Narrative accounts of US teachers' collaborative curriculum making in a physical education department
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© 2013, © 2013 Taylor & Francis. Through the use of narrative inquiry, this research study explores the collaborative curriculum making experiences of six teachers (three males; three females) in one physical education (PE) department in an urban middle school in the U.S. Collaboration; as defined in this work, this has to do with teachers’ voluntary interactions and their shared decision making in support of common goals. Where curriculum making is concerned, it refers to interactions between and among the four commonplaces of curriculum (teacher, learner, subject matter, milieu). The paper features the perspectives of the department head (female), experienced teachers (male and female) and teachers new to the profession (male and female). The narrative accounts of the individual teachers are set against the backdrop of the PE department with which they identify and within the storied history of the school in which they work. The story constellations representational form conveys the interrelatedness of the narratives and instantiates the teachers’ experiences of collaborative curriculum making. In the final analysis, this research enterprise makes a major contribution to the study of PE as well as to education generally. To date, no inquiries have focused on the collaborative curriculum making of teachers lodged in a PE department in one school context, despite collaborative curriculum making most closely reflecting how PE teachers typically approach the teaching task due to shared classrooms/gymnasiums/fields and the communal use of equipment.
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