Purposeful Teaching. In what ways do teachers teach purpose?

  • D. Drenth

Student thesis: Master's Thesis: Humanistic Studies


This research identifies in what ways six Dutch seventh and eighth grade teachers teach purpose. Using the theoretical model of Tirri & Kuusisto (2017) purpose can be taught in three main ways: as the content of teaching, within a meaningful didactical relation between the teacher and the students’ learning process and within a close, compassionate, safe and supportive pedagogical relation between the teacher and the student. The teachers taught purpose mostly pedagogically. They all provided a safe atmosphere, gave students the individual attention they need and were supportive towards them. Didactically teaching purpose happened a lot less. Teachers were having an interactive classroom atmosphere, made regular method lessons meaningful and clarified the personal relevance of lessons explicitly. However, lessons that didn’t occur much were lessons that were explicitly purpose-related. Some purpose related content occurred in social-emotional lessons, philosophy lessons and projects. However, most purpose related content appeared in talks about students’ (academic) learning processes, planning their near future and their future towards secondary school. The teachers feel they have little time and space to teach about purpose related content, since it’s not part of the curriculum. This thesis concludes that purpose should become part of the curriculum.
Date of Award1 Jan 2019
Original languageAmerican English
SupervisorE. Kuusisto (Supervisor) & I. Groot, de (Supervisor)

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