Working with Pedagogical Cases.
Armour (2014) describes pedagogical cases as ‘learning tools and as a starting point for generating ideas about ways to link theory, research and practice’ (p. 4). With this in mind, we hope to use the idea of pedagogical cases to provide a point for thought and discussion about ways to conceptualize and enact meaningful PE in schools and pre-service teacher education. The cases we provide on the website are not meant to be interpreted as ‘ideal types’: like those in Armour’s (2014) initial volume, they are based on composites of real situations, data, and excerpts we have experienced or accessed. We make a point of explaining where each case came from at the end of each one. Based on feedback from a session where the cases were used, we have provided a long and short version of each case. The short version may be suited if working in sessions of an hour or less. As you read through each case, we suggest considering the following:
- How does the case resonate? For example, identify any aspects that are similar/different from what you currently do as a teacher or teacher educator. Is there anything you would normally emphasise in a similar situation that is missing or omitted? Is there anything you could take from the situation to apply to your own practice?
- Analyse the case in relation to the specific features of meaningful PE (which you can learn about here and here) and pedagogies that promote meaningful participation, such as autonomy-supportive teaching, goal-setting, and reflection. What is prominent? What is missing? To what extent do the features work in an integrated way, with one clearly linking to another (such as challenge leading to more fun)? To what extent do you find the case captures ideas about meaningful PE? How is this helpful or unhelpful to your own work or how you work with pre-service or practicing teachers?
- Think about the ways each case either supports or could change how you teach in ways that foster meaningful participation. Are you already doing some of the things to support meaningful experiences? Based on the case, how could you change how you plan, instruct, or assess to better support meaningful experiences?
At the end of each long version of the case we have provided a list of bullet points that summarise things that stand out to us. These are not intended to be “the solution” but may help connections to be made in the case. We see these as being potentially beneficial if the cases are used with pre-service teachers.
We hope that the cases might be of use to individual teachers or teacher educators who are interested in learning about meaningful PE. If you would like to use the cases for small group activities in a PETE course or professional development session, please go ahead: we just ask that you acknowledge the work, and if you are up to it, please provide us with some feedback so we might get a sense of how the cases were helpful or can be improved.