How Teacher Beliefs, Assumptions And Knowledge May Affect The Content Of A Lesson/Course. Introduction Teaching primary school children how to read has always been something important. However, to manage such a difficult task teachers tend to follow a set of beliefs along with theories. These beliefs become the teacher’s source of designing successful method of teaching primary students reading. Teachers’ beliefs and values, and their relationship to classroom action, are increasingly coming to be accepted as an important dimension in understanding teachingRichardson (1996) has reviewed this construct and presented a working definition.
She says beliefs “name, define, and describe the structure and content of mental that are thought to drive a person’s actions” (p. 102). They cannot be directly observed or measured; therefore, beliefs must be inferred from people’s verbalizations and actions (Pajares, 1992). Teaching beliefs are part of one’s broader general belief system (Pajares, 1992). The following paper shall discuss how teachers’ beliefs have an effect on the teaching reading to primary school students. Analysis Within the educational literature, the study of teaching beliefs has been problematic due to poor and often conflicting conceptualizations, lack of definitional clarity, and dissimilar understandings about beliefs (Pajares, 1992).
Teaching beliefs usually develop from personal experience (Clandinin, 1986), prior schooling and instructing experiences (Anning, 1988; Britzman, 1991; Knowles, 1992), and interaction with formal knowledge. Formal knowledge may be imparted, for example, through interaction with school personnel, books, television, and religious classes. A number of studies have shown the resilience of the teachers’ beliefs; their entrenched ideas strongly affect what and how they internalize the content of the teacher education program (Massengill, Mahlios, and Barry, 2005; Britzman, 1991; Calderhead & Robson, 1991). These studies have indicated that teacher education programs and university preparation have minimal impact; pre-service teachers possibly aligned their opinions with the prevailing university culture in a veneer-type layer to insulate themselves, but there was no real change.
Bullough, Knowles, and Crow (1992) and Butt and Raymond (1987) assert that these held beliefs of teachers influence how teachers think, act, and view the teaching experience. Too often, ideas and views of pre-service teachers have been ignored (Carter, 1990; Connelly & Clandinin, 1988). Pajares (1992) stated that the lack of exploring the teachers’ beliefs may be one cause for outdated and ineffective teaching practices.
Consequently, their beliefs should be recognized, valued, and acted upon by teacher educators. It has been in more recent years that research has shown the impact of teacher education programs on teacher beliefs. Grossman et al. (2000) followed teachers during the first 3 years of their career. They learned that teacher education programs can affect beginning teachers’ thinking and practice. They alert researchers to not make conclusions based solely on the first year of teaching. Based on more than a decade of research, there appears to be contradicting evidence on the influence of teacher education programs.
Zeichner and Gore’s (1990) theory of teacher socialization posits that an individual becomes a participating member in the society of teachers through a process that is influenced by pretraining experiences as a pupil, formal pre-service teacher education, and in-service years of teaching. Academic analysis alone is insufficient for encouraging personal responses to beliefs; teacher candidates become socialized into the profession during the practice teaching component.