Initial teacher education programmes such as the Postgraduate Certificate in
Education (PGCE) in South Africa are undergoing significant changes with the
introduction of a new policy regime. This paper briefly outlines the policy changes
advanced for teacher education programmes in South Africa. It examines productive
pedagogies as a conceptual framework to underpin such a restructured programme.
It then proposes that multiple representations can serve as a productive pedagogy of
enactment in the science classroom because it engages the student with higher-order
thinking skills, connects them with the world beyond the classroom in a supportive
environment, and values difference by affording students multiple opportunities
to develop a deep understanding of concepts. Some examples are given and the
broader implications for classroom practice are discussed.