3.1 Maxims of Teaching

Each child is different from the other and hence requires individualized instruction, there are certain fundamental principles that have to be born in mind while imparting any skill to the child and so the teaching must always proceed from:

·        Simple to complex: Always start with a step in which the child is bound to meet with success. This would motivate the child to learn further. Goals which are too high for the child should be avoided. As the child learns the simpler steps, gradually introduce the complex or different steps.For ex. – While teaching brushing teeth, one should start from front teeth and slowly proceed to the teeth on either side, then the inside of the teeth.

·        Known to unknown: The child’s current level of functioning must be the starting point for teaching the skill. Consider what he knows in a skill as a beginning for teaching the rest of the skill. Thus, if a child need to be taught reading the word ‘dog’, one has to start with the identification of picture of the dog which is known to the child, match the word dog to the picture and let him identify the written word dog in two choice or multiple choice situation.

·        Concrete to abstract: Every teaching must have concrete examples associated with it.For ex. To give the child the concept of Sunday which is abstract, associate it with the activities of Sunday such as father won’t go to office on Sunday and there is no school on Sunday and so on.

·        Whole to part: Any concept taught must be introduced as a whole. Before teaching about the various parts of our body, introduce the whole self-This is the man, this is hand, this is head, these are your eyes and so on. Similarly, words must be introduced as a whole before the letters that makeup that word. These principles must be remembered while teaching any topic to the child.

·        From analysis to synthesis: When we divide a thing into easy parts or separate elements in order to understand it easily is called analysis. It is the process which helps in understanding the hidden elements of a thing or the cause of some incident or behavior. Synthesis is just opposite of analysis. All parts are shown as a whole. For example while teaching digestive system, we should first analyse the different parts of digestive system one by one and then gives the synthetic view of it. Hence a good teacher always proceeds from analysis to synthesis.

·        From particular to general: A teacher should always proceed from particular to general statements. General facts, principles and ideas are difficult to understand and hence the teacher should always first present particular things and then lead to general things. Suppose the teacher is teaching continuous tense while teaching English, he should first of all give few examples and then on the basis of those make them generalize that this tense is used to denote an action that is going on at the time of speaking.

·        From empirical to rational: Empirical knowledge is that which is based on observation and first and experience about which no reasoning is needed at all. It is concrete, particular and simple. We can feel and experience it. On the other hand rational knowledge is based upon arguments and explanations. For example suppose the students are to be taught that water boils on heating. They should first be made to heat the water and see it boiling. Then the teacher should explain the process.

·        From induction to deduction: The process of deriving general laws, rules or formulae from particular examples is called induction. In it if a statement is true in a special situation, it will also be true in other similar situations. It means drawing a conclusion from set of examples. For example when hydrogen reacts with boron, it gives Boron hydride, potassium reacts hydrogen, it gives potassium hydride, we come to the conclusion that all elements when reacts with hydrogen they from hydrides. While using this process in teaching, a teacher has to present particular examples or experiences and tell about similarity of their attributes. Deduction is just opposite of induction. In it, we derive a certain particular conclusion from general laws, rules or principles. For example in language teaching, before giving the definition of noun, the students are acquainted with the example of noun like man, chair, Delhi etc and then they are led to general definition of noun

·        From psychological to logical: Modern education gives more emphases on psychology of the child. The child`s psychological development is of utmost important than any other thing. A teacher while teaching should follow this maxim viz from psychological to logical. Psychological approach takes into consideration the pupil his interests, abilities, aptitudes, development level, needs and reactions. The teacher should keep in mind the psychological selection of the subject matter to be presented before the pupils. Logical approach considers the arrangement of the choosen content into logical order and steps. It is child centered maximum. For example a teacher tells the story of a poem to students when they are not interested in reading, with this a teacher proceeds from psychological to logical sequence.

·         From Actual to Representative: First hand experiences makes learning more vivid and efficient than to give them representative ones. A teacher while selecting the content for presentation should make all efforts possible to present it through actual, natural or real objects than from their improvised representative one’s like pictures, models etc. For example to teach about ‘Golden Temple Amritsar’, a teacher should try his best to visit the actual place and that learning will be more vivid and the pupils will retain it for a long time inspite of teaching through sketches, model or a picture. Representative forms should be used at the higher classes than in lower classes.


3.2 Stages of Teaching: Plan, Implement, Evaluate, Reflect

Teaching is the concerted sharing of knowledge and experience, which is usually organized within a discipline and, more generally, the provision of stimulus to the psychological and intellectual growth of a person by another person or artifact.

Stages of teaching

·        Planning - it is the process of  making  strategy to achive goals that can be carried out in appropriate time considering the need of learner with appropriate availability of material .Planning phase include several decision like  -the needs of the learner  , the achieveable goals and objectives to meet the needs , selection of the content to be taught , motivation to carry out the goal , approach that suits best to carry out the goals etc.

·        Implementation - Based on the objective , implementation is to put into action the different activities in order to achieve the objectives through subject matter .

·        Evaluation - is matching the learning outcome with learning objective  ,it gives information whether the learning goal I achieved or not .

·        Reflection - it refers to careful analysis of teaching strategy , areas that need to be improved , strength and weakness of applied strategy etc . In simple terms it is method for self assessment that is to know how you teach and what needs to be improved.


3.3 Stages of Learning: Acquisition, Maintenance, Generalization

Crow and Crow , 1975 - learning is the acquisition of habit , knowledge and attitudes. It involves new ways of doing things and it operates in individual's attempt to overcome obstacles or to new situations . It represents progressive changes in behaviour and further enables the individual to satisfy interest to attain goals .

Stages of  learning

·        Acquisition - refers to acquiring new skill and knowledge. In this the individual has begun to learn how to complete the target skill correctly but is not yet fluent in the skill .The goal in this phase is to improve accuracy.

·        Proficiency - the individual learns to perform a task or an activity to a higher level of accuracy that further leads to practice, feedback and/or reward.

·        Maintenence - refers to retention of learned knowledge,  skill or behaviour.

·        Generalization - refers to implementation of skill or  behaviour across settings , individual and/or time . Automatically transferring learning to new situation or setting.


3.4 Learning Environment: Psychological and Physical

The learning environment is both a physical structure but also an emotional and intellectual entity. Maslow (1943) suggested that in order for individuals to achieve their full potential, a range of basic needs have to be met first.

Physical space

·        Infrastructure - The resources available to a department can make a large impact on learning. Trainees and consultants alike need lockers, and a pigeonhole, somewhere to obtain and eat food and drink, workspace and computer access.

·        People - Having peers with similar ideas, experiences and goals can give an individual a sense of belonging. Learners are motivated through inclusion and consultation. Work and learning are enhanced if we feel we are a respected part of a team, have a useful role and feel our voice is heard.


·        Motivation - is a key factor in learning. It can arise from intrinsic and extrinsic sources. Their previous experiences, internal pressures and future use or relevance can influence a learner’s intrinsic motivation. Assessments are usually strong extrinsic motivators for learning, but they do little to inspire intrinsic drive and can lead to demotivation and disengagement. Other factors that reduce motivation include: unhelpful attitudes, distractions, hunger or lack of sleep. The teacher’s role in motivation should not be underestimated. Demonstrating enthusiasm for the subject matter and an interest in the learner’s experiences, thoughts and ideas, can all help to maintain attention and improve knowledge and understanding.

·        Safety - learners need to feel safe. This will help them to experiment, reveal their lack of knowledge, ask questions and stretch themselves. By endorsing a learner’s level of knowledge we can create an atmosphere of respect conducive to learning.

·        Belonging - through inclusion and consultation, we feel part of the learning process. Learners should be involved in setting ground rules, in decisions about content, the teaching methods used, feedback and evaluation. It is as important to discuss the above elements with a learner as it is for them to feel involved in the teaching session itself.

·        Self-esteem - safety, belonging and respect all lead to building confidence in a learner. With teaching comes a level of responsibility because praise, appreciation and constructive feedback can all be unraveled with the delivery of one thoughtless comment. The teacher learner interaction is as pivotal a relationship as that which exists between clinician educator and patient and must be balanced to allow both to flourish – neither at the expense of the other. Some find it difficult to translate their clinical dexterity into the educational setting, which is why teaching, like any other skill, has to be learnt, developed and perfected through practice.


3.5 Leadership Role of Teacher in Classroom, School and Community

Louis A. Allen- A leader is one who guides and directs other pupil.

Leader is a outstanding member of a group who has a capacity to create a condition within which all member feel strong, commitment to contribute fully to words achieving accepted objectives in a given environment.

Leadership is a generally defined as influence, that is the art or process of influencing people so that they will strive willingly towards the achievement of group goal.

Principle of leadership

·        Principle of effectiveness

·        Principle of coordination of goal

·        Principle of direct contact

·        Principle of leadership

·        Principle of leadership techniques unity of order

Types of leaderships  

By Kurt Lewin

·        Democratic leadership: Lewin’s study found that participative leadership, also known as democratic leadership, is typically the most effective leadership style.1 Democratic leaders offer guidance to group members, but they also participate in the group and allow input from other group members. In Lewin’s study, children in this group were less productive than the members of the authoritarian group, but their contributions were of a higher quality.

·        Autocratic: Authoritarian leaders, also known as autocratic leaders, provide clear expectations for what needs to be done when it should be done, and how it should be done. This style of leadership is strongly focused on both command by the leader and control of the followers. There is also a clear division between the leader and the members. Authoritarian leaders make decisions independently with little or no input from the rest of the group.

·        Laisses faire or Delegative Leadership: Delegative leaders offer little or no guidance to group members and leave the decision-making up to group members. It is the least productive of all three groups. The children in this group also made more demands on the leader, showed little cooperation, and were unable to work independently. 

A classroom is a group of learners. Generally speaking, learning groups have at least two basic objectives:

1.     to complete learning tasks;

2.     to maintain positive and effective relationships among group members.

Leadership consists of actions that help the group to complete its tasks successfully and maintain effective working relationships among its members. For any group to be successful, both task-leadership actions and group maintenance-leadership actions have to be provided.

Responsible leadership depends upon

a.      flexible behavior;

b.     the ability to diagnose what behaviors are needed at a particular time in order for the group to function most efficiently; and

c.      the ability to fulfill these behaviors or to get other members to fulfill them.

Roles in Teacher Leadership in Classroom

·        Communicate

Communication is the first step in cooperating with others. There are two basic categories of skills -- sending and receiving. Some essential skills are the ability to:

These skills are ones well known to teachers as important classroom skills. They are skills needed by any leader, in any situation.

·        Build and Maintain Trust

Acceptance and support are essential in building and maintaining trust. Acceptance is communicating to others that you have high regard for them. Support is communicating to others that you recognize their strengths and believe they are capable of productively managing their situation.

Underlying all significant learning is the element of trust. Stephen Brookfield (1990) proposes that those playing the role of teacher in a learning group must pay attention to the balance between two important characteristics that make teachers more trustworthy in students' eyes: credibility and authenticity.

·        Manage Conflict

Since participation in a group will inevitably produce some conflicts, it is essential that members of learning groups have the skills required for managing controversies constructively, including the ability to:

Roles in Teacher Leadership in School and Community

Roles in teacher leadership vary greatly. All teacher leaders, whether designated as a leader through certification and job title or simply making a difference in their school a community, drive education forward. Here are just a few roles that a they may take on.

·        Instructional Specialists

An instructional specialist helps teachers improve teaching strategies and implement new instructional ideas into their classrooms. Instructional specialists spend a lot of time researching best practices and new studies so that they can use the latest and most effective lessons and resources in their classrooms. Instructional specialists are often teachers themselves. They take on this additional role to better the overall educational quality of their school and help their fellow educators grow.

·        Mentors

Many teacher leaders take on the role of mentor to help teachers familiarize themselves with the school, curriculum, practices and culture. Mentors are invaluable when it comes to ensuring that standards are communicated and that young teachers feel welcomed to the school community. It’s not just new teachers who need mentors, though. Mentors can help established teachers grow or help parents understand how to encourage their children outside of the classroom.

·        Speakers and Bloggers

Some teacher leaders enjoy speaking at professional conferences and community meetings about their area of expertise or as a representative from their school. Others blog or write pieces for publications. These teacher leaders help place schools and communities in the spotlight and spread their influence beyond just one school. Blogging and speaking is a great way to lead many educators in multiple communities.

·        Data Coaches

Data plays a huge role in teaching, but not every educator knows what to do with the large amounts of it. Data coaches help guide their peers in analyzing and applying the data to improve instruction. Teachers with a knack for numbers will really flourish in this leadership role and help drive the education practices at a school forward.

·        Political Advocates

Teachers and students need representation in the government for teachers to perform at their best. “Advocating for teacher pay, more planning time and common sense in education policies is a significant component of teacher leadership,” said Anthony Colucci, a national board-certified teacher and vice president of the Brevard Federation of Teachers. Teacher leaders can speak from a position of experience on behalf of their schools and fellow educators in the public arena.

While these jobs differ, all have the goal of bringing teachers together, helping them become better and advocating for best practices.