"Growing the finest teachers possible": Theorizing how Young Teachers Challenge, (Re)produce, and are Subject to Discourses of Childhood, Adolescence, and Adulthood

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Weaver, Katlynn
University of Lethbridge. Faculty of Arts and Science
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Lethbridge, Alta. : University of Lethbridge, Dept. of History
My thesis analyzes semi-structured, qualitative interviews with seven student or practicing teachers between the ages of 22 and 28. Each participant is currently pursuing or has recently completed a Bachelor of Education degree at the University of Lethbridge. I also analyze a range of educational policies from Alberta Education and the Alberta Teachers’ Association which inform teacher behaviour as well as define and manage what is or is not a child, youth, and/or adult. My thesis analyzes how these young teachers struggle to make sense of transitions of life stages – either their own or their students – based on their formal education, their childhood memories, and their experiences in the classroom. Using an approach to Critical Discourse Analysis, I analyze how subjectivities of child, youth, and/or adult – in both educational text and talk – are gendered, racialized, and complex and leave some of my participants feeling like they have failed as adults.
Alberta Education , Age categories , Critical Discourse Analysis , Young teachers