Final practicum as a “boundary zone” in early childhood teacher education: Transversality, relational agency and co-configuration
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This paper describes the role of an Interdisciplinary Seminar to “scaffold” final practicum for early childhood student-teachers at Lisbon School of Education, Portugal. Student-teachers, cooperating teachers, university supervisors and specific didactics instructors worked together to involve young children in project-work. This cooperation provided an opportunity for innovation and experimentation and, especially, a context for teacher educators to deepen their understanding of their roles and to improve their teaching strategies, specifically around specific methods (maths, language, arts, etc.). As a consequence, the final practicum became central to the teacher education programme. Data from evaluation after a two-year work-seminar will be presented and discussed. New concepts will be developed such as “relational agency”, “co-configuration” and “boundary zone”. It is specified how they may help to understand the crucial role developed by practicum (fieldwork) in teacher education.
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