Learning to talk like a teacher: Participation and Negotiation in co-planning discourse

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A new teacher's progress from novice to expert involves learning not only discipline-specific content and pedagogy, but also norms for how to talk in the community of practice. Through participation in joint planning conversations with experienced teachers, student teachers learn how to talk about planning lessons and units. This learning, though, is a two-way process. The encounter between experienced members and new members is an integral part of ongoing renewal in a community of practice. These encounters, however, can arouse tensions between the goals of the two parties, tensions that are particularly difficult to manage in a hierarchical and high-stakes cooperating teacher-student teacher relationship. An examination of the negotiations between an experienced teacher and a novice teacher during joint planning indicates that participating in a community of practice requires new members to evolve productive ways of challenging the assumptions and practices of the community, ways of negotiating shared practices and discourse with more established members. This study warrants reconceptualization of student teacher preparation to embrace not only competence through participation in collaborative planning, but also opportunities to negotiate new discourses of planning.


Copyright 2005 Taylor & Francis for National Communication Association (NCA)

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Publication Title

Communication Education

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Smith, E. (2005). Learning to talk like a teacher: Participation and Negotiation in co-planning discourse. Communication Education, 54(1), 52-71.



Peer Reviewed