What does a "good" teaching team look like in a middle school classroom?
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Observations of teams have been made during 3 years of ongoing experiences in several local middle school settings. These observations have occurred in the course of teaching middle school classes as a participant-observer, conducting a single case study of a state P-12 school that established a middle school program (Main. 2003), and undertaking a major study in progress of four teaching teams in three middle schools. These observations have provided a basis for reflecting on the current practice environment for middle school teaching teams. Using teaching teams in middle schooling has been justified in terms of benefits for teacher collegiality, student learning, and creation of a flexible environment. That is, teaming allows the creation of a larger working space and more adaptable working time, which then enables teachers to incorporate virtually any teaching or learning method with any combination of students at any time during the normal timetabled sessions of a school day. However, this flexibility raises questions not only about 'what', 'how', and 'when' to team-teach but also about how teachers manage the process of forming and developing as a team. What does a 'good' teaching team look like?
Stimulating the "action" as participants in participatory research
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