You make the road by walking – Se hace camino al andar

Blog post and original art work by Steve Kroeger


Student writing during a warm up exercise

A sage expression from Machado’s (1982) selected poems, you make the road by walking (“Se hace camino al andar”), captures the nature of accompaniment in partnership development. In our roles as two high school co-instructors and a university faculty member, we examined what initially brought us together – a classroom instructional need. While designing and implementing an investigation of the use of class instructional time, we simultaneously conducted a self-study action research project about the dynamics of their partnership and how to improve it. Critical interviews revealed challenges to integrating research findings into practice as well as convergent benefits of partnership development that may be relevant to partnerships of all kinds.classchange

The central story line and the primary focus of this paper that resulted from this action research experience was the dynamic of the collaborations in the process of engaging in Action Research in linking a school and a university. The struggle to achieve knowledge democracy and equal partnership in research within the traditional mind-set of knowledge dominance and monopoly are clearly demonstrated as a struggle for both the practicing teachers and the researchers as they sought to understand Mode 1 and Mode 2 knowledge creation. Most interesting in this article was the actionable knowledge element in the Action Research undertaking was clearly brought out and demonstrated while addressing the classroom management and instructional difficulties.


View of the school from the university

This study demonstrated that in this instance the gap between research-based knowledge and pedagogical knowledge does not exist at cross-purposes. The key to blending such knowledge is the development of collaborative trust, which depends on the quality of the relationships that are built and maintained.

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Neighborhood where the school and university are located.