Journal of Science Teacher Education

, Volume 20, Issue 3, pp 219–243 | Cite as

Preservice Elementary Teachers’ Reflection on Narrative Images of Inquiry

  • Christine M. Dietz
  • Elizabeth A. Davis


Preservice elementary teachers face challenges in learning to teach science. Educative curriculum materials, designed to promote teacher learning, can provide support for overcoming these challenges. The educative curriculum materials used in this study provide narrative vignettes describing a teacher’s decision making with regard to lesson plans. As part of an elementary science methods course, 40 preservice teachers were asked to reflect on and respond to the narratives. Results suggest that descriptions of teaching situated in lesson plans can promote productive reflection for preservice teachers. This study informs the design of educative curriculum materials and elementary science teacher education experiences and helps improve the pedagogical content knowledge of elementary science teacher educators.


Preservice elementary teachers Educative curriculum materials Science teacher education 



This research is funded by a PECASE/CAREER Award grant #REC-0092610 and a CLT grant number #0227557 from the National Science Foundation. However, any opinions, findings, and conclusions or recommendations expressed in this publication are those of the authors. We thank our colleagues in the CASES research group, including Shawn Stevens, Cory Forbes, Michele Nelson, Julie Smithey, and Carrie Beyer, for their help with this study and feedback on earlier versions of this paper. For more information about CASES, see


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, B.V. 2009

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.School of EducationUniversity of MichiganAnn ArborUSA

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