Here are the slides and the handout that I'm going to use at the Asia TEFL 2017 conference in Indonesia.
My presentation is from 13:45 to 14:15 on Saturday, July 15 at Pemandengan 1, Royal Ambarrukmo Hotel.
I regret that, because of the time limitation in this oral presentation, I cannot really compare Open Dialogue and Exploratory Practice or discuss much about complexity (Luhmann 2012, 2013) and pluratity (Arendt 1998), as I promised in the abstract below.
Although the notion of reflective practice has established an undisputed recognition in teacher education for long now, many teachers still find it difficult to reflect, that is, to have a good dialogue with themselves or with their mentors. Part of the reason lies in our insufficient theoretical understanding of dialogue; we are not, in fact, exactly able to distinguish dialogue from (reciprocal) monologue, (analytical) discussion or (antagonistic) debate. This presentation reports the progress of a one-year project of incumbent teacher education for 10 primary or secondary public school teachers in Hiroshima, Japan. In this project, dialogue is theoretically understood in the general conceptual framework offered by a renowned physicist-philosopher, Bohm (1996), in which orientation for 'truth' and 'coherence' play an important part. In practice, dialogue is specifically promoted in a way inspired by the 'Open Dialogue' approach in the field of psychiatric care (Seikkula and Olson 2003, Seikkula and Trimble 2005). Despite the differences among mentors and teachers of different school subjects (including English, of course), all participants as equals are encouraged to talk polyphonically, with no obligation to reach a consensus or conclusion. This project involves radical changes in the concept of teacher education itself, and is expected to contribute to a better understanding of Exploratory Practice, whose similarities and differences with this Open Dialogue approach should be carefully examined. Epistemological discussion in terms of complexity (Luhmann 2012, 2013) and plurality (Arendt 1998) is also presented to deepen our understanding of practice in social contexts.
teacher education, reflective practice, dialogue
Yosuke Yanase is professor at Graduate School of Education, Hiroshima University in Japan. He radically asks questions about fundamental concepts of language teaching in the spirit of “there is nothing so practical as a good theory,” although he is quite aware that “there are more things in heaven and earth than are dreamt of in your philosophy.”