O3. Teachers' experiments - research plans, observations and reports
The outcomes of Lesson Study are not only relevant to the participants, but can be shared with teachers and other professionals with expertise related to mathematics education. This, essentially, is the purpose of practice reports. These do not present all the details of the LS but a careful selections of the questions, data and results it has produced. The format is designed to be used by teachers, and while it is much shorter than a journal paper in the field of mathematics education, its structure is similar, with central elements such as: motivation and background, research questions and design, observations and results, conclusion. It can thus be reviewed and assessed by peers (other teachers), and researchers can assist in sharpening the precision of the document by questions, suggestions and further references.
The main product of O3 will be a collection of peer-reviewed, research supported practice reports, based on the template and guidelines of O1. The main novelty of this product, other than the mathematical and didactical ideas contained in the actual reports, will be the process of peer and expert review set up as quality assurance, after the first drafts have been elaborated through the planned LS activities. Concretely, each practice report will be submitted to two peer reviews and one expert review, before being finally revised and published by the responsible LS team. We will produce review forms to give the reviews a succinct, relevant and homogenous form. A main novelty of the procedure is that it will be international: reports and reviews are written in English, and the reports are thus to become available for scrutiny and subsequent use by other teams – both in the project, and by other teachers in the partner countries as well as across Europe. And this is the other novelty: through the project website, practice reports will be made public as the project progresses, and as they are making their way through the review process.
Each team will investigate the situation in their own school and decide in collaboration with university partners on the aims of their experiments. All teams will share an overarching goal to investigate implementation of IBMT and to evaluate the task design ideas.
This is the most ambitious and innovative intellectual output of the project as it comprises of multiple research studies that will be performed in partnering schools with the collaboration of university partners. Each team of teachers will be trained for Lesson study based on intellectual outputs O1 and O2, during activities C1 and C2 and further local workshops. After this preparation phase teams will perform a needs analysis and set for themselves specific aims related to implementation of inquiry-based teaching and design of innovative tasks. The format for this research will be set up in O1 and we call the final products of these research studies the practice reports. Methodology will be hence be further elaborated during the project and it will be based on the literature already listed for O1.