CONVENER(S): Anna Perry - [email protected]
PARTICIPANTS: Michael Dorer, Harvey Hallenberg, Virginia Varga, Mary Gaudet, Mimi Basso, Linda Zankowsky, John Chattin-McNichols?, Kitty Willliams, Amy Henderson, Prabha Williams
SUMMARY OF DISCUSSION:
I put this topic on the board because I see a need to give recognition and definition to a group that as of now has not been formally identified within the AMS and Montessori community - the Teacher Educators. Our TEC committee brings together the heads of Montessori Teacher Education Programs (TEP's), and they do professional development and discussions of current best practices on a limited basis at their annual meeting. However, there is no such group, and no meetings or professional development currently organized for the rest of the Teacher Educators who are typically Heads of Schools and/or Teachers as well.
The discussion among this group centered around two ideas: 1. There needs to be a 'track' for Teacher Educators at AMS conferences 2. There (eventually) needs to be a formalization of the process of becoming a Montessori Teacher Educator, including a certification program.
1. There needs to be a 'track' for Teacher Educators at AMS conferences Under the teacher education track and general professional development needs for this group, here are the notes from the discussion: Topics that should be addressed include: - Curriculum
- defining what IS the Montessori Curriculum (beyond the materials) - History of Montessori education - both the full history and the American history - Child development - current information - Cosmic Education - Montessori Philosophy and fundamental principles - Spiritual preparation of adult students- Montessori for a diverse community (of both adult and child students) - The defining characteristics of the Master Teacher - Assessment
- rubrics, especially for the Elementary and higher levels - tests/exams of adult students - written, oral, practical- Tasks/homework being given to adult students
- how well are assignments integrated into the full curriculum - purpose - what is the intended purpose of the assignments, is it doing that?- Field Supervision - Increased awareness of current research findings
- integrating current findings into our instruction - basing our assertions and assumptions on verifiable data/work- Adult Education - what works? what is best practice outside of Montessori? How is the philosophy interpreted from our relations with adults? are we walking the walk?
- Instructional Strategies - cooperative learning - teachers as researchers/scientific pedagogue - reflective practitioner- sharing the wealth of wisdom from the 'best' in our field - Technology updates/intros
- video conferencing - distance learning - PowerPoint? - BulletinBoardSystems? and Listservs - computers 101 - spreadsheets, databases - internet and email 101 - media instruction - digital cameras, digital camcorders- Research
- history/integration of Montessori
2. There (eventually) needs to be a formalization of the process of becoming a Montessori Teacher Educator, including a certification program.
Professional Standards must be defined - what does every Montessori Teacher Educator need a) to know, b) to be able to do, c) to have experienced
Do we set up a basic, broad Teacher Education certification or is it level specific? What about Teacher Educators that are non-Montessori presenting on the more general topics such as child development? Do we offer Model I and Model II cert programs like the Administrators Certification? How much experience should they have under their belts (5 years in the classroom was suggested)? Should it be an apprenticeship organized at a different TEP than the one you attended (cross-pollenation)? Who will be the 'Uber' Montessori Teacher Educator Teachers? Who names them as such? How do we share this responsibility of providing this certification to include several centers, a variety of people, etc.? Do we run it as a Teacher Education Symposium? Can TEC solidify and regulate (more or less) the professional development requirements of all Teacher Educators so that their professional development is related to adult education in addition to their content area(s)?
Possible Actions: A) For the Anneheim conference, Anna will get in touch with some of the well-recognized mentors of the Montessori Teacher Education community that were identified by the group. She will ask several to present at the Anneheim conference in a workshop in which they answer: What is essential for Montessori Teachers to know when finishing a TEP and how do we get them there as Teacher Educators? We will also try to convene a panel of these same 'mentors' to discuss this question together and to help to guide future professional development efforts at the end of that conference. The same track is possible to put together, with other 'mentors' for the Boston conference in spring 04. B) For the Boston conference include topics/speakers addressing: - Habits of Mind, the book from the ASCD, and how it relates to Montessori - Cooperative Learning - Teachers as Researchers - Reflective Practitioner