The article “Middle school co-teaching: Effective practices and student reflections” focuses on how co-teaching has impacted middle school students. The authors provide a comprehensive look at how the No Child Left Behind Act asked for the highest quality of teachers. Conderman (2011) reflects on how the implementation of co-teaching’s purpose was to help blend expertise from different teachers and build effective communication students.
The notion that teachers need to collaborate comes from the lack of expertise for most middle and high school teachers. This is due in part to more generalized teachers being placed in classrooms. I believe that the inclusion of informing the reader of the generalized teaching approach is what brings perspective to this article. A general teacher does not specialize in one subject area. In order to meet diverse needs in these environments co-teaching has become a solution. The article includes formative assessments from students who showed appreciation for the feedback. The students believed that the best part about the co-teaching was having a teacher readily available if they needed to communicate any issues they were having (Conderman, 2011). This is a strong point of the article. Without the feedback from the students it would be another article that brings expert opinion but none from the students. The teachers provided systematic feedback that was beneficial to the students. With the assessment to the students, researchers believe that this open dialogue is what is needed in order for teachers to be aware of best teaching practices (Conderman, 2011). Coming from the students make the feedback that much more valuable.
This article is important to the field of teaching because it not only provides techniques on how to approach co-teaching, but it includes honest feedback from students. The students are at the core of education, so their feedback is paramount to any new strategies that are taking place. By this being research done in the last ten years, it is still relatively new to the field, and ongoing, but this is a positive look at how co-teaching is impacting education.
Hang and Rabren’s article, “An examination of co-teaching: Perspectives and efficacy indicators” is about how co-teaching was initially created to help students with learning disabilities. The article provides expert opinion on the indicators of co-teaching and its effectiveness. Overall, the discussion is on how co-teaching is effective and needs to be an instructional delivery options for special needs classrooms.
Hang & Rabren (2009) takes a look at the four components of co-teaching and what role they play in ensuring student success. The components are strong points in the article and take on the task of explaining what makes co-teaching work. The first component that is explored is of course the qualifications of the teachers. All teachers need to be certified in order to meet eligibility. Certification is important because special needs students rely on the expert knowledge of teachers who are instructing them. There is also a need for instructional delivery by all teachers involved. It was established early on in the article that co-teaching can include more than two teachers, but the most popular combination is two (Hang & Rabren, 2009). Nonetheless, both teachers are to instruct and communicate with the students. After all it is a collaborative experience. Another component of this co-teaching is the type of students who are being taught. These are students who have learning disabilities. This is not an inclusive classroom setting. The article stresses the importance of these factors in order for the strategy to work.
This article is important because it provides a blueprint as to how this kind of teaching method can be effective for students with disabilities. There have been countless studies done to determine pedagogical practices that will lead to effective learning for students with disabilities. This article adds to the conversation.
The article “Using collaboration, co-teaching, and question answer relationships to enhance content area literacy” examines a teacher’s (Mrs. Hunt) class and how she has made co-teaching part of the instruction (Fenty, McDuffie-Landrum, & Fisher, 2012)). The teacher has a generalized classroom where there are students with learning disabilities. The article is a testament to her struggles in dealing with an inclusive classroom, but also provides support for the idea of co-teaching in order to raise literacy and reading comprehension scores.
The findings in this article focus on how expertise is pivotal in the quest to teach students with learning disabilities, specifically literacy (Fenty et al., 2012). The way in which the teachers communicate to the students will impact how the students will respond to them based on literacy skills. The blending of co-teaching and collaboration holds a lot of promise to bringing instruction to these students. QAR (Question Answer Relationships) is derived from co-teaching (Fenty et al., 2012). This is an effective communication process in which students and teachers are bale to engage in literacy relationships. The QAR approach gives students the ability to become self-directed learners. There could have been more focus on QAR in the article. I believe the QAR is considered to be the end goal of knowing how students will succeed as a result of co-teaching relationships. The communication they gain from this strategy is finding importance in what they are reading. They are able to make inferences and monitor the way in which they comprehend information. This is ultimately important to not only their literacy success but academic one as well. As stated, the QAR was an informative part of the article and more time should have been given to this component.
This article speaks to the sentiment of why co-teaching relationships is an effective strategy. It takes the idea of communication and strategy to a level of academic success. The support offered in the article is substantiated and using the classroom assessment to test co-teaching is brings a realistic view to how the strategy works.
- Conderman, G. (2011). Middle school co-teaching: Effective practices and student reflections. Middle School Journal, 42(4), 24-31
- Fenty, N. S., McDuffie-Landrum, K., & Fisher, G. (2012). Using collaboration, co-teaching, and question answer relationships to enhance content area literacy. Teaching Exceptional Children, 44(6), 28-37.
- Hang, Q., & Rabren, K. (2009). An examination of co-teaching: Perspectives and efficacy indicators. Remedial and Special Education, 30(5), 259-268.