A study which explores the impact of the english national curriculum (1990) on the work of teachers at key stage 2
This thesis is a report of a longitudinal study which explores the impact of the English National Curriculum (1990) on the work of teachers at Key Stage 2. It is based on teachers' experiences viewed in relation to a theoretical template of questions. The questions - refined during a process of iteration throughout the research - provided a conceptual framework which kept it focused and manageable. Data - obtained from interviews, document study and observation - derived from five cases were subjected to qualitative analysis which involved progressive reflection, the use of matrices to sort and sift and the identification of similar phrases, patterns, themes and differences, both between and across the range of participants, and across the various cases. Key patterns and differences emerged which were then cross matched with each subsequent case in a process of refocusing and refinement. Preliminary findings were discussed with recognised experts chosen for their connection with English teaching at Key Stage 2 or for their role in developing the statutory Order. Several issues emerged prompting questions about teachers' experience of: • subject knowledge across all four language modes of English; • the complexities involved in teaching pupils to read; • process approaches to teaching writing; • the part that metatextual and metalinguistic understanding plays in learning; • teaching techniques which support the teaching of speaking and listening; • the relationship between standard English and language variation; which were viewed within the context of the National Literacy Strategy (March, 1998) in order to reach conclusions and frame recommendations for theory, practice and policy. In summary, these relate to teachers' ability to deal with the complexities involved in English teaching, particularly with regard to raising standards in literacy and the role that speaking and listening plays in this, and the implications which this has for Initial Teacher Training and for Continuing Professional Development.