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my teaching experience

By reshmadhunputh Oct 11, 2013 1508 Words
To begin with I want to mention an interesting or even thought provoking quotation from the famous philosopher, Jean Jacques Rousseau, “Plants are shaped by cultivation and men by education” (Quote by Jean Jacques Rousseau, Emile, On Philosophy of Education). This quotation underlines the undeniable fact that education has been prized since years. Education is considered as one of the basic needs for the survival of mankind. In most societies men and women must know how to read, write and count so as to deal with daily ordinary work. Nowadays a person without education is a loser. Education is important for the upliftment of man. It is high time to make our students realize that education is beneficial in all aspects. Where there is education there is the presence or contribution of teachers. Here I would like to draw the attention towards the involvement of teachers in the education sector. The role played by teachers is very important and they can judge the effectiveness of their teaching through their teaching philosophy. A teaching philosophy is a self-reflective work or in other words personal comments on a teacher’s viewpoint to teaching and learning. For me a teaching philosophy is crucial in helping a teacher to ponder over his or her method of teaching, whether the message is passed to learners, and the response of students and also the outcome of the teaching process. Now I would like to write a few lines on why I have chosen the teaching profession. Some people choose this profession for security reasons and others join it unknowingly. There are many factors which have shaped my penchant for teaching. I have always been a prolific reader. I have even pursued further studies through distance learning. The desire of knowledge acquisition and its advancement are of great importance for me. Now that I have embarked in this profession I get a sort of job satisfaction. I have in borne power to love, trustworthy, caring, help students in problem and all these have culminated in giving me job satisfaction. I find teaching a fascinating profession. I have been teaching since eight years and I gained a lot from this. I work with prevocational students. To be able to teach them, I need to have a feeling for them. They have failed CPE twice or even thrice. They have lost their self-confidence, they feel rejected. Most of them suffer from circumstances as financial problem, no proper housing and food. These are some of the heart-rending which these students have to face alone. So, my first role is to boost up their self-worth and build up their self-confidence again. I have to make them love coming to school. Despite the fact they do not have any academic baggage. Whenever I step in my class, I bear in mind that after my departure my students have learnt something, their coming to school has proved to be fruitful. To arouse the interest of my students I prepare my lessons in such a way that they feel involved in the process of learning. I rarely face problem concerning classroom management. Classroom management is also an important skill for teachers. I think that a teacher should be able to master his / her class in a fairly orderly manner. This work begins at the beginning of each year when I establish the code of conduct with newcomers. I firmly assert that my behaviour and attitude is the most important factor in the classroom. Whenever I come across a case of indiscipline, I act immediately. I would like to say a few words on the classroom itself. The classroom is a micro society; students learn to interact with each other. Here I want to mention about Lev Vygostsky, a well-known Russian educator who made reference about the Zone of Proximal Development. This implies that students come from different milieus with different skills. So it is up to me to prepare my lessons in order to cater for the needs of each student. My belief is that learning is obtaining. I use my learner’s interest as starting point. Effective learning requires collaboration between teacher and students. Concerning the daily lesson plan I want to throw some light on Howard Gardner theory of multiple intelligence. For linguistic development and as I Teach English I lay emphasis on reading aloud, sentence writing, filling in forms and grammatical exercises. As for mathematical-logical, I help students interpret bills and receipts which are current features of our life. Bodily-kinesthetic includes the performance through role play or simple sketches. Musical aspect of intelligence is done through recitation of poems. Group work helps students to develop their interpersonal intelligence. During brainstorming sessions students are encouraged to voice out their opinions, hence contributing to their intrapersonal development. Lastly spatial intelligence is boosted like asking the student to imagine he or she is a protagonist of a story. According to Jean Piaget intelligence is a form of adaptation wherein knowledge is constructed through two complementary processes namely assimilation and accommodation. As a facilitator I try to do innovative activities that students can assimilate. Another aspect of education is to make people functional in life. “Education is not a preparation for life: Education is life itself” as quoted by John Dewey, thus I adopt a plethora learning activities which reflect daily life. What’s the use of acquiring knowledge when one can’t use it or does not know when to use it? For the welfare of my students, I choose activities that aptly suit them. Example a lesson on trades, through discussion students learn about skilled occupations and words associated to them. This is very important for my students since they have to follow vocational trainings after three years of schooling. Lesson planning is an integral element of teaching. Firstly I detect my classroom reality and then prepare my lessons. My method of teaching is student-centered. I start my class with an informal conversation and a review on previous lesson. Then I start my class from known to unknown. Time factor also is important. My actual teaching strategies are lecturing, brainstorming, group work, story telling, role play, educational games. A conducive environment is established within the classroom for learning to take place. Lectures are beneficial to transmit further information (example a comprehension on My kitchen garden). I use brainstorming as a medium to give students a chance to air their opinions (example an oral session on ‘importance of science in today’s life’. Creative thinking is stimulated by brainstorming sessions. Group work promotes cooperative learning. Students choose a leader on their own, abide by set rules, share ideas and build up on each other’s ideas to come to a mutual understanding. This activity helps students to be more extrovert. And most important respect friend’s ideas as well. This interaction will replicate later when they will step in the world of work. Storytelling promotes critical thinking and provides opportunity for moral development. Apart from being a role model to my students, I inculcate values such as honesty, compassion and justice in them. I believe that adolescents must be taught how to implement values in their life. Moral reasoning helps them to judge between wrong and right in real life. I device simple role play to help students portray behaviour as real situation (example a scene which takes place in a bank). Through role play students get over their shyness and enjoy participating in such activities. Role play also builds up learners’ self-confidence. I deem that role play helps student anticipate future roles in life. I take recourse to educational games namely, puzzles, crosswords and scrabbles to break the monotony due to tedious work done during the day. These activities are associated with fun. Just as humour reduces tension so do these games. These unusual activities enhance the learners’ vocabulary. I also make students view educational films once in two months. I have noted that simple activities help prevocational students to acquire the English language. As reinforcement work I give them classwork and home work to develop their writing skill. My future approach to teaching lies in making optimal use of technology. I must make maximum use of the audio visual since visual stimuli are a great teaching tool. I even want my students to learn how to use Microsoft Word for typing letters and also to do basic research via internet. I want my students to walk according to the pace of modern life. English is used everywhere, be it written or oral. According to me I incorporate audiolingual method in my teaching by making students listen to music, poems in English. I can even teach English through physical activity via giving them commands to perform actions said in English. The more my students are exposed to this second language the better for them. As concluding note I want to emphasize on the fact that my teaching changes and my professional identity grows. The richness of my experience has helped in developing a strong nurturing bond between my students and me.

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