Introducing the Persona blog


I have several friends who blog about their lives, and I find it an interesting glimpse into personal trials and tribulations (often around parenting) that we often never get to hear people talk about.  This blog is a bit different: it is a space where I will discuss my primary research interest: the teaching persona.

 

What is a teaching persona, you may ask?  Put simply, persona means “mask.”  It is our public identity; experienced teachers have all kinds of experience with this.  I believe it was Hargreaves who said that teaching involves emotional labor such as “smiling when one is not happy.”  Conversely, some new teachers (even today) hear “no smiling ’til Christmas.”  This is just the emotional side–there are a host of aspects of one’s self that teachers have to determine whether to share, hide, or amplify for their students, and this might change from class to class and year to year.

 

These ideas, about which self one will present, apply to any teacher.  My work currently focuses on preservice teachers, so this blog with address them and their challenges in this area above all.  But I am also interested in college professors, high school and elementary teachers, and the students themselves–the most interesting thing about preservice teachers, though, is that they are both teachers (generally high school or elementary) and students (college).  Research shows that this is a challenging time, and that some student teachers even start to dislike the person/teacher they become in front of the class or feel alienated from their friends and families.

 

I’d love to hear from preservice teachers or anyone else who might be interested–how have you found your teaching persona?