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Professional Practice - Element 4

Element 4

Teachers communicate effectively with their students

I have achieved effective communication with my students in terms of communicting clear directions about learning goals, engaging in classroom discussions, asking questions, listening to students. I try my best to support my communication with various aids such as visuals or gestures. This helps support all the learning needs of the students as well as making the communication much more exciting. For questioning, I am employing Bloom's Taxonomy. I find that these questions are very effective in terms of meeting the diverse needs of the students, hence differentiating the curriculum. I have provided an example of questions that were employed during a game of 'It's Academic' (link is located at the bottom) with my stage 2 class. Also to promote effective questioning, I want to employ the IRF approach (Dufficy, 2006, p.8). This approach is very teacher led but acts as an effective formative assessment (McInerney & McInerney, 2004) as well.

I love using group work throughout my lessons. In many of my lesson plans, I have incorporated various grouping strategies such as pair work, friendship groups, assigned groups and peer tutoring. I find all these to be effective when the students know how to respect and care for each other. This is very important. If the child has no understanding of respect for others, cooperative group work cannot work. Teaching strategies are immense. Sometimes I need to think of what strategies I will use but most of the time, the teaching strategies are spontaneous bubbles of greatness. Unfortunately, I have not recorded these strategies, but let me guarantee you that they work. One example is where stage 3 students were expected to show their understanding of provided vocabulary. I wanted to complete a paper test but found this ineffective. So, immediately, we ripped some strips of paper, wrote some chosen words with their meaning, then did a lucky dip. The words chosen were then to be used in a small paragraph to show their meaning. The students enjoyed this.

I will continuously improve my questioning techniques (NSW Quality Teaching Standards and Gifted and Talented Policy) as I sometimes forget to ask the students what they have learnt. Also I want to improve my formation of sentences when I speak. Sometimes, the words come out before they are processed. I want to use language that is also professional and content based. I need to achieve this by preparing in my head the discussion that will occur in the upcoming lessons. I feel this works effectively as I have a brief idea of where the lesson will be heading.

Teacher and student communication needs to be developed throughout the students' life. Students need to develop appropriate communicating strategies to suit the surrounding. This is effectively taught through drama based literacy. Similar to what Needlands (1990) emphasises that drama and appropriate themes bring about changes in attitudes, social behaviour and understanding and awareness of others.

I believe that teacher and student communication is essential in the classroom. This can be developed through the effective use of narratives (Quality Teaching Framework). The effectiveness of this communication is dependent on the teacher and their genuinity. I believe that group work is essential for the children of today. With the growing poverty and discrimination in the world, children of the future need to work with each other to help each other. I want respect to prevail. I believe that as a teacher, if students can work effectively in a group, then the learning will come follow with a reduction in question asking and misbehaviour. Great classroom feel to when everyone works cooperatively.

Link to Questioning:

http://s850.photobucket.com/albums/ab63/brindi0/?action=view¤t=Image0002.jpg

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