Secondary teacher candidates’ learning lesson planning

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The purpose of this study is to examine school-based teacher learning by exploring how secondary teacher candidates (TCs) learn to lesson plan through the alignment of their pre-service field experiences with a general methods course. Using interview and observation data, two themes were identified: (a) student-centered and teacher-centered instructional approaches and (b) the mentor’s role in lesson planning. Using experiential learning theory, specifically looking at third space, the study found that TCs used teacher-centered methods more often than student-centered methods in school-based practice. The study found that lesson planning was challenging for TCs who are concurrently enrolled in a methods course and field experiences. These challenges resulted from the lack of meaningful implementation of a third space by both mentors and university faculty.