Australian Journal of Teacher Education
Rubbing Off the Corners: The Rite of Passage of the Teacher Trainee in 20th Century New Zealand
Abstract: This paper investigates how, in the early 20th Century training colleges of New Zealand, student teachers actively constituted themselves through internalising the norms imposed upon them by the educational authorities. It explores how their training resulted in "rubbing off the corners" so that they could be ethically and pedagogically transformed into the ideal teacher. The result of this was the emergence of a disciplined body of conforming individuals who could implement the state's moral and pedagogical imperatives. This occurred through a three-phase rite of passage: the separation of trainees from their original society; a transition in the enclosed world of the college where their existing identity was deconstructed; and (iii) a subsequent integration into the society of teachers when acculturation had occurred and appropriate norms and values had been internalised. This signalled a readiness to accept the increased status and responsibilities of the qualified teacher. This paper draws extensively on the theories of Arnold van Gennep and Michel Foucault and is based on a recent doctoral investigation.
Rubbing Off the Corners: The Rite of Passage of the Teacher Trainee in 20th Century New Zealand.
Australian Journal of Teacher Education, 36(11).