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Insights Into Teacher Development: The Emergent Teacher

by Patricia Scallan Berl
January/February 2004
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Article Link: http://www.exchangepress.com/article/insights-into-teacher-development-the-emergent-teacher/5015508/

The child care workforce is changing. More than ever before, directors must contend with faculty whose educational levels, job expectations, and career aspirations differ widely. Teachers vary in their experience, professional demeanor, stages in career development, and most recently, generational differences that impact the significance and commitment work holds for them. Today, directors can no longer look to a single solution when designing staff development. Instead, they must apply both insight and strategy to create effective training programs that meet the needs of a diverse faculty. They need an approach that not only addresses job knowledge and skills, but also recognizes the impact of career life cycle on teachers’ goals, attitudes, and motivation.

The beginning teacher’s plight

While each teacher is unique in her knowledge, skills, and motivation, the needs and concerns of new teachers are especially crucial and often times challenging. Beginning teachers come fresh to teaching. While they are eager and imaginative, they can also be impatient, opinionated, and very passionate about their beliefs. High on ideals but low in self-confidence, beginning teachers want to do well and to be good teachers.

For a new teacher, the transition from being a student or an associate teacher to lead ...

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