Exploring the Impact of Self-Reflection on Novice Catholic School Teachers' Practices with English Language Learners

Ramos, Francisco
November 2012
Journal of Catholic School Studies;Nov/Dec2012, Vol. 84 Issue 2, p26
Academic Journal
This study investigated the impact of self-reflection on the practices with English Language Learners (ELLs) of 13 novice Catholic school teachers at the end of their first-year commitment to Partners in Los Angeles Catholic Education (PLACE). PLACE is a partnership between the Archdiocese of Los Angeles and Loyola Marymount University offering recent university graduates (PLACErs) for whom teaching was not their career of choice, the opportunity to work in under-resourced schools of the diocese while earning a combined academic degree in education and preliminary teaching credential. Given PLACErs' limited educational background, weekly self-reflections on their performance in their classrooms are compulsory assignments in a second language methodology course pertaining to their academic coursework. The purpose of these reflections is to help PLACErs identify their strengths and weaknesses, evaluate their performance, and consider the necessary modifications to improve their routines. PLACErs were surveyed three times throughout their first year in the classroom: Prior to the start of the school year, at the end of the first semester, and at the end of the year. Their responses indicated that they had progressively learned to maintain the academic content pertaining to their respective grade levels while introducing the necessary modifications in the language they used to make it accessible for their ELLs and that they had increased their use of cooperative group work. The positive effects of this combination boosted PLACErs' perception of success, effectiveness and confidence in their teaching abilities.


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