Original Research

Grade R teachers’ understanding of reflective practice

Ailsa S. Connelly, Naseema Shaik, Cina Mosito
South African Journal of Childhood Education | Vol 10, No 1 | a842 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.4102/sajce.v10i1.842 | © 2020 Ailsa S. Connelly, Naseema Shaik, Cina Mosito | This work is licensed under CC Attribution 4.0
Submitted: 03 February 2020 | Published: 19 August 2020

About the author(s)

Ailsa S. Connelly, Faculty of Education, Cape Peninsula University of Technology, Cape Town, South Africa
Naseema Shaik, Faculty of Education, Cape Peninsula University of Technology, Cape Town, South Africa
Cina Mosito, Faculty of Education, Cape Peninsula University of Technology, Cape Town, South Africa


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Abstract

Background: Internationally and nationally, reflective practice is suggested as a tool to inform quality teaching and learning. In South Africa, the quality of education is in the spotlight as schoolgoing children continue to perform poorly. This article investigates reflective practice in Grade R teaching. It explores teachers’ understanding of reflective practice to inform their practice to support learners having a positive first year of formal schooling.

Aim: The aim of this study was investigate the knowledge and understanding of Grade R teachers about reflective practice.

Setting: Two Grade R teachers in one school in the Southern Suburbs of Cape Town participated in the study.

Methods: An interpretivist case study using semi-structured interviews and document analysis informed the findings. Thematic analysis revealed common themes to explore the knowledge and understanding of Grade R teachers regarding reflective practice.

Results: The teachers interviewed demonstrated a tacit understanding of reflective practice. They described it as an innate aspect of their teaching. Their knowledge and understanding are theoretical and there is no evidence of reflective practice in the documents used to inform their teaching on a daily basis.

Conclusion: The findings of this study show that the participants use reflective practice innately. Support by the school and the Department of Basic Education through professional development has the potential to encourage the use of reflective practice for quality teaching and learning.


Keywords

Grade R; foundation phase; reflective practice; teaching and learning; knowledge and understanding; professional development

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