As a teacher it is important that
you find different teaching methods that you can use for different pupils.
Although this may make your job a little more complicated it can help immensely
with individual children’s learning.
It is unfair for us to expect that
all children learn at the same speed and level. Many children will excel in one
area but then may struggle in another. It is important to refinish when your
teaching method doesn’t suit a child and try and adapt it to ensure they are
not missing our. It may be that they need more one on one attention, in which
case you may be able to get a teaching assistant to sit with the child and help
them along. If there are quite a large group of pupils that don’t seem to get
it, it may be that you are going too fast or are using words they don’t already
understand. Rather than getting frustrated try and take a step back and
approach the subject matter in a totally different way. Visualising things can
often help a lot so don’t forgot to draw or write things down to get the
children to be able to see what you mean.
If you would like to work in an
education setting but do not want to work with young children it may be worth
exploring a career in further education. This is any study that takes place
after secondary school but outside of higher education (university).
In further education, the teaching
does not always happen in a classroom. It can take place in community centres,
workplaces and private training centres and could involve teaching a variety of
learners including young people and adults who are returning to education.
Courses can range from basic
literacy and numeracy skills to apprenticeships and technical qualifications
such as BTECs and can be full time, part time or taught in a block.
The benefits of working as a
further education teacher are mainly down to the positive attitude of the
students to their learning. As they have chosen to embark on a further
education course they are more likely to work hard and successfully complete
the course with your support along the way.
If you want to train or retrain to
teach in further education some employers will let you start teaching without a
qualification because you can work towards one as you go. This also means you
will be earning a salary straight away. A bursary may be available for certain
subjects such as Mathematics, Science and Engineering and can help with living
costs whilst training.
Mobile devices have become so
commonplace now that the majority of children either have their own device or
have use of an adult’s one. As the apps that are on these devices may be
educational it is important that children are still given the opportunity to
immerse themselves in real books and reading not only for the enjoyment it brings
but also because primary school aged children are expected to reach a good
level of reading ability by the time they enter key stage two at the age of seven.
This can be problematic for some children who may be reluctant to read not only
books, but any printed material and it can also be a concern for parents and
teachers who are often searching for ways to inspire and encourage reading.
Learning to read may not be easy
for some young children so one approach is to show them that there is a purpose
to reading whether it be reading the instructions to a favourite game or
reading a recipe to make a cake. This type of incidental reading can encourage
children to engage in reading without them being aware that they are doing so.
Another way to encourage a
reluctant reader is to share children’s magazines and comic books together so
that the child may be inspired to read material about a hobby they enjoy or an
interest they may have. The biggest challenge for any teacher or parent is to
resist putting pressure on the child to read but rather show them that reading
is fun and an activity to be enjoyed.
It is a fact that primary aged
school children are regularly given homework from school with the amount that
they are given increasing as they move through the school but does this
homework actually make a difference to their academic ability or is it given
out despite some teachers questioning the value of it. Another issue is how
much of the homework is completed by the pupil and how much additional support
have they received from parents and carers meaning that any tasks completed at
home cannot then be used as a reliable method of assessment.
The reasons for setting the
homework need to be studied carefully in order to answer these probing
questions. Some homework is set to give the pupil an opportunity to practise a
skill that they have been working on in class such as a new mathematics method
or spelling practise, but it is clear that some homework is set simply because
the teacher has been told by superiors to regularly give out homework. Practising
new skills is a worthwhile use of homework time as there may not be sufficient
time in the school day to do this. The homework in this case is beneficial and also
serves to give parents an insight into the curriculum that the child is
studying. The child can be encouraged to explain the homework to their parents
and this in turn will be a valuable learning tool.
The problem arises if the child is
unsure about the task set by the teacher and the parents or carer do not
understand the task. This is quite a common issue as was experience by many
parents when children were having to be home schooled for lengthy periods. It
is always a good idea if there are issues that the teacher is made aware of the
difficulties so that they can be addressed at school during lesson time.
Some pupils enjoy doing homework
especially if the task is enjoyable. This may be something like asking parents
or grandparents about their childhood memories or looking for mathematical
shapes around the home even playing a game can be used as a homework task. It
really is up to the teacher to try to make homework a pleasure rather than a
chore so that pupils are continuing to learn after the school day is over and
do not need to be forced by busy parents to complete unhelpful tasks.
As schools try to be as inclusive
as possible when it comes to children with special needs there will probably be
a few children in a mainstream school that would in years gone by be educated
in a special school but are now in the classroom working alongside their peers.
Although socially this is a good thing academically this may cause issues if
the pupils are not well supported and helped to access the curriculum.
Getting a post in a school
offering support to children with special needs can be a rewarding position as
the difference this support can make to a child can be tremendous. The job may
involve preparing resources so that children can access the tasks and
supporting and encouraging children to complete activities.
In order to work in a school with children it
is necessary to have an enhanced DBS check which if you are employed by the
school will be carried out as part of the application process. Qualifications
are usually required to work in this role as sometimes specialist knowledge is
needed in order to fully support children with specific needs. Ongoing training
is an essential part of the job so that you are kept up to date with new