Looking towards the source: A consideration of (cultural) context in teacher education

Konai Helu Thaman
Vol 11, Number 2, p.88
I received the education of a Tongan woman. My early education, almost exclusively through the medium of the Tongan language, was focused upon membership of a large extended family in a small Polynesian island kingdom. I subsequently entered the foreign cultures of New Zealand and the United States of America primarily through their educational institutions but also, in 1970, through marriage to an American. These new systems and the insights they provided were very different from my own. Thus I am a product of both Tongan and western emphases: what Horton (1967) refers to as closed' and 'open' predicaments because I operate sometimes in one and sometimes in the other: the experience has often been painful. What I have to say about teacher education has been shaped by my experiences as student-teacher, teacher, teacher-educator and researcher.