The classroom is a dynamic environment that brings together students from different backgrounds with a number of different personalities and abilities. Whether your child is attending the international schools in Singapore or you simply want more information about effective teaching strategies to look for in the best classrooms, here are some of the top teaching strategies for the classroom:
The best classrooms bring dull academic concepts to life with visual and practical learning experiences, which helps your child and other students understand how what they learn in school applies in the real world. Examples of visualization include using the interactive whiteboard to display photos, audio clips, and videos and encouraging students to get out of their seats with local field trips and classroom experiments.
Another great teaching strategy used by the best classrooms is cooperative learning. This strategy involves encouraging students of mixed abilities to work together by promoting the whole class or small group activities. Students learn how to develop their self-confidence and enhance their communication and critical thinking skills through verbally expressing ideas and responding to others during the cooperative learning process. The skills that your child learns during cooperative learning are important throughout their entire life. Solving mathematics puzzles, conducting science experiments, and acting out short drama sketches are a few examples of how cooperative learning can be incorporated into the classroom environment.
Inquiry based instruction.
Another great teaching strategy that the best classrooms provide is inquiry-based instruction, which encourages posing thought-provoking questions that inspire students to think for themselves and become more independent learners. With this strategy, students are encouraged to ask questions and investigate their own ideas in order to help improve their problem-solving skills and gain a deeper understanding of academic concepts, both of which are crucial life skills. These inquiries can be more rational science or mathematics-based questions like, “Is the sum of two odd numbers always an even number?” or “Why does my shadow change size?” But the inquiries can also be more subjective and allow your child to express their own unique views and opinions, like “Should all students be required to wear uniforms?” or “Do poems have to rhyme?”
Another great teaching strategy is differentiating teaching by allocating tasks based on students’ different abilities to make sure that no student gets left behind. Assigning classroom activities according to the unique learning needs of each and every student means that those students with higher academic capabilities are stretched and people who are struggling get the support that they need. Differentiation can involve handing out worksheets that vary in their complexity to different groups of students or setting up different work stations around the classroom that include an assortment of different tasks for students to choose from. Teachers can also use online educational tools that automatically group students for them to easily identify individual and whole-class learning gaps.
Technology in the classroom.
Technology in the classroom is another excellent teaching strategy. Incorporating technology into the learning process is a wonderful way to actively engage students, as digital media surrounds kids and young people during the 21st century. Interactive whiteboards, phones, tablets, and mobile devices can be used to display videos and images that help students visualize new academic concepts. Learning can become more interactive and hands-on when technology is used, since students can physically engage during the lesson and instantly research their questions and ideas, developing a sense of autonomy. Mobile devices like iPads and tablets can be used in the classroom for students to record results or take photos and videos or as a behavior management technique. Incorporating online educational programs into lesson plans is an excellent way to make formative assessments more engaging and fun.
Implementing an effective behavior management strategy can also help ensure that students have an equal chance of reaching their full potential. Noisy and disruptive classrooms do no encourage a productive learning environment, so creating an atmosphere of mutual respect through a strategy that combines discipline and reward can help teachers and their students. Examples of behavior management include interactive and fun reward charts for younger students, where the students move up or down based on their behavior and the top student receives a prize at the end of the week. Golden time can also work for students of all ages, with a choice of activities like games or no homework in reward for their discipline and hard work.
Engaging in regular professional development programs can help teachers enhance teaching and learning in the classroom. Sessions can include learning about new educational technologies, online safety training, how to use a teaching assistant more. Being an effective teacher can be difficult since every student is unique, but students can use a combination of teaching strategies to address students’ varying learning styles and make the classroom a more dynamic and motivational environment for your child and other students.