Student to Teacher


Teacher preparation cast in Heidegger’s terms is “present-at-hand” (potentially useful) until interrogation makes it ready-to-hand (actually useable). What authentic questions prompt teaching to become ready-to-hand for the beginning teacher? How might we show that the essential particularity for phronesis (knowledge as practical wisdom) resides in teaching other Beings who are not just present or ready for us, but are creating the very world in which we encounter within the classroom? The study described below, undertaken in the 2008/2009 school year, juxtaposes passages from Being and Time (Heidegger, 1962) with observations in the classroom, knowledge of the local university teacher preparation program, and interviews with beginning teachers. So that no teacher might be able to self-identify, “Becky” and “Eloise” are both fictitious names. “Becky” comes from a university program outside the area now teaching in the district described in the study, whereas “Eloise” was educated in the local teacher preparation program.

Keywords: teacher, phronesis, Heidegger, reflective practice, education

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