Strengthening Teacher Practice through Visual Methodologies
Gitonga, P. N.
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Research reveals intricate and complex interaction between teacher identity and teachers’ practice, professional development, attitudes towards educational change, epistemological access by learners, learners’ outcomes, teachers’ receptivity to change, among others (Beijaard, Meijer, & Verloop, 2004; Smith & Fritz, 2008). It is an interpretive lens that illuminates into how teachers engage with curriculum, make judgments and ultimately act out teaching activities (Bullough, 1997; Knowles, 1992). Other studies on teacher identity have, among other aspects, focused on the relationship between teacher and social conditions, self-understanding aspect, and conceptions of professionalism. This proposed workshop is premised on the assumption that teacher identity has a direct implication on the teacher practice and the epistemological access of learners to the taught content and hence the learners’ outcomes in music education. This is grounded on Bourdiu’s theory of identity as an embodied practice. According to Bourdieu, there exists a system of durable, transposable dispositions, which predisposes individuals to act, to think, and to behave in particular ways. We therefore argue that a music educators’ sense of competence in their professional identity is intricately interwoven with the habitus in their profession as well as the status and other dispositions that are related to self and which constitutes their sense of teacher identity. Therefore, the purpose of the workshop is to create a forum in which music teachers at all levels could disrupt the status quo of his/her context, which informs his/her teacher identity and practice to enhance the status of music education. The workshop aims to expose the educators to selected participatory visual methodologies namely drawings and participatory videos to stimulate self-reflection through which the educator could explore her sense of identity