Quality class is a 10 days exchange program for teacher-students. During quality class different countries, different cultures and different opinion about mathematics education meet. Part of the program is a visit to an international conference about didactics of mathematics education. Members of the quality class change every year. The program is made for students of teachertraining college. Quality class is organized by Lambrecht Spijkerboer: STA@Lambrechtpijkerboer.nl and Monica Mattei firstname.lastname@example.org
The participating teacher-students aim to be teacher for pupils of 12 – 18 y.o. Even it has been possible to attend quality class with elementary school teacher-students. The teacher-students should meet following qualifications:
- passed more than 50% of their professional formation
- have some practice in classroom.
- are flexible, cooperative; like to work in a group
- are able to communicate in English
- are interested in didactics of mathematics education
The aims for the quality class participant are:
- learn to work in a multicultural environment.
- learn how to find your way in an international conference. Making choices, collaboration and presentation in a foreign language are part of it.
- experience being a member of an international team.
- discover and develop knowledge about teaching mathematics and be aware of what educational research can bring you in connection with personal experiences i.e. in classroom.
Each participating country forms a team of 2 – 4 teacher-students. They develop a workshop for ±3 hours. The issue of the workshop is free. The only compulsory part is the presentation of the national school system. During the first day of the exchange program, the schedule is made in detail, so it is not to say in advance when this workshop will take place exactly. You can have a preference. If there is technical support needed, the students have to organize it themselves. Tutor during this preparation part is the teacher at the teacher training college.
4 Days in advance of the international conference the participants of the quality class come together. The first day is travelingday: arrivaltimes will be different therefore the first meeting is at dinnertime getting to know each other.
Second day the morning session is taken by the staff of this event. This introduction will make clear the aims, the schedule, the tasks to be done during these days. Groupactivities will be part of the introduction, to make the ways of working clear.
Next days will be filled with workshop presented by the different country-groups. Afterwards there is always a possibility for personal feed-back in a coach-session for about 1,5 hours separately with each country group. If there is a preference there will be an optional social program during evenings as well.
For information and remarks there is nearly every day a short meeting with representatives of each country and the staff.
When conference starts the quality class-participants are helped to make choices by means of additional information about different parts of the program. During the conference program, there will be some extra sessions for quality class members only:
- Reflection session: after about 50 % of the conference; to give an opportunity to exchange experiences together, questions to discuss, and proposals for special meetings.
- Special session: One of the conference members will be asked to make a special session for quality class members. Because the contributions of researches sometimes are quite theoretical, this special session is an opportunity to meet more expectations for teacher-students.
- Evaluation session: in the end of the quality class, there is a meeting for evaluation. Not only on a personal basis, but in a group exchange as well, there will be possibilities to learn from this process. For that reason it is important to be available for the full period of quality class.
The saying good-bye events will for some participants not be the finish of the quality class. Some members are busy in making reports and/or presentations, because of the points for study they can get, with their contributions during this event. Sometimes new teacher-students are being informed by the participants, in order to form a new group for the next year.
Costs will be about travel, lodging, meals, fees, transportation and accommodation.
In order to have as low costs as possible, the lodging is mostly in cheap places, like university- students accommodation, with possibilities to cook the meals yourself. Sometimes there is youth hostel, a cloister or other lodging available, sometimes not and we have to make the best of it. Mostly accommodation is part of the conference. Transportation is not to be foreseen in advance, but it can happen that the low cost lodging is more far away form the meeting places. Costs for the preparation of the workshop, like sheets-multiplication is part of students matter.
About reduction for registration and conference fee, every year there is an ongoing negotiation with the local organizing committee.
The main problem for each country is how to get some funding for the teacher students to participate in this program. Teachertraining colleges, should work hard to find at least a part of the cost to be funded. For teacher-students in EU-countries already being teacher in a secondary school it is possible to get a scholarship for this kind of activity, to be asked in advance on a personal basis.
More information and detailed questions can be asked to Lambrecht Spijkerboer: STA@Lambrechtspijkerboer.nl
On behalf of the organizing committee:
Lambrecht Spijkerboer (NL)
Monica Mattei (IT)