FEATURES FOR TEACHERS
Features For New Teachers
Volume 4, Issue 12
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A look at a teacher's
I've only been teaching for two years now, and I'm still adjusting to life away from school in the summer. Don't get me wrong, I love the summers off, but I still feel the compulsion to be thinking of my job. How do you find a good balance between the urge to feel 'professional' and still take time off for myself and my family?
Jennifer, Auburn Hills, MI
My suggestions for the summer are simple. Once you've taken care of all your end of the year details, leave the building, go home and spend THREE weeks without school - no paperwork, no calls, a complete separation. Do things for yourself: sleep in, have coffee on the porch, take nature walks, do things that relax you. You can still manage your family - after all, you have just completed nine months of 25+ kids in a classroom for six or seven hours a day!
After three weeks of R&R, you will be ready to start some projects or revisit an old hobby. You will be free from the stress and you will no longer be stuck to the daily routine of the classroom. You will realize there is another world out there. After a few more weeks, your mind will be totally clear and you can begin to analyze how your year went. This will be the time to think clearly and make notes on what worked or didn't, and begin to formulate a plan for next year. A word of caution: take it slowly; you don't want it to engulf you. Once you have assessed and made a preliminary plan, step back and reflect - give it some time. Revisit your plan, then put it away for awhile. Continue to do the fun things with family and friends.
About a month before school starts, give yourself some time each day for effective planning. Start slow, maybe an hour a day. Progress to where you feel comfortable yet not overwhelmed. You will feel excited again and anxious for the year to begin. With a couple of weeks before you start, you will be spending free time trying your plan and getting your materials ready.
Teaching done effectively takes so much time and energy that we establish daily routines and many times these don't include time for ourselves. Rest is so important because without it, it's difficult to think objectively. That is critical for effective teaching.. I also encourage you to physically get ready for the next year. It is not enough to be mentally fit, your body must be able to hold up also.
I hope you have a safe and enjoyable summer. Remember you are a professional who touches the lives of students each and every day. For many instances you spend more time with the kids than their parents do.
Congratulations on a successful and rewarding year!
I started teaching, with time I understood that I had many flaws, which
I accepted whole heartedly. I was a person who always looks for
improvement. Gradually I realized that I became a better teacher, and
that happened because of taking feedback from others and by being
conscious of the effectiveness of my teaching style and strategies.
During my vast teaching experience, I always followed this quote,
reach the highest, always start with the lowest.”
the completion of my Montessori training dated back in 2001, I joined
was his lack of understanding level. He was never able to follow the
instruction given by me. The
second problem was his
chronological age. The average age of the class was
, but he was 10 years old. It showed that the normal milestone
progression of his development was delayed. The
third problem was his
learning capacity, which was almost zero as compared to the other
children learning, which was at
fourth main problem was
his hyper activity. He didn’t sit on his seat. I tried to make him sit
beside me by holding his hands, but all the time, he broke his arm
free and ran away from class.
I used to chase him, because he would
often run all over the school
and kick anyone who grasped him. After a week, there were no changes
felt by me and my efforts ended in smoke. I tried to explain this to my
headmistress, but she didn’t accept my assertion and gave the same
your duty to manage him in class."
that time, I was working with Aga Khan Rehabilitation Centre. I had
taken a few
trainings of Inclusive Education, which helped me to identify that he
had a behavior
problem. I consulted his parents. Initially the mother didn’t accept
that her child
behavior problem but after much
parents accepted that a child
was hyperactive since childhood. The mother of the child was uneducated
and father was busy in his big business -
that’s why they never
initiated to consult a psychologist to modify his behavior.
Behavior problems (and what is normal behavior) in a child is determined by the child’s age, physical and emotional development, personality and what is socially and culturally acceptable in his or her surroundings.
came to know that this was his fourth school and the previous schools
expelled him due to his behavior problem,
from which his development was
delayed. Afterwards, I talked
headmistress and discussed the whole scenario. She agreed and allowed me
counseling. Being a reflective practitioner, I encouraged his parents to
send him to any other school where he could learn and adjust in a proper
environment. There were some schools in
second issue, which I would like to raise, is the
many challenges that teachers
face. During my teaching practicum for STEP, I decided to teach class
seven. I saw the lesson plans and the files of the preceding year. I saw
that there was
no proper lesson planning being done by the teachers. The teachers told
me that they used to teach students from the curriculum book rather than
initiating any proper planning.
teacher is the good leader of the class and future generation. The
teacher has to play a variety of roles which will assist to growth and
development of student personalities”
I asked the previous students and took their feedback which gave me an
idea that there were no activities for any lesson. The teacher taught in
a theoretical way. No audio visual aids were being used.
a reflective teacher, I worked a
lot and developed few lesson
plans according to their level and need. Teaching should be practical
so I used effective and innovative strategies in which students
participated to the greatest
extent possible. Everyday I
energized my students by using different stories and activities. I used
library books to integrate my lessons with
the Quran, Ginan and Farman.
The strategy to teach students with integrated activities worked well
and they all showed a
lot of interest and
am happy to adopt the
teaching profession. It has
given me a platform to learn a
lot. I am trying my level
best to fulfill the expectations of my students and to prepare them for
the challenges, which will be faced by them in the future ahead.
The first large-scale use of the IQ test in the US was during the World War I (circa 1914-18). The Educational Testing Service (ETS) established in 1948 is the world's largest private educational testing and measurement organization
Standardized testing is used as a public policy strategy to establish stronger accountability measures for public education. While the National Assessment of Education Progress (NAEP) has served as an educational barometer for some thirty years by administering standardized tests on a regular basis to random schools throughout the United States, efforts over the last decade at the state and federal levels have mandated annual standardized test administration for all public schools across the country.
The idea behind the standardized testing policy movement is that testing is the first step to improving schools, teaching practice, and educational methods through data collection. Proponents argue that the data generated by the standardized tests act like a 'report card' for the community, demonstrating how well local schools are performing. Critics of the movement, however, point to various discrepancies that result from current state standardized testing practices, including problems with test validity and reliability and false correlations.
Critics charge that standardized tests became a mandatory curriculum placed into schools without public debate and without any accountability measures of its own. Many feel this ignores basic democratic principles in that control of schools' curricula is removed from local school boards, which are the nominal curricular authority in the U.S. While some maintain that it would be preferable to simply introduce mandatory national curricula, others feel that state mandated standardized testing should stop altogether in order that schools can focus their efforts on instructing their students as they see fit.
Critics also charge that standardized tests encourage "teaching to the test" at the expense of creativity and in-depth coverage of subjects not on the test. Multiple choice tests are criticized for failing to assess skills such as writing. Furthermore, student's success is being tracked to a teacher's relative performance, making teacher advancement contingent upon a teacher's success with a student's academic performance. Ethical and economical questions arise for teachers when faced with clearly under performing or under skilled students and a standardized test.
The earliest evidence of standardized testing based on merit comes from China during the Han dynasty. The concept of a state ruled by men of ability and virtue was an outgrowth of Confucian philosophy. The imperial examinations covered the so-called Six Arts which included music, archery and horsemanship, arithmetic, writing, and knowledge of the rituals and ceremonies of both public and private parts. Later, the five studies were added to the testing (military strategies, civil law, revenue and taxation, agriculture and geography).
The first large-scale use of the IQ test in the US was during the World War I (circa 1914-18). The Educational Testing Service (ETS) established in 1948 is the world's largest private educational testing and measurement organization, operating on an annual budget of approximately $900 million.
The Elementary and Secondary Education Act of 1994 requires standardized testing in public schools. US Public Law 107-110, known as the No Child Left Behind Act of 2001 further ties public school funding to standardized testing.
The USA educational system judges the academic qualification of applicants on their test results of standardized tests, standardized college and graduate-school entrance tests:
ACT - American College Test
Part 2 of this series will look at the design and scoring of standardized tests, as well as the standards utilized. Stay tuned next month for more!
Being an intern is an interesting position to be in. The university
treats you as a student, making you jump through hoops completing
projects and meeting deadlines sometimes seeming totally irrelevant to
the internship. The school district you are working in expects you to be
a professional educator with all the secrets of innovation and new
technologies fresh from the university 'think tank'. Parents think of
you as someone who really doesn't know what they are doing yet and don't
understand why you are practicing on their kids. They are always quick
to point out their perceptions of student teachers when a problem arises
about grades or behavior.
Interested in FREE writing activities you can print out and use immediately in your classroom? Simply click the following link to our writing page: http://www.starteaching.com/writing.htm
A sick man turned to his doctor, as
he was preparing to leave the examination room and said, "Doctor, I
am afraid to die. Tell me what lies on the other side."
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Getting Ready for Next Year
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