Using Video to Build Reflective Teaching Practices with Elementary Teacher Candidates & Mentor Teachers

Meghan Shaughnessy and Meri Tenney Muirhead, professors at the University of Michigan School of Education, use video to help elementary teacher candidates become reflective practitioners. They presented on the topic at the 2018 AACTE Annual Meeting in Baltimore, Md.

These professors lead teacher candidates through a process of learning, practice, and reflection.

To help teacher candidates lead their own discussions with elementary students, Shaughnessy has candidates first participate in a similar discussion. Candidates then develop and rehearse lesson plans. During this process, one candidate takes the role of teacher and others act as students. The teacher-educator provides live coaching throughout.

Eventually candidates teach (and record) a real class. Shaughnessy uses Edthena with teacher candidates because of its clear advantages for ease of use and capability with various microphones used in the classroom.

“One of the really lovely things about Edthena is that it will support the diverse set of different recording devices that our teacher candidates try to use over time.”

Shaughnessy notes the value of Edthena when it comes to prompting this reflection from her candidates.

“Here the video recording is so crucial because they are able to go back and hear the student strategy, it’s not a recollection of what the student strategy was,” Shaughnessy said.

Before Edthena, the process of giving feedback on teacher videos was arduous and uncertain.

“When I didn’t have Edthena I used to have to write out these long narratives…and hope they went back to watch the video,” Shaughnessy said. However, “in Edthena I can tag that exact instance with the idea being my teacher candidates can go back and watch it and think about my comment in relation to the instance the video that got tagged.”

Shaughnessy values the ability to view average performances of her group of teachers over time and see both improvements and areas that need more work.

Additionally, mentor teachers and field instructors use Edthena to contribute to this process of helping teachers candidates grow. After teacher candidates upload videos of their teaching to Edthena, field instructors and mentor teachers weigh in, offering comments to the candidates.

This kind of conversation creates rich evidence of teacher growth. The conversations and comments become more sophisticated as the teaching does.

Learn more about Shaughnessy’s process in the video above.

Keep Reading