A site maintained by teachers for teachers
From today’s observation I was able to reflect on several issues.
The first issue being: Having a student nibbling his/her lunch during a lesson. In this position I would stop my explanation and only continue when each and every one in the class is paying attention. From what I saw this week the student concerned immediately stopped eating and apologized! I was surprised as it is not common for students of that age to apologize. This showed sincere regrets and I as his\her teacher would have truly appreciated this gesture. I wondered what could have prompted this student to apologise and to such politeness. Most probably he came from a well –bred family. However, today, the other students’ behaviour tended to become a little unpleasant. Some students were not afraid to answer back and one of them even did so in foul language.
This led me to reflect on another issue: Students lacking you respect. I believe that you should never tell a student to go outside a classroom or if so just behind the door window so that you could still keep an eye on him. If the student escape from the school and/or got hurt, it would have been the teacher’s sole responsibility. Furthermore, when doing the explanation every student have the right to be in class and participate and also the teacher avoid the hassle explaining the same thing more than once. If the student had lacked respect, I personally believe that no action can be justified. Disrespect sometimes can be due to the student trying to show off and appear cool in front of everyone, disinterest in the subject or maybe as a way of overcoming past experiences such as being bullied, by behaving in such way.
In these past observations I also had the possibility to observe some students behaviours in the corridors or at the assembly and I noticed how their attitudes varied according to the teachers` and even the support teachers` gender. With male teachers, the students were more respectful, more attentive and better behaved then with female teachers. With the former, they seem to make more effort to please them and more often display a higher self-esteem. From what I observed last year as well, I tried to come up with various reasons why this could be. It can be maybe male teachers display a better sense of humour, crack more jokes and provoke more competition among the students in their teaching methods. Also at that age teenagers are often still trying to fit in the social environs and new experiences in life. Moreover, they are still getting accustomed to their pubertal body changes and having a good looking female teacher surely provides a distraction. They do their utmost to appear cool. Most of the boys especially, would have a lot of issues with their mothers, and maybe they associate a female teacher with their mother. Finally, male teachers seem to be stricter in their classes and maybe they look at them as role models.
As I was leaving the school, I heard a student stating how stressed he was this year. This shows that some students work under an amount of stress, which is certainly not a healthy thing. I personally think that some students are being pushed to achieve high academic results chiefly by their parents and are being left really stressed with no relaxation time at all! Sometimes even some teacher push their students too hard. By this, I do not mean that the teachers and family should not do their best to have highly educated students,however I personally think that a limit should be set and the students should have some relaxation and fun time, where they can do things they like best and enjoy being the children they still are.
From this observation I tried to figure out some factors which might motivate and encourage students and also what may make students dislike school. I personally think that making use of presentations and making the lesson interesting is a major factor of what motivates students and avoids boredom. The teachers must keep in mind the age level of the students and their abilities.Good and effective communication between the students and the teacher is a must. Joviality and cracking an occasional joke to relieve tiredness and boredom and speaking with dignity are very important, however, it is important to make it clear that the teacher is in charge. The classroom environment must be a loving and welcoming one, a second home for the student where s/he feels at ease and looks forward to go to, and not a place where the student is eager to get away from at the first opportunity that crops up.
Futurist, educator, speaker, writer
Christopher Felix Bezzina
Higher Education in the Digital Age
The TED Blog shares interesting news about TED, TED Talks video, the TED Prize and more.
give it time
Research and practice in the use of play and games for adult learning
Creative Healing with Writing and Art
Conflict simulation, peacebuilding, and development