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Theory into Practice in Curriculum Planning Ministry of Education
Culture and Sport Pedagogic Administration The Israeli Curriculum Center, 1999

Training Literacy Consultants: Development of Professional Knowledge and Consulting
Patterns


Constructing a Teamworking Instructional Unit via Educational Change in the "Teachers'
Room"


On the Issue of the Realization of Vague Curricular Goals, or, What is left of Literature
Classes outside the Classroom


Issue: Why have a Stantards-Based Curriculum and What are the Implications for the
Teaching-Learning-Assessment Process?


YBM (Yesh Bagrut Model) Matriculation Studies for Young "Education Blocked"
Immigrants


Assessing the Development of Systems Approach of MATAS Science Teachers and STES
Curriculum Developers, a Case Study


Alternative Teaching and Evaluation Methods in the MUTAV Program


Training Literacy Consultants: Development of Professional
Knowledge and Consulting Patterns

Hana Ezer, Nurit Merav

The research described in this paper explores a two-year-project of training elementary and
junior high school teachers to become professional literacy consultants in their schools. The
paper describes the two phases of the project:

1. Teaching and learning literacy concepts and literacy teaching strategies.

2. Coaching the teachers to become literacy consultants in their schools.

The paper also describes the development of the teachers' professional knowledge from two
aspects: Content-pedagogical aspect and personal aspect. This knowledge is a compound of
theoretical knowledge, practical knowledge and self knowledge. It also presents the different
consulting patterns evolved in the schools and discusses the factors involved in shaping those
patterns. Finally, the paper discusses implications for teacher training and for consulting
patterns, development in schools and recommends further research.



Constructing a Teamworking Instructional Unit via Educational
Change in the "Teachers' Room"
Meira Eisenhammer

The transfer of the focus of instructional planning otherwise known as "Curriculum Planning"
from a centralized system to a local school focus signifies an important principle in the
response of the educational system to the wide range of developments and social,
technological and economic changes that characterize the end of the 20th century. (Levin,
Aviram 1996; Zilberstein, Emanual, Tzbar Ben Yehoshua, 1995 ;1995).

In this article the change will be described and outlined with regard to the term "curriculum"
as representing the changes occurring in all areas of life. Moreover the article will present the
operative aspects necessary for starting the change in instructional planning specifically in the
"teachers' room" via the construction of teamworking units.*

It must be stressed that: the teachers who are the backbone of the school are meant to be both
a conduit for the change and its agent-operators. The result of this complex process is
supposed to be realized on a daily basis in the class and in the "teachers' room"

Because this desired change is a complicated process from the teachers' point of view,
integrating both personal and professional aspects (Shachar and Sharan, 1994), it appears that
its activation via the "construction of teamworking units," a significant element in the school
process, will allow teachers to change and be changed simultaneously.



*The operative aspects that will be demonstrated were developed within the framework of
"Ladaat" a highschool value intervention system which functions on a regular basis in part of
the Junior High Schools and High Schools in the religious sector.



On the Issue of the Realization of Vague Curricular Goals,
or, What is left of Literature Classes outside the Classroom
Yael Foys

This paper claims that literature curricula include overall goals intended to develop in the
readers personal involvement in works of literature, esthetic sensitivity, literary taste and
evaluative skills. Yet, these goals are vague, due both to the difficulty in defining the
concepts involved and to the multiplicity of factors effecting this field. The paper is based
upon research, which examines the explanations provided by students of four twelfth grade
classes (just before taking their final exams in literature) regarding their choice of a poem
unfamiliar to them) as their favorite one. The findings indicate their very partial use of)
knowledge, tools and strategies studied in the course of six years of high school. The
research, focusing upon the most complete and the best answers, finds a goal oriented
approach to the reading of poetry.

There is a gap between expectations derived from the phrasing of the goals and the students'
responses to literary texts not learned in class and to free reading situations. The instruction of
literature in schools is not aimed towards fostering esthetic sensitivity - mainly due to the
undefinability of the concept - and hence, there are difficulties in finding ways of application.
The paper points out the absence of research investigating the meaning of literary
understanding and esthetic sensitivity and the ways whereby they can be attained. Such
research may lead to the construction of models that will serve as a basis for study programs in
which there is correlation between goals and ways of instruction and evaluation.



Issue: Why have a Stantards-Based Curriculum and What are
the Implications for the Teaching-Learning-Assessment Process?
Judy Steiner

Up until now, the Israeli educational system has not included curricula based on standards.
However, in July 1998, the Pedagogical Secretariat of the Ministry of Education, Culture and
Sport approved of a standards-based curriculum for the teaching of English in Israeli schools.

This article has raised the issue of the importance of having a standards-based curriculum and
what the implications are for the teaching-learning-assessment process. The underlying
assumption of the importance of setting standards is that there is a national need to raise
standards and to equip pupils finishing an Israeli high school with the knowledge of English
that the modern world demands. In order for pupils to achieve the standards, teachers will
have to change the way they think about teaching and about how and what pupils learn in a
foreign language. As a result, radical changes in teachers' perception of how pupils are
assessed will have to be considered.



YBM (Yesh Bagrut Model) Matriculation Studies for
Young "Education Blocked" Immigrants
Rita Sever

Education-Blocked" is a term chosen to assemble into one category three sub-categories of"
youngsters who are usually treated separately: one includes the "over dropouts," those who
are not registered in any school; two - the "latent dropouts," who are registered but do not
participate in the schooling process; and three - those placed in dead-end tracks that do not
lead to a matriculation certificate. What all three sub-categories have in common is that they
are blocked from further education in the future, and that the more prestigious labor market
will be closed to them to a great extent.

Although the exact size of this category is not easy to establish, it is becoming evident that
immigrants are highly over-represented in it. Contrary to common belief, this
over-representation is not a temporary phenomenon; the rate of "Education Blocked" among
the immigrants is constantly increasing.

In the age 17 cohort, a higher percentage of immigrants than veteran Israelis (in the Jewish
population) do not possess a matriculation certificate: 69% vs. 55% - despite the fact that
among those who take the exams, the immigrants' success is somewhat higher than that of
their veteran Israeli peers. The situation calls for explanations that do not put the onus of
failure on the immigrants; indeed a series of school-related factors have been identified that
impinge on schools' effectiveness in preventing immigrants from becoming
Education-Blocked." This has led the author and her staff at the Hebrew University to"
develop a program - YBM, specially designed by for these immigrants youngsters. It is a
highly demanding program, a 2-year marathon of intensive studies, making it possible to offer
these youngsters aged 16-17 a genuine chance to obtain a matriculation certificate within this
period. The program has been implemented in several cities in Israel since1994, with close to
participants overall, and a graduation-rate of more than 80%. Two of every three 150
participants (including those who did not graduate) passed at least 8 of the 10 mandatory
matriculation exams; 48% are eligible for the full matriculation certificate.

The paper presents the rationale and operation-model of the program as well as details about
its implementation and its results.



Assessing the Development of Systems Approach of MATAS
Science Teachers and STES Curriculum Developers, a Case
Study

R. T. Tal, Y.J. Dori, U. Zoller

Science teaching in Israeli high schools is expected to play a key role in educating students
for active involvement and commitment. As future citizens they are expected to participate in
decision making processes based on a value system aimed at improving life and
environmental quality within our technology-based society. The primary goal of the MATAS
curriculum development project is the development of an autonomous learner capable of
system critical thinking and decision making in relation to real life problems and acting
accordingly.

The MATAS curriculum consists of seven modules developed by several groups of teachers
from different science disciplines, led by group coordinator and an academic advisor. One of
these groups was assessed and studied throughout the curriculum development process,
aiming at evaluating the development of system and pedagogical approach within the STES
framework.

The research findings indicated improvement in the content aspect - transformation from
disciplinary to interdisciplinary teaching. Only a few of the teachers developed a system
approach and a multifaceted teaching strategy. Finally, progress was made in the use of
teamwork following the start of the field test. The group members switched to a more
collaborative pattern of work compared to what they were used to at the beginning of the
teamwork.

Most teachers indicated that their active involvement in the design and development of the
Biotechnology, Environment, and Related Issues MATAS module contributed, meaningfully,
to their professional development.



*Hebrew acronym for "Science, Technology and Environment in Modern Society"



Alternative Teaching and Evaluation Methods in the MUTAV
Program
Rachel Mamlok, Dvora Katzevitch, Etti Leonov and Ruth Ben-Zvi

This article will focus on a description of the workshop in which the teachers experienced
alternative teaching and evaluation methods in the context of a new curricular program for
senior high school students: "Science and Technology in Society".

The problems likely to arise in this program's application are:

*   The interdisciplinary character of the subject and the unfamiliarity of the teachers with
spheres of content in which they have not undergone training (the teachers who started to
teach the MUTAV program have been trained to teach specific science subjects: chemistry,
biology or physics).

*   Teachers are not always familiar with the required teaching strategies.

In order to assist a group of teachers from two schools (who began teaching the MUTAV
program in 1997) in both teaching and evaluation methods, it was decided to open a
workshop for these teachers at the Department for Science Teaching at the Weizmann
Institute of Science.

The characteristics of the workshop can be divided into two parts:

1. Workshop activities.
2. Field (classroom) activities.

Different teaching and evaluation methods formulated at the workshop will serve as
examples. The work methods employed at this workshop can also be applied to work with
teachers in other, different frameworks.



* Hebrew acronym for "Science and Technology in Society".