Uncovering What I Thought Had Been Missing
Teaching was presented to me by some circumstances although I had this feeling of hesitation for lack of training. I started as a volunteer in a public school with a small number of learners and it became a great challenge. It felt like I was put into a situation with no prior experience and from the start there was this voice telling me I lack something. Day by day, it felt a struggle to know what’s missing and so I decided to enroll in this program. I have already gained a lot of ideas or information during my first trimester and this semester, I realized there’s a lot more to discover.
Having introduced to Teaching Perspectives and Learning Style, I have uncovered another element to be successful in doing the job. The results I had from taking the TPI and TSI has made me see myself as if I have been looking at a “super mirror” that could see through my inner being. Now I have this awareness of how I do things in the learning or teaching environment.
“Knowing your learning style is important because it deals with how you manage information, how you prefer to study, and how you go about solving problems.” Katharine Hansen, Empowering Academic, College, and Career Success via http://www.mycollegesuccessstory.com/academic-success-tools/learning-styles.html
Prior to this, I wasn’t aware that teaching perspectives and learning styles can be figured out through sets of questions and can be labeled and described. It’s interesting because the results came out as if I have spread out what kind of an educator I am before the survey. The descriptions match with how I do things in the classroom or learning environment.
In TPI, the predominant perspectives are Apprenticeship and Nurturing. It is being said that one of the difficulties under Apprenticeship is how to put one’s skill or into knowledge. An educator has to find the “zone of proximal development” (Vygotsky 1978) or the difference between “what the learners can do on their own and what they can do with guided assistance from the instructor.” If I wasn’t enrolled in this subject, I won’t have known this to be useful and that I have the responsibility to see that learners work on tasks that are related and appropriate to the community practice. As for Nurturing, I’ve learned that I need to find balance between my caring ways and the responsibility to give the learner the challenge to learn and set goals. I have to be aware that I might be wanting too much to be like by the learners that I prefer to be nurturing. I hope not to adhere to shallow reasons just like that.
As for my teaching style, I know I will be guided by the disadvantages mentioned for Personal Model style which could lead to some students to feel not adequate enough just in case they fail to achieve the expectation and adhere to standards set. And that overusing the Expert style, I might find myself dealing with intimidated learners especially those who have not gone through the experience.
Pratt, D. D. (Forthcoming). Good teaching: one size fits all? In An up-date on teaching theory, Jovita Ross-Gordon (Ed.), San Francisco: Jossey-Bass, Publishers.
Grasha, A.F., Teaching with Style, http://homepages.ius.edu/kwigley/teaching_with_style.pdf