ABSTRACT

In the discussion of reflective practice in the previous chapter, some issues are concerned wholly with the professionalism of the teacher, but Van Manen's levels of reflection (see Chapter 2) are posited in a manner that is also relevant to action at the professional-client interface. The content of his book (1991) takes this a great deal further and is written to inspire novice teachers to a reflective or mindful stance in their early work with pupils. The previous chapter briefly considered the notion of mindfulness as a theoretical interpretation of reflective practice, but here it is examined in its more practical implications. Previously, mindfulness has been equated with the behavioural orientation of 'being reflective' (as in Chapter 5). Van Manen suggests that mindfulness is a quality of the behaviour of a person that links thought and action in a relationship between the self and others. The quality of this relationship is maintained by means of reflection on or about actions and represents a concern in the relationship between teacher and learner. It aims to produce a positive educational experience for the learner (or the child - Van Manen considers this in the context of parenting as well). Daloz (1986), in a similar way, discusses the manner in which a reflective teacher or mentor can affect the quality oflearning and experience of the learner or men tee.