Course Reflection- Introduction to Education

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Figure 1

Educational Standard 8- Professional Practice reflects the importance of continual professional development for teachers as both educators and colleagues. Figure 1 shows an excerpt from Internship Criteria Rubric Wiki, modeled after the Danielson Framework for Teaching, which I completed in Introduction to Education. Two other emerging educators and myself collaborated to create a model of an excellent teaching candidate and tools one might use to engage students and enhance learning. Donna M. Ploessl’s paper, “On the same page: Practical techniques to Enhance Co-Teaching Interactions” addresses the relationship of co-teachers and endorses multiple teachers working together to create the best possible learning environment. Ploessl states co-teachers must devote time to improve communication skills, improve instructional strategies and resolve conflicts (Ploessl, et al, 2010). I believe Ploessl’s recommendations apply not only to teachers working in the same classroom, but also those who work within the same school. Not only did this assignment provide me an opportunity to learn more about becoming an excellent teacher, this activity also allowed me a platform to become better a co-worker. In Figure 1 I demonstrated personal growth and understanding in this area when I state “The teacher recognizes personal weaknesses and endeavors to grow as an educator by setting goals for themselves. In order to stay accountable to these goals, the teacher asks two colleagues and a supervisor to asses them bi-monthly on their progress.” Additionally during this assignment I developed a better understanding of important variables to consider when working with colleagues including work schedules and limited communication modes. I also practiced giving and receiving quality feedback. By working with others to accomplish tasks, teachers have the opportunity to model social skills and teamwork for their students. Developing students who are able to contribute to society and work well together is an important function of the classroom. One way to continue enhancing my professional development is by mirroring the example I referenced in Figure 1. By creating goals in alignment with teacher standardized assessments and evaluating my growth and development on a regular basis, I will experience continual professional growth.

Reference

Ploessl, D., Rock, M. L., Schoenfeld, N. A., & Blanks, B. (2010). On the same page: Practical techniques for enhancing co-teaching interactions. Intervention in School and Clinic, 45 (3), 158-168.

 

 

 

Characteristics of an Effective Educator

During my time in the classroom, I have had the opportunity to learn from great leaders and role models what it means to be an effective  educator. Those who are masters of the classroom are ones who can teach amidst social and psychological barriers, maintaining the mentality every child can succeed academically. A teacher should know how to preserver in the face of adversity, be flexible with change, handle conflict with peers and parents expertly, and remain culturally sensitive to the needs of individuals and families.

A teacher should also know his or her audience, engaging as many students as possible regardless of subject content or student learning styles. By taking time to understand each group of students and tailoring academic lessons to the children’s interests there is strong motivation to learn. With this foundation laid, grade level standards can be met if not exceeded. Although changing lessons from year to year to accommodate ever changing interests may take time, the outcome is worth the investment.

Classrooms are continually becoming more diverse both ethnically and financially. An effective teacher recognizes these changes and accommodates them. An effective teacher can make a lesson in any circumstance and promote learning regardless of cultural background, access to technology or an array of other limitations. On a global level, classrooms vary drastically and teachers have a responsibility to provide the best education to next generations regardless of geographical location or financial resources.