Journal of Educational Change

, Volume 10, Issue 4, pp 365–391 | Cite as

What is successful adaptation of lesson study in the US?

  • Rebecca R. Perry
  • Catherine C. Lewis


This paper features a case study of one US K-8 school district pioneering the use of “lesson study,” a teacher professional development approach adapted from Japan. The case explores events that occurred in the district over more than 4 years (Spring 2000–Fall 2004) as lesson study spread nationally and within the district. We document four categories of changes that occurred in the district’s lesson study approach, and describe some of the early consequences of these changes as well as conditions that enabled the changes to occur. We argue that this case illustrates much of what we would hope to see in a maturing lesson study effort, and conclude that other US sites may need to go through similar changes, organize similar supports, and persist in their learning about lesson study to successfully adapt this model to their local contexts.


Organizational change Professional development Educational reform 



This material is based upon research supported by the National Science Foundation under grants REC 9814967 and REC 0207259. Additionally, revisions to the original manuscript submission were informed by work conducted for and supported by the MacArthur-Spencer Meta-Study. Any opinions, findings, and conclusions or recommendations expressed in this publication are those of the authors and do not necessarily reflect the views of the National Science Foundation or the MacArthur-Spencer Meta-Study project. The authors wish to thank the many practitioners involved in the research as well as Mary Kay Stein and Cynthia Coburn for their formative feedback on the substance of the manuscript.


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media B.V. 2008

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.School of EducationMills CollegeOaklandUSA

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