Designing lessons and teaching are very often individual activities that require teachers to refer to the national curriculum and available teaching resources in relation with the targeted students they are in charge of. Both activities are quite challenging for student teachers that have to acquire multiple professional skills during their training. Consequently, taking part into a collaborative international research project surely represents a very valuable opportunity. This is what offers PEERS projects (a French acronym for Students and Researcher Social Networks Projects) supported by the Lausanne School of Education (HEP), Switzerland. These projects bring together a team from the faculty of education of Lausanne and one from a foreign faculty of education.
This presentation will rely on data collected during a second PEERS project coordinated by two teacher trainers, one from each institution, working with two groups of student teachers coming respectively from the Breton School of Education (ESPE de Bretagne, France) and the HEP (Switzerland). It will describe the whole Lesson Study (LS) process (Murata, 2011), that is the four phases that constitute a LS cycle: 1) studying the curriculum and the knowledge in relation with a specific goal, 2) designing and planning a research lesson, 3) observing the lesson implemented by one member of the group, 4) analysing and reflecting on the lesson in order to improve the lesson and more particularly its impact on the students’ learning.
In our project, the research lessons focus on the teaching and learning of English to francophone students (both French and Swiss students) aged 11 to 12. More particularly, the lessons include an oral communication activity conducted in pairs, based on an information gap (pairwork activity). Gruson’s study (2006, 2007) highlighted a number of specific conditions pairwork situations have to meet if they are to encourage learning for all students: in particular the fact that the language content and documents used must be carefully analysed and selected. This work also showed that the demonstration techniques used by the teachers and the analyses of the students’ oral productions play a crucial role in lesson effectiveness.
In relation with the LS process our research questions are the following: under what conditions does participating to a LS project allow students to design and implement their lessons more efficiently? To what extent analysing and re-designing lessons raise the student teachers’ awareness about the impact of teaching strategies on the learning of all their students whatever their abilities in ESL are?
With these questions, our objective is to explore very concretely and from a didactical perspective the results described in previous literature. Indeed, it has been demonstrated that lesson studies contribute 1) to improve didactic knowledge and the understanding of learning processes (Fernandez, 2005), and 2) to support the development of an investigative approach and a more reflective attitude towards practice (Andrew, 2011, Fernandez, 2005).
Nom de la manifestation
European Conference on Educational Research (ECER)