Reviews into teacher education emphasise the need for preservice teachers to have more school-based experiences. In this study, a school-based experience was organised within a nine-week science curriculum university unit that allowed preservice teachers’ repeated experiences in teaching primary science. This research uses a survey, questionnaire with extended written responses, and researcher observations to investigate preservice teachers’ (n=38) learning experiences in two school settings. Survey results indicated that the majority of these preservice teachers either agreed or strongly agreed that school-based experiences developed their: personal-professional skill development (100%); system requirements (range: 81-100%); teaching practices (81-100%); student behaviour management (range: 94-100%); providing student feedback (89-94%); and reflection on practice (92-100%). Qualitative data provided insights into their development particularly for science content knowledge and receiving positive reinforcement on effective teaching behaviours. According to these preservice teachers, the school-based experiences facilitated “teachable moments – having the knowledge or skills to run with students’ questions or ideas” and allowed preservice teachers to “critically reflect between groups to make the task flow better”. Embedding school-based experiences needs to be part of each and every preservice teacher education unit so preservice teachers can develop confidence, knowledge and skills within authentic school contexts
To submit an update or takedown request for this paper, please submit an Update/Correction/Removal Request.