As a teacher of 18 years, I have constantly worked upon my classroom teaching methods. What more can I do to make my students attentive? How can I make my classroom teaching more effective? These are some of the questions forever on my mind. I try different strategies and some of these ideas have brought remarkable results.
The Parent’s Side
The teachers should do this, that etc.!! Concerned parents’ thought process goes like this.
The primary goal of parents and teachers is to motivate the child and ensure that he learns without nagging.
It is the supreme art of a teacher to awaken joy in creative expression and knowledge.Albert Einstein
A teacher grows from the role of a teacher to a mentor. Such is the impact of being an effective teacher.
Here’s an article on how a teacher’s efficiency affect their student’s performance.
What influences a student’s learning?
There are a variety of factors which influence a student’s learning
1. Their family environment
2. Local region
3. Their Language
4. Health issues
5. Gaps in concepts from previous years
Watch this video to understand how gaps in learning affect performance in higher classes.
6 Secrets of Highly Effective Teachers & their Classroom Teaching
1) They Know Their Students
It’s a good idea, to begin with student analysis to understand your student’s previous knowledge and skills. This helps you as a teacher to deliver the concept in a way that students with varying skill levels are able to receive and retain their learning.
2) They Always Recap the Skills Needed
Do a quick recap of skills required to learn the concept which you are going to deliver. Make this recap session interactive to engage students and instigate them to learn.
For example, If the topic is ‘Factors and Multiples’. Multiplication is the essential skill required for it. So, it’s preferable to do a quick recap of multiplication tables to bring all students on the same page.
3) Effective Teachers Make it Relatable to Their Students
Introduce the topic by quoting an example picked up from the student’s surroundings. If the children can relate, it increases their chances of learning better.
For example, If the topic is Money. You may begin by giving them a situation – you go to an ATM machine to withdraw Rs 5000. The machine gives you all notes of Rs 500. How many notes did you get?
Tip – While giving situations, try to use the names of children in the story. Like in the above story, instead of ‘ You ‘ use a real student’s name (who is present in the classroom at the moment). This will bring more connections between students and the moment.
These three steps will prepare students to receive new knowledge. Use these steps as warm-up exercises before entering into a more rigorous session.
4) Effective Teachers Build a Connection with Their Students
Once you have run the steps mentioned above. You have established a connection between with your students. Now, comes a more challenging task – to SUSTAIN this connection. If you can sustain this connection throughout the session – you did well.
Try out different strategies to maintain the flow. You may ask questions in between to ensure that your students are still there with you mentally.
A good teacher always keeps the students engaged.
Some Useful Tips
* For effective engagement, it’s a good idea to break the lesson in the form of a quiz or a casual interaction. Be careful of not letting it go out of control.
* Maintain eye contact with students. Avoid turning away from them until unless you are writing on board. While writing on board, keep looking back. Don’t get too absorbed in writing and lose your mental connection with your students.
5) Good Teachers Balance Interaction with Their Students
A teacher’s lesson should not be one-way traffic. There has to be a balance between how much a teacher speaks and how much students speak.
Useful Tip – Encourage children to come up with answers. You play the role of a director. Give them hints and clues to reach the solution.
6) For Effective Classroom Teaching Prepare Lesson in Advance
To ensure that you have a successful session. You must come to the classroom well-prepared. The topic, the introduction, key points, reference examples etc.
This preparation will bring clarity in your communication.
Children can understand better if our dialogues and instructions are crisp and clear. The flow of the lecture matters a lot.
Success is neither magical nor mysterious. Success is the natural consequence of consistently applying basic fundamentals.Jim Rohn
Over and above, Respect each student – Irrespective of their academic performance. Take utmost care to not to brand them with a specific negative quality.
This can have a long-lasting impact and hamper their learning and development. You, as a teacher, must have a firm belief that every student has the POTENTIAL TO LEARN.
Let’s Hear It From The Experts About Their Classroom Teaching Methods
We invited a few experts to share their views and experiences on how they make their classroom teaching effective.
Harpreet Kaur (Teaches Grade – 6, 7 & 8)
“Well, I don’t believe in having a boring classroom, where students feel lethargic & disengaged. Each and every session should have an active enrollment of the students present in the class. Asking various questions in between makes the child alert during each session. Taking regular assessments and making sure they are upgrading their scores.
“A teacher who takes teaching as their passion will always update her lessons with innovative ideas. Believe and appreciate each of her students. Motivate them according to their calibre”.
Dr ReshamPal Kaur (Doctorate in Applied Mathematics. Teaching Mathematics for 20 years)
Some students do better than the others in their favourite teachers’ subject. The underlying reason is Child Psychology. Thus to make teaching more effective, we need to pay attention to a child’s psyche. Each student is different from the other. Hence learning methods also should be differential.
Sangeeta (TGT Science, Govt School ) uses some interesting strategies in her classroom.
“I start my class with a small activity to create interest amongst the students. For example, to teach respiration I told my students to hold their breath for a few seconds while raising their hands. As soon as they release the breath, they will put their hands down. Now the class was ready to learn”.
“Another trick I use is – make some errors while explaining the concepts. As a strategy, I choose the errors which are easy to point out. Students find it interesting to find these mistakes. This helps them stay attentive”, she says. “Whatever I teach on day 1, I revise the next day, before I begin with a new concept”.
Sangeeta believes in giving motivational talks to awaken the will power of her students. Teaching becomes effective with willing students, is her mantra.
Priya Agarwal (TGT Maths)
Priya learnt a valuable lesson from one of her students. As she recalls, “One day a student approached me with doubt. I had seen this child sitting at the back. So, I said, You are short in height and you sit at the back. How will you understand it? I cleared his doubt and proceeded with my class”.
“After the class got over, he came to me and shared that my comment on his height was hurtful to him. I was not aware that the child was not comfortable with his height and mentioned in front of his peers. This incident taught me to address such concerns in private. Since that day I have become conscious of my conversations with my students. I am thankful to my student for helping me grow as a teacher”.
Deepa Gupta, PGT Maths, DPS
“Know your students in and out”, Deepa says.
This would enable the teacher to understand the child’s weak points and fears. A teacher can then pinpoint the areas in which a student can face difficulty in grasping the concept. It’s important to understand that every child comes with a different skill set. Hence needs to be dealt with differently. Knowing the child would enable the teacher to reach out and help the child to excel.
“Everyone needs recognition and wants to feel important, once a child tastes the feel of excelling, then there is no looking back”.
Studies show how emotionally intelligent students make better grades in school. Read this short article on the same.
If you are a teacher then do share your journey with us in the comment section below. We would feature your experiences and tips with our readers.