Efforts to improve educational achievements in Israel are at the forefront of national concern. In acknowledging the crucial role of the teacher in this endeavour, this enquiry explores the prominent instructional practices of effective teachers of English as a Foreign Language in Israeli elementary schools. The qualitative study is placed within a social constructivist perspective of learning that, in turn, serves as a foundation to the authentic pedagogical approach as determined by Newmann et al (1996). A multiple case study was conducted, whereby observations were carried out in the classrooms of five teachers recognised to be effective in their practice, and followed up with post- observation and post-data analysis interviews. The data collected from each case individually was subsequently used to engage in a cross-case analysis.The analysis offers clear indication that all teachers provide significant opportunity for pupils to construct knowledge using a variety of techniques and strategies. There is also evidence to show –albeit to a lesser extent, that relevance in instruction, promoted primarily through the topic of the lesson and opportunities to develop intrapersonal skills, plays an important role in the practice of the effective teachers in this study. Both aspects identified are central to the notion of authenticity in instruction. The enquiry concludes with the suggestion that the findings from this study could be used as a basis to explore the extent to which the aspects of instruction identified feature in the practice of effective teachers in a wider context, with a view to developing a national model of pedagogy that would promote much-needed and sustainable educational improvements in the Israeli context.
|Date of Award||2 Jan 2014|
|Supervisor||Susan Martin (Supervisor) & Elisabeth Barratt Hacking (Supervisor)|