Nurturing Critical Dialogic Partnerships: A Praxis for Teacher Induction with/in Urban School Communities
thesisposted on 27.10.2017, 00:00 by William Kennedy
This research explores the Critical Dialogue that I facilitated and engaged in as part of a dialogic Praxis cycle with four first year teachers in Chicago Public Schools, all graduates of the critical and urban-focused teacher education program where I am an instructor. Using a Freirean conception of dialogue, I engaged in third space Critical Dialogue Partnerships with each teacher, five times over the course of the school year. Our dialogues focused specifically on the critical analysis of their attempts to engage in classroom instruction from the ‘curricular standpoint’ (Au, 2012) of the low income students of color in their middle school classrooms as well as their attempts to develop a dialogic Critical Care with the various members of their school community - students, fellow teachers, administrators, parents and families, and community members. Through this Critical Dialogue process, explicit attention was given to how the teacher participants confronted hegemonic socialization, in its various forms, as teachers in urban schools situated within the context of US Schooling. Using Practitioner Inquiry, I examined our transcribed dialogues to consider the ways that new teachers described their struggles and successes engaging in Critical Dialogue with the members of their school community. Together, we found that Critical Dialogue was easier when there was support amongst other school community members or structures that facilitated dialogue within the institution of the urban school. Conversely, in school communities where dialogue was actively silenced or dismissed, the teacher participants struggled to enact the approaches to teaching they believed in and had been educated to enact.