Baby Steps Are Better Than Nothing at all
Teacher quality has emerged as one of the most important determinants of student performance in the classroom and beyond. Continuous professional development of teachers, therefore, becomes imperative for keeping the teachers regularly updated with latest pedagogical tools, create learning opportunities with peers and be motivated to give their best in the classroom every day.
A recent research conducted by the World Bank titled ‘Learning to realize Education’s Promise’ explains how most teachers can flourish if they are provided with the right training and resources. It also explains the need for equal participation of all segments in an educational setup to help the students absorb better. It focuses on follow-up, pre-service, and in-service training to enhance the skills of teachers so that they can communicate with the students in a healthier and more organic manner, conveying course matter more effectively.
Here are a few methods to enhance and improvise teacher quality for improving learning outcomes for students.
1) Relevant training programs:
The need of the hour is a more comprehensive teacher training solution with optimized content, regularly updated courses readily accessible to the teacher at her discretion Here, content must be relevant and focus on teacher’s ability to address varied learning levels and learning styles of the students.
2) Improved and empowered training techniques:
With technology driving the learning sphere, teachers must be trained to adopt and adapt to these techniques which can empower them to cater to each student’s individual requirement and be effective in helping them grow. Teachers need to be able to facilitate differentiated instructional methods to help each child successively move up the learning level.
3) Community intervention:
Schools and teachers must partner with neighboring communities to give teachers a more practical approach toward teaching students coming from various backgrounds. These could comprise educating teachers about games, lessons, and techniques to overcomes cultural and linguistic barriers to accommodate each student in the class while conducting a lesson. This brings inclusion for all the students in the classroom and appreciates and celebrate their differences. This also constitutes a major source of social-emotional learning for the students of all levels.
4) Provide resource and support to teachers:
After providing pre-service and in-service training courses to teachers authorities must invest time in providing teachers with a platform to continuously learn and innovate. This will help teachers keep themselves abreast with the latest pedagogical tools and address generally prevalent misconceptions in students. The daily excitement generated on a teacher community translates to an energized classroom where students are also then exposed to a multitude of learning resources and innovative learning methodologies which invoke a love of learning and sow the seeds of building ownership towards one’s learning.
5) Make use of technology to make training accessible:
By investing in information and technology, schools and other educational organizations can provide teachers with a wide platform to connect, create and improve content to match the needs of their classroom and also provide them with professional guidance at all times to make necessary decisions for inculcating techniques and practices in their lessons.
Poor and insufficient development has the ability to hamper the personal & professional growth of teachers which in turn can lead to a class of poorly educated students. The students coming out of such an academic system will be ill-equipped to handle the challenges of the ever-changing demands of the 21st-century workspaces. This will, in turn, render a nation like India unable to yield the benefits of the demographic dividend; the promise of the sustainable growth will become more elusive than ever. Therefore, by paying attention to the bigger picture of teacher’s training and facilitating inclusive learning for all students, can learning outcomes be greatly influenced and progressively improved.