“It’s More About the Program”: Teacher Sensemaking of Literacy Instructional Practice

2016-10-19T00:00:00Z (GMT) by Melanie M. Walski
This case study examines the role of standards, organizational structures, and mechanisms on teachers’ sensemaking of literacy instructional practice, and how that sensemaking manifests into classroom practice. Participants were teachers and leaders at one elementary school in a mid-sized district in a collar community of a large urban area. This study examines the ways teachers construct meaning of messages from leadership about literacy teaching and learning by using frames for sensemaking. Findings suggest that messages about curricular program adherence and assessment accountability pressure played a role in how teachers understood what should be emphasized and valued in literacy instructional practice. This study also looks at one teacher’s classroom practice by highlighting way she acted in agentive ways to meet these demands but also design learning opportunities that reconciled school-level expectations with her own teaching philosophy.