A Rationale to Adopt Team Teaching in Prevocational Education in Jordan

Article excerpt

Prevocational education (PVE) in Jordan is a multi-disciplinary subject. It is known that it is difficult to prepare one teacher to teach all its fields. This study investigated the possibility to teach prevocational education by a team of teachers. Through questionnaires addressed to PVE teachers and teachers of other subjects, the study discussed the context that makes it necessary to adopt team teaching in PVE, identified the teachers who might participate in the teams, and their levels of ability to collaborate in teaching each of the PVE subjects. It also identified the difficulties and the required managerial and curricular changes. Among difficulties that would face team teaching in PVE were the increase in the teaching loads of the teachers who would participate in the team, and the interference in their timetables. However, teachers showed positive perceptions towards the usefulness of team teaching, and they expressed good affinity to participate in the teams.

Key words: Team teaching, Pre-vocational education.

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Prevocational education (PVE) in Jordan is a practical form of provision that is taught at all grades of basic education. It is delivered as modularized training packages in agriculture, industry, home economics, economics, and health and safety. The provision of PVE in Jordan is intended to achieve a variety of general objectives, such as: inculcating positive attitudes towards manual work and workers, enabling students to acquire practical and applicable skills with economic and social benefits, providing the students with an opportunity to discover their affinities and aptitudes in order to facilitate their selection of prospective careers based on informed and realistic experience s. In addition, PVE aims at acquainting students with the practical application of knowledge obtained from other subjects, improving students' problem-solving and values-commitment abilities, enhancing their abilities to deal with modem technology, improving their consciousness of domestic life requirements, improving their "sense of responsibility" towards the environment, and enabling them to communicate through drawings and symbols (MoE, 1990).

It is obvious that PVE is intended to contribute to the overall role of the school in building the student's personality, and helping him/her to cope with the social requirements of human relations, inculcating ethics and values in addition to practical needs. This requires the teacher to teach the subject in an integrated way that does not confine learning to only practical skills and theoretical knowledge neglecting behavior, ethics and values (Al-saydeh, 2002).

Because of the wide spectrum of objectives, and teacher's tasks, the curriculum of PVE is distinguished from the academic curriculum in that it includes not only theoretical knowledge and basic subject skills, but also practical ability in real-life situations. Prevocational education does not take the form of a linear curriculum, and thus the interaction of all relative components will continuously occur (Doghlos, 2004).

To achieve the PVE objectives, the PVE teacher should have special abilities other than that of training on practical skills and transferring theoretical information and their sub-abilities. Al-saydeh (2002) identified these abilities as perceived by teachers, supervisors and curriculum developers. These abilities included undertaking vocational guidance and counseling, relating the subjects to students' life, using technology relating to the curriculum, utilizing and serving the local environment, in addition to undertaking maintenance to the PVE workshop and, sometimes, to school facilities, and doing other administrative tasks in the school.

This preview of the nature of PVE in Jordan, its objectives, and teachers' roles, reveals the difficulty of the PVE teachers' job. This difficulty results from the variety of the subject matter fields, the big variety of objectives intended to be achieved, and the low level of quality of teacher preparation and training, (Al-kiswani, 2005). …