The Effects of Classroom Management Education on Handling a Class Disruption among Teacher Students

Our research contributes to the understanding of the contents of teacher students’ “apprenticeship of observation” (Lortie, 1975), thus, teacher students private and inner beliefs about appropriate teachers’ behavior. Specifically, we describe teacher students’ private models of dealing with disruptive behavior in the classroom and embed this issue in a larger context concerning Classroom Management (CM) in Teacher Education. Therefore, our research questions are concerned with teacher students’ private beliefs and exploring methods of teaching CM. We investigate two questions in specific: 1) What are the contents of teacher student’s beliefs about solving a discipline problem at school between a teacher and a student? 2) Do they reflect critically on these beliefs after a CM seminar? We conducted a study with a projective procedure in order to investigate our research questions and obtained data at two points of time (T1, T2). At the beginning of a seminar about CM, teacher students (T1; N = 62) completed an unfinished story that described a conflict between a teacher and a disturbing student. Mental models about how to behave as a teacher and how to interact with a disturbing student are explored by means of content analysis. A second set of data was obtained after the seminar (T2; N = 51). The teacher students were requested to combine he original end of the story with contents they had learned in the seminar about CM. At T1, we found many approaches that were not appropriate and possibly emerged from teacher students’ apprenticeship of observation. Results of T2 showed clearly that teacher students were able to adopt some theories, but were surprisingly uncritical towards the story. The results are discussed by focusing on the teaching of CM as one central task of Teacher Education.


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