chapter  3
Combining the Personal and the Professional in Teaching: An Example
Pages 30

IHAVE ARGUED THAT IT IS paramount for everyteacher to reflect on his or her own teacher identity,and I have offered a theoretical justification for adopting a teacher-identity framework. In this chapter I will demonstrate what teacher identity actually looks like and, in doing so, narrate some of the early struggles associated with becoming a teacher. More specifically, I will use the concept of teacher identity to illuminate how hard it can be for a new teacher to reconcile his or her prior and personal experiences with the more professional, technical aspects of teacher education. Acknowledging all the influences on one’s teacher learning often requires the teacher to confront multiple personal and professional conflicts. And, although these conflicts over time give the teacher newer and richer views of himself or herself as a teacher, while he or she is in the process of recognizing and working through them they can cause frustration and anguish. Such is the challenge of earlycareer teacher development. Even the most amazing veteran teachers had to go through it in order to become amazing.