As an online teacher, or as a trainer, I always want my students/participants to get the best learning experience that they could get. I tend to think small of myself whenever I feel that I did not provide my students the knowledge and skills as well as the treatment that they deserve. I know that I cannot be perfect as a person or even as a teacher, but that does not stop me from thinking that I need to act upon everything that surrounds my students.
Module 3B made me realize that indeed, teachers need to consider a lot of factors in order to be an effective educator. First, instructional planning is a must to facilitate efficient delivery of content as well as considering student characteristics. I believe that when learning objectives, teaching strategies, and assessment are aligned, success in learning is inevitable. Further, having a well-defined and organized instructional plan can create a flexible teacher. This is because if he/she is abreast of the activities and learning goals for a specific session, sudden need for changes will not deter him/her. The teacher can still pursue with the teaching session since he/she is familiar with the content and activities in the plan. This poses an advantage because having an instructional plan can allow teachers to review and refresh lessons prior to the class itself.
In my opinion, the most challenging aspect of instructional planning is Deciding How to Teach because in this area, the teacher actually delivers the content and implement what is there in the instructional plan. Teaching is a performance so educators need to show that they are masters of their content and that they can teach them well. To help teachers in overcoming this challenge, they should be capacitated through seminars and trainings so as to share best practices among themselves.
Another thing that I learned in this module is that knowing one’ students is very essential in achieving an effective classroom management. Teachers need to know the personal as well as psychological needs of the students. He/She cannot generalize and blindly implement teaching approaches because in that case, teaching will not be as effective as when student characteristics and needs are considered. In terms of approaches, teachers can employ different techniques depending on the need of the class. I learned that most teachers still employ a traditional approach wherein strict discipline is imposed to students. I was inspired to take on a liberal progressive approach, in which I would like my students to take part in the decision making process inside the classroom. I want to make them as responsible as possible. But of course, this still depends on the level of students, because the latter is more applicable to adult learners, and not on children.
Student diversity is a reality inside the classroom. Students have different learning styles, abilities, attitudes, and cultural orientations. I learned that teachers need to treat each student as unique and do his/her best to address each of their leaning needs considering these differences. When this is done so, a positive student-teacher relationship can be formed. And in dealing with students, teachers need to have good interpersonal skills.
To cap it all, I know that educators need not be perfect, because there is no such thing as that in the first place. Even so, teachers can do so much to make learning as an effective, fun and memorable experience for themselves and most especially, for their students.
Airasian, P. W., Engemann, J. F., and Gallagher, T. L. (2007). Instructional planning and assessment (Chapter 3). In Classroom assessment: Concepts and applications – First Canadian edition. Toronto, ON, Canada: McGraw-Hill Ryerson.
Algozzine, B. and Ysseldyke, J. (2006). What are the components of effective instruction (Chapter 1). In Effective instruction for students with special needs: A practical guide for every teacher. Thousand Oaks, California: Corwin Press.
Cruickshank, D. R., Metcalf, K. K., & Jenkins, D. B. (2009). Teaching diverse students (Chapter 3). In The act of teaching. New York, NY: McGraw-Hill.
Jones, Vern. (2015). Understanding effective classroom management (Chapter 1). In Practical classroom management (2nd ed.). Boston: Pearson, pp 1 -16
Scarlett, W. G., Ponte, I. C., & Singh, J. P. (2009). Building positive teacher – student relationships (Chapter 3). In Approaches to behavior and classroom management. SAGE Publications.)