Developing Communities of Practice Through Language Teacher Associations in Oman
One of the most important concerns of teachers’ professional development is their involvement in language teacher associations and specialized academic groups. Language teacher associations (LTA) are expected to provide sustainable collaborative learning activities that are beneficial to the teachers. This chapter, therefore, explores how language teachers in Oman develop communities of practice through their involvement in language associations. In addition, this chapter draws from my own managerial experience in education as an organizer of language associations and delves into the strengths and limitations of teachers’ involvement in language associations through analyzing their own reflective practices and the use of the Community of Practice (CoP) model to illustrate how their transformative learning activities contributed to their professional growth. Finally, recommendations on how LTAs could provide effective and beneficial professional development to the teachers and how to intrinsically motivate teachers are included in this chapter hoping that these would eventually have a valuable impact on teachers’ transformation.
This report is based on teachers’ beliefs and perceptions on the importance of professional development activities and engagement in academic groups and associations in promoting communities of practice in the local context. They expressed interest and eagerness in forming a language association in Oman. Their main goal is to support language teachers’ professional development through their involvement in the association. They dreamt of teachers who can effect teaching and learning transformation, thus developing communities of practice.
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