I would like to start this final post off by describing my teaching style. I think to be an effective teacher communication has to be a core strength. I have worked on being a solid communicator most of my life, and I think that will shine through in my teaching. Communication is only part of my teaching style, a good mixture of fun and discipline are also part of the recipe. I want my teaching to always be fun and interesting, avoiding stagnant lapses that create opportunities for students to drift off into their personal dreamworld. One must hold the attention of students to keep motivation thriving and learning fresh. I think the best way to do that is to keep things fun. Also, and equally important, teachers must maintain a certain presence in the classroom. The presence must be one of respect, going both ways from student to teacher and teacher to student. Expecting respect from students and teaching with respect sets the stage for a great learning experience and teaching style.
So, lets get down to the nitty gritty and discuss how my students will learn. First and foremost my students will need to apply themselves to learn. I will always strive to put them in the best position to learn, but for one to truly learn something they must put forth effort and hard work. Honestly, I feel this fits perfectly with a project based learning teaching style. I wasn't very familiar with project based learning before this class, but I connected with it very quickly once introduced. I would love to teach in a project based learning atmosphere and have my students learn in this way. Being hands on and doing things yourself is an extremely effective way to learn something, and I wish I would have had the chance to be in that kind of curriculum when in high school.
Having the right tools in one's classroom is very important. I am going to be a high school science teacher, so utilizing the right tools can have a great impact on learning in my class. If science is a solar system, than questions have to be it's sun. The best tools to have in a science classroom have to be ones that supplement scientific questions. Having that in mind, tools like iCurio and Discovery Ed are a must. Sometimes I feel like a broken record with my constant endorsement of iCurio and Discover Ed, but they are such amazing tools for the classroom. Other tools like a SMART Board and Blogger can be great supplements to learning as well, and I definitely plan to incorporate them too.
I am very excited to start teaching, and to start learning in a new capacity as a teacher. Keeping open lines of communication with my students, making the material fun and maintaining respect between students and teacher sets up an ideal atmosphere for my classroom. I really hope to be in a position that allows my classroom to take on project based learning, because ultimately that's what I want my classroom to feature.
Comparison of ideas between beginning of semester and now
Beginning of semester
-Useful knowledge obtained not just memorized
-Have a good scientific knowledge base
-Being able to use all the classroom tools such as Flasks, Bunsen burner and weight scales
-Students being able to work on and accomplish problems through thinking and not heavily relying on me
-Being honest with my students and maintaining a comfortable learning atmosphere
-Displaying exemplary projects from other students
-Doing group work and having thought provoking discussions in the classroom
-Obtained knowledge through multiple sources including me as a teacher, other fellow students and students from other classrooms around the world
-Having a scientific knowledge base that allows the student to think outside the box in many areas, not just science
-Being able to use scientific equipment (Bunsen burner, flasks, etc), but more importantly being able to use technological tools such as iCurio and Discovery Ed
-Promotion of critical thinking and mental toughness which will result in students' ability to problem solve on a high level
-Having open communication with students and creating an atmosphere of respect and accountability
-Displaying exemplary projects from other students to serve as motivation and as an example of hard work
-Using project based learning to achieve high levels of learning