactions -1 dont know how 1 would measure it -how to set up your marking scheme -to evaluate each other, their groups, use checklists, objectives would have to be laid out ahead of time - you would have to look at what's important -you would have to look at evaluation -rules of working together would be important. -1 would pick the groups and set up who does what - when they're in groups who knows what they're talking about -the dynamics of the c lass -the c lass chemistry -its hard to get kids to discover information all the time -you can't have kids talking all the time - the hardest to match up the right groups -if we can get them to stay on topic that would be great -they can't just talk -the group size -management of classroom problems - management is a big item because its a very verbal thing - someone has to try it first to see if it works -maybe they go hand in hand (verbal & written) -1 don't know how we do that - to try and remember who talks -how would you mark participation in calendar? -so what do you do with all the tapes? it would take all day - turning it on the machines buttons, that would be learning too - the difficulty is in trying to evaluate communication -set the standards for group talk, set criteria, cho ices , -more responsibility on the students -teach them to get eye contact - to respect other people speaking not fool around -classroom rules - class size -behaviour -we have to have some structure -if 1 had the checklist there 1 would use it - when they are talking to one another its important that they don't just hang out talk about their lives but be on task - monitoring that is a key idea -1 think their interaction improves over time but 1 can only get to certain groups -you only have so much time -certain groups went well others had to change -made mental notes of what worked and what didn't. Personal ego needs -make sure that I'm getting responses -its easier to control Reading & Writing than its is talking -tolerate noise, enthusiasm , loud talking -for me the major thing would be not to feel it necessary to be in charge 100% of the time -older teacher seems to enjoy that power 'I'm in charge and they do what I say. ' I saw that happen and I've seen it happen and I've felt that way myself Student teacher confidence -its pretty hard to do especially for me right now I'm not sure how to do it right now whereas summative is easier and formative is more difficult Lack of experience - its hard for us as students we don't know what they can do -1 haven't had much experience yet - even when I look at their writing I didn't know what to look for whether neat or punctuation or spelling 81 Not enough time -time too is a problem -you would take more time, -as a teacher I don't think you have time for I -but I see it as time -you'd have to limit their time, grade one would talk an hour -as a classroom teacher, fairs, concerts, your own life, its tough -I don't have time, I was teaching 100% What about others? - what about the parents too -kids and parents are still looking for the product versus the process -I could see a parent coming in and seeing talk, talk, talk, and wonder if anything is being done -or the principal -you would have to consider the parents Concerned with classroom arrangements -physical things don't matter. - actually getting of the clip board or using anecdotal comments to pick it up and write -as a new teacher I'd rather just be a rover and move around and helping and getting my hands dirty and stopping Its not traditional -if it was the whole school it would be accepted - because that's what I'm used to -its not the way we're used to - its always been this way Concern with organization -but I had no time for one on one which I wanted - trying to watch many kids at once - how to manage the time and watching kids - my object was to observe but difficult to do in 6 weeks -recording is possible but that takes more time -its time management mostly just ignore it and continue on with the day Discrepant responses that were not accommodated in the 14 clusters were labeled as 'outliers' and would require further analysis to verify their applicability in this investigation (See Table 4.2). Table 4.2. Interview 'Outliers' TERM 1 TERM 2 writing is easier to evaluate - because it would be harder to evaluate -written assignment/ its easier because you can mark it at your own pace -its very easy to mark a piece of paper writing is concrete -our society also values the concrete evaluating speaking more time-consuming than evaluating writing. -takes a lot of time -do I have time for checklists? oral interpretations vary -one persons oral interpretation would be different from another -differences from teacher to teacher -we can't really set criteria for it because everyone has a different idea so it wouldn't work speaking is difficult to evaluate -to evaluate enunciation is even harder 82 age differences -primary different than intermediate speech not recoverable -a public speaking assignment you have to mark it on the spot -you can't correct and you can't go back over what you said like in a written test -definitely shared ideas are important and the only thing I'm concerned about is that they would have to sooner or later write it down-studies show that something written down they remember better and how are you going to study it later if you don't have it written - when its oral its instant you missed it. its gone teacher position 'on stage' -make sure that I'm getting responses -1 don't have the time 1 was teaching 100% -I've felt that way (I'm in charge) myself recording unnatural/inauthentic -a video tape was stiff with many mistakes. They wanted it perfect not natural. You get what is real as when they practiced they just worked one idea into another without worrying about appearances These 'outlier' interview comments appeared to reflect the latent beliefs of student teachers and acted as a rationale for why increased oral interactions in the classroom might be difficult. Although stated as facts, the statements contained value judgments comparing attributes of orality and literacy. Speculating that the 'outliers' were contributory factors affecting orality, restrained the researcher from deleting them from the investigation altogether. At this juncture the researcher reasoned that a folow-up interview was an option which would clarify the nature of these 'outliers' and verify the constructs derived from the study. As an example of the evolving process of ethnographic research, this recognition provided yet another perspective from which to examine the interdependence of data collection and analysis. This post-analysis interview was also recognized as a means to verify other findings resulting from this investigation. Emergence of categories. The clusters reported in Table 4.1 and 4.2 were derived from student responses and it seemed on further analysis that they could be subsumed into more generic labels. With the identification of clusters a pattern 83 indicative of more generic concerns was discovered. Much like solving a jigsaw puzzle, through a process of manipulation, mixing, and matching, major categories of responses became apparent. Some factors addressed issues such as knowing how to proceed or knowing that oral language was valuable for learning. These types of knowledge, representative of cognitive processing models of development, have categorized knowing that and knowing about something as declarative knowledge (Pintrich, 1990). Knowing how to do something was labeled as procedural knowledge (Pintrich). Thus declarative and procedural knowledge categories were constructed to subsume student teacher responses of knowing. Conditional knowledge, knowing when and why to use certain strategies, although not evident from interview responses was also included here, speculating that it might be discovered in other data (Pintrich). Some factors were concerned with personal responses when implementing orally interactive strategies. These were subsumed into a 'student teacher position or role' category. Similarly 'school community expectations', and 'structural features' categories were constructed. This process was analogous to a distillation process of continuous re-alignment and re-invention into which responses could be subsumed. Subsequent to the 'discovery' of these categories it became evident that the 'outliers' were perhaps assumptions which students held about orality. These assumptions were not revealed directly from student comments and were only apparent after repeated examination and tentative labeling of this particular 84 'meaning' unit. Since assumptions are more easily recognized from a distant perspective, the researcher, not the student was able to identify them within student teachers' responses. In the folow-up interviews students affirmed the categorization of these outliers as assumptions which they held regarding the affect of increased oral interactivity in the classroom (See Table 4.6). At the completion of interview comments analysis, labels for 24 factors and five categories were chosen and student responses were grouped according to their 'fit.' These 24 factors were organized into five categories, namely: knowledge, student teacher position/role, school community expectations, structural features, and assumptions (See Table 4.3). Table 4.3. Interview Responses Grouped bv Category and Factor TERM 1 TERM 2 A. K N O W L E D G E 1. dec larat ive - a whole new way to learn -I hadn't thought about it -they haven't ever seen it work or seen the virtue -I haven't seen the tape recorder I've mostly experienced a class where we write and the teacher talks I've never even heard of the tape recorder thing 2 . procedural -1 don't know how I would measure it -how to set up your marking scheme -to evaluate each other, their groups, use checklists, objectives would have to be laid out ahead of time - you would have to look at what's important -you would have to look at evaluation -rules of working together would be important. -I would pick the groups and set up who does what - when they're in groups who knows what they're talking about -the dynamics of the class -the class chemistry -its hard to get kids to discover information all the time -you can't have kids talking all the time - the hardest to match up the right groups -if we can get them to stay on topic that would be great -maybe they go hand in hand(verbal & written) -1 dont know how we do that - to try and remember who talks -how would you mark participation in calendar? -so what do you do with all the tapes? it would take all day - turning it on the machines buttons, that would be learning too - the difficulty is in trying to evaluate communication -set the standards for group talk, set criteria, choices, -more responsibility on the students -teach them to get eye contact - to respect other people speaking not fool around -classroom rules - class size -behaviour -we have to have some structure -if I had the checklist there I would use it - when they are talking to one another its important that they don't just hang out talk about their lives but be on task 8 5 -they can't just talk -the group size -management of classroom problems - management is a big item because its a very verbal thing - someone has to try it first to see if it works - monitoring that is a key idea -I think their interaction improves over time but I can only get to certain groups -you only have so much time -certain groups went well others had to change -made mental notes of what worked and what didn't. 3 . conditional B. STUDENT TEACHER POSITION 4. confidence -its pretty hard to do especially for me right now I'm not sure how to do it right now whereas summative is easier and formative is more difficult 5. risk -control - 1 don't know maybe control -1 guess our fear is that they will get off topic -maybe its a fear of losing control -an upper level class who's never done this before will take advantage -when you think about it and let the reins go the fear of letting go blinds you far too much that holds most of us back -fear is a big one -grades need to be produced so why go out of the norm ( risk) - we're covering our butts and the kids are going to be traditional teachers -some activities were risky 6. experience - its hard for us as students we don't know what they can do -1 haven't had much experience yet - even when I look at their writing I didn't know what to look for whether neat or punctuation or spelling 7. personal ego-power - sure that I'm getting responses -its easier to control Reading & Writing than it is talking -tolerate noise, enthusiasm , loud talking -for me the major thing would be not to feel it necessary to be in charge 100% of the time -older teacher seems to enjoy that power Tm in charge and they do what I say.' I saw that happen and I've seen it happen and I've felt that way myself 8. comfort under observation -if you stick a mike in front of a child's face I noticed that a few kids are used to it but the majority of the class wasn't -you can't also insist that they always talk in front of a mike -as you need to perform at a specific level I always act differently under pressure of performance even in journals if you compare their marked class writing and their journals they're different. -I think we all perform differently under pressure 9. sponsor teacher expectations - my sponsor said there was a large amount of noise you tolerate -I asked her a couple of days before and she said -my sponsor asked me how I was going group the kids -its very important to find out what the ideals of the sponsor teacher are because if they want talk it will be much easier for you to foster C SCHOOL COMMUNITY EXPECTATIONS 10. justification -even kids are motivated by letter grades -you would have to know why you're doing what you're doing and justify it -society values that and we can't change that easily -our society also values the concrete -we have to be accountable for what were doing -we have to justify what we're doing 86 11. parent/principal/pupil concerns - what about the parents too -kids and parents are still looking for the product versus the process -I could see a parent coming in and seeing talk, talk, talk, and wonder if anything is being done -or the principal -you would have to consider the parents 12. tradit ion -if it was the whole school it would be accepted - because that's what I'm used to -its not the way we're used to - its always been this way D. STRUCTURAL F E A T U R E S 13. physical -physical things don't matter. - actually getting of the clip board or using anecdotal comments to pick it up and write -as a new teacher I'd rather just be a rover and move around and helping and getting my hands dirty and stopping 14. organizational -but I had no time for one on one which I wanted - trying to watch many kids at once - how to manage the time and watching kids - my object was to observe but difficult to do in 6 weeks -recording is possible but that takes more time -its time management mostly just ignore it and continue on with the day 15. time -time too is a problem -you would take more time, -as a teacher I don't think you have time for I -but I see it as time -you'd have to limit their time, grade one would talk an hour -as a classroom teacher fairs, concerts, your own life, its tough -I don't have time, I was teaching 100% E. ASSUMPTIONS 1 6. writing is concrete -our society also values the concrete 1 7. writing is easier to evaluate -because it would be harder to evaluate -written assignment/ its easier because you can mark it at your own pace -its very easy to mark a piece of paper 18. evaluating speaking more time-consuming than evaluating writing. -takes a lot of time -do I have time for checklists? 19. speaking is difficult to evaluate -to evaluate enunciation is even harder 20. speech not recoverable -a public speaking assignment you have to mark it on the spot -you can't correct and you can't go back over what you said like in a written test -definitely shared ideas are important and the only thing I'm concerned about is that they would have to sooner or later write it down-studies show that something written down they remember better and how are you going to study it later if you don't have it written - when its oral its instant you missed it. its qone 21. oral interpretations vary -one persons oral interpretation would be different from another -differences from teacher to teacher -we can't really set criteria for it because everyone has a different idea so it wouldn't work 22. recording unnatural / inauthentic -a video tape was stiff with many mistakes. They wanted it perfect not natural. You get what is real as when they practiced they just worked one idea into another without worrying about appearances 23. age differences -primary different than intermediate 24. teacher position 'on stage' -make sure that I'm getting responses -I don't have the time I was teaching 100% -I've felt that way (I'm in charge) myself 87 Dialogue Journal Analysis Results Comments in the dialogue journals relevant to oral interaction in the classroom were highlighted and clustered using the format of factors and categories developed from the analysis of the interview data (See Table 4.4). It appeared that all dialogue journal comments relating to oral interactivity could be subsumed into the 24 factors. No 'outlier' comments were found and similar to the interviews, most responses focused on knowledge concerns. The speculative inclusion of conditional knowledge was confirmed after analysis of the dialogue journals. Table 4.4. Dialogue Journal Comments per Factor and Category TERM 1 TERM 2 A. K N O W L E D G E 1. declarat ive -I should have stopped the lessons and tried to do something a little more active -I definitely see why things are done as centres in kindergarten -choral reading went better than I thought -I talked too much -I should have allowed them to talk more -the students knew lots and had good ideas -1 went with them and they figured out the experiment before I did -sharing with a partner was good - their ideas are valid and important -just feel that they're doing too much listening to me -many students weren't with me due to my lengthy explanations -I feel that if I had taken the student suggestions for editing and actually written them the students would have been more involved -I was actually shocked by student demonstrations -I find myself talking, giving directions way too much -I really felt the balance of hands on activity and teacher talk working well -I was also shocked by how well they responded to the demonstrations and clapping for each group 2. procedural -I think I'm going to check each couple to see if they know how to . . . -I'm going to sing with the children by . . . -next practicum I will have clear checklists with marking criteria and reasons -they can help kids who aren't getting it -another way would be to have grade 7 buddies -I think they worked really effectively when they chose their own partners -I'm a bit nervous about group work -later on we'll also do group publications -thanks for reading the test to . . -having other students re-word my instructions makes perfect sense -I started the class off by asking for suggestions from the students -I noticed that by giving them a task and walking through it with them really helps in keeping on task -I told them they could work alone or in partners if the noise level rose they would have to work alone -I did whisper in their ear -keeping the disciplinary talk only between us -I should have started the lesson with individual practice 8 8 -1 should have had 3 people in a group -they seem to work better in small groups -1 like to have them work in groups -the groups worked better than 1 had expected perhaps because 1 specifically said what 1 was looking for. -1 wanted them to work together as a team that was not competing against anyone else -a talk had to be given about how we treat others -try small group activities during centres -1 had to talk to them about 'booing' -class tended to talk too much because they were excited try to tell everyone about their experiences -1 asked a couple to peer edit -students help develop criteria and moved into partner practice -if they had any questions to ask a peer -1 need to be careful with the grouping of certain students some work better when not around others -1 sometimes tell him he will have to try or work by himself -one mistake 1 made was pairing 2 students together again after they didn't work well with each other the other day -next time 1 will take more time to introduce a stations like this one -I'll also model -the student were working in their groups doing little experiments very cooperatively -yes we did a jigsaw -feedback from student groups -students said they preferred group work to individual work -they did a wonderful job of asking the presenting group questions -maybe it may have been the partners bad pairings 3. conditional -the students will enjoy sharing with a partner -it seems its easier to take -it also clarifies what they're doing -it seems to be more important to make sense to a peer than a teacher -makes them more aware of what's expected -they seem to enjoy it and 1 like to listen -they had the opportunity to do it themselves -1 will use pair share to boost student involvement -groups who have problems can learn from other groups B. STUDENT TEACHER POSITION 4. confidence -what did you think of my self assessment? -1 wasn't so nervous today and the students are beginning to come around and treat me as their teacher -thank you for giving me the chance to monitor centres by myself -I'd like to continue taking more responsibility for the class and possibly try doing the majority of one day on my own and see how it goes -thank you this was getting to me and it will work well for art -it was just like you were there when 1 had the class -they were good and definitely looked at me as their teacher - this area (math) terrifies me -after realizing that fear of failure is real -1 feel very comfortable and confident with them -1 thought the class was easy to handle today probably due to myself feeling more comfortable -the math lesson went well -tomorrow 1 wouldn't mind if you left so 1 and the students get a sense of what its like without another teacher in the room -I'm so worried that I'm going to forget something -when P(supervisor) is here 1 tend to increase my use of improper terms -1 would like to be in charge of the speech arts festival -my speech was slower today probably because 1 wasn't nervous-not being formally evaluated 5. risk-control -it was a good test and 1 appreciate your confidence in me -where do 1 find you if 1 lose it? -1 demanded and expected more of them today -they love to talk about themselves -1 just have to take control and relax -changes in behaviour were rambunctious at first, then about 2 minutes into reading the students sat quietly and read really well -1 was terrible 1 was mainly trying to control the class 8 9 6. experience -its one thing to walk in teach a lesson then leave but its another to move from subject to subject -1 think the transition is coming -the kids seem to be moving with me fairly well -1 need consequences for individual behaviour -I feel like I'm asking for far too much help -it was good to see the success because I didn't have to be there to show them step by step 7. personal ego-power -it is nice to have times where 1 am left in charge alone because 1 really like to feel like 1 am in charge -1 think it also has an impact on the kids because if they need something or have a question they know that 1 am the one that is here to help them -it gets me excited and dreamy about having my own class -also it helps the kids to respect me as another teacher just like transitions do -since 1 have been doing more of those transitions 1 can notice a positive difference -I really enjoy the feeling of having them alone -the more I have them the better -trust me, if I feel that I am being abandoned I'll let you know -but I really like having them alone -I really enjoy having the class alone -It feels more like they are mine 8. observation -its awful to see yourself on VCR -I think the team teaching approach is going to be a very positive experience for me and I hope for you -I find it very helpful when you just come in during my lesson or add to it -I need you to observe too because you give great feedback -maybe you could peek in at the start, middle, and closure? 9 . sponsor teacher expectations -can we go over the math for next week? -is this okay to get bright students who are finished to help out students who are behind? -thanks for all the freedom in your class -1 am going to expect the same classroom behaviour as Y does and get it -1 see what you mean about the group not working well together -was assigning the project for homework appropriate? -T. suggested that I model -I keep forgetting to ask what you do with the math marks -thanks for the freedom to rearrange the room C SCHOOL COMMUNITY EXPECTATIONS 10. justification -I should not assume as much as I do 11. parent/principal/pupil concerns -yesterday a parent and I came up with a consequence for her son 12. tradition D. STRUCTURAL FEATURES 13. physical -this group is a bit too active to try and keep everyone quiet while all spread out 14. organizational -I forgot about buddies -I like the way the afternoon went allowing them to have some free time -learn to read the class -be flexible -I gave the groups 2 0 minutes -something at each centre may have been too much -centres are tiring and take a lot of work to set up -the PE lesson was fun and I was able to do a checklist of two skills -I agree about the pairing next time I will try 90 -1 discussed how to work cooperatively -1 enjoyed seeing the small groups alone and it really gave me an opportunity to see personalities -tomorrow 1 will use groups to do manipulatives that will help for problem solving -next time 1 would eliminate the outside station and extend some others -could have shortened the time use by using partners to brainstorm -I will try your suggestion about waiting to explain -setting clear expectations for them -when do you assess their progress when they are constantly lining up? -how do you find time to work with your progress evaluations? 15. time -best of all I got through everything on time -I didn't think I was going to have this much time -should have set up enough time for all of them to read their poems -there was not enough time -I wanted to spend time on things the kids brought up -I ran out of time for them to finish their poems -but I didn't get to record observations of the kids -we were only able to go through each station once -I felt myself being very rushed because of time -lesson was rushed due to time -but that is not a big deal we will have plenty of time -it seems like there is so much to do and not time -I am not going to get through all the topics I have to -I'm scared we won't get through everything -how fast the day goes and there is not enough time E. ASSUMPTIONS 16. writing is concrete 17. writing is easier to evaluate 18. evaluating speaking more time consuming than evaluating writing speaking is difficult to evaluate 20. speech not recoverable 21. oral interpretations more subjective 22. recording unnatural/inauthentic 23. age differences 24. teacher position 'on stage' -I want them to know that I am not a teacher god -1 was shocked by student demonstrations -I didn't have to be there to show them step by step -they did a wonderful job of asking questions School community expectations and assumptions revealed in the dialogue journal comments were minimal. Factors, Categories and Descriptors The purpose of this investigation was to identify and describe factors which student teachers perceived of as affecting oral interactivity within the classroom. Through analysis of the interview comments, factors and categories emerged which were subsequently used to cluster the dialogue journal comments. With confirmation of the organizational format from the analysis of interview and 91 dialogue journal comments it became possible to identify and describe each factor (See Figure 4.1). KNOWLEDGE Declarative Procedural Conditional ROLE Confidence Risk/Control Experience Personal power Observations Sponsor expectations STRUCTURES Physical Organizational Temporal Categories & Factors SCHOOL COMMUNITY EXPECTATIONS Justification Stakeholder concerns Tradition ASSUMPTIONS Intangibility Assessment difficulty (S) Time constraints Subjectivity Age variables Threatens status quo Assessment ease (W) Recoverability Authenticity Figure 4.1. The factors and categories The labels were constructed to reflect the defining characteristics of each factor as they emerged from the refinement process of student teacher comments in the interviews and dialogue journals. They are not a static label but remain a flexible indication of the essence of the factors and categories which emerged (Ely, et al. ,1991). Each description is a paraphrased statement which gives the factor a core rationale (See Table 4.5). These descriptors which reflect student teacher perceptions, were formulated after the factors and categories were 92 constructed, and as such are a unique feature of ethnographic research. The two-stage analytic procedure resulted in the identification and description of 24 factors clustered into five categories. Table 4.5. Factors. Categories and Descriptors CATEGORIES & FACTORS DESCRIPTORS A. KNOWLEDGE 1. declarative - knowing that -aware -having been made aware of or having oral work demonstrated or modeled or experienced 2. procedural -knowing how -marking criteria -how to record -technological know how -management of tapes, machines -knowledge of group processes -pupil experience -having experienced setting up marking criteria for speaking. Physically recording anecdotal formative data . Aware/experienced in recording group processes, editing, selecting, evaluating, managing tape portfolios, -experience in setting up groups, criteria, choices, roles, a structure, monitoring efficiently/effectively, understanding social nature of learning 3. conditional -knowing why certain conditions are conducive to oral interactions and others are not -aware of the conditions necessary for effective orally interactive strategies -aware of conditions for positive oral response B. STUDENT TEACHER POSITION 4. confidence student teachers use the practicum experience to move through stages of ego needs, management needs and finally learner needs. 5. risk-control -the practicum experience reveals much concern about 'how am I doing?'. Once personal needs are met management and learner needs become the more dominant focus. 6. experience -referral to novice status, questioning personal strengths, decisions, 7. personal ego-power -personal power/control/management, questions 8. observation (students/pupils) -being observed, self-conscious, focus on self initially, acting out, 9. sponsor teacher expectations -tone, noise, productivity, evaluation, physical arrangement of desks, displays, student movement, C. SCHOOL COMMUNITY EXPECTATIONS 10. justification -much of what a student does is motivated by a desire to please forces outside of self. 11. parent/principal/children concerns -societal expectations as portrayed in the media, as expressed by parents, their own experience as students, and historical paradigms that influence their actions. 12. tradition -the status quo 9 3 D. STRUCTURAL FEATURES 13. physical -the arrangements of the desks, displays, location of classroom affect the possibility of oral interaction. 14. organizational -the organization of time, subjects, integration, platooning, outside of the classroom -set approaches to curriculum within the classroom i.e. individual/group/partner strategies 15. time -the 6 week practicum, the 5 hour, 5 days per week, to cover perceived curriculum E. ASSUMPTIONS 16. writing is concrete -not recognizing the interpretive characteristics of all communication spoken or written 17. writing is easier to evaluate -inconsistent comparison of spoken and written evaluation criteria 18. evaluating speaking more time consuming than evaluating writing - recording/evaluating observations more time consuming than recording/marking written assignments 19. speaking is difficult to evaluate -inability/inexperience of setting criteria/processes to evaluate spoken communication 20. speech not recoverable -technology not accessible, inexperience with audio/video within classroom contexts 21. oral interpretation more subjective -assuming that what occurs in speech is more subject to interpretation than writing 22. recording unnatural/inauthentic -spoken records of thought not equated with written records of thought -performance on tape contrasted with performance on paper 23. age differences -assuming that speech is more acceptable for younger children and writing more indicative of mature pupils 24. teacher position 'on stage' -that pupils' talk valued if monitored -evaluation mandated teacher as focal point -teacher to ensure talk was 'on task' Comment Distribution An examination of the frequency of comments distributed between the five categories provided additional investigative data for analysis. Interview comment distribution. The percentage of responses per category reflected in student teacher comments made during the interview are shown in Figure 4 .1 . Knowledge responses ( 3 7 % ) , most of which were procedural, dominate student teacher 94 perceptions of factors affecting oral interactions within the classroom. These are folowed in order by responses which suggest that their position or role as student teachers (23%), assumptions about orality as opposed to literacy based instruction (16%), structural concerns (12%), and school community concerns (12%). Structure 12% Position/Role 2 3 % Figure 4.2. Percentage of interview responses per category Dialogue journal comment distribution. The percentage of comments per category that student teachers made in their dialogue journals referring to oral interactivity in the classroom are shown in Figure 4.3. The largest number of comments student teacher made were related to knowledge issues (40%) folowed by a large number of comments related to their position as apprentices (35%). Structural comments (21%), especially those related to time, were folowed by a few comments regarding assumptions (3%) and school community concerns (1%). 9 5 Assumptions 3% Community 1% Str uctur e 2 1 % Knowledge 40% Posit ion/Role 35% Figure 4.3. Percentage of dialogue journal responses per category Questionnaire Results The limited value of the questionnaire, addressed previously, is largely due to the numbers of responses in the second term. However, although lesser in value, the results reveal another more quantitative perspective from the interview and dialogue journal comments. The results of the questionnaire are reported in graph form by order of question from #1 to #10 and are recorded for each of two terms by the number of students selecting degrees of agreement or disagreement on a five-point scale. This is folowed by a summative graph where the compiled results of all ten questions are displayed. Figure 4.4 illustrates the range of responses student teachers made to the statement that, 'Pupils learn a great deal speaking with each other.' Between the end of term 1 and term 2, students responded more strongly in favour of the student speaking to each other. The change is represented by equal numbers for agreement or strong agreement after the first term (6/16) compared to larger numbers strongly agreeing (4/6) and less numbers agreeing (2/6) after the second 96 i3 6.00 I 5.00 tn 4.00 ° 3.00 v 2.00 i i . o o fc* * ; • Term 1 • Term 2 •a 1 2 Strongly Agree 3 4 5 — Strongly Disagree Figure 4.4. #1 Pupils learn a great deal when speaking with each other, term. This change to agreement or strong agreement is also shown by no ambivalent responses after term 2 in comparison to some agreement and disagreement after the first term. Figure 4.5 illustrates the range of responses student teachers made to the statement that, 'Collaborative tasks are not efficient.' Over the course of two terms c T 3 3 +J 00 J Q E Z 7.00 6.00 5.00 4.00 3.00 2.00 1.00 • Term 1 • Term 2 1 2 Strongly Agree 3 4 5 — Strongly Disagree Figure 4.5. #2 Colaborative tasks are not efficient. students changed from some in disagreement (2/16) or ambivalence (3/16) after the first term to most disagreeing (4/6) and some strongly disagreeing (2/6) after 97 the second term. Increasingly students saw colaborative tasks as more efficient and after the second term none thought of colaboration as inefficient for the tasks at hand. Figure 4.6 illustrates the range of student teacher responses to the statement that, Teacher instruction is more effective than pupil collaboration.' A large number of students replied ambivalently after the first term (12/16) whereas only half (3/6) were similarly ambivalent after the second practicum. Increasingly students teachers recognized pupil colaboration as an effective means of school achievement. This is evident in the numbers of students in disagreement after the first term (3/16) compared with students in disagreement after the second term (3/6) c •D 3 4-1 o </) k_ <D E 3 12.00 10.00 8.00 6.00 4.00 2.00 n Term 1 0 Term 2 mm* ' I m , -,eJI ; 1 2 Strongly Agree 3 4 5 •—- Strongly Disagree Figure 4.6. #3 Teacher instruction is more effective than pupil collaboration. Figure 4.7 illustrates the range of student responses to the statement that, 'Collaboration is an effective communication skill that pupils should learn in school.' Results after term 1 (15/16) and term 2 (6/6) indicate that students saw and continued to see colaboration as a skill to be taught in school. Very few 98 students were ambivalent about colaboration being taught as an effective skill in school after the first term (1/16) but none were ambivalent after completing the second term. w 10.00 8.00 c V "D 3 4-1 V) o </> 0 ) .£) E 3 6.00 4.00 2.00 • Term 1 E Term 2 _ n 1 2 Strongly Agree 3 4 5 — Strongly Disagree Figure 4.7. #4 Colaboration is an effective communication skill that pupils should learn in school. Figure 4.8 illustrates the range of student responses to the statement that, 'Pupils in colaborative groups need continuous monitoring.' Student responses indicate that approximately half (8/15) agreed strongly with this statement after c 73 3 10 V X I E 3 7.00 r 6.00 - -5.00 -4.00 -3.00 -2.00 -1.00 - n • Term 1 ' • T e r m 2 1 Strongly Agree 3 4 5 •— Strongly Disagree Figure 4.8. #5 Pupils in colaborative groups need continuous monitoring. 99 term 1 and one-third (2/6) did so after term 2. This smal decrease in agreement is countered with an increased disagreement after term 2 (1/15 to 2/6). Continuous monitoring of groups seemed to be viewed as less necessary after term 2. Figure 4.9 illustrates the range of student responses to the statement that, Talk or speech is a child's most effective communication tool.' Although some students disagreed (3/15) with this statement after the first term, after term 2 most agreed or agreed strongly (4/6). Furthermore, none disagreed after the second term, however, ambivalence increased somewhat (4/15 to 2/6). </> 5.00 c •S 4.00 3 3.00 « 2.00 -° 1.00 2 • Term 1 I • Term 2)_ 1 2 S t r o n g l y A g r e e 3 4 5 — S t rong l y D isagree Figure 4.9. #6 Talk or speech is a child's most effective communication tool. Figure 4.10 illustrates the range of student responses to the statement that, 'Group work requires much prior preparation and teaching.' Student responses indicate more agreement after term 1 (7/15) than after term 2 (2/6), however, more students disagreed with this statement after the second term (3/6 compared to 1/15). Ambivalence, regarding the effort required for preparing and teaching group work decreased significantly after the second term (8/15 compared to 1/6). 100 V) 8.00 -, c a> 7.00 j -T 3 3 6.00 -(/) 5.00 + u-O 4.00 | in t_ 3.00 j -a) ja 2.00 | E 3 i.oo -; z -t-• Term 1 • Term 2 1 2 Strongly Agree 3 4 5 — Strongly Disagree Figure 4.10. #7 Group work requires much prior preparation and teaching. Figure 4.11 illustrates the range of student responses to the statement that, 'Children's speech informs their writing.' A large number of students were ambivalent in their responses after the first term (12/16) but none were so after their second term. Increasingly, students agreed with this statement. After the second term, all students responded positively to this statement (6/6). Interestingly, none disagreed with this statement after either term. </> 12.00 | 10.00 3 *-> oo o </> <u E 3 8.00 6.00 i 4.00 2.00 • Term 1 BTerm 2 1 2 Strongly Agree 4 5 Strongly Disagree Figure 4.11. #8 Children's speech informs their writing. 101 Figure 4.12 illustrates the range of student responses to the statement that, 'Potential group problems must be solved beforehand.' None disagreed with this statement after either term. The change after term 1 to after term 2 shows an inconclusive response indicated by an increase in strong agreement (2/6 compared to 3/16) and a decrease in agreement (8/16 to 2/6). Ambivalence remained essentially similar after each of the two terms (5/16 compared to 2/6). c -o 3 *-> CD X! E 8.00 7.00 6.00 5.00 4.00 3.00 2.00 1.00 -4-• Term 1 HTetm 2 1 2 3 4 5 Strongly Agree Strongly Disagree Figure 4.12. #9 Potential group problems must be solved beforehand. Figure 4.13 illustrates the range of student responses to the statement that, 'Collaborative tasks are effective.' Decrease occurred both in ambivalence (2/16 compared to 0/6) and agreement (10/16 compared to 2/6) after the second term. However, strong agreement (3/16 compared to 4/6) increased significantly while the total numbers of agreement increased somewhat (13/16 compared to 6/6) after the second term. Notably, only one student disagreed with this statement after the first term and none did so after the second term. Ambivalence decreased after the second term (2/16 to 0/6). 102 <* 10.00 8.00 c T3 3 4-1 o Vt cu E 6.00 4.00 2.00 • 1 2 S t rong ly Agree • Term 1 Q Term 2 n 4 5 Strongly Disagree Figure 4.13. #10 Colaborative tasks are effective. Bearing in mind the limitations of sample size and the use of percentages, when questionnaire responses favouring oral interactions are aligned and negative ones reversed, the compiled responses indicate an increasing agreement with oral interactions (Figure 4.14). The percentages represent a comparison of frequency of responses compared to the total frequency of responses for all 10 questions in that term. First term responses indicate more ambivalence (35% compared to 17%) and disagreement (46% compared to 8%) S 5 0 Vt o 40 CL Vt 22 30 20 I 10 IV Q_ S r i w - J n • Term 1 , a Term 2 1 2 S t rong ly Agree 3 4 5 — St rongly Disagree Figure 4.14. Compilation of questionnaire responses. 103 whereas the second term responses indicate more strong agreement (16% compared to 29%) and agreement (26% compared to 39%). Folow-up Interview Results The folow-up interviews took place approximately one year later with two volunteer students, one male and one female who had participated in the initial phases of the study. The process of analysis and the resulting 24 factors in 5 categories were identified and described to the participants and comments were invited. In general, both participants commented that the process and resulting research findings were confirming. Neither student found factors, categories or descriptors to be disagreeable or contentious. Comments recorded here reflect the elaboration of specific aspects of the analysis or results made by the students on audio-tape (See Table 4.6). The most common response was assent in the form of 'okay' or 'ah ha.' Knowledge concerns generated the largest number of responses. For example, student A commented that 'It is not surprising that orality is not treated as a valid way of learning,' adding that 'We haven't been taught to use talk as a vehicle to learn so why would we do it when we teach?' This same student reflected a lack of declarative knowledge by saying, 'It didn't occur to me to use talk.' Student B commented that, 'Instructors think they've given us all this information, so now we should be ready,' implying a transmission approach to teaching. More specifically, procedural knowledge was addressed when student B commented, 'They give you lots of ideas but you don't really get to try them out until the practicum.' 104 Table 4.6. Follow-up Interview Comments bv Category CATEGORIES STUDENT A COMMENTS STUDENT B COMMENTS KNOWLEDGE - k n o w l e d g e f a c t o r s a r e l eas t surpr is ing - n o n e of u s h a v e b e e n taught that orality is a val id w a y of l earn ing - w e haven ' t b e e n taught to u s e talk a s a v e h i c l e to learn - w e haven ' t d o n e it in o u r l ives s o w h y w o u l d w e d o it w h e n w e t e a c h ? - c o u l d h a v e d o n e it but it didn't o c c u r to m e - k n o w l e d g e s e e m s b i g g e r than it s h o u l d c o n s i d e r i n g that w e just g r a d u a t e d -I think t h e y g i v e y o u lots of i d e a s but y o u don' t real ly ge t to try t h e m out - y o u k n o w the p r o c e d u r e s but y o u don ' t k n o w if they work -I a g r e e that s e e m s to b e the b i g g e s t a r e a (procedura l ) STUDENT TEACHER POSITION - d e p e n d s o n the s p o n s o r - c o u l d n ' t d o it in s o m e s i tua t ions trying to b l e n d y o u r v i e w s with y o u r s p o n s o r is important -dur ing m e n t o r s h i p w e c o u l d just sit at the b a c k - m e n t o r s h i p d a y s w e r e too u n d i r e c t e d SCHOOL COMMUNITY EXPECTATIONS - s u r p r i s e d at the c o m m u n i t y c o n c e r n s - a s l o n g a s k ids a r e learn ing w h y w o u l d y o u b e c o n c e r n e d ? -went in o n o u r o w n (4th year ) -weren ' t a c c o u n t a b l e for o u r visit - a c h e c k mark w o u l d h a v e m a d e it m o r e val id STRUCTURAL FEATURES N o c o m m e n t s - a s s e n t i.e. o k a y N o c o m m e n t s - a s s e n t i.e. o k a y ASSUMPTIONS -I'm not s u r p r i s e d at t h e s e - w e ' v e got a l o n g w a y to g o a n d a lot to learn - i g n o r a n c e of w h a t ' s out there -not s u r p r i s e d b e c a u s e of w h o it c a m e f rom i.e. s t u d e n t t e a c h e r s - y o u h a v e a lot of a s s u m p t i o n s b e c a u s e y o u h a v e n ' t tr ied t h e m out - y o u a s s u m e t e a c h e r s k n o w that ce r ta in p r o c e d u r e s work Role comments are evident in comments such as Trying to blend your views with your sponsor is important for both to be happy' (Student A). In some sponsors' classrooms, student A commented, 'You couldn't have done it,' i.e., promoted oral interactions. School community concerns surprised student A who said, 'As far as I'm concerned as long as the kids are learning that should be the main concern.' Neither student made comments regarding structural features even though the factors of time, physical layout, and organizational features were presented to 105 them as issues raised in the interview and dialogue journals. Both students indicated their agreement with the identification of structural factors with 'okay.' Assumptions were commented on by both students and most specifically by student A who suggested that student teachers without experience have many such assumptions about ways of teaching and learning. This was stressed by the use of the word 'Ignorance' when describing student teachers who 'Don't have the experience.' Student B commented that because of their lack of practical experience approaches to the practicum are filled with 'Lots of assumptions.' In summary, the results reported here are the outcome of stage one and two of a three-stage analytic procedure as suggested by Goetz and LeCompte (1984). In addressing stages one and two in this manner, links between data decisions, collection procedures, and analysis are maintained. Comments made in the interviews, dialogue journals, and folow-up interviews are reported in a format derived from the analysis of interview responses. The results reported here are identified and described as the factors affecting oral interactivity in the practicum classroom. 106 Chapter 5 Analysis, Interpretation and Integration Links between data decisions, collection procedures, and analysis are intentionaly maintained throughout this chapter which addresses the third and final stage of the three-stage ethnographic model introduced earlier (Goetz & LeCompte, 1984). This third stage of analysis includes further analysis of the data and its interpretation as wel as the integration of oral interactions into a unified pedagogical perspective. This unified perspective views knowledge construction through oral interaction as a conversation. The metaphor of conversation provides a exclusive perspective from which to describe knowledge construction in the classroom. Successful conversations in the classroom require participants to share some common understandings, some of which have been identified by student teachers. This investigation views these understandings as key issues requiring attention if the potential of classroom conversations are to be effective for teaching and learning. If conversations for knowledge construction are the goal, then the identification of factors student teacher perceive as affecting such oral interactions becomes worthwhile. Student teachers perceived the conditions necessary to promote conversations in the classroom to include the 24 factors identified in the five categories of knowledge, role or position, community expectations, structural features, and assumptions. This chapter utilizes the five categories of factors identified previously as the organizational framework for this third stage of analysis, interpretation and 107 integration. While analysis and interpretation of interviews, dialogue journals, questionnaires, and folow-up interviews constitutes the major portion of this chapter, the results of the four data sets are woven into a fabric which views oral interaction in the classroom as a conversation. Knowledge One category of factors that student teachers perceive affects the implementation of more orally interactive classrooms concerned knowledge. Most remarkable was the nature and number of knowledge comments raised. Indeed, the largest number of comments in the interviews and dialogue journals were made in regards to knowledge (Figures 4.3 and 4.4). Some knowledge interview comments contained notes of surprise that oral interaction was effective and valued by pupils, yet students were not sure why. Although student responses indicated that they lacked some knowledge, it was also readily apparent during the interviews, especially after the second practicum, that many had become more aware of the effectiveness of interactive pupil talk (declarative) and how this talk could be managed more effectively (procedural). What is apparent from both sets of interviews, the dialogue journals, and questionnaires is that student teachers possess varying degrees of declarative, procedural, and conditional knowledge of pupil talk as a means for constructing knowledge in the classroom. What also seems apparent is an increased predisposition to oral interactions when total responses to the questionnaire are compiled (Figure 4.14). However, even after the second 108 practicum, students expressed the need for more knowledge to be effective in establishing more orally interactive classrooms. The analysis, interpretation, and integration of knowledge factors into a conversational metaphor folows and constitutes one of the major categories of factors affecting the implementation of strategies which would incorporate more pupil talk in classrooms for knowledge construction. Declarative knowledge. Student teachers' interview comments indicated that they were not aware of the potential of oral interactions for knowledge construction. This lack of declarative knowledge (Pintrich, 1990) was evident when students indicated that they had never experienced or observed classrooms where talk was valued, deliberately encouraged, or evaluated, e.g., "I've never seen it work or seen the value in it" (Table 4.3, Factor 1). Yet students' recognition of the value of orality is reflected in their dialogue journal comments which regard active learning as a key to pupil involvement, e.g., "Do something a little more active" (Table 4.4, Factor 1). This recognition occurred alongside the realization that too much teacher talk, not enough pupil talk, e.g., "I should have alowed them to talk more" and, "I talked too much" would be less effective for oral interaction (Table 4.4, Factor 1). This perspective is further supported by questionnaire responses that view children's speech as informative of their writing. After two terms of practice teaching students responded in agreement that, "Children's speech informs their writing" (Figure 4.11). Student teachers were not ambivalent about the value of 109 speech after the second practicum. This view concurs with Keithley (1992), who suggests that speaking figures significantly when pupils seek to improve their writing. Increasing agreement with pupils speaking to each other was indicated in questionnaire responses to the statement that, "Pupils learn a great deal from speaking to each other" (Figure 4.4). This gain in declarative knowledge is likely the most influential feature increasing student teacher agreement with the efficiency of colaboration (Figure 4.5). Student teacher interview responses indicated that their most common experience was one of the teacher talking and pupils listening because pupils are expected to receive and reproduce content. To consider pupils capable of learning through deliberately encouraged conversations appeared as, "A whole new way to learn" (Table 4.3, Factor 1). In their pre-practicum preparation courses most teaching was done through teacher talk, implicitly modeling a strategy to be replicated when students entered their practicum classroom. Yet after their second term, students agreed that, "Talk or speech is a child's most effective communication tool" (Figure 4.9). However, this increased agreement was countered by an increase in ambivalence to children speaking which may have arisen from a change in student teacher perspectives of management occurring during the practicum experience. The possibility that an orally interactive model was an option had not occurred to some students, e.g., "I hadn't even thought about it" (Table 4.3, Factor 1). In the interviews they commented that they had not seen such a classroom nor 110 had they experienced such a learning environment, a claim also made by Craig, et al., (1994). In their dialogue journals students indicated surprise at pupil knowledge, e.g., "I was shocked by student demonstrations" and "They knew lots and had good ideas" or, "They figured out the experiment before I did" (Table 4.4, Factor 1). This awareness in itself signals an increase in declarative knowledge. One student's journal expressed pleasant surprise at how pupils, "Clapped for each group demonstration" (Table 4.4, Factor 1) perhaps in unconscious recognition of each other's oral contribution to knowledge construction. Such comments indicate that students were becoming aware of the value of talk, pupils' increased sense of ownership, and pupils taking responsibility when they were permitted to participate actively. Witnessing these explorations of ideas through talk contributed to the student teachers' desire to acquire more declarative knowledge regarding classroom conversations. In their questionnaire responses, student teachers indicated an increasing awareness that oral interaction of pupils was an effective and efficient means of knowledge construction (Figures 4.4, 4.5, 4.6, 4.13). Their dialogue journals, written during the practicum, revealed an increasing awareness of the value of oral interaction as the practicum progressed. Yet some interview comments indicate an unawareness of talk as valuable for knowledge construction and that this approach was a 'novel' teaching method. That as student teachers they had not experienced nor been exposed to such an approach was also confirmed in the folow-up interviews (Table 4.6, Category A). They may have thought that increased oral interaction would conflict with the accepted models of pedagogy. 111 It seems that there was insufficient knowledge that oral interactivity was effective prior to the practicum and that student teachers discovered this declarative knowledge as the practicum progressed. This lack of experience was most directly addressed in the interviews where a lack of confidence and the need for control were indicators of a defensive stance taken by student teachers. This was confirmed in the post-analysis interview comment that, "We haven't been taught to use talk as a vehicle to learn" (Table 4.6, Category A). Although students as learners preferred working in orally interactive groups, as teachers designing lessons for others, they, initially at least, relied on lessons with a predominance of didactic strategies where control and confidence would be assured (Mahlios & Maxson, 1995). This student teacher insecurity and the al-consuming concern with themselves (personal ego-power needs) is echoed in other studies (McDermott et al., 1995). It seems to be a required step through which student teachers need to pass and before they proceed to the management of pupils and then attend to pupils' learning needs. To design an efficient and effective environment of oral interactions, declarative knowledge is necessary. Without the knowledge that conversational involvement is a potent means of teaching and learning, student teachers will continue to view talk as a neutral, if not negative activity. During the two terms students increasingly recognized pupil conversational involvement as a means to harness pupil interest for knowledge construction. 112 Procedural knowledge. Conversational involvement requires not only the knowledge that (declarative) oral interaction is effective for teaching and learning but also knowledge of how (procedural) to implement such conversations (Pintrich, 1990). One of the more interesting findings of this investigation was the prolific number of knowledge comments made concerning students' lack of such procedural expertise. Another interesting finding was that most concerns with procedural knowledge involved grouping processes. For many student teachers the oral interactions of pupils produced unexpected positive discoveries; for some, they produced concerns. Student interview comments spoke of not having experienced or observed such a classroom or of the lack of resources for evaluation, e.g., "I don't know how I would measure it [talk]" (Table 4.3, Factor 2). Most knowledge comments in the interviews (40/44) and dialogue journals (40/65) were concerned with procedural issues (Table 4.3, Factor 2; Table 4.4, Factor 2). In the folow-up interviews comments concerning procedural knowledge were also the most prolific (Table 4. 6). Procedural comments in the interviews addressed concerns with the technological difficulties of recording speech, relying on memory for recording speakers and content, and not having the evaluative criteria for assessing spoken events. The logistical management of equipment and tapes (both audio and video) for storage, seemed to be a challenge, e.g., "So what do you do with all the tapes" or, "It would take all day" (Table 4.3, Factor 2). 113 The major aspect of procedural knowledge raised by students was their concern with creating, monitoring, and evaluating groups. As the practicum proceeded, students' dialogue journals indicated that the teaching strategies chosen influenced the involvement or lack of involvement of their pupils. As they became aware of the value of oral interaction they began to recognize the need for procedural planning which encouraged more pupil interaction. With their increased knowledge, confidence, and experience, students became more able to capitalize on the pupils' sense of ownership and responsibility (Table 4.4, Factor 2). Grouping pupils, structuring varieties of tasks, making physical arrangements, and monitoring pupil progress were some of the aspects of procedural knowledge concerns that the practicum brought into sharp focus. Student teachers modified 'traditional' strategies by alowing pupils to take a test orally instead of relying on deficient written skills, having pupils rephrase teacher instructions for their peers, requesting suggestions from pupils for learning procedures, and encouraging pupils to consult with peers. Collectively, these strategies revealed a developing recognition by student teachers of the value of pupil interactions in the classroom and procedures to make them effective. Student questionnaire responses disagreed more with, "Group work requires much prior preparation" (Figure 4.10), after the second term (3/6 compared to 3/16) than in the first term. One might presume that with more procedural experience the student teachers' knowledge of how groups function, adapt, and vary in their approaches to task completion increased from the first 114 term to the second. More consequential is the movement away from ambivalency toward disagreement after the second term (8/15 compared to 1/6). It could be surmised that with experience students knew what to prepare ahead of time and what could be worked out within the classroom. Furthermore, their change in response is indicative of the confidence they had gained to deal with procedural issues as they appeared within the classroom. The questionnaire responses to, "Potential group problems must be solved beforehand" (Figure 4.12), indicate increasing procedural knowledge gained from classroom experience and subsequent teacher preparation. The use of the word 'potential' implies knowing and solving beforehand, yet experience alowed students to wait and see what would develop. This increased confidence acquired through experience is certainly an explanation for the results of the second term. Although the ambivalent responses after both terms remained essentially the same (ambivalence, 5/16 compared to 2/6) this was countered by a decrease in agreement (8/16 compared to 2/6). This suggests that students' increasing procedural knowledge alowed them to view some issues as being more effectively solved within the classroom rather than planning for them ahead of time. Comments in dialogue journals raised procedural concerns regarding types of groupings and sizes of pupil groups, e.g., "I had to be careful when pairing students" and, "I should have had three people in a group" (Table 4.4, Factor 2). Observations of procedures that seemed to be effective were also made, e.g., "They work effectively when they choose their own partners." It 115 became apparent that expectations of task completion and setting of criteria required modeling, demonstrations, and class discussion before groups could be expected to work on their own. Questionnaire responses indicated that most student teachers were ambivalent about, "Teacher instruction is more effective than pupil collaboration" after the first practicum (Figure 4.6). However, with increased experience some student teachers (4 out of 6) became more able to exploit the potential of pupil colaboration for constructing knowledge. These gains imply that increased experience resulted in gains in procedural competence when managing groups. Responses to the statement, "Collaborative tasks are effective" seemed to reflect the procedural knowledge gains made from term one to term two (Figure 4.13). Although agreement decreased somewhat, total agreement increased and ambivalence and disagreement disappeared completely after the second term indicating that increased experience seemed to increase procedural knowledge. Procedural knowledge gains are also indicated in students' dialogue journal comments that addressed the need to teach pupils group social skills such as maintaining eye contact, how to treat others, and to value other points of view. Students' journal comments indicate that they had expected groups to be cooperative yet they often turned out to be rather competitive (Table 4.4, Factor 2). Students recorded procedural directives for groups in their journals that they had 'discovered,' for example, to introduce group activities by taking more time, doing fewer activities in one class, using smaler groups, and developing criteria for evaluation with the whole class (See Table 4.4, Factor 2). However, these gains 116 in procedural competence with groups did not allay student teachers' procedural concerns evident in their interview comments and questionnaire responses. Although student teachers had regularly participated in groups, they had seldom participated in actualy organizing and sorting pupils. It seems that discussion about groups in non-practicum settings had not given them as much procedural knowledge as they required to confidently manage them. They felt they were often 'learning on their feet' when making group management decisions. It seems that the actual implementation of group processes appeared in stark contrast to the theoretical discussions of grouping procedures in student teachers' preparatory courses. The frequently applauded strategy of grouping pupils had apparently not addressed the practical realities student teachers now faced in classrooms with live pupils. This continuing concern with procedural knowledge for managing oral interactions was also confirmed by students in the folow-up interviews. Student B supported Zeichner (1990) in a call for a practicum curriculum (Table 4.6). The development of procedures for managing orally interactive classrooms was supported by this student as one such practicum curriculum focus. Post-analysis interview comments also indicated that the lack of accountability during mentorship days could be alleviated by more direction, i.e., a practicum curriculum. The 'discovery' that teaching required a commitment to teaching inter-personal skills was another important finding. Some students expressed surprise 117 at having to teach pupils how to operate in groups rather than just how to manipulate information. Perhaps by design, teacher education programs seem destined to 'play school' as it were and students regarded role plays, dramatizations, and the creation of 'realistic' chalenges as apparently frivolous until faced with the reality of 25 or more 'live' pupils. These grouping concerns were intriguing considering the amount of time student teachers had been in groups themselves during pre-practicum courses, that they preferred this approach to learning themselves, and that most classrooms they had observed had some form of grouping in place. Perhaps they had not 'seen' the methods teachers used as pedagogicaly practical until they themselves were confronted with the task of managing classroom interactions. It seems that students conceived of their role as teacher to be teaching 'things' much more important than group process skills. This echoes the statement by Wels and Chang-Wels (1992) that talk is 'like a window' which teachers look through to address content, supposedly the real issues of teaching and learning. Although students saw value in group processes they felt they lacked sufficient procedural knowledge to implement them effectively. In summary, that conversational involvement in the classroom is an effective means to teach and learn is only part of the knowledge necessary to create orally interactive classrooms. Declarative knowledge requires procedural expertise to be effective. With increased experience student teachers gained some procedural knowledge, yet they continued to express most concern with their ability to do so in the interviews. In their dialogue journals students 118 recounted the procedural strategies used and 'discovered.' The questionnaire responses indicated increasing recognition of colaboration as an effective and efficient teaching procedure. Establishing classrooms which support such colaborative conversations requires sufficient procedural knowledge to manage pupil interactions efficiently and effectively. Conditional knowledge. To view conversational involvement as an effective means of knowledge construction requires declarative and procedural knowledge to be effective. However, conversational involvement for knowledge construction is further influenced by participant knowledge of when and under what conditions oral interactions most effectively occur (Pintrich, 1990). Declarative, procedural, and conditional knowledge represent potent factors indicated by student teachers as necessary requirements for the successful implementation of orally interactive strategies. Although conditional knowledge issues were not raised in the interview, nor directly elicited from the questionnaires, they were included in the format expecting that they might appear. Comments in support of conditional knowledge did appear in the dialogue journals and, therefore, the format for analysis derived from the interview data included a conditional knowledge factor. Inferences to conditional knowledge became evident in the assumptions where student teachers rationalized the omission of spoken dialogue, e.g., subjectivity of speech events, difficulty of capturing speech, interpretive variation (Table 4.3, Factors 16-24). The absence of comments regarding conditional 119 knowledge in the interviews is perhaps due to a lack of preconditions necessary for oral interactions, i.e., declarative and procedural knowledge are precursors to conditional knowledge. The dialogue journals indicated quite clearly that student teachers recognized conditions under which oral interactions were effective or not. This was perhaps due to the more intimate view of the developing conditional knowledge perspectives of student teachers evident in the journals as each practicum proceeded. Comments such as, "Students enjoy sharing with a partner" and, "Peer-editing seems easier to take for them," indicate the development of a rationale that oral interaction is a viable strategy under certain conditions for pupils to construct knowledge (Table 4.4, Factor 3). Student teachers increasingly recognized that their own wisdom was not the definitive one. This reflects an increase in conditional knowledge, namely, that student involvement increases effectiveness and is confirmed by comments such as, "Peer editing seems to clarify their thinking" and, "Its more important to make sense to a peer than a teacher." This view is corroborated by students' questionnaire responses that increasingly viewed pupils speaking to each other as an effective and efficient teaching and learning strategy (Figures 4.4, 4.5, 4.6, 4.9, and 4.13). The inclusion of pupils when developing criteria was recognized, i.e., "Making them [pupils] more aware of what's expected" and showed an increasing commitment of student teachers to developing strategies which involved pupils in structuring their own learning, a condition increasing the effectiveness of oral 120 interactions. Involvement of pupils in their own learning through oral interaction was also supported by positive student teacher questionnaire responses to conditions for colaboration and group formation (Figures 4.8 and 4.10). The identification of conditions conducive to oral knowledge construction became the reservoir of knowledge from which student teachers could rationalize the learning situations in their classrooms. In their journals student teachers seemed to recognize the increasing awareness of conditions under which knowledge construction would be more effective. Comments such as, "I should have started the class with individual practice and then with partner practice" or, "Next time I'll take more time to introduce the station," convey such an increase in conditional knowledge. Students also commented that, "They [pupils] find it [correction] easier to take" or, "It [talk] clarifies what they're doing," indicative of an increased knowledge of conditions under which oral interactions are effective (Table 4.4, Factor 2). Interestingly, interview comments often expressed concern with introducing more oral interactions in the classroom, yet comments in the dialogue journals indicated quite clearly that more effective teaching included alowing more oral interactions. Perhaps the nature of the interview resulted in a defensive stance for current student teacher practice, whereas the dialogue journal was a more reflective medium, alowing students to revisit their teaching in a less threatening manner. In summary, dialogue journal comments revealed an increasing awareness of the need for conditional knowledge to implement orally interactive classroom 121 strategies. This increasing awareness of conditional knowledge was also reflected in the questionnaire responses. Student comments in the interviews were not as indicative of conditional knowledge as necessary for developing orally interactive classrooms. The student teachers' rationale for using talk or seeing value in talk revolved around the conditional knowledge that pupils enjoyed it, that it was easier to take correction from peers, that pupil talk clarified ideas effectively, and that peer comments were valued more than a teacher's. These conditions, deduced from practicum experiences, are congruent with socio-constructivist paradigms of learning and teaching presented in current foundational courses. In conclusion, it is not surprising that students indicated that their possession of the various forms of knowledge necessary to effectively implement oral interactivity in the classroom was insufficient. After all, these students were 'teachers-in-training' or novices and their knowledge base was in its infancy. Although student teachers had experienced a variety of opportunities to learn in groups during their own education and had indicated a predisposition for oral interaction among pupils in the questionnaire, they expressed a surprising amount of concern when attempting to implement orally interactive strategies in their own practicum classrooms. What was informative were the number and type of knowledge concerns which student teachers revealed, especially the large number of concerns student teachers expressed regarding the procedural knowledge necessary to increase oral interactivity. To perceive conversational involvement as an effective means of 122 knowledge construction requires that the participants have the declarative, procedural, and conditional knowledge necessary to establish such a learning environment. Student Teacher Position/Role Analysis of interview data suggests that a second category of factors plays an important part in determining the nature of the classroom environment (Table 4.4, Category B). If conversational involvement is regarded as a potentially effective means of knowledge construction in the classroom, the roles of the participants is crucial. Student teacher comments in the data sources indicate that their abilities to implement orally interactive strategies in the classroom are affected by their own confidence, experience, ability to control, meeting expectations, being observed, and meeting personal ego needs. Confidence, control, and experience. In their interview comments student teachers attributed their degree of confidence (Table 4.3; Factor 4), their ability to maintain control (Table 4.3, Factor 5), and their lack of experience (Table 4.3, Factor 6) as factors affecting the use of more orally interactive strategies. In dialogue journals student teachers reveal the perception of their role as a subordinate by thanking their sponsor for this experience, e.g., "Thank you for giving me a chance" and by asking for validation of particular strategies, "What did you think of . . . ." (Table 4.4, Factor 4). Student teachers' lack of experience became more apparent when students began to teach all day, including transitions, e.g., "Its quite another thing to move from subject to subject," and the recognition of their need for more 123 management strategies, such as, "I need consequences for behaviour-any ideas?" However, students' increasing confidence was shown in their journals by comments that asked for permission to have the 'whole class' and to, "Try centres by myself" or "Take more responsibility for the class." After the second practicum student teachers' increasing confidence was indicated in that they were more able to specify the areas of concern, e.g., term 1, "I guess, I don't know, maybe;" term 2, "Fear of letting go blinds you" (Table 4.4). Increasingly these requests became more direct statements of declaration such as, "I'd like to take charge of the . . ." and also statements of confidence such as, "I feel very comfortable" or, "I thought the class was easy to handle" and even, "I wouldn't mind being left alone for the students' sake." This increased confidence became so apparent that one student identified herself as equal to the teacher, e.g., "Another teacher in the room" (Table 4.4, Factor 4). Although more confident and experienced after the second practicum, student teacher responses to the questionnaire remained quite ambivalent concerning group monitoring, structuring, and preparation (Figure 4.6, 4.10, and 4.12). In their dialogue journals student teachers suggested that their lack of experience was a factor affecting the implementation of more orally interactive classrooms (Table 4.4, Factor 6). Yet they reflected an increasing sense of self-awareness in their journals when stating that, "I just have to take control and relax" (Table 4.4, Factor 5) or, "I feel I am asking for too much help" (Table 4.4, Factor 6). 124 The role of the student teacher characterized by factors of confidence, experience, and control, impinges heavily on any suggestion that pupils learn more effectively (Figure 4.13) or efficiently (Figure 4.5) by speaking to each other (Figure 4.4). Student teachers' questionnaire responses also indicated that pupils learned a great deal from each other and by their second practicum student teachers concluded that colaborative tasks are both more effective and more efficient (Figures 4.5 and 4.7). Although, more disposed to oral interactions after their second practicum (Figure 4.14), student teachers indicated that their lack of confidence, their potential to take risks, and lack of experience were factors affecting their ability to foster orally interactive classrooms. Personal ego-power. As expected, novice teachers' personal ego-power needs were revealed as well in reflections of students' teaching (McDermott, et al., 1995). Comments in their journals such as, "Its nice to be in charge because I like to feel like I am in charge" or, 'Then they know that I am the one that is here to help" or in term 2, "I really enjoy the feeling of having them alone" and, "It feels more like they are mine" reveal the desire to fulfill their personal needs (Table 4.4, Factor 7). Student teachers also indicated in their interviews that personal ego-power concerns affected their use of more interactive procedures (Table 4.3, Factor 7). Personal ego needs reveal an affective need exemplified by the frequent use of the word 'feel' in their journals. These feelings represent a necessary phase for student teachers to progress through to subsequent stages of development, including management needs and ultimately learner needs 125 (McDermott, et al., 1995). The predominance of ambivalent questionnaire responses to the suggestion that, "Teacher instruction is not as effective as student collaboration" (Figure 4.6), would seem to indicate the vulnerable position of the student teacher. Yet there was evidence in their journals that these needs were already decreasing after the second practicum, e.g., "I did not feel it necessary to be in charge 100%" or, "I've felt that way myself," i.e., needing to be in charge (Table 4.3, Factor 7). Increasing self-awareness seemed to lessen the desire for personal power, a factor students felt affected their ability to implement more oral interactions. Observation. Another factor students identified as affecting their ability to implement orally interactive strategies in the classroom focused on concerns with observation of themselves and their students. Interview comments suggest that the effects of audio or video recordings of themselves or their pupils creates difficulties for encouraging oral interactions, e.g., "A few kids are used to it but the majority of the class isn't" or, "I always act differently under pressure of performance" (Table 4.3, Factor 8). The absence of concerns with observation in the first practicum is perhaps explained by so much focus on self, which by the second practicum became more focused on management (McDermott, et al., 1995). Although video recording was encouraged, few students took advantage of this process to learn and one student commented in the journal that, "Its awful to see yourself on the VCR" (Table 4.4, Factor 8). In the second term observation comments in the journals were more numerous, perhaps due to the serious 126 consequences of success or failure in this final practicum or recognition of the value of observation on practice. In the second term ambivalence about being observed is apparent in the journal comment, "Maybe you could peek in at the beginning, middle, and closure?" Nonetheless, observation was seen as helpful, "You give great feedback" or even encouraged through team teaching possibilities, "Just come in during my lesson and add to it." Interview comments implied that observation was often a negative feature of the practicum yet dialogue journals such as the above would suggest otherwise. When the researcher suggested that written assignments are also performed under pressure student teachers qualified their response by saying that, "I think we all perform differently under pressure." It seems that performance varies under pressures but through repetition become more 'natural.' Nevertheless, the act of being observed constituted for student teachers a factor which the interview suggests affected their ability to introduce a 'novel' approach to learning. By defining their role as 'student' they saw themselves as limited in pursuing more orally interactive strategies. Sponsor teacher expectations. Another factor student teachers perceived as influencing the implementation of orally interactive strategies was the expectations of their sponsor teachers. As student teachers in their subservient role, referred to above, they could not be expected to implement strategies that differed from their sponsor teachers'. 127 Although student teacher concerns with sponsor teacher expectations were not evident in the interviews after the first practicum they were clearly so after the second practicum interviews (Table 4 . 3 , Factor 9 ) . Satisfying the expectations of their sponsor teachers is also evident in the dialogue journal comments such as, "Is this okay?" or, "Was this appropriate?" (Table 4 . 4 , Factor 9 ) . Students addressed the expectations of their sponsor by expressing gratitude for the freedom to rearrange the existing physical layout of the classroom or the privilege of 'using' someone's classroom for their own professional development (Table 4 . 4 , Factor 9 ) . It is possible that personal concerns of confidence, control, and ego-power dominated student teacher perspectives so much in the first term that only when those were partially alleviated could they focus on the management issues. Dialogue journals support this developmental explanation as reflections in the first term were typically egocentric, e.g., "I'm nervous" or "Where do I find you if I lose it?" or, "I think transitions are coming" whereas in the second term confidence had increased, e.g., "I really feel comfortable" or," The lesson went well" and, "I really enjoy the feeling of having them alone" (Table 4 . 4 , Factor 9 ) . Student teachers also commented in the interviews that if their sponsor teachers were in favour of more oral interaction it would be much easier to foster, e.g., "Find out what the ideas of the sponsor are . . ." (Table 4 . 3 , Factor 9 ) . As confidence and experience increased, students looked beyond themselves and the expectations of the sponsor teacher became evident. This is indicative of student teacher development from personal-ego needs (inner) to 128 management or pupil learning needs (outer) typical of the second stage of teacher development (McDermott, et al., 1995). Interview comments for confidence in term 1 (Table 4.4, Factor 4), as wel as comfort under observation (Table 4.4, Factor 8), and sponsor teacher expectations (Table 4.4, Factor 9) were largely absent. This is in sharp contrast to the numerous dialogue journal comments regarding confidence which, perhaps because of their self reflective nature, promoted self-reflection. Reflective comments on experience (Table 4.4, Factor 6), risk/control (Table 4.4, Factor 5), or personal ego-power (Table 4.4, Factor 7) are numerous in the dialogue journals and minimal in the interviews perhaps due to the dialogical nature of the journal which alowed for more openness than an audio-taped interview. The questionnaire responses were viewed as minimaly relevant to the role perceptions of student teachers and, therefore, are not included. The most important finding in the dialogue journals was the student teachers' increased confidence. This increased confidence was most evident in comments made about controlling the class, understanding of the subject material, and the decreased need for personal-ego satisfaction. Although the reduction in ego-power needs was apparent during the first practicum it became much more so during the second practicum. Interview comments suggest that increased experience also resulted in more attempts to take risks and awareness that they could control the class in a variety of situations. With increased student teacher confidence, concerns with self were modified to include management and sponsor expectations. 1 2 9 It seems that dealing with role concerns was necessary before student teachers would consider utilizing more orally interactive strategies in the classroom. The practicum experience seems integral to the development of confidence so necessary to implement other pupil learning strategies. The analysis of the data indicates that the identification and description of role factors is perceived by student teachers as imperative when considering the implementation of more orally interactive classroom strategies. If conversation is viewed as an integrative metaphor to coalesce the role factor, it seems that in dialogue journals student teachers felt empowered to express their lack of confidence, their concerns with observation, and their consideration of sponsor teacher expectations. Certainly the student teachers' role in the classroom, as expressed in the interviews, remained a subservient one, affecting their perception of factors affecting oral interactions. Only in the dialogue journals did students seem to feel confident in expressing their feelings of increasing confidence or concern. This lends additional weight to importance of considering role as a factor when orchestrating conversational involvement in the classroom to construct knowledge. School Community Expectations Another group of factors student teachers perceived of as affecting the implementation of orally interactive strategies were school community expectations. From a conversational metaphor perspective, community expectations would be expected to exert some influence on the participants. The 130 analysis of student teachers' interviews, dialogue journals, and questionnaires resulted in three: justification, parent-principal-pupil concerns, and tradition. The interviews generated the most prolific number of comments regarding school community expectations which seemed to be treated as a rationale for perpetuating traditional ways of teaching, i.e., "Teachers talk and pupils listen" (Table 4.3, Factor 1). The dialogue journals, on the other hand, were almost silent in regards to school community expectations. Perhaps the chalenges of daily life in the classroom were sufficient to over-ride any larger school community concerns. However, journal comments such as, "I should not assume as much as I do" and, "A parent and I . . . " indicate some recognition of issues beyond the classroom (Table 4.4, Factors 10-11). Questionnaire responses to colaboration and group processes provided some insight into expectations of justification and tradition. Justification. School community expectations were perceived by student teacher interview comments as centering on the issue of justification, e.g., "We have to justify what we're doing" and, "We have to know why we are doing what we're doing." This included justifying their performance as practicing teachers in the classroom in relation to the values of society, e.g., "Society values that," and, "We have to be accountable to society" (Table 4.3, Factor 10). Many of the interview comments focused on the issue of justification for present practice as wel as justification for not altering future practice (Table 4.3, Factor 10). 131 Questionnaire responses indicating that efficiency can be obtained in the classroom (Figure 4.5) coupled with the effectiveness of colaboration (Figure 4.13) provided justification for strategies which included more oral interactivity. Yet, these positive questionnaire responses regarding colaboration were countered by interview comments that raised concerns when considering more orally interactive classrooms. Parent, principal, and pupil concerns. It seems that student teachers justified the current use of orally interactive strategies on the basis of the perceived expectations of the pupils, parents and administrators. This included justifying their teaching approaches and curriculum methodology (Table 4.3, Factor 11). This is only natural considering their role as 'student teachers' and their pre-occupation with personal-ego needs and pupil management (McDermott, et al., 1995). Perhaps with more teaching experience and, therefore, increased attention to pupil learning, a disposition to more orally interactive classroom strategies would result. Tradition. Student teachers recognize that societal values change slowly and justified their present teaching practices on the basis of tradition. As a justification for not using more oral interactions for learning, student teachers commented that, "Its not the way we're used to" and, "Its always been this way" (Table 4.3, Factor 12). Individual student teacher acceptance of the value of talk for learning seemed to be an insufficient motivator for implementation; larger groups like the school or district would have to recommend such an approach before it would be deemed 132 acceptable, e.g., "If it was the whole school it would be accepted" (Table 4.3, Factor 12). School community expectations were a more compeling reason than their own preference as students for learning through conversational involvement, their own disappointing experience in teacher-dominated classrooms, and the knowledge gained in their teacher education classes. It could also be conjectured that in their role as 'student teacher' it would be unwise to counter present teaching practices. Perhaps with increased experience and, therefore, confidence, student teachers might consider altering present teaching practices. Although tradition was not addressed directly by students in their dialogue journals, by implication, issues of time for curriculum coverage, marking, and homework reflect traditional teacher concerns (Table 4.4, Factor 12). Furthermore, although traditional perceptions of schooling still favour teacher-as-speaker and child-as-listener these perceptions were changing with some student teacher experiences in the classroom (Figures 4.4, 4.6, and 4.11). Most student teachers responded that the non-traditional skills of colaboration should be taught in schools (Figure 4.7). This contradicted the interview comments which suggested that student teachers do not have sufficient time for teaching group process skills (Table 4.3, Factor 15) and also directly confronts 'back to the basics' perceptions of schooling which focus on literacy and numeracy skills. In summary, concerns for school community expectations were most evident in the interviews. While the interview format took an interrogative stance 133 and questioned present practice, the dialogue journal format presented a more reflective stance which assumed present school community expectations were being met. The directed interview format seemed more effective in producing comments regarding school community expectations than the indirect reflective dialogue journal format. School community factors of justification, parent-principal-pupil concerns, and tradition were perceived by student teachers to affect the implementation of orally interactive strategies. School community expectations would seem to limit student teachers' development or increase of conversational involvement in the classroom. Structural Features A fourth category of factors evident in the transcriptions of student teacher interviews concerned structural features (See Table 4.3, Category D). Analysis of their comments generated factors which addressed such issues as physical space, organization, and temporal features. Student teacher interview comments elicited some responses to each of the three structural features; however, journal comments concerning structural features focused mostly on the issue of time or lack of time. Few comments in either mode voiced concern with the organizational arrangements of classes and even fewer comments were made regarding the physical features within a particular classroom (Table 4.4, Category D). Questionnaire responses seemed not to impinge on physical or temporal features, yet indirectly referred to organizational features. 134 Physical features. The researcher's suggestion in the interview that physical features such as the location or availability of space might affect oral interactions among pupils was met with the response that, "That physical things don't matter" (Table 4.3, Factor 13). Student dialogue journals contained no references to physical limitations restricting their development of interactive learning environments. Yet, comments made by student teachers when they found themselves teaching pupils how to maintain eye contact or physically organizing groups countered the remark "That physical things don't matter." Students seemed to perceive that physical factors such as room size, types of furniture, or the layout of the room as factors which had little affect on the implementation of oral interactions. Organizational features. Student teachers expressed concern in the interviews that organizing classrooms for more oral interaction would be difficult because, "How do you watch so many kids at once?" or, "Recording is possible but it would take more time" and "I had no time for one on one" (Table 4.3, Factor 14). These concerns are related to the procedural concerns expressed in regards to managing groups (Table 4.3, Factor 2). It seems that their lack of experience in the organization of groups precluded a negative reaction to a suggestion for more oral activity. Specific organizational concerns included the recognition that recording data wasn't always convenient or seemingly appropriate, e.g., "I'd rather just be a rover, moving around, helping, getting my hands dirty" than writing anecdotal comments or completing observational checklists (Table 4.3, Factor 14). Other 135 organizational factors mentioned included the logistics of recording group processes during a teaching/learning event, i.e., knowing how or when to use clipboards, anecdotal comment sheets, or checklists. Student teachers felt that oral interactions and evaluation of them took more time, e.g., "Do I have time" and although they had wished to do so they couldn't, "Watch [so] many kids at once" (Table 4.3, Factor 14). Organizational alternatives were not considered as an option to resolve some of the issues of observing and recording pupil interactions. Interview comments such as, "I don't have the time; I was teaching 100%" and, "Just ignore it and go on with the day" indicate awareness of the need for observation and recording of pupil interactions yet alternative organizational strategies were not considered. Arrangements such as using group study, group presentations, and group evaluation were not perceived of as organizational alternatives which might resolve the difficulties of observation, record keeping, and lack of time. Student teachers' interview comments also gave no indication of consultation with their sponsor teachers regarding organizational alternatives. It seemed that traditional patterns of teacher activity, e.g., teaching content, marking, being in charge, using similar contexts for all pupils, etc., had a more dominant influence on teacher behavior than organizational alternatives which would result in more oral interactions. Although discussion of alternative teaching models by instructors occurs in education programs and were suggested by their sponsor teachers, other organizational methods did not seem to appear. To transfer alternative teaching strategies to students more successfully some 136 instructors have implemented them in their education methodology courses, thereby modeling and demonstrating them (Craig, et al., 1994). Interestingly, student teachers in this study did not perceive of reorganization as a means by which to achieve both a more interactive classroom and more observational time. Although few, some journal comments addressed organizational concerns such as, "How do you find time to ..." or, "Use pairings next time to demonstrate .. ." or positively, "I was able to do . . . " reflecting organizational success (Table 4.4, Factor 14). Dialogue journal comments indicated that the structure of lessons and organization of groups seemed to be of more concern than the physical aspects of number of pupils, size of space or type of furniture (Table 4.4, Factor 13). As student teachers their experience with collaborative activities was limited, yet questionnaire responses indicated their increasing agreement that collaborative tasks increased classroom efficiency (Figure 4.5) and effectiveness (Figure 4.13). Student teachers increasingly recognized that pupils learn a great deal from each other (Figure 4.4). Their problem, however, was one of how to structure someone else's classroom environment, to reflect this. Temporal features. The most frequent response student teachers gave in the interviews for not creating more orally interactive classrooms was the lack of sufficient time (Table 4.3, Factor 15). It seems that the curriculum requirements were a dominant force that necessitated a more transmission-oriented classroom. Allowing more pupil interaction seemed to conflict directly with the perception of efficiency which teacher-directed classrooms appeared to have. There seemed to be a direct 137 relationship between a teacher-directed classroom and efficient use of time, in direct opposition to questionnaire responses favouring colaboration (Table 4.5, 4.13). Dialogue journals also focused on how little time there was with comments that reflected the acceptance of the fact that, "We were only able to . . " or, "I didn't get to . . . " or, "I am not going to get to .... " (Table 4.4, Factor 15). Serious concerns were raised in taking even more time for students to talk among themselves and in teachers taking time to evaluate these interactions. Statements such as, "I don't think you have time for it" or, "It takes more time" were common justifications given for ignoring interactive strategies. "I wanted to do one-on-one observations" or, "My object was to observe but..." suggest that there was a desire for such approaches to teaching yet the time available was perceived to be inadequate. Teaching seemed to be perceived as something other than organizing pupil activities, e.g., "I was teaching 100%, I don't have time." The implication being that the amount of time predetermined a particular strategy for teaching. That this comment occurred after the second practicum is indicative of a continuing perception of teaching as something quite different than structuring orally interactive pupil activities. Quite possibly this is the result of the increased amount of time that student teachers were required to teach in the second practicum, and therefore, they had even less time to consider alternate organizational patterns. External structural factors that student teachers might perceive to affect the development of orally interactive classrooms are the effects of platooning, subject 138 distinctions, interruptions and time-tabling. These factors would specifically impinge on preparation for and monitoring of group work (Figures 4.10 and 4.12) yet neither the interviews nor the dialogue journals raised these concerns, the implication being that student teachers do not perceive that these outside factors affect the development of orally interactive classrooms. Interestingly, physical factors of location, amount of space, arrangements of that space, and design of furniture were not identified in any of the data sources as factors affecting the implementation of orally interactive classrooms. Yet one would surmise that quality of sound, for example, would be a positive or negative attribute of classroom design. However, student teachers did not seem to perceive of these physical features as influential on oral interactions. In summary, the structural factors affecting the implementation of more orally interactive classrooms were perceived by student teachers to be predominantly the lack of time and the organization of time. Concerns over the lack of time, rather than resulting in a modification of organizational patterns to alow for more interaction, resulted in a movement toward more teacher-directed classrooms. While the interviews dealt with time and organization from a more global perspective, the dialogue journals were more reflective of specific instances where time was wel spent or not. Interestingly, most of the dialogue journal comments were prefaced by the personal pronoun 'I,' indicative of conscious or unconscious acceptance of responsibility for how time was spent in the classroom. 139 Certainly the predominance of a concern with time and a lesser concern with organization limited student teachers' perceptions of conversational involvement as an alternative approach. Without demonstration and modeling of orally interactive strategies students cannot be expected to seek alternative approaches to teaching and learning (Craig, et al., 1994). From a conversational perspective structural features would seem to play a large role in classroom oral interactions yet, these features were of much less concern to student teachers (Figures 4.2 and 4.3). Assumptions Assumptions about teaching and learning held by student teachers influence all other responses and yet are the most difficult to identify and modify (Pajares, 1992). Interestingly, the assumptions identified here focus mostly on the differences between oral and written discourse and the pedagogical consequences of these differences (Table 4.3, Category E). Although these assumptions are treated as a separate category here, they permeate comments made in the interviews, statements written in the dialogue journals and responses made to the questionnaire. Their isolation here assists us in identifying and describing some of the factors which students perceive as affecting the implementation of orally interactive classroom strategies. The influence of assumptions on pedagogical practice is supported by their key role in any conversation. If orally interactive classrooms are to be viewed as a conversation, assumptions about oral processes and procedures are critical to the 140 success of such an endeavor. The recognition of the nine assumptions uncovered here are critical if orally interactive classrooms are to be valued and fostered. The interview comments most clearly revealed assumptions regarding the difficulties of establishing more orally interactive classrooms. The dialogue journals, perhaps due to their indirect nature, contained very few references to any one assumption about teaching and learning, and the questionnaires only referred to a few. The identification and description of these assumptions is especially important since they influence actions of student teachers in the classroom. Often they are unconscious modes of operation which direct questioning makes conscious. Some assumptions remain submerged as unquestioned modes of operation yet derivative actions are indicative of their presence. Student teachers' declarative knowledge comments such as, "I hadn't even thought about it" or, "That's a whole new way to learn" illustrate such unconscious assumptions (Table 4.3, Factor 1). Writing is concrete. When asked what obstacles prevented them from using more orally interactive strategies in the classroom, some student teachers in the interviews commented that, "Writing is more concrete than speaking" (Table 4.3, Factor 16). Further analysis suggests that a faulty comparison is being made. It seems the organizing processes of speaking, i.e., brainstorming, idea consolidation, and selection are being compared to the products of writing, i.e., the written assignment. If the processes of producing a written product such as 141 brainstorming, drafting, and editing were compared to the processes of speech preparation, the statement that writing is more concrete would need to be reconsidered. Although written texts are deemed more concrete than recorded texts, writing materials such as pen and paper are no more concrete than audioA/ideo tapes or recording machines (Wels & Chang-Wels, 1992). Both media are tangible, retrievable, and re-examinable, thus the meaning of the word concrete varies with the situation. Perhaps views (assumptions) that hold written text as more concrete are the reason oral interactions are less valued. In spite of our technologicaly sophisticated classrooms this perceived lack of concreteness may be part of the reason that orally interactive strategies continue to be under-valued. Writing is easier to evaluate. A related comment that, "Writing is easier to evaluate" (Table 4.3, Factor 17) was also made in the interviews. If evaluation focused on the transcription features of writing such as spelling, punctuation, and legibility and the transcription features of speaking such as articulation, enunciation, audibility, and dynamics, it would seem that both could be easily evaluated. When students evaluate pupils' spoken or written abilities in the realm of ideas, logic, or argument, neither the spoken or written medium are 'easier' to evaluate. It seems that different attributes of speaking and writing are being compared. These incompatible comparisons result in illogical and, therefore, incorrect assumptions which affect orally interactive instructional practices. 142 Speaking is difficult to evaluate. This assumption appears to be a corollary of the previous one yet it centres on the nature of speech itself rather than a comparison to the evaluative ease of writing. Students indicate that, "Speaking is difficult to evaluate" (Table 4.3, Factor 19). This difficulty includes the challenge of developing criteria to evaluate speech from a performance, informative or idea-formation perspective. It would seem that student teachers' inexperience plays a significant role in making speaking difficult to evaluate. This difficulty is also related to the availability of audio and video equipment and students' expertise in using it. A related difficulty involves the logistics of tape storage and retrieval, for collection of data from individuals or groups, and management of the assessment of these products. Comments such as, "I haven't even heard of the tape recorder thing" or, "I've never seen it work" exemplify the concerns of student teachers but more significantly reveal their inexperience with such procedures (Table 4.3, Factor 19). Evaluation of speaking is more time consuming. Student teacher interview comments indicated that, "Evaluation of speech takes more time than the evaluation of writing" (Table 4.3, Factor 18). Comments such as, "Do I have time for checklists?" and, "It would take more time" seem to indicate that an additional amount of time would be required in an already crowded curriculum. Further, it is inferred that the time taken for evaluation of writing, which usualy occurs outside of class time, is taken as normal and reasonable, yet the evaluation of speaking outside of class time is not. It seems 143 illogical to suggest that the evaluation of speaking in class takes more time than the evaluation of writing outside of class. If comparisons of time consumption were made for the evaluation of recorded text and written text, e.g., products, this would be acceptable. On the other hand, comparisons of time required to evaluate the process of producing a speech or a written text would also be acceptable (Table 4.3; Factor 18). Yet when asked about factors affecting the establishment of orally interactive classrooms these incompatible comparisons are made without a thorough examination of the assumptions which inform them. Although the importance of the relationship of speech to writing is evident in student teachers' responses to the statement that, "Children's speech informs their writing" (Figure 4.11) assumptions of time consumption were perceived to mitigate against increased oral interaction. In addition, although students recognized the efficiency (Figure 4.5) and effectiveness (Figure 4.13) of collaboration, assumptions about time consumption were used to justify not increasing the use of orally interactive strategies. Speech is not recoverable. Another assumption is that speech is not recoverable but rather a one-time event which if 'missed' is gone (Table 4.3, Factor 20). Interestingly, student teachers did not comment on the use of audio or video-tapes even though the interview itself was audio-taped specifically for purpose of recoverability (Table 4.3, Factor 22). 144 Interpretation of speaking is subjective. Another assumption that spoken ideas are more subjective than written ideas was evident in student teacher interview comments (Table 2, Factor 21). Statements such as, "Everyone has a different idea" or, "There are differences from teacher to teacher" were made when asked about concerns regarding evaluation of speech events, yet these same concerns were not raised regarding the evaluation of written events. Student teachers seemed not to question that their interpretations of written ideas were similarly subjective. Recording is unnatural-inauthentic. Another assumption that recording spoken dialogue is unnatural or inauthentic was evident in student interview comments, e.g., "A video was stiff with many mistakes" (Table 4.3, Factor 22). Students even justified not using video because of pupil assumptions of speech events, e.g., "They [pupils] wanted it perfect." Interestingly, students did not refer to the extensive technological development of technology necessary for writing. Students did not seem to view letters as the artificial representation of sound in our alphabet. Clearly, the lengthy historical efforts to develop literacy have caused them to be taken as 'natural' and 'authentic' whereas audio or video recordings are still seen as intrusive and constrained, e.g., "Not natural." Furthermore, although repeated experiences had resulted in literacy behaviours being accepted as 'natural,' the repetition of oral behaviours was not perceived of as similarly necessary to produce 'naturalness.' 145 In addition, it seems that students made a distinction between the authenticity of ideas that were written from those that were spoken; an assumption not necessarily correct. It seems format restrictions when recording spoken products were considered unnatural but largely ignored when considering written products. It seems that the 'effort' of written performance remained invisible and irrelevant while the 'effort' of spoken performance being highly visible was considered relevant. Age differences. A fifth assumption addressed in the interviews was the comment of one student who perceived age as a factor in valuing speech behaviours (Table 4.3, Factor 23). It seems that when younger pupils use speech to express ideas it is acceptable, but that the more mature, experienced pupils would more readily and ably rely on the written expression of ideas, e.g., "Primary is different than intermediate." This view seems to support the view that spoken ideas are associated with immaturity and that written ideas with more mature behaviour. When it was suggested that adults frequently construct knowledge through oral interactions, student teachers rationalized this assumption by adding that, "Teachers need to talk to each other too." The acceptance of speech as a vehicle of knowledge construction for adults seemed natural, yet conflicts with the teaching practice of paying more attention to the written products of older pupils. Nevertheless, it seems illogical to suggest that the effectiveness of spoken or written modes for knowledge construction is mediated by age. 146 Teacher position 'on stage.' A sixth and final assumption revealed in the student teacher interviews is their perception that teaching requires their presence or leadership to be effective (Table 4.3, Factor 24). Although students readily acknowledged that 'sage on the stage' approaches to teaching were not always effective, interview comments such as, "When they're in groups who knows what they're talking about" and, "They can't just talk" or, "Making sure I get the responses I want" indicate an opposing perspective (Table 4.3, Factor 24). On the other hand, students commented in their dialogue journals that they as teachers were not nearly as important as might have been expected, "They [pupils] had the opportunity to do it themselves" or, "I didn't have to show them [pupils] step by step." One student teacher even wrote that she wanted her pupils to realize that she "Wasn't a god" and that, "Pupil ideas were valid and important." (Table 4.4, Factor 24). The number of ambivalent responses to the questionnaire statements that, "Teacher instruction is more effective than pupil collaboration" (Figure 4.6) and "Speech is a child's most effective communication tool" (Figure 4.9) reflect this dilemma. If teachers are teaching, that is, talking, students might wonder how \ \ pupils can also be using talk to learn. It seems that the procedural or experiential knowledge that alows student teachers to create a classroom environment where the pupils were more interactive was unavailable (Table 4.3, Factor 2). Comments such as, "I don't have the time, I was teaching 100%" underscore student teacher perceptions of 147 the need for 'presence'. Furthermore, evaluative tasks such as observation which lessen teacher 'presence' were seen as less important than completing classroom tasks, e.g., "I'd rather be a rover and move around and get dirty" (Table 4.3, Factor 24). In summary, the assumptions identified from the interviews, dialogue journals, and questionnaires are related in that they are a response to the focus questions concerning the difficulties of implementing more orally interactive strategies in the classroom (Appendix A). Although the focus questions highlighted concerns, compiled second term questionnaire responses seem to indicate an increased predisposition toward oral interactions (Figure 4.14). Assumptions that spoken ideas are less authentic, less concrete, less objective, alongside assumptions that writing is concrete, requires less time and effort, were seen as acceptable rationalizations for the lack of more orally interactive strategies being used in student teacher classrooms. It seems that even though some of the assumptions were re-examined during the interview, e.g., "I never thought of the tape recorder thing," most assumptions remained intact. Without further introspection these assumptions will remain submerged and continue to permeate pedagogical decisions in teaching and learning. The beliefs, assumptions, and memories of classrooms that student teachers hold continue to exert a strong influence over their perceptions of current classroom practice (Brookhart & Freeman, 1992; Craig, et al., 1994; Kagan, 1992; Phelan & McLaughlin, 1995). 148 In conclusion, this investigation identified student teachers' perceptions of factors affecting oral interactions as evident in their responses to four data sets. The result was the identification of 24 factors in five categories. The analysis and interpretation of the findings was permeated by an integrative metaphor which viewed knowledge construction as involving a conversation. The potential of conversations in the classroom to enhance knowledge construction appears to be inextricably linked to the findings that knowledge, role expectations, school community expectations, structural features, and assumptions are key factors affecting the fostering of oral interactions in the classroom. Validity and Reliability Concerns for validity and reliability in this investigation were addressed by using a variety of data sources, triangulating the data (Figure 3.1), maintaining a visible researcher profile, and using a post-analysis interview. The variety of data sources increased external validity through refinement, modification, and elaboration of the findings, e.g., the addition of a conditional knowledge factor resulting from dialogue journal analysis. Internal validity of the interview data was enhanced through the triangulation of secondary sources, e.g., dialogue journals reinforced knowledge concerns, questionnaires supported speech as an effective learning tool and post -analysis interviews corroborated the assumptions. The use of direct quotes, participant involvement after analysis and use of audio tapes increased internal reliability. External reliability was enhanced by clear descriptions of the researcher's role, the participants, and the context of data 149 gathering. External reliability is also furthered by detailed descriptions of the processes of data collection and analysis. Data Perspectives The student teachers were more reflective of 'self as learner' when they wrote in their dialogue journals and responded to questionnaire statements while they were more reflective of 'self as manager' during the interviews. However, when interviewed, student teachers viewed themselves as managers of a learning environment where their knowledge, confidence, and experience were being questioned. Although students were aware that practicum grading had been completed the interview mode seemed to present a critical view of what had occurred in the practicum and, therefore, needed defending. Perhaps the use of a tape recorder or the novelty of being personaly involved in educational research created anxieties in the interviews not apparent in the dialogue journals. Why the interviews seemed to be negatively predisposed to oral interactivity while the questionnaire and dialogue journals both seemed to welcome notions of increased oral interaction is unclear. Perhaps the perceived agenda of increased oral interaction of the researcher was seen as something to be resisted. Student teachers commented in their journals that sufficient group work had been done, even more than they had expected. Perhaps they perceived the interview as proposing even more content into an already full curriculum. The interview mode seemed to question the strategies used in their particular classroom and practicum, thereby persuading student teachers to take a defensive stance. The interviews produced doubts whereas the dialogue 150 journals presented possibilities. It was also quite apparent in the journals that oral interactions were valued. It would seem that some of the differences apparent in the data sources stem from the stances student teachers took when completing them. The apparent resistance to more oral interaction evident in the interview seemed to emanate from a defensive stance. The pro-active attitude towards oral interaction evident in the dialogue journals was more indicative of a reflective stance. A reflective stance was also apparent in the questionnaire responses, although from a more distant, less subjective stance. Interestingly the dialogue journals gave very little indication of student teacher assumptions whereas the interviews gave little indication of conditional knowledge regarding oral interactivity. The questionnaire responses did not generate additional factors which had not already been identified in the interview data or dialogue journals. Knowledge, position/role, and structural factors seemed to be addressed more appropriately in the dialogue journals as indicated by the number of comments, whereas assumptions and procedural knowledge factors seemed to be more appropriately addressed in the interviews. The dialogue journal comments are especially noteworthy since they reveal student teacher concerns without any prompting on the part of the researcher,. The data are also important in that they were generated from journals written during the practicum compared to the interviews and questionnaires which were collected after the practicum. As such, these journal comments add a unique dimension to perspectives constructed from the interviews and questionnaires. 151 The enumerative results of the questionnaire provided another unique perspective on the factors generated from the interviews. While both the interview and the questionnaire were directed by the researcher, the questionnaire presented responses in degrees of agreement or disagreement. Additionally, although the questionnaire was constructed and administered before the factors and categories were identified, the evidence from the questionnaire substantiated their subsequent identification and description. In summary, the categories and factors identified from the interview data as an organizational format for the analysis and interpretation of the other three data sources effectively accounted for all comments and responses made. Although evidence from the four sources provided varying perspectives, specific factors identified from analysis of the interview data were not undermined or discounted by subsequent analysis of the other data. Multiple data sources alowed for the refinement of factor and category labels, including the addition of other factors. Analysis of the other data sources also confirmed the decision to use the interview data as the primary source for the organizational format. 152 Chapter 6 Conclusions The purpose of this study was to identify and describe those factors which affected student teachers' predisposition to implement more orally interactive learning strategies in the classroom. This study identified factors which resulted from an analysis of student teacher interviews, comments in dialogue journals, and responses to a questionnaire which were then validated through folow-up interviews. To interpret and integrate the findings into a larger theoretical framework oral interactions were viewed from the perspective of a conversation. A successful conversation requires participants to share and be aware of each others' perspectives and understandings. Similarly, in the classroom, productive oral interactions require common understandings. This study identified 24 factors grouped into five categories, namely: knowledge, roles, school community expectations, structural constraints, and assumptions which student teachers perceive require attention if the potential of oral interactions in the classroom is to be realized. The data sources, the five categories of factors, implications of their identification and description for practice, and suggestions for future research are addressed here. Just as in a conversation, the inter-dependent and reciprocal nature of the factors that influence orality in the classroom cannot be overlooked, although they were isolated for discussion in this investigation. The Data Sources The directed nature of the interviews provided the initial entry point for this investigation. Focus questions provided guidance for student teacher comments regarding concerns they had when considering the implementation of more orally 153 interactive strategies for pupil knowledge construction (Appendix A). Their interview comments provided the primary data from which the factors perceived to affect the implementation of orally interactive strategies were identified. Throughout this investigation these factors were considered essential elements for the development of orally interactive classrooms. These factors were subsequently utilized as a scaffold to analyze the dialogue journals, questionnaires, and folow-up interviews. The dialogue journal comments, questionnaire responses, and folow-up interviews were utilized to corroborate, modify, or extend the constructs identified in the interview comments. They were treated as secondary sources due to the indirect and less prolific data emanating from them and as secondary sources they were also useful in validating the interview analysis through triangulation (Figure 3.1). A second source of data resulting in the identification of factors affecting oral interactions in the classroom were the dialogue journals. Comments from student teacher dialogue journals were treated as an important source of information as their point of view, that is, they were written during the practicum, provided a unique perspective from which to determine factors affecting oral interactions in the classroom. Since they were written during the practicum they reflect the formation, development, and or modification of student perspectives over time. With increasing knowledge and experience, student teacher journals revealed evolving perspectives. The intensity and extent of growth in knowledge of self and pupils during these practica are evident in the comments from these journals and resulted in many discoveries; however, only those discoveries 1 5 4 related to the development of orally interactive classrooms were extracted for analysis. A third source of data which provided a perspective on factors affecting the development of more orally interactive classrooms was the questionnaire (Appendix B). This enumerative measure was constructed to add a third perspective to the identification and description of these factors. The questionnaire, like the interview, was more directed in its focus than the dialogue journals; yet it differs from both in that the data was quantitative rather than anecdotal. The questionnaires' design alowed for degrees of agreement or disagreement and its value lay in recording changes in agreement or disagreement over time. The statements made in the questionnaire were expected to iluminate some attributes of the factors student teachers would perceive as affecting the development of orally interactive classrooms. The limitations of the questionnaire sample size, mentioned previously, substantially reduced its usefulness in confirming, modifying, or extending the interview findings. However, there were some indicators of change to perspectives of orality over time, the questionnaires' initial purpose. In addition, although the categories and factors generated from the interviews were not known before constructing the questionnaire, nor before student teacher responses were obtained, congruency of the questionnaire findings with the interview and dialogue journal findings was evident. The folow-up interview comments provided a fourth source of data which provided validation for the findings and analysis of the other three data sources. These interviews were conducted with participants in the study after the analysis had been completed. Although these interviews yielded largely affirmative 155 responses, some comments elaborated or extended factors identified as affecting oral interactivity. The Findings The findings collectively represent five categories of factors student teachers perceived to affect the implementation of more orally interactive strategies into the classroom. Their treatment as necessary elements underpinning successful oral interactions in the classroom stems from perceiving them as foundational to productive conversations. Each factor within the categories were an element student teachers perceived as affecting oral interactions in the classrooms. Knowledge. The first category of factors identified from the research data affecting the implementation of more orally interactive classrooms concerned knowledge. The nature and number of knowledge comments raised in this regards was most noteworthy. Student teachers' knowledge comments included many concerns of how to implement oral interactions effectively. Less frequently student comments addressed their knowledge of when and why oral interactions would be most expedient. Utilizing the three categories of knowledge as determined by Pintrich (1990), these knowledge factors were subsequently identified as declarative, procedural, and conditional knowledge. Interestingly, there were far fewer declarative and conditional knowledge comments than procedural knowledge comments necessary for implementing orally interactive strategies. Student Teacher Position/Role. A second category of factors identified as influential in developing orally interactive classrooms was that of the special role of student teacher. Within this category six factors were perceived to affect student 156 teacher performance in the classroom and thereby, directly influence the implementation of orally interactive strategies. They were factors of confidence, risk-control, experience, personal ego-power, comfort under observation, and sponsor teacher expectations. The interrelated nature of these factors is important in that changes in any one substantially affects the others. When questioned regarding their concerns with implementing orally interactive strategies in the classroom these role factors were quite apparent and analysis of the four data sources suggests that each factor played a part in students' perceptions of themselves in the role of 'teachers-in-training.' School Community Expectations. A third category of factors that the student teacher data revealed as affecting the implementation of orally interactive strategies was that of the school community expectations. Some student teachers' role expectations reflected management concerns beyond the classroom and this included comments regarding external expectations of tone, productivity and teaching strategies. These expectations included those of parents, pupils, and administration, and adherence to perceived traditions. Although comments regarding school community expectations were much fewer than in other categories, the most important factors evident were a concern with justification and folowing tradition. Justification referred to the immediate classroom 'players,' i.e., teacher and pupils, but also to the larger school community of parents and administration. Structural Features. A fourth category of factors, albeit the least dominant category, became evident from the research data and were identified as the structural features of the school. These factors included the physical structure, the organizational timetable, and the availability of time. 157 The most important finding in this category was the student teachers' concerns with time when considering the implementation of orally interactive classroom strategies. Although student teachers expressed strong agreement with the effectiveness and efficiency of colaborative tasks in the questionnaire responses, the interviews and, especially, the dialogue journals were dominated by concerns with time. It seems that the implementation of orally interactive strategies was perceived as another demand placed on teachers to be accommodated in an already full day. Oraly interactive strategies were not seen as a means to help pupils become even more effective and efficient knowledge constructors, with the added potential of alleviating some time concerns. Assumptions. A fifth category of factors that became evident during the analysis were the assumptions student teachers held in regards to factors affecting the implementation of more oral interactions in the classroom. Although these assumptions were only minimaly revealed or addressed in the dialogue journals and folow-up interviews, they were apparent in the interview data. The differences between spoken and written modes of knowledge construction seemed to permeate these assumptions. Although literacy has been the agenda of school curriculum for generations, the predominance of spoken discourse in the daily life of the classroom combined with recording innovations would lead one to expect that current student teachers would view oral knowledge construction more equitably. Assumptions that speech is not recoverable, that oral interpretations are subjective, or that the evaluation of speech is difficult, are indicative of the strength of beliefs and past experiences. This was especially ironic considering that the interviews themselves were being audio-taped. 158 In conclusion, the purpose of this study was to investigate factors which student teachers perceive affects the praxis (theory and practice) of oral language during the practicum. The identification of 24 factors in 5 categories was the result of an integrative investigation using 4 different data sources and although their identification and description remains flexible and open to further interpretation, they provide an initial position from which to pursue an investigation into the pedagogies of orality. This identification alows for present student teacher education programs to more effectively exploit the potential of oral interactions. Furthermore, this identification may assist current teachers in promoting oral interactions as an effective medium for negotiation and meaning-making in the classroom. Implications for Teacher Education One of the most evident implications of this study was the perceived need on the part of student teachers for more procedural experience in organizing, managing and monitoring groups of pupils. It seems surprising that after a two year education program these students were still discovering that pupils could learn significantly within groups, that pupils needed to be taught how to communicate effectively, and that they as teachers needed to know when and why groups should be encouraged, redirected, or modified. It seems that student teacher criticisms of the theoretical focus of so much of their education programs is validated by the prolific number of procedural concerns voiced in this study. Further, it is imperative and reasonable that students develop standardized routines for management and discipline through practical experience before they focus on pupil learning (Kagan, 1992; McDermott, et al., 1995). It would seem that much more could be done to prepare 159 student teachers to appreciate the value of oral interactivity before they enter classrooms, i.e., declarative knowledge through demonstration and modeling. This would then enable student teachers to focus in their practicum on the procedural use of oral interactions as a constructive means to manage pupils, and even more importantly, enable pupils to construct new knowledge for themselves. If justification and traditions of the larger school community are factors affecting the facilitation of orally interactive classrooms, it is incumbent upon teacher educators to develop programs which address these traditions and provide a rationale and experiential knowledge to support oral interaction in the classroom. Orally interactive strategies require validation through demonstration and practice in teacher education to help students 'see' what grouping strategies are for, how they are organized, managed, monitored, and modified. Teacher education programs are encouraged to create situations where student teachers 'see' grouping practices as pedagogicaly effective and practical. Another aspect of teacher education that this study touches upon is that student teachers need to become aware of the nature of language as a tool for making meaning. Within pre-practicum classrooms assumptions about the objectivity of language need to be addressed and cultural or linguistic filters need to be revealed. The implications of using language as a tool as wel as an end in itself requires explication and examination. Some criticism has been directed at pre-service programs and practices because of the lack of a specific curriculum (Zeichner, 1990). It would seem productive for both the student teacher and preparatory programs that a curriculum focusing on factors affecting oral interactivity in the classroom could be developed. Recommendations of procedural practice, for example, could be 160 specified for the curriculum of a pre-service seminar. A recommendation for faculty is to 'teach as they preach' in methodology courses by providing models as wel as demonstrated practice for student teachers (Craig, et al., 1994; Lambdin & Preston, 1995; Watson, 1995). This would also establish metacognitive awareness for students in this study indicated they had not seen or heard of a teaching strategy that departed much from students listening and writing while the instructor spoke. Specific assumptions about spoken versus written modes of communication held by student teachers need to be addressed through discussion, but more importantly through practical experiences with recording, monitoring, and evaluating speech events. Apparent contradictions between concreteness of written or spoken texts, time consumption in evaluating written or spoken events, and the efficiency and/or effectiveness of colaboration and teacher directed learning need to be part of the teacher education program. This could be modeled in classrooms so that individual, smal or large groups can experientialy address some of these assumptions. Declarative, procedural, and conditional knowledge regarding strategies and practices of oral interactivity need to be systematicaly addressed in methods courses because the 'talk curriculum' should not be left to chance (Booth, 1994). To enhance oral interactions in the classroom the identified categories of knowledge, role, school community expectations, structural features and assumptions need to be addressed in a systematic way. The belief systems or 'latent culture' of student teachers requires addressing in preparatory education courses to expose and question the dominant modes of pedagogy. Simultaneously, prospective teachers could be provided with experiential 161 knowledge of strategies that promote oral interactivity (Tabachnick & Zeichner, 1984). In lesson planning, strategies that include the specific inclusion of a 'talk curriculum' paralleling a reading and writing curriculum could be incorporated to elicit the full range of language functions. Many types of talk could be demonstrated, practiced, and assessed. The use of audio/video technology should become as commonplace as literacy equipment such as books, paper, overheads, and computers. Teacher education programs need to cultivate teachers who are responsive to the plurality of ways in which children create texts, both spoken and written (Bianchi & Cullere, 1996; Patterson, 1996). It is the awareness of the multiple avenues of access to the discourse community that we must inform our teachers. Through the diversity of spoken and written dialogue students gain access to learning, gain ability to display learning, and are able to extend their learning into new directions (Wels-Chang-Wels, 1992). Organizational alternatives can be developed, experienced, and practiced to alow for more orally interactive classrooms. Through demonstration in teacher education, students can experience and be able to modify classroom procedures to value, encourage, and enhance opportunities for oral interactions. In summary, it is not the intention of this investigation to replace literacy with orality but rather to redress the balance so as to represent more equitably the whole range of 'ways with words' that pupils bring to school (Bianchi & Cullere, 1996; Buckley, 1992; Heath, 1986; Patterson, 1996). 162 Implications for Future Research To promote more oral interaction in the classroom, future researchers are encouraged to investigate where and how the five categories of factors can be addressed in teacher education. Recommendations of where and to what extent these factors should be addressed would be useful for some factors may be more effectively addressed in foundational courses, others in pre-service education methodology courses, while others are more effectively in classroom practicum settings. Another important direction for research would be to develop, pilot, and make available to the educational community an 'orality curriculum' which would strive for much more than 'oral enhancement' as suggested in present curricula (B.C. Ministry of Education, 1988). This 'orality curriculum' would be integrated with a 'literacy curriculum' which would include genres of speaking, strategies for promoting orality as wel as practical assessment procedures which enhance the opportunities for oral interactivity in classrooms. The potential of orality to reciprocally enhance literacy could be explored and demonstrated through action research, for example. Another direction of research might include a comparison of factors affecting oral interactions in the elementary classroom compare to those in a secondary classroom. It seems that oral interaction decreases as pupils advance through the grades and perhaps such a study could reveal some of the possible reasons (Pinnell & Jaggar, 1991). Another direction for future research would be to work in colaboration with government educational authorities to continue to refine the development of curriculum materials which assist teachers in group communication skills (B.C. 163 Ministry of Education, 1995). Present group communication assessment guides could be expanded to include strategies for encouraging more interactive oral language activities through the development of speaking reference sets such as those already available for reading and writing (B.C. Ministry of Education, 1995). This study set out to identify and describe factors which student teachers perceived as affecting oral interactions in the practicum classroom. Through the analysis of interviews, dialogue journals, questionnaires, and validation through folow-up interviews, 24 factors in five categories were identified. The identification and description was intended to promote orality as a valid medium of knowledge construction in the classroom. 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(1992). Constructing knowledge together: Classrooms as centers of inouirv and literacy. Portsmouth, NH: Heinemann. 176 Wels, Gordon, (1986). The meaning makers: Children learning language and using language to learn. Portsmouth, NH: Heinemann. Wilkinson, A.M. (1965) Spoken English. Birmingham, England: University of Birmingham Press. Yaden, D. B. (1984). Inner speech, oral language, and reading: Huey and Vygotsky revisited. Reading Psychology: An International Quarterly. 5. 155-166. Zeichner, K. (1990). Changing directions in the practicum: Looking ahead tothe1990's. Journal of Education for Teaching. 16(2). 105-125. 177 Appendix A Focus Questions 1. Where does most of your information for evaluation come from? Students' writing, reading, talking, or listening? 2. Would you change this? Why? 3. What are some difficulties in doing this ? 4. Which mode, writing or speaking is more effective for giving instruction? Why? 5. How much time (%, fraction) do you estimate that: -you talk in your classroom? -pupils talk in your classroom? 6. Is there too much, too little, just the right amount of student talk in the classroom? 7. What are some concerns you have in attempting to initiate more student talk? e.g. control, time, efficiency, etc. 8. Is it effective for learning to have pupils talking with each other about tasks, procedures, solutions, etc? 9. Is it efficient? 10. In general society talk surrounds us everywhere. Should this be reflected in the classroom? Why? Why not? 11. Anything else? 178 Appendix B Teacher Questionnaire (Circle your response) Age group- (20-30) (30-40) (40-50) (50+) Gender-M/F 1. Pupils learn a great deal when speaking with each other. Strongly Agree 1 2 3 4 5 Strongly Disagree 2. Colaborative tasks are not efficient. Strongly Agree 1 2 3 4 5 Strongly Disagree 3. Teacher instruction is more effective than pupil collaboration. Strongly Agree 1 2 3 4 5 Strongly Disagree 4. Colaboration is an ability that pupils should learn in school. Strongly Agree 1 2 3 4 5 Strongly Disagree 5. Pupils in collaborative groups need continuous monitoring. Strongly Agree 1 2 3 4 5 Strongly Disagree 6. Talk or speech is a child's' most effective communication tool. Strongly Agree 1 2 3 4 5 Strongly Disagree 7. Group work requires much prior preparation and teaching. Strongly Agree 1 2 3 4 5 Strongly Disagree 8. Children's speech assists their writing. Strongly Agree 1 2 3 4 5 Strongly Disagree 9. Potential group problems must be solved beforehand. Strongly Agree 1 2 3 4 5 Strongly Disagree 10. Colaborative tasks are an effective learning strategy. Strongly Agree 1 2 3 4 5 Strongly Disagree 183 Appendix G Student Teacher Questionnaire Consent Form Two ytprdtyyf Jronv: dlarold QlerAsen/ re-: fftesearcAparticipatiom @ear- AodiW&lSJ'tncltrtts. • Congratulations om tie/ compdetiom ol^gxHu^piracticuvti/ ffloPffullgjfou/usere/ successfd andqoar summertime' emplqgment or^gurtAer studies' are/ organized inqoar ^favour. ~4s- some ofgow Anour 3?anv conducting/ same- research in tAe< area of oral la/iguage/ in/ fAe classroom?//or my doctoraldissertation. Jtlg/particular- interest is em tie- significance ofpupul talA- as* a/ means of learning. If ourparticq^atiom is- requested to-providanie-uHtA in/ormatiom ad)/id/ ilAustrates-j/oarftersfectioeS' om pupil talA and tA^/^factors udicli/ affect' tie use/ ofpapiA fa/Ay in tie/ classroom. {dies co/isent^form ia>Aicli/follows is? tA^qormalpartqfdoing researcA/ autA Aumam s//A-f£cts- in> tAic-^O s. -ffgow wisA. to fartieifate-/dcas sign/ tie* lofj.om,. drot& tAatjyour a/t-origmitg- is- assurred andtAatgou- can/ an'/Adram at a/igtime/ sAould^gou/ decide- to do so. Sfj/:om volunteer fafarticifa/:e< Iduw dialqguefoi/rnal, oAseroatiom reports- interim// orfinalreports/pins- loo A at ang/ videos' orpAotos-g^ou/ mag/ Aa/>€/ taAiem. idle- onA// time- reqe/iresnent is/ to p>ariicip>ate im a/// cnterviear of aAou/>40 minutes' impersom, om om email, or eoen video, or cassette- etc. dZoptefi/AA/- tAis/ could txiAe-place- sometime- during/ ffune-. Hffgou leave me- a telepAx>ne-munAer or emadaddress- Idwdlcontactgm// to- arrange die- detads-. -ffgou- Aaoe- a/tg-questions- da not Ae^utat^- to contact/ me-idlianAgo/j/for considering tAis- request and IdtooA/framrd to- meeti/tggou/ sAouAA^gou/ cAoose to-participate-. jfood lucA i/i/gourfa^/re/ eruAeavours, 


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