What characteristics should a teacher possess? What Makes a Good Teacher? Video – Effective Teacher • An effective teacher can be seen in the following video: Introduction What does being a teacher mean? • Having a vocation for the teaching profession. • Being dedicated. • Being surrounded by a large number of diverse students, each with their own baggage and unique character. Knowledge 1st Characteristic of an effective teacher • Should be transmitted in a unique and fun manner. • One should move from the known to the unknown. • It is not how much one knows, but how much one can deliver.
Knowledge – Observation 1 • At a particular Boys’ Area Secondary School, it was noticed that the boys had a low IQ. • A highly motivated Maltese teacher used a practical example to help them learn. • He compared the Maltese language to a cocktail. – The different drinks symbolized Italian, Arabic and English. • As a result the children remembered the example more. Adaptation 2nd Characteristic of an effective teacher • One should get to know one’s students to cater for them accordingly. • Scaffolding activities accordingly, ensures maximum learning.
“The wise adapt themselves to circumstances, as water moulds itself to the pitcher” – Chinese Proverb Environment 3rd Characteristic of an effective teacher • Creates a non-threatening and welcoming environment. Environment – Observation 1 • A Maths lesson in a Boys’ Area Secondary School – The teacher greeted the students by the words ‘hurry up because you are wasting precious time’.
– The students were not very friendly towards her and imitated her. – Whilst going out for recreation these students were heard echoing the teacher’s words to their peers who dawdled on their way out. Theory of Observational Learning • The students’ picked up the teacher’s habit and used it to their advantage. • This can be applied to Albert Bandura’s theory of observational learning.
Theory of Observational Learning • Bandura established 4 steps – Attention – characteristics instilled within a person that will affect the way in which he is influenced. – Retention – the ability to remember what one sees and transforms it into visualizations or verbal expressions. – Reproduction – the ability to transform what one has retained into definite behaviour. – Motivation – one has to be given a reason or incentive to reproduce what he has observed and retained.
Organisation Good Organisation 4th Characteristic of being an effective teacher • Having good organisational skills. • In order to keep the students focused, the explanation should be sequential to avoid confusion. • The teacher should always follow a lesson plan.
Bloom’s Taxonomy for Learning Domain • The last two domains – Synthesis – Evaluation focus on the importance of having a lesson plan as a guidance for the lesson. Importance of a Lesson Plan • A lesson plan is important – to make the lesson sequential. – to ensure the objectives devised were reached. – to assess whether students understood or not. Conducting a Lesson • The teacher starts off the lesson by correcting the home work, – the students participate and say their answers.
• Introduces the topic that will be tackled. • The teacher may write down some notes on the whiteboard. • Class work is given so as to make sure that the students understood the topic. Organisation – Observation 1 • A particular math’s teacher at a girl’s school, applied very good organisational skills in her lesson. • She stated the aims of the lesson at the beginning of the lesson in a very clear way. • She managed to do all the things she had planned.
• On repeated observations, it was noted that she always had a well-planned lesson. • Students were always motivated to learn. Organisation – Observation 2 • Another class that was observed in the same school was a Maltese literacy class. – It aids students who find it difficult when it comes to reading and writing. • She involved the students by asking them to continue reading from where she stopped and corrected them wherever they made a mistake.
• At the end, she gave them some pages to read at home. Classroom Layout 1 • In the previous incidents mentioned, the desks were neatly placed and organised in twos. – Students can help each other with any difficulties they might have. • The teacher’s desk was facing the student’s desks. • On some occasions, the teacher may still need to separate desks to avoid misbehaviour and interruptions before starting the lesson. Classroom Environment • When students are already inside the classroom, the teacher should make his / her presence felt.
• On the contrary, when students change class, the teacher can alter the classroom layout to suit his/her approach to teaching. Disorganisation • When the teacher is disorganized he/she will not be able to deliver a well-balanced lesson. – This was noticed in an observation where the class only managed to read a small paragraph from a textbook throughout two whole double lessons.
– The rest was random, out of point discussions. • There was poor classroom management together with a lack of discipline. Observation – Disorganisation • During a Home-Economics practical session a disorganised teacher was observed. • The teacher did not guide and assess the students. • They ended up asking each other what to do next and did not learn any skills. Discipline Behaviourism • Constant motivation is compared to behaviourism – researched by B. F. Skinner. • He called his research ‘The Operant Conditioning Theory’. • Theory states that a particular behaviour can be increased by positive / negative reinforcements (praise / punishments).
Bad Discipline Observation – Ineffective Teacher • Observation – A particular teacher, instead of correcting the students in a gentle manner and explaining what was wrong, the teacher sent the students out of class together with their desk and chair. • It was observed that most of the teachers reprimanded the students whenever they got something wrong.
• Students are demoralized and in consequence show no interest in learning. Albert Bandura • Throughout our observations, one thing was particularly noticed. • When a teacher scolds students, their actions turn out to be counterproductive as that same action is repeated by the students. • This is backed up by the Social Cognitive Theory researched by Albert Bandura. • The Bobo-Doll experiment – Children imitated what was seen both verbally and physically. Influential Teachers • A teacher’s behaviour contributes to classroom management .
Henry Adams once stated: “A teacher affects eternity; one can never tell were the influence stops. ” Good Discipline Observation – Effective Teacher 5th characteristic of being an effective teacher • Keeps the same discipline methods with all students regardless of their gender, race, ability or religion. • Positive reinforcement: praises students and corrects their mistakes. • Greets the students. • Prepares the things needed for the lesson beforehand and waits for the students to settle down. • Goes around the students to check whether everyone is paying attention. • Removes distracting materials such as any irrelevant writing on the board will be rubbed off.
Communication of Ideas 6th Characteristic of being an effective teacher • Ability to communicate ideas effectively. • This is done through the use of a variety of resources. • This is explained in Benjamin Bloom’s book – Taxonomy of Learning Domains. Resources Motivation • A teacher should always motivate students in a fun way – that is what keeps them going; Albert Einstein once said: “It is the supreme art of a teacher to awaken joy in creative expression and knowledge.
” Observation • During a science lesson, one of us observed one such characteristic, • The science teacher used a variety of interesting resources such as: – – – – PowerPoint presentations Worksheets Information handouts Textbooks • These resources enabled students to be enthusiastic and motivated. Importance of Resources Something commonly observed:
• Very few teachers made use of resources, • Most of them used the traditional resources; white board and textbooks, • Students ended up bored and disinterested throughout the lesson. Edgar Dale • In the 1960’s he put forward the theory: • Students retain more information by what they “do” as opposed to what they “hear”, “see” or “observe”. • He devised the ‘Cone of Experience. ’
• “Learning by doing” is nowadays known as “experiential learning”. Cone of Experience Ineffective Resource 1 Textbooks • By time, textbooks become outdated. This means that more money has to be forked out by the school and parents to update them. • Textbooks should be used as a reference for studying, revising or even further notes. Ineffective Resource 2 Whiteboard • Teachers still rely on such a sole type of pedagogy application, • Disadvantage:
The teacher may not write clear and big enough for the students to read, • There can be cases of impairment; eyesight problems. Positive Environment 7th Characteristic of being an effective teacher • The ability to create a positive classroom environment.
• A positive classroom environment is boosted further by using: – the appropriate type of humour – at the appropriate time. Humour • Teachers should foster the praxis of using humour as it is an effective technique. – This removes any tension in the relationship between the teacher and the student.
– This leads to a better performance in the students’ academic life. Negative Attitude • Students will learn less if the teacher uses a negative attitude towards them. • This includes factors such as sarcasm. Sarcasm • Sometimes teachers confuse good humor with sarcasm.
– The use of sarcasm may harm the teacherstudent relationship since what some think as funny others may find to be offensive. – Sarcasm is humiliating for students. What makes a bad teacher? Video – Ineffective Teacher • An ineffective teacher can be seen in the following video: Conclusion • A teacher should be a life-long learner which is committed to the teaching profession striving to ‘reach and teach’ students. Plato claimed that “ The direction in which education starts a man will determine his future life”.