UNESCO-NIE Centre for Arts Research in Education (CARE)

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Name of Author: 
Loo, Yin Mei
Institute: 
Thesis (M.Ed.) National Institute of Education, Nanyang Technological University
Supervisor: 
Stinson, Madonna
Year of completion: 
2007
Country: 
Singapore
Country of Research Data: 
Singapore
Language: 
English
Abstract: 

"Collaborative teaching is like a box of chocolates, you never know what you're gonna get". This dissertation reports on a collaboration between the researcher and a secondary school English teacher. The research investigated the impact of co-planning and co-teaching on the teacher's professional development when using drama in a Secondary one Normal Academic English Language classroom in Singapore. During the collaboration in June-July 2006, lessons co-planned and co-taught with Estella, the co-teacher who was also a participant in this study, were audio and video-taped. The researchers/co-teachers kept journals and reflected on the effectiveness of their co-taught lessons together. To ascertain students' responses to Estella's use of drama, pre and post intervention surveys were administered and post-lesson co-generative dialogues (Tobin, 2005) with students were documented, together with students' self-checklists of their own behaviour during lessons. Analysis suggests that co-planning and co-teaching had significant impact on Estella's professional development with self-reported outcomes of increased confidence in and commitment to her teaching practice. Estella also evidenced greater acquisition of knowledge and skills in drama pedagogy and deeper reflective practice. She learnt to take greater risks as a teacher, trusting her students to discover learning more independently. There was also greater student learning as students engaged deeply in the issues that the lessons explored. The introduction of drama into the GCE 'O' level syllabus in 2006 warrants greater investigation into drama as a pedagogy and as an art form in the curriculum and this study investigates what worked or did not work for the teachers collaborating in this context. The reflections generated will contribute to an understanding of the institutional constraints that were encountered. Teacher trainers and trainees may find the experiences of the co-researchers in this study of interest, especially when grappling with the challenges of incorporating new teaching strategies.

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