Rachael Stone joined Canterbury Christ Church University in 2015 and now works as a senior lecturer in primary education. Before this Rachael worked for 14 years in primary schools across Kent, specialising in the teaching of English. She also worked as a leading English teacher and consultant for the local educational authority.
Rachael currently teaches Primary English courses across a range of initial teacher education programmes including Primary Education undergraduate courses and with post-graduate students on the Teach First PGDE programme.
Research and knowledge exchange
Rachael’s areas of interest are in the teaching of reading, and teachers’ professionalism and how it is developed through collaborative practice. Her Doctoral thesis focused on what teachers understand about the teaching of reading as the question of how children learn to read – including reading provision for children in English primary schools – has been the focus of increasing attention in political policy and academic research over the last three decades. Within this attention and associated discourses, too little attention has been paid to how primary school teachers understand and perceive the teaching of reading. In directly addressing this gap, Rachael’s thesis contributes to the body of literature by examining how primary school teachers understand and perceive the teaching of reading within their schools and classrooms. The research examines how teachers draw on their beliefs and experience to influence their classroom practice, and how they make sense of the teaching of reading in response to policy. The study is underpinned by social constructivism as there is a consensus that social constructivism is concerned with empowering individuals to create and express their own understandings.
Rachael is currently working with colleagues from Canterbury Christ Church and Greenwich University on a longitudinal study exploring how newly qualified teachers' (NQTs) perceptions of teaching English alter as they progress in their career.
Teaching and subject expertise
Rachael is a member of NaPTEC - National Primary Teaching Education Council. An organisation promoting quality in teacher education. She is a school governor at St. Nicholas Primary School, New Romney, with governor responsibility for Teaching and Learning and Early Years Provision. Rachael is also the external examiner for the PGDE and the Masters Programme in Transformational Leadership at Bath Spa University.
Publications and research outputs
Stone, R. (2018) A study of primary school teachers’ understandings and perceptions of teaching reading. Ed.D. thesis, Canterbury Christ Church University