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EARCOS Teachers Conference 28-31 March 2012 Donna Kalmbach Phillips, Ph.D. Pacific University, OR USA.

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Presentation on theme: "EARCOS Teachers Conference 28-31 March 2012 Donna Kalmbach Phillips, Ph.D. Pacific University, OR USA."— Presentation transcript:

1 EARCOS Teachers Conference March 2012 Donna Kalmbach Phillips, Ph.D. Pacific University, OR USA

2 “Action research…..requires teachers to be acutely aware of a sense of process, and to refine their perceptions to account for that process…action research raises to a conscious level much of what is already being done by good teachers on an intuitive level. It enables teachers to identify and come to grips with their practice in a human way that is at once supportive and critical.” McNiff, 2008

3 Action Research… Involves a systematic or organized approach to problem-solving Requires active engagement & interaction Insist upon reflection, critical analysis & revolving assessment Analyzes systems of power Deconstructs taken-for-granted assumptions Results in action as a practical outcome Results in transformation Relies upon democratic ethical principles Focuses on a single place of inquiry

4 Criteria of Trustworthy Action Research

5 Teacher Action Research: Process Workshops Framing the Study Discover an Area of Focus Develop a critical Question Research Design Literature Review Trustworthy Action Research Design Data Analysis, Interpretation Research Design Triangulation Criteria for Trustworthiness Data Analysis Fundamentals Ongoing Analysis: Cycle & Strategies Final Data Interpretation Going Public ………………………………………………………Critical Questions…………………………………………………………… Researcher Dispositions

6 “I’ve got the data, now what?”

7 “Interpretation is revelation based upon information. But they are entirely different things. However, all interpretation includes information. The chief aim of interpretation is not instruction, but provocation.” Tilden (1957)

8 Data Analysis & Interpretation rests upon triangulated, multi-layered “thick” data

9 Principles of Data Analysis & Interpretation Analysis … take apart, to break down or dissect. The act of separating data for the purpose of study; a narrowing of the gaze.

10 Principles of Data Analysis & Interpretation Analysis 1.What seems to be happening in this data? What is not happening in this data? 2.What is repeated in this data (words, behaviors, attitudes, occurrences)? 3.What is surprising, perplexing, disturbing in this data? 4.What information seems to be missing from the data?

11 Principles of Data Analysis & Interpretation Synthesize …..the act of putting back together again, of integrating pieces; seeing the data set as a whole; changing the lens of inquiry to wide angle.

12 Principles of Data Analysis & Interpretation Synthesize 1.What patterns emerge across the data? (What are the repeating themes?) 2.What are the contradictions, dilemmas in the data? What doesn’t seem to fit? 3.What are the emotional & intellectual reactions to this data? 4.How does or doesn’t this data answer the CQ? 5.How are systems functioning in this data? 6.What material factors are at play?

13 Principles of Data Analysis & Interpretation Deconstruction … check assumptions, consider personal & social context; to put the lens of inquiry down, climb back up the hill to see what we’ve been missing.

14 Principles of Data Analysis & Interpretation: Deconstruction 1. Study categories of data: what other ways might these be configured and reconfigured? 2. What are the limitations? 3. What personal assumptions, values, beliefs are present in the synthesis? 4. What would other voices say about the synthesis? 5. How are systems functioning in this data? 6. What material factors are at play? 7. What is useful & dangerous?

15 Principles of Data Analysis & Interpretation: Contextualization …..the cultural, social, physical, political context of the data

16 Principles of Data Analysis & Interpretation: Contextualization 1.How are larger issues, values, political views, systems & structures influencing data interpretation? (Or how should they influence interpretation?) 2.How is power at work in the study? 3.Are conclusions mirroring, representative, in conflict with mainstream discourse? What does this mean?

17 Criteria of Trustworthy Action Research

18 Categories of Data Analysis & Interpretation Category of Analysis & Interpretation What it looks likeWhat it is On the Ground Running: Daily Note taking/note makingOngoing Analysis Off Road Break: Weekly or biweekly, depending upon project Deliberate organization of data & analysis of data Ongoing Analysis Some emphasis on synthesis, deconstruction, contextualization Weekend Break: Every 2 – 4 weeks depending upon project. At least twice throughout project Analytic MemoOngoing Analysis Greater emphasis on synthesis, deconstruction, contextualization Yoga Retreat: End of Project Final Layers of Data Interpretation Some Analysis Synthesis Deconstruction Contextualization

19 On the Road Running: Daily or Frequent Ongoing Data Analysis Note taking/Note making

20 Note Taking/Note Making Grade 6 Literature Circle: Elena, Richard, Moses & Catherine Text: Bridge to Teribithia/Date: 14 February/Time: 20 minutes Note Taking Note Making C: I hated the way this story ended. Didn’t you? How come they always make people die? Talks with hands; leans into group. R: I didn’t like her anyways. C. That’s rude. Leslie was so cool! R: I thought she was a snob – being from the city and everything. Hey, why did they cremate her? Do you think that is weird? Talks to C. only C. My mom is gonna be crea…. E: Aren’t we suppose to start with the questions on this list? She has been looking down until now. M. sitting and listening. C: Mmm…I don’t know. Is that what Mr. Ryan said? C. directs this to R. E: We are suppose to answer these questions. C. really gets into reading. She just finished PIG – maybe she is reading too many books about death? Not a great conversation starter but R. has certainly read & comprehended the book. How can I encourage these two to invite the others into the conversation? This has happened before – they get off into their own conversation and leave everyone else behind. R. pushes C. Here’s the rub: it is good book conversation. It is authentic. How do you keep this and get everyone involved? Or do I assume that “being involved” has to be through talk? Is this E.’s way of getting into the conversation or is she really concerned about following directions, being the good student? How do my questions get in the way of the conversation? They are suppose to be a scaffold…are they?

21 Practice: Note Taking/Note Making Video Clip: Teacher-Student Writing Conference Directions: Divide paper into two columns Take notes: Focus on what the teacher says & the student’s response

22 Grade 5 Writing Conference

23 Practicing Trustworthy Action Research Directions: Return to note taking/note making. Analyze talk according to Choice Words by Peter Johnston. How does layering analysis with literature make a difference? How is it useful and dangerous?

24 Strategies for Organizing Data & Analyzing Data by Charts

25 Organizing & Analyzing by Events Researcher’s On-going Analysis Journal: Record thinking (self-reflexivity), questions, connections, perspectives

26 Organizing by Literature Researcher’s On-going Analysis Journal: Record thinking (self-reflexivity), questions, connections, perspectives

27 Organizing by Quantitative Charts


29 Researcher’s On-going Analysis Journal: Record thinking (self-reflexivity), questions, connections, perspectives Charts + Narrative

30 Organizing by Data Type StudentPost-Multi- dimensional Fluency Scale Survey Responses Self- Evaluation: Fluency Rubric podcast Post Self- Evaluation Fluency Rubric Podcast Post Survey Podcast Antidotal Notes A Not administered yet Says she is a reader some of the time but only when reading by herself. Recognizes different kinds of readers in the class. Doesn’t like to read aloud. G,G,O,O, G,G O,D,O NW, NW, O Not completed yet Chose a rhyming book for the podcast because, “This will sound good.” Researcher’s On-going Analysis Journal: Record thinking (self-reflexivity), questions, connections, perspectives

31 Practice Data Set: Grade 5 Building Community

32 The Researcher’s Journal The discussions that followed the classroom meeting were probably the worst overall. Three of the five groups bickered throughout the discussion time. As a result of this, two groups (Mouse “A” and Mouse “B”) had minimal discussion. The Applewhites had no discussion because they could not resolve their intrapersonal conflicts. The Hatchet group was unable to have a discussion because there was only one member present. Dark Hills Divide was the only group having a productive discussion. I asked the counselor to observe The Applewhites group and noted that the environment was so tense that it was impossible to hold a discussion. One member was so bossy that she alienated the other members. Another member was unprepared and distracted the group. The other two members stirred the pot and argued with the other two. The counselor questioned whether the literature circle jobs are too complex and whether the groups are too large. He suggested pairing students up with one task to do – a task that they can be successful at. I am having the same thoughts after witnessing the extreme interpersonal conflicts and off task behaviors. Many of these students cannot get past their bickering to hold a discussion. I was discouraged to find that despite teaching behavior skills, these discussions are usually not a productive use of time for four of the five groups. Once again, I find myself asking, is it the task itself or the lack of behavior skills or something I am not even accounting for that causes the problems? Are the books not engaging? Should I have allowed choice? How do I account for context of these kids’ lives?

33 Weekend Break (Reflective Pause): The Analytic Memo Ongoing Analysis with greater emphasis on synthesis, deconstruction, contextualization Formal Data Analysis Completed 2 – 4 times throughout project

34 Why an Analytic Memo? Modify the AR design Recheck & possibly modify CQ To change course if needed To practice trustworthy action research through self-reflexivity, multiple perspectives, and making strong connections The analytic memo is a space to…

35 Process for the Analytic Memo 1.Read through all organized data, including note taking/note making & research journals 2.Read with literature at your side 3.Read for repeating patterns, ideas, themes 4.Cluster, mind map accordingly 5.Develop synthesis statements or synthesis questions

36 Teacher Talk does not appear to exist in a vacuum: the environment, occasion, assignment, my mood, and the student all can influence my talk (and a student’s response).

37 Synthesis Statement or Question Relevant Supporting Data Influencing Literature Further Questions Plan of Actions (Interventions) Teacher Talk does not appear to exist in a vacuum: the environment, occasion, assignment, my mood, and the student all can influence my talk (and a student’s response). Note data for Jenna, Jorge, Mike & Lelah: Note taking/Note making: Jan 10, 12, 25, 30 See conference notes for the same days Johnston: Choice Words Dynamic Classroom Lenz Taguchi, Going Beyond Theory/Practice Divide It seems as if teacher talk is just one piece of this energized moment (or flat moment): how can I begin to track these other factors that complicate the dynamics of talk? Develop a chart with these categories: Physical Interruptions My mood Student’s mood Assignment Use of Talk. Have rating scales. Quick way to track & analyze data next period

38 Next Step: Critical Colleague Response & Dialogue. Document.

39 Critical to the Analytic Memo Practice Trustworthiness: Use raw data Employ the expertise of the literature Seek multiple perspectives (critical colleague, students, parents, others) Practice self-reflexivity: pursue significant questions, stay open, resist conclusions Make strong connections Return to Critical Question

40 The Analytic Memo: An Excerpt Directions: Read through the memo. Be this teacher-researcher’s critical colleague. What questions do you have for her? What do you want to know more about? Discuss the memo: How does (or doesn’t) it represent trustworthy action research?

41 Cycles of Ongoing Data Analysis

42 Data Collection/AR Memo 1 Data may appear disconnected; unable to write synthesis questions or statements Need to refine CQ Discover gaps in data Need to refine data collection strategies Requires adapting teaching/interventions

43 Data Collection/AR Memo 2 Data is likely more focused Synthesis statements are likely questions May still refine CQ Connects data more closely to literature Further refines data collection strategies focusing on emerging themes, patterns Actively seeking multiple perspectives Further refines teaching/interventions

44 Data Collection/AR Memo 3 Data richer, multi-layered leads to more connections across data sets & to literature Enriched & expanded themes & questions Refined data collection to target specific areas Continue to refine teaching/interventions Actively practicing trustworthiness

45 Yoga Retreat: Final Data Interpretation Actively practicing: Synthesis Deconstruction Contextualization

46 Revisit, review & re- read ongoing analysis & memos Create mind maps, charts, timelines and/or generate categories Expand Interpretations Apply layers of interpretations Return to Critical Questions Draft Synthesis Statements

47 Revisit, review & re- read ongoing analysis & memos Apply layers of interpretations Practice active deconstruction Practice active contextualization What is ignored, lost or disregarded? Create mind maps, charts, timelines and/or generate categories

48 Expand Interpretations Apply layers of interpretations How do I know this ? Add Data How do I know this? Delete categories Deconstruct & Contextualize Data

49 Apply layers of interpretations Draft Synthesis Statements Different perspectives Participant Voices Expert Consultation Contextualization

50 Return to Critical Question Apply layers of interpretations What do I still wonder? How are questions limitations? How are questions areas to explore?

51 Draft Synthesis Statements Final Check: Critical Colleagues Evaluate Interpretations for Trustworthiness

52 Data Analysis & Interpretation: Summary of Process Collect data Organize data Analyze, synthesize, deconstruct, contextualize data Pause…reflect during formal spaces of ongoing analysis: Analytic Memo Cycle through above process 2-4 times Final Data Interpretation

53 Going Public Key points I want to make Connecting Points from the data Connecting points from the literature Questions I still have from this study

54 Writing Your Story: Traditional Abstract Introduction Literature Review Clarifying AR Project (Who, what, how, where, when & limitations) Road Map: Research design/Methodology The Story of the AR Project Further Reflection & Continuing Questions

55 Sharing Your Story: Alternatives Digital Witness Narrative, poetry Drama Illustrated Timelines Artwork, graphica Poster Presentations Snapshots

56 Venues for Sharing School EARCOS Open Source Journals Practitioner’s Journal Conferences Web Site Online Publications Blogs Newsletters

57 AR Data Interpretation Revisit, review: reread ongoing data analysis & memos Create mind maps, charts, and/or timelines; generate categories Expand your interpretation Apply layers of interpretation Return to the questions Draft synthesis Statements Interpretation Scaffold Going Public Prewriting Audience Key Points “Thick Description” “Results” Lingering Questions Going Public Web page Blog Conferences Practitioners’ Journals Newspaper & Letters Critical Questions Critical Questions Discover an area of focus Literature review AR Design What I will do in my AR Project? What data will I collect? How will I collect the data? How will I organize the data? AR Plan &Timeline Becoming a Teacher Action Researcher Clarify Critical Questions Collect Data Set Observations Artifacts Interviews Researcher’s Journal On-Going Analysis Organize and read the data Think about the data Chart, free write,cluster process the data in the researcher’s journal Use AR question as guide Write AR memo Draft synthesis statements Questions AR Data Analysis Action Research As Practice

58 #4 Knowing Theory & Research Gives Teachers an Authoritative Voice Speaking from your own experience is Critical. Speaking from your own experience with supportive data is Persuasive. Speaking from your own experience with supportive data framed by theory & research is Powerful Why do Action Research?

59 Doing Action Research keeps YOU In the Conversation Don’t know theory/research perspectives? Don’t engage in research of your own? Someone is positioned to TELL YOU. (You listen.) Know the theory/research perspective? Have research & data of your own? You ENGAGE, DEBATE (You Decide.)

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