Teacher Beliefs and Practices in Schools Serving Communities that Differ in Socioeconomic Level.Report as inadecuate

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This study compared teachers' assumptions about students and effective teaching practices in low and high poverty schools. Attitudes, beliefs, perceptions and classroom practices of 476 teachers in 24 urban and suburban elementary schools throughout the United States were assessed with teacher questionnaires and classroom observations during a single school year. The data indicated that teachers in schools serving students from economically-disadvantaged backgrounds put greater emphasis on teacher authority and control and less on student autonomy and "constructivist" approaches than those in other schools. The findings confirmed earlier studies in showing that students in poor communities generally receive less engaging kinds of education (such as cooperative learning) and that teachers in such schools see the school climate as less positive and stimulating and themselves as having less influence. Teachers at these schools also were less trusting of students and more skeptical about their abilities. Teachers' beliefs were generally consistent with their practices, even when school poverty level and students' mean achievement levels were statistically controlled. Five data tables are attached. (Contains 24 references.) (Author/ND)

Descriptors: Classroom Techniques, Economically Disadvantaged, Educational Environment, Elementary Education, Low Income Groups, Suburban Schools, Surveys, Teacher Attitudes, Teaching Conditions, Teaching Methods, Teaching Styles, Urban Schools

Author: Solomon, Daniel; And Others

Source: https://eric.ed.gov/?q=a&ft=on&ff1=dtySince_1992&pg=12475&id=ED398174

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