Pedagogy: Teaching and Learning Strategies
During my PGCE placements I felt I have used a wide variety of assessment, teaching and learning strategies. I feel that this is absolutely necessary in terms of providing the best possible service to the pupils. To be repetitive, predictable and non-contemporary with such strategies is to compromise the effectiveness of your teaching and limit the chance of achieving your Learning Objectives. It is crucial at the outset to understand that the pupils under your tutelage will not learn at the same pace continually. Similarly, they will not understand or grasp concepts uniformly. Therefore, it is important to tailor your methods to best support each child as individually as possible. During my PGCE I tried to develop or challenge the pupils in my classes to take responsibility for their own performance as much as possible by involving them in tasks and projects that allow them to plan, create, produce and assess collaboratively. Not only does this strategy enable scaffolded support from a stronger support group but it also reduces the fear of those pupils who may feel isolated and unsure during individual challenges. Therefore much planning went towards developing the notion of team work and community within the classes. At the outset of each teaching unit I outlined what my expectations were in terms of behaviour, approach and outcomes. At this early stage, I didn't discuss the qualitative expectations, in fear of intimidating those less confident; rather I outlined the expectations of how the task would come together and what the (hoped-for) end point would be. I was determined to make sure that the challenges I presented to the students would not be blandly and irrelevantly academic in their make-up. To that end, I felt it was important to engage students in trying to solve problems that were based in reality and had a direct link to both real-life experiences and, ideally, subjects or topics that they were interested...
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