Teacher Reflection To Improve Professional Growth

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Teacher Reflection to Improve Professional Growth Collaboration among practitioners has been a means for improvement in education for many years because direct leadership inhibits the professional growth of others. Dominant leadership fails to foster an environment for collaboration and teacher reflection. According to Hallinger (2003, p. 340), “the collaborative processes inherent to the enquiry approach to school improvement offer the opportunity for teachers to study, to learn about, to share and to enact leadership”. In order for improvement to begin at the teacher level within a school, classroom educators must be given the opportunity to work on their skills. The collaborative leadership approach allows school administrators and teachers to work together, to analyze and solve instructional and classroom management issues. Supporting teachers in developing reflective practice is a significant challenge. In order to create a positive impact on student performance, teachers must spend time reflecting through professional growth. To begin improvement with the classroom educator requires “individualised support for stapff” and . . . “building organisational goals from the ground up” (Hallinger, 2003, p. 337). Adaptive challenges are difficult to solve, as the values, beliefs, habits, and ways of working, must be altered, in order to meet the challenge of the 21st century classroom (Heifetz & Linsky, 2004). Specifically, working in partnererships related to instructional practices, peer observations, and collaboratively designed professional development will lead to improved reflective practices. Reflecting on instructional practice is crucial in responding to teachers’ individual professional growth. As stated by Strahan, D., & Hedt, M. (2009), “individual growth” [occurs] “in three intertwined dimensions: deeper comprehension of subject matter, more
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