Teachers' agency as values educators in the History classroom

Halbert, Kelsey (2011) Teachers' agency as values educators in the History classroom. In: AARE 2011 Conference Proceedings, pp. 1-14. From: AARE 2011 Australian Association for Research in Education Conference: researching across boundaries, 27 November - 2 December 2011, Hobart, TAS, Australia.

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Abstract

One of the relatively recent manifestations of citizenship education was an initiative that prompted schools and teachers to explicitly teach 'Australian' values. The National Framework for Values in Australian Schools (DEST, 2005) can be examined for the way it positioned teachers as values educators. This paper adopts a Foucauldian lens to discuss the ways History as a school subject is constructed as a space and place for fostering ethical citizens. The discussion draws on a study of three Modern History teachers and their students, based on data collected through document analysis, interviews and classroom observation (Halbert, 2010). The research revealed that whole school approaches which utilised the national framework did not necessarily sit in congruence with the teaching and learning experiences of value laden subjects such as History.

In seeing values in context, the agency of the History teacher is in fostering skills for engaging students as ethical citizens such as reflectivity, critical analysis and a knowledge and understanding of the values of social justice. In addition, the teachers took on the role of modelling active citizenship and values through the performativity of History teaching. At a time of global citizenship when curriculum reforms and a plethora of cross-curriculum agendas are taking place in schools, this research contributes to our understanding of the ways teachers perform as values educators.

Item ID: 21336
Item Type: Conference Item (Refereed Research Paper - E1)
ISSN: 1324-9320
Date Deposited: 03 Apr 2012 23:57
FoR Codes: 13 EDUCATION > 1302 Curriculum and Pedagogy > 130205 Humanities and Social Sciences Curriculum and Pedagogy (excl Economics, Business and Management) @ 100%
SEO Codes: 93 EDUCATION AND TRAINING > 9301 Learner and Learning > 930104 Moral and Social Development (incl. Affect) @ 50%
93 EDUCATION AND TRAINING > 9303 Curriculum > 930399 Curriculum not elsewhere classified @ 50%
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