Teaching As A Reflective Practice: The German Didaktik Tradition, 1st Edition (Paperback) book cover

Teaching As A Reflective Practice

The German Didaktik Tradition, 1st Edition

Edited by Ian Westbury, Stefan Hopmann, Kurt Riquarts


360 pages

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This volume presents a mix of translations of classical and modern papers from the German Didaktik tradition, newly prepared essays by German scholars and practitioners writing from within the tradition, and interpretive essays by U.S. scholars. It brings this tradition, which virtually dominated German curricular thought and teacher education until the 1960s when American curriculum theory entered Germany--and which is now experiencing a renaissance--to the English-speaking world, where it has been essentially unknown.

The intent is to capture in one volume the core (at least) of the tradition of Didaktik and to communicate its potential relevance to English-language curricularists and teacher educators. It introduces a theoretical tradition which, although very different in almost every respect from those we know, offers a set of approaches that suggest ways of thinking about problems of reflection on curricular and teaching praxis (the core focus of the tradition) which the editors believe are accessible to North American readers--with appropriate "translation." These ways of thinking and related praxis are very relevant to notions such as reflective teaching and the discourse on teachers as professionals. By raising the possibility that the "new" tradition of Didaktik can be highly suggestive for thinking through issues related to a number of central ideas within contemporary discourse--and for exploring the implications of these ideas for both teacher education and for a curriculum theory appropriate to these new contexts for theorizing, this book opens up a gold mine of theoretical and practical possibilities.


"Needless to say, the book is edited very carefully. The scientific apparatus (information about the authors, information about the texts, references, etc.) is in perfect shape; an author and a subject index complete this picture….The classical texts have been translated very well."

Teachers and Teaching

"This book is on the cutting edge of thinking in the field of curriculum and teacher education….It will stand alone. I see it making a very important primary contribution."

Dorothy Vasquez-Levy

University of Virginia

"There is much interest in the United States in Didaktik, but little descriptive material is available in English. This text will correct that deficiency….It is strong in terms of topic, significance, reputation of authors, and relevance to contemporary English-language work on curriculum and teacher education….and is a distinctive contribution to the 'Studies in Curriculum Theory' series."

Gary D (NO PERIOD AFTER "D" as per Fernstermacher) Fenstermacher

University of Michigan

Table of Contents

Contents: Preface. S. Hopmann, K. Riquarts, Introduction: Starting a Dialogue: A Beginning Conversation Between Didaktik and the Curriculum Traditions. Part I: Didaktik as a Reflective Practice. I. Westbury, Teaching as a Reflective Practice: What Might Didaktik Teach Curriculum? R. Künzli, German Didaktik: Models of Re-presentation, of Intercourse, and of Experience. Part II: Bildung: Didaktik's Central Idea. W. von Humboldt, Theory of Bildung. C. Lüth, On Wilhel von Humbuoldt's Theory of Bildung. W. Klafki, The Significance of the Classical Theories of Bildung for a Contemporary Concept of Allgemeinbildung. Part III: Sources From the Didaktik Tradition. E. Weniger, Didaktik as a Theory of Education. H. Roth, The Art of Lesson Preparation. W. Klafki, Didaktik Analysis as the Core of Preparation of Instruction. M. Wagenschein, How to Teach Understanding: On the Concept of the Exemplary in Teaching. P. Menck, Content: Still in Question? Part IV: Didaktik as Praxis. S. Hopmann, Klafki's Model of Didaktik Analysis and Lesson Planning in Teacher Education. G.G. Hiller, Levels of Classroom Preparation. C. Senn-Fennell, Oral and Written Communication for Promoting Mathematical Understanding: Teaching Examples From Grade 3. M. Neubrand, Reflecting as a Didaktik Construction: Speaking About Mathematics in the Mathematics Classroom. A. Kirsch, Aspects of Simplification in Mathematics Teaching. M. Wagenschein, The Law of Free Fall as an "Exemplary Theme" for the Mathematicizablity of Certain Natural Processes. P. Reinhold, Open Experimenting: A Framework for Structuring Science Teaching and Learning. S. Gudmundsdottir, A. Reinertsen, N.P. Nordtømme, Klafki's Didaktik Analysis as a Conceptual Framework for Research on Teaching.

About the Series

Studies in Curriculum Theory Series

In this age of multimedia information overload, scholars and students may not be able to keep up with the proliferation of different topical, trendy book series in the field of curriculum theory. It will be a relief to know that one publisher offers a balanced, solid, forward-looking series devoted to significant and enduring scholarship, as opposed to a narrow range of topics or a single approach or point of view. This series is conceived as the series busy scholars and students can trust and depend on to deliver important scholarship in the various "discourses" that comprise the increasingly complex field of curriculum theory.

The range of the series is both broad (all of curriculum theory) and limited (only important, lasting scholarship) – including but not confined to historical, philosophical, critical, multicultural, feminist, comparative, international, aesthetic, and spiritual topics and approaches. Books in this series are intended for scholars and for students at the doctoral and, in some cases, master's levels.

Persons interested in submitting book proposals or in serving as reviewers for this series are invited to contact

Professor William F. Pinar

Canada Research Chair
University of British Columbia

Faculty of Education

Department of Curriculum Studies

2125 Main Mall

Vancouver, British Columbia V6T 1Z4


EMAIL: William.Pinar@ubc.ca

Learn more…

Subject Categories

BISAC Subject Codes/Headings:
EDUCATION / Curricula